News of interest to Calvert, Charles and St. Mary's counties that appeared in the daily Post, Nov. 7 to 13

Sunday | 7

Designer of Calvert Flag Dies

Jane Elizabeth Peter Coffin, 92, who designed the Calvert County flag and painted historical murals in the county courthouse in Prince Frederick, died of pneumonia Oct. 26 in Cambridge, where she had recently moved. Coffin's flag design features a green tobacco leaf on a black and gold field. Over the years, as tobacco fell out of favor, she urged officials not to change the flag, pointing out tobacco's key role in the county's history. She had lived in Scientists Cliffs since the 1950s with her husband, Robert Morris Coffin, who died in 2000.

Sunday | 7

Crash Kills Waldorf Woman, 20

Shanika Greenfield, 20, of Waldorf died Saturday morning when the car she was riding in left Route 925, went airborne and struck a telephone pole, the Maryland State Police said. Greenfield was in the back seat when the southbound vehicle crossed the center line and ran off the road about 3 a.m. The driver and a front-seat passenger were injured.

Sunday | 7

Voter Turnout Exceeds 2000's

Unofficial vote totals showed increases in voter turnout in all three Southern Maryland counties compared with those of the 2000 presidential election. In Calvert County, 79 percent of registered voters went to the polls Nov. 2. In Charles County, 78 percent voted, and in St. Mary's County, 75 percent cast ballots.

Tuesday | 9

Calvert Pipeline Plan Criticized

The Dominion energy company's plan to build a 36-inch pipeline to carry natural gas across Southern Maryland from a terminal on the Chesapeake Bay in Calvert County has drawn harsh criticism from those whose land it would cross and from others who say the project would create safety hazards. The route would cross many farms that have been enrolled in land preservation programs. Such a route was chosen, some farmers say, because the undeveloped property is less expensive than land in more populated areas.

Wednesday | 10

Baseball Clash Echoes

While officials in the District spar over the location and financing for a proposed Major League Baseball stadium, a similar battle is raging on a smaller scale in the Charles County village of Hughesville. County elected officials and economic development agencies say the minor league ballpark would provide family entertainment and help revitalize commercial activity in Hughesville, once one of the area's main tobacco markets. Opponents, mostly residents of the crossroads and its rural environs, say the stadium would destroy their quiet, country way of life.

Tuesday, Thursday | 9 & 11

Builder Ends St. Mary's Land Bid

A Baltimore construction executive retreated from his proposal to buy 836 acres of St. Mary's County woodlands from the state in a deal that would have given him up to $6 million in tax benefits. Willard Hackerman had proposed buying the land, donating part of it to the county for schools and preserving the rest by giving the development rights back to the state, which was the source of potential tax advantages. Though he will not buy the land, Hackerman said he nevertheless will donate $1 million to St. Mary's County for the purchase of school sites. Later in the week, internal state documents related to the original proposal indicated that officials were concerned that Hackerman would subdivide and develop a portion of the land. The deal, which was backed by aides to Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. (R), fell apart after heightened scrutiny from state lawmakers.

Friday | 12

Uncertain Prospects for Oysters

For weeks this fall, even as St. Mary's County celebrated the beginning of oyster season with festivals and contests, Tucker and Agnes Brown couldn't find oysters. Most days, the stainless steel sinks and tables inside their shuck house were shining, untouched. The decline of the region's oyster population has changed life on the water, but the Browns keep looking ahead, thinking that perhaps the government will bring in a new kind of oyster that can survive in the bay. For decades the Browns, like most watermen, have adapted as diseases, pollution and commercial fisheries have taken their toll on the Chesapeake Bay and its rivers. Oysters, an important filter for the water and once the mainstay of the region's fishing industry, have been decimated, their numbers dropping to historic lows.