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Ocean City, NJ
Posted by: Groundspeak Regular Member Math Teacher
N 39° 17.052 W 074° 33.993
18S E 537382 N 4348404
Quick Description: Founded in 1879 as a Christian ocean resort, this town still has its original core appeal in that of its Victorian architecture. While some of Ocean City has been torn down to make way for expensive condos, a protected historic section remains.
Location: New Jersey, United States
Date Posted: 7/2/2009 2:07:26 PM
Waymark Code: WM6PM3
Published By: Groundspeak Charter Member BruceS
Views: 6

Long Description:

"Ocean City, 3.1 m. (5 alt., 5,525 pop.), is a bone-dry city by design of its founder. Since 1879 the community has catered to families from many states who return year after year. Situated on the northern end of one of New Jersey shore islands, it has the double advantage of quiet inland waters and the ocean. Two inlets on the harbor side are the centers of beautiful residential sections." --- New Jersey, a Guide to Its Present and Past, 1939; page 562

The residential section spoke of on one end of the island have been razed and been rebuilt to accommodate renters and the wealthy. Fortunately, about 2005, citizens had the presence of mind to petition the Department of the Interior to place the downtown part of this town on the NRHP as an Historic District which was successful and has now protected it from development.

Upon visiting, the first striking detail is the amount of Victorian homes along the streets in the designated historic area. This of course makes sense as its incorporation was during the Victorian era for architecture. The streets are very quaint, bed and breakfasts dot the landscape and Ocean Breezes cool the nighttime district.

I counted three "old-time" houses of worship typical of what you would see in Philadelphia or Camden. This is no surprise as settlers came from that area originally and built that which was familiar. Several historic markers delineate the boundaries of this residential district. Aside from the boardwalk, this fascinating piece of history is one of the premier attractions of Ocean City, especially if you are a shopper. The multiple markers, which are all the same, multiple read:

The Ocean City Historic District

The district, bounded by 3rd and 8th Streets and Central to Ocean Avenues, has been placed on both the state and National Register of Historic Places by the United States Department of the Interior.

On October 20, 1879, Simon Lake, Ezra B. Lake, S. Wesley Lake, James E. Lake, William H. Burrell and William B. Wood, met to dedicate this island as a Christian seaside resort and to incorporate the Ocean City Association. By October 1880, a total of forty-eight buildings had been constructed around a prayer meeting area bounded by 5th and 6th Streets and Wesley and Asbury Avenues.

I often come here to visit and relax with the children. if it was not for waymarking I would have never taken the time nor had the inclination to nice and study the architecture. There are very few places where you can go on vacation, swim in the ocean and get a history lesson as well. As soon as you clear the ninth avenue bridge, there is a welcome center on the right. Stop in and get some brochures to make your visit more productive and meaningful.

Book: New Jersey

Page Number(s) of Excerpt: 562

Year Originally Published: 1939

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kayakingdog visited Ocean City, NJ 11/25/2011 kayakingdog visited it