SoJourn has arrived!


SoJourn — our new journal devoted to the history, culture, and geography of South Jersey has arrived from the printers.

It is available at the Stockton Campus Center Bookstore, Second Time Books in Mt. Laurel, the AtlantiCare Regional Medical Center gift shop, the Visitors Center at Smithville, which is part of the Burlington County park system, the Pine Barrens Store next to the Shamong Diner on Route 206 and Amazon. It will be available in other bookstores and establishments soon. Price is $7.95. All proceeds go to the SJCHC publication fund.

Second Time Books   Amazon

SoJourn is a collaborative effort. Local historians contribute the articles; Stockton students edit, set type, and design the layout; SJCHC oversees the publication.


Brief Description of Articles:

“Bipolar State: A Survey and Analysis of South Jersey’s Geographical and Cultural Borders” by Robert Lowe Barnett and Steve Chernoski.

For years, divisions within the state of New Jersey have been a topic of conversation. Most people recognize a cultural divide between North and South Jersey, and some argue for a “central” Jersey. This entertaining article mixes geography and cultural analysis to examine historical boundaries that influence the state to this day.

“The Future of Transportation: The Bicycle Railway” by Dennis McDonald

2,000 people gathered within three days of the opening of the Arthur Hotchkiss’s bicycle railway in 1892. Six years later, the track which connected Smithville and Mount Holly was in disrepair. Hardly a trace remains today. Follow the rise and fall of one of New Jersey’s most novel inventions.

“Nature, Naturalists, and South Jersey” by Claude M. Epstein

Follow noted naturalists as they explore South Jersey over a 400-year span. Epstein describes the areas where naturalists studied, their research and field logistics, and the specialization of their professions over time.

“Mary, Mary, Quite Contrary. . .” by Patricia A. Martinelli

Mary Tillotson was a 19th-century suffragist who lived in Vineland and campaigned for the right of women to wear comfortable clothing. She herself wore pants around town, believing that less restrictive fashions supported women’s health and comfort. Tillotson traveled the northeast and across the country preaching social and dress reform.

“Nash’s Cabin (Buck Run)” by Richard Watson

Local historians have long been intrigued by the site known as “Nash’s Cabin” on Buck Run of the Oswego River. Did the 20th-century poet Ogden Nash build it, did his relatives own it, or even someone named Nash? Richard Watson has traced the history of the land and the cabin built upon it, uncovering the Nash family and describing the intriguing tale of this site.

“Immersion” by Ken Tompkins

Forty-six years ago, three of Stockton University’s early administrators—its first president and two deans—spent 48 hours on the streets of Camden with $2 in their pockets. Their immersion experience was a social experiment from another time.

“Shinplasters: Economic Remnants of New Jersey’s Glass Industry” by Todd R. Sciore

Before New Jersey was known for produce, it had a booming glass industry. Glass manufacturers, in order to retain skilled workers in rural South Jersey, needed to provide food, shelter and wages. They found that locally issued scrip, or shinplasters, helped keep employees in one area. The issuance of this “funny money” was popular in the glass houses of New Jersey and has become a collectible for historians.

“The Burlington Town Plan: From Medieval to Modern” by Robert P. Thompson

Extracted from Robert P. Thompson’s forthcoming Burlington Biographies: A History of Burlington City, New Jersey Through the Lives and Times of Its People (published by the SJCHC, supported by a grant from the New Jersey Historical Commission). This article provides an intriguing glimpse of the original European settlement of Burlington. To this day, decisions made during the 17th century inform the urban design of the city.

“Mary Ann and the Cranberry Farm, a Transformative Experience” by Alexis Demitroff

Mary-Ann Thompson, who ran Paradise Hill Farm, an organic heirloom cranberry farm in Vincentown, New Jersey, was a well-known preservationist, activist and visionary. She is remembered by Alexis Demitroff who studied with Mary-Ann for a semester in 2013.

