This section is from the book "The Law Of Real Property and Other Interests In Land", by Herbert Thorn Dike Tiffany. Also available from Amazon: A Treatise on the Modern Law of Real Property and Other Interests in Land .
In a number of states the owner of land bordering upon navigable water has the privilege of reclaiming land under water in front of his land,49 and of erecting wharfs and piers upon such submerged land,50 although he is not the owner thereof. The right of "wharfing out," is substantially identical with that of reclamation, and they will be here discussed as one right.
48. Atty. Gen. v. Wemyss, 13 App. Cas. 192; Marshall v. Ulleswater Company, L. R. 7 Q. B. 166; Hindson v. Ashby,  2 ch. 1.
49. Musser v. Hershey, 42 Iowa, 356; Baltimore & O. R. Co. v. Chase, 43 Md. 23; Hanford v. St. Paul & Duluth R. Co., 43 Minn. 104, 7 L. R. A. 722, 42 N. W. 596, 44 N. W. 1144; State v. Korrer, 127 Minn. 60, L. R. A. 1916C, 139, 148 N. W. 617; Clement v. Burns, 43 N. H. 609; Stevens v. Pater-son & N. J. R. Co., 34 N. J. L. 532; Heiney v. Nolan, 75 N. J. L 397, 67 Atl. 1008; Providence Steam Engine Co. v. Providence & S. Steamship Co., 12 R. I. 348.
50. Dutton v. Strong, 1 Black. (U. S.) 23, 17 L. Ed. 29; Mobile Transportation Co. v. City of Mobile, 153 Ala. 409, 13 L. R. A. (N. S.) 352, 127 Am. St. Rep. 34, 44 So. 976; Simons v. French, 25 Conn. 346; Mills & Allen v. Evans, 100 Iowa, 712, 69 N. W.
1043; Bainbridge v. Sherlock, 29 Ind. 364; Rice v. Ruddiman, 10 Mich. 125; Union Depot St. Ry. & Transfer Co. v. Brunswick, 31 Minn. 297, 47 Am. Rep. 789, 17 N W. 626; Clement v. Burns, 43 N. H. 609; Bell v. Gough, 23 N. J. L. 624,; Brookhaven v. Smith, 188 N. Y. 74, 80 N. E. 665; Bond v. Wool, 107 N. C. 139, 12 S. E. 281; State v. Cleveland & P. R. Co., 94 Ohio 61 L. R. A. 1917A, 1007, 113 N. E. 677; Providence Steam Engine Co. v. Providence & S. Steamship Co., 12 R. I. 348; Diedrich v. Northwestern Union Rwy. Co., 42 Wis. 248, 24 Am. Rep.399.
Similar to the right of erecting wharves is that of constructing booms to aid in the floating of logs. Musser v. Hershey, 42 Iowa, 356; Williamsburg Boom Co. v. Smith, 84 Ky. 372, 1 S. W. 765; Coquille Mill & Mercantile Co. v. Johnson, 52 Ore. 547, 132 Am. St. Rep. 716; 98 Pac. 132; Colin v. Wasau Boom Co., 47 Wis. 314, 2 N. W. 546.
In some states rights of this character have been created by express statutory provision,51 and the establishment of harbor lines by or under authority of the state in effect confers authority on the land owner to make improvements out to such lines.52 In a few states the existence of such a right, apart from statute, has been explicitly denied.53
The right of reclamation and of wharfing out, where recognized, is regarded as the exclusive right of the littoral or riparian owner, in front of whose land the privilege is sought to be asserted.54 But while this general rule is not questioned, its application as between neighboring owners upon the shore or bank is a matter of very great difficulty.55 One who does not own land bordering on the water has no right of reclamation or of wharfing out,56 except in so far as he may acquire the right by reason of its severance from the riparian land to which it originally appertained.57
51. See Palama Ice & Fish Co. v. Atlanta & St. A. B. R. Co., 71 Fla. 149, 71 So. 608; Horner v. Pleasants, 66 Md. 475, 7 Atl. 691; White v. Nassau Trust Co., 168 N. Y. 149, 64 L. R. A. 275, 61 N E. 169; Atlantic & N. C. R. Co. v. Way, 172 N. C. 774, 90 S. E 937; Montgomery v. Shaver, 40 Ore. 244, 66 Pac. 923; Austin v. Rutland R. Co., 45 Vt. 215.
52. Miller v. Mendenhall, 43 Minn. 95, 8 L. R. A. 89, 19 Am. St. Rep. 219, 44 N. W. 1141; People v. Delaware & Hudson Co., 213 N. Y. 194, 107 N. E. 506; Bailey v. Burges, 11 R. I. 330. And see Sullivan Timber Co. v. Mobile, 110 Fed. 186.
53. Dana v. Jackson St. Wharf Co., 31 Cal. .18, 89 Am. Dec. Revell v. People, 177 111. 468, 43 L. R. A. 790, 69 Am. St. Rep. 257, 52 N. E. 1052; Commissioners of Lincoln Fark v. Fahrney, 250 111. 256, 95 N. E. 194; State v. Longfellow, 169 Mo. 109, 68 S. W. 374, (semble); Naglee v. Ingersoll, 7 Pa. 185; McGunnegle v. Pittsburg & L. E. R. Co., 213 Pa. 383, 62 Atl. 988 (semble); Austin v. Rutland R. Co., 45 Vt. 215; been referred to as a franchise,63 a license,64 and an easement.65 The right is, However, sui generis, and there appears to be little or no advantage in the use of such nomenclature. The judicial recognition of the right involves ex hypothesi the assumption that the submerged land over which it is exercisable does not belong to the owner of the riparian land to which the right appertains, and any suggestion66 that such person, by reason of the existence of this right, has an estate in the submerged land, cannot be accepted.67
Eisenbach v. Hatfield, 2 Wash. St. 236. 18 L. R. A. 632, 26 Pac. 539.
In Washington, apparently, the owner of the upland has no right to wharf out over the land belonging to the state below high water mark, but one who has acquired shore land may wharf out over the land belonging:o the state below the low water mark. State v. Sturtevant, 76 Wash. 158, 135 Pac. 1035.
In one case, while the right of wharfing out was recognized, any right of otherwise reclaiming land under water appears to have been negatived. Diedrich v. Northwestern Union Railway Co, 42 Wis. 248. And see People v. Delaware & Hudson Co., 213 N. Y. 194, 107 N. E. 506.
54. Lane v. Harbor Commis-sionres, 70 Conn. 685, 40 Atl. 1058; Hanford v. St. Paul & Duluth R. Co. 43 Minn. 104, 7 L. R. A. 722, 42 N. W. 596, 44 N. W. 1144; Bond v. Wool, 107 N. Car. 139, 12 S. E. 281; McCarthy v. Murphy, 119 Wis. 159, 100 Am. St. Rep. 876. It has been decided that the making of an improveR. P.-65.
The exercise of the right is subject to the proviso that it is not exercised in such a way as substantially to interfere with navigation,58 and it is subject to any restrictions in this behalf imposed by the state or by authority of the state.59 Apart from specific limitation by statute or ordinance as to the distance outwards to which the improvement may be extended, as by the designation of harbor lines, it may be extended, it has been variously said, "to the point of navigablity,"60 "of actual navigability,"61 and "of practical navigability."62