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St. Jones River
Saint Jones River.jpg
The St. Jones River in Dover in 2006
Other name(s) Tributary to Delaware Bay
Country United States
State Delaware
County Kent
City Dover
Physical characteristics
Main source Silver Lake
Dover
13 ft (4.0 m)
River mouth Delaware Bay
Bowers
0 ft (0 m)
Length 13 mi (21 km)
Discharge
  • Location:
    Bowers Beach, Delaware
  • Average rate:
    107.65 cu ft/s (3.048 m3/s) at mouth with Delaware Bay
Basin features
Progression southeast
River system Delaware Bay
Basin size 36 sq mi (93 km2)
Tributaries
Waterbodies Silver Lake
Bridges E Division Street, E Lookerman Street, Martin Luther King, jr. Blvd., US 13, Puncheon Run Connector, E Lebanon Road, DE 1

The St. Jones River is a river flowing to Delaware Bay in central Delaware in the United States. It is 12.8 miles (20.6 km) long and drains an area of 36 square miles (93 km2) on the Atlantic Coastal Plain. The river is believed to have been named either for Robert Jones, an early European property owner in the region, or for "St. Jone", the Welsh spelling of St. John.

The St. Jones River flows for its entire length in east-central Kent County. According to the Geographic Names Information System, the river begins at the dam of Silver Lake in the city of Dover; Silver Lake is fed by Fork Branch, Penrose Branch, and Maidstone Branch. From Silver Lake, the St. Jones River flows generally southeastwardly, along the east side of downtown Dover and past Legislative Hall, the Capital Square/Legislative Mall, and the Dover Air Force Base to Bowers, where it flows into Delaware Bay, approximately 0.5 miles (0.8 km) north of the mouth of the Murderkill River.

The lower course of the river southeast of Dover is surrounded by brackish marshes and salt marshes, open water habitats, and wetlands. A portion of the lower river, along with nearby Blackbird Creek, have received federal protection as the Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve, part of the National Estuarine Research Reserve system.

Variant names

The United States Board on Geographic Names settled on "St. Jones River" as the stream's name in 1894. According to the Geographic Names Information System, it has also been known historically as:

  • Jones Creek
  • Joness Creek
  • Kishlen
  • Saint Jones Creek
  • Warge Kijhlen
  • Wulfs Creek
  • Wulfscreek
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