Editors: Rebecca Hund, William Bassett, Greg Melo, Ashley Robertson, Taylor Carmen, Aurora Rose Landman, Gabrielle Veneziale, Naijasia Thomas, Jenna Geisinger, Olivia Oravets, Kristina Boyer, Kyle Ewers, Paul W. Schopp and Tom Kinsella.

SJCHC / School of Arts & Humanities

Stockton University

101 Vera King Farris Dr.

Galloway, NJ 08205

Or write

Posted in Announcements | Comments Off on SoJourn has arrived!

Garment Workers of South Jersey: Nine Oral Histories

Garment-Workersfront-cover The garment industry was an important component
of the South Jersey economy throughout much of the
twentieth century, especially in the Town of Hammonton,
New Jersey.

Collected here are informative interviews with nine
former garment workers or their family members.
Their stories describe a way of life that balanced hard
work in the factories with the demands of a caring
home life. Here are the words of skilled craftspeople
who took pride in their work, their families, and ultimately
the lives they led.

85 pages, paperback
ISBN: 978-0-9888731-8-6

Jointly published in 2016 by The Stockton Center on
Successful Aging, the South Jersey Culture & History
Center, and Kramer Hall. Available on Amazon and by
contacting SJCHC

Posted in Announcements, Publications | Comments Off on Garment Workers of South Jersey: Nine Oral Histories

Reading South Jersey

Alumni ReadingPoster1

Posted in Announcements, Events | Comments Off on Reading South Jersey

Whitesbog Living History Tours & Antiques Show

The Whitesbog Preservation Trust will host its 1920s Cranberry Harvest Living History Tours and Antiques Show on Sunday, October 25, 2015.

Beginning at 10:00 AM, visitors will be able Shop dozens of Antique Dealers for vintage tools, toys, postcards, bottles & turn-of-the-Century collectible treasures…. Free admission and parking.

At 1:00 PM, Enjoy the reenactment of a 1920’s Cranberry Harvest and Learn about Whitesbog’s founder and legendary cranberry grower, J.J. White, his daughter and blueberry innovator, Elizabeth C. White, and other residents of Whitesbog from scientists to berry pickers. Docents in period dress will guide you through the Village’s many museums and historic buildings.

Visit all Whitesbog Village’s interpreted museums & historic landscapes with to:

• Meet Whitesbog’s founder and famed cranberry grower, J. J. White, and harvest your own cranberry’s with an authentic 1920s cranberry scoop.
• Meet Elizabeth Coleman White and tour her historic home and office at Suningive.
• Learn about a typical villager’s day in the Workers’ Cottage.
• Meet Charles Beckwith and visit the 1st Rutgers’ Experimental Research Substation (circa 1920).
• Visit the Paymaster’s Shed and trade your cranberries in for a 1920s pickers voucher – then spend it in the General Store.
• Enjoy a Wagon ride out into the Bogs and old time bluegrass by the Blueberry Jam Band.

Tour admission: Adults $8, Children 5 to18 years old are $5, Children under 4 years are free

Reservations are requested to 609-893-4646

Historic Whitesbog Village is located on County Route 530 at mile marker 13, just 1.3 miles Northwest of Route 70, and a few miles southeast of Browns Mills, NJ.

GPS or Mapquest address: 120 North Whitesbog Road, Browns Mills, NJ 08015. Telephone (609) 893-4646 for more information

Visit our Website: for Directions from the Tri-State Area—using I-95, the New Jersey Turnpike & the Garden State Parkway.

Funding is made possible in part by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/ Department of State, a Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts through a grant to the Burlington County Board of Chosen Freeholders.

Posted in Announcements | Comments Off on Whitesbog Living History Tours & Antiques Show

Naming Lake Fred

Lake Fred - at the heart of Stockton University

Lake Fred – at the heart of Stockton University

The South Jersey Culture & History center presents another of its occasional publications, “Naming Lake Fred”: the story of how the central lake of Stockton University received its prosaic name, Fred.

Materials gathered from the Bjork Library, Special Collections & Archives and interviews with early alums and faculty inform this detailed essay by Tom Kinsella. Enjoy.

Naming Lake Fred
pdf-format (7.1 mb)

Posted in Announcements | Comments Off on Naming Lake Fred

Call for Articles

The SJCHC is accepting submissions for SoJourn: Journal of South Jersey History & Culture

In spring 2016, the South Jersey Culture & History Center at Stockton University will publish its inaugural issue of SoJourn, a new journal devoted to the history, culture, and geography of southern New Jersey. We are seeking community members, avocational historians, and scholars to contribute essays on topics related to South Jersey. Illustrations to accompany these articles will be a plus. Articles should be written for laypersons who are interested and curious about South Jersey topics, but do not necessarily have expertise in the areas covered. Potential authors should check SJCHC’s website in mid-October 2015 ( for a link to a simplified style sheet guide for article preparation. Journal editors will be happy to guide any would be authors.

Sample topics might include:
Biographical sketches of important but forgotten local people; the development or succession of a community’s roads or bridges; local transportation (focused by mode or area) and what changes it wrought in the served communities; history of community businesses and industries (wineries, garment factories, agriculture, etc.); old school houses, old hotels, or meeting halls; narrative descriptions of local geographical features; essays concerned with folklore, music, arts; and reviews of new local interest publications. Photo essays and old photograph and postcard reproductions are welcome with applicable captions. In short, if a South Jersey topic interests you, it will likely interest SoJourn’s readers.

Parameters for submissions:
• Submissions must pertain to topics bounded within the 8 southernmost counties of New Jersey (Burlington & Ocean Counties and south)
• Manuscripts should be approximately 3,000–4,000 words long (5 to 7 pages of single-spaced text and 9 to 12 pages including images)
• Manuscripts should conform to the SoJourn style sheet, available here:
• Manuscripts, if at all possible, should be submitted in digital format (Word- or pdf-formatted documents preferred)
• Images should be submitted as high-resolution tiff- or jpeg-formatted files (editors can assist with digital conversion of photos if necessary)
• Appropriate citations printed as endnotes should be employed (see style sheet).
• Original submissions only. Copyright licenses for all images must be obtained by the author or should be copyright-free figures and/or figures in the public domain.
• Articles need to be more than just a chronology of the given topic. The author should be able to properly contextualize the subject by answering such questions as: a) why is this important?; b) what is the impact on the local or regional history? and c) how does it compare to similar events/personages/changes/processes in other localities?

Call for submissions:
Submissions are due by December 31, 2015.
Send inquiries or submissions to

The call in pdf format can be found here: Call for Articles

Posted in Announcements | Comments Off on Call for Articles

A Trip to Mars

Cover-s A Trip to Mars, by Charles K. Landis, the founder of Vineland and Sea Isle City. The manuscript of this previously unknown sci-fi thriller was found in the vault of the Vineland Historical & Antiquarian Society. It is now jointly published by the VHAS and SJCHC. Available for purchase on Amazon or from VHAS, also in the Stockton University Bookstore.

The story has adventure scenes – fighting off monstrous beasts that control large swaths of the Marsian wilderness and impinge upon the more settled agricultural and urban areas – it has philosophical sections, where the culture of Earth and Mars are held up and compared. It is an intriguing volume by an important South Jersey figure.

132 pages, paperback, $9.95.

Posted in Announcements, Publications | Comments Off on A Trip to Mars

Climate Change: A Panel Discussion

At the Noyes Museum of Art of Stockton University
Oceanville, NJ

Thursday, September 10
6:30 – 7:30 pm

Regular admission; Members – Free
FREE for Stockton Students, Faculty and Staff

Five distinguished panelists will discuss climate change. Organized by artist Laura Petrovich-Cheney and featuring artist Diane Burko as moderator. The catalyst for the discussion is the Noyes Museum’s exhibition Frozen Earth: Images from the Arctic Circle.

Featuring the works of several artists from a fall 2013 Arctic Circle expedition, Frozen Earth offers a glimpse into how the changing environment of the northern extremes of our planet inspired artists to explore central issues of our time. The intent is to expand the dialogue on climate change and to create impactful conversations that not only include the art community, but the science and literary communities as well.

Panelists include:
Michael Lemonick, covered science and the environment for TIME magazine for nearly 21 years, where he wrote more than 50 cover stories, and has also written for Discover, Scientific American, Wired, New Scientist, The Washington Post and National Geographic.

Dr. Jeff Niemitz, Professor of Earth Sciences at Dickinson College, has been the president of the National Association of Geoscience Teachers and is a Fellow of the Geological Society of America.

Andrew Revkin has covered science and the environment for 30 years in newspapers, magazines, books, documentaries and in his New York Times blog, Dot Earth, winning the country’s top science journalism awards multiple times. He was a staff reporter at The Times from 1995 to 2009. He has written acclaimed books on global warming, the changing Arctic and the fight to save the Amazon rain forest.

Amy Lipton began her career as a gallerist in New York City from 1986-1995. She is the co-founder of Eco Art Space, which is one of the leading international organizations in a growing community of artists, scientists, curators, writers, nonprofits and businesses who are developing creative and innovative strategies to address our global environmental issues.

Aaron T. O’Connor is the founding director of The Arctic Circle expeditionary residency program. This unique residency takes place aboard a specially outfitted, century old sailing vessel in the High Arctic.

Posted in Announcements, Events | Comments Off on Climate Change: A Panel Discussion

Take a Trip to Mars

Join us at Stockton’s Kramer Hall in Hammonton on September 17th, 2015 — 6:00-8:0pm — for the launch of Charles K. Landis’ previously unpublished A Trip to Mars.


Posted in Announcements, Events, Publications | Comments Off on Take a Trip to Mars

Talk on The Civilian Conservation Corps

Here is the announcement for the August installment of Batsto’s “Beyond the Barrens” speaker series. It will take place at the visitor center auditorium on Saturday August 8 at 1:00pm. Admission is $2.00 per person. This month’s presentation is “The Civilian Conservation Corps” by Wes Hughes.

In 1933, newly elected President Franklin Roosevelt devised a plan to help protect the nation’s forest and get its unemployed youth working. For nearly a decade, the Civilian Conservation Corps. planted trees, constructed campgrounds and cabins, dug lakes, built park roads and lookout towers and all things necessary to help protect the land and create recreational areas for all citizens to enjoy. Unemployed men between the ages of 18 and 25 were given the chance to earn a monthly wage of $30, have a roof over their head and get three meals each day. Coming from families on relief, they were required to send home $25 of their monthly wage home. The work was hard and the days long, but these young men acquired skills, a strong work ethic and an appreciation for our natural resources. When the program ended in 1942, more than three million men working in 4500 different camps across the country planted almost three billion trees, built 125,000 miles of park roads and developed 800 state parks.
Wes Hughes, a resident of Cherry Hill, NJ, is employed as the Director of Commercial & Industrial Service for Goodwill Industries of Southern New Jersey and Philadelphia. Hughes is a member of the Batsto Citizens Committee, Inc. and a lover of all things related to the Jersey Pine Barrens. His love of history, his native southern New Jersey and the Civilian Conservation Corps. philosophy compelled him to tell the story of these special men.

Batsto, a once thriving industrial center is now a historic village of limitless opportunities. Explore this 18th/19th Century community as you walk back in time among the buildings and listen to the stories still being told. Discover the natural beauty that surrounds the area on one of the numerous hiking trails and in the Annie M. Carter Interpretive Center. Make sure to begin your journey at the Batsto Visitor Center which, in addition to having a highly regarded museum, houses a world renowned book and gift shop. Also, the Batsto Visitor Center auditorium is home to “Beyond the Barrens: A Pinelands Speaker Series”. The program, held on the second Saturday of every month, focuses on the various natural, cultural, and historical aspects of this unique South Jersey region. The presentations begin at 1:00pm and last for approximately one hour. Admission is $2.00 per person and the facility is ADA accessible. If you have any questions, or for more details, regarding your visit to Batsto Village please contact John Morsa at 609-704-1910. Come see Batsto again for the first time.

Posted in Announcements | Comments Off on Talk on The Civilian Conservation Corps