New Jersey Memories

Greetings from the Garden State!

March 2015 Updates on Previous Posts

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I have been spending some time going through my blog archives. When I started this blog in 2009, I more or less intended just to mention certain interesting New Jersey stories I read about either online or elsewhere. 

I really didn't intend to take many photos because I had an old film camera that had once taken pretty good photos (at least by 1990s standards -- yes, that's how old it was) but most definitely was not taking good photos by 2009. 

I cringe when I look at my early photos, especially when I realize that even my current point-and-shoot takes better pictures. I guess I can look at my "progress" in photography over the years. At least I don't have my thumb over part of the lens now when I take a photo.

I started thinking about some of the posts I have written over the years and what has happened since . . .

In 2009 I wrote about a "haunted hospital" called Overbrook that were slated for demolition. 

Be warned that if you click on the link above you will see some very bad photographs -- and to think I was proud of them at the time! For some reason, I returned obsessively to this topic and my photos had improved by my last post on the topic in 2012.

Anyway, several of the buildings were torn down and the rest were set to go -- but bickering between the developer, the town and everyone else involved means that the remaining buildings are still just sitting there to this day.

Way back in December 2009 I posted about an apparently abandoned gas station in Cedar Grove

The angry owner had a sign on the front which stated: "This property pays $14,857.12 in taxes and cannot be used by owner."

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Bad photo alert!

I do not know what the story was behind this gas station because I did absolutely no research,  but I do know that it was eventually torn down and a Chase bank was built on the property. 

I was also startled and embarrassed at the time when I received an email from a major New Jersey newspaper asking about the story and where the gas station was located. Why? Well, I was startled that I was "discovered" by this newspaper when only about 5 people read my blog (including my husband!) and embarrassed because my photographs were so crappy and that I had done no research into the situation, despite my journalism training. I was totally clueless about blogging at that time. I learned that just about anyone can see what you've written, no matter how obscure your blog is. 

In December 2012, I asked “Can the Atwood-Blauvelt Mansion Be Saved?”

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The Atwood-Blauvelt Mansion in Oradell, NJ still exists

Update: apparently the fight is still on to save the mansion. 

On a very, very sad note: 

In 2011, I posted some photos I took in delightful Ocean Grove, down the shore. 

Two of the photos I posted were of local businesses: The Village Kloset and Smuggler’s Cove

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Village Kloset, Ocean Grove, NJ,  destroyed by fire

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Smugglers Cove, Ocean Grove, NJ, destroyed by fire

Heartbreakingly, both of these businesses plus several others were destroyed in a fire in February, and the buildings were torn down. 

You can read more about it at Blogfinger, a fine blog that is based in Ocean Grove.

A relief fund has been set up for the victims of this fire.


  1. I recognized the Oradell mansion right away. I grew up in Westwood and we drove past that place many times. I always wondered who the rich people were that lived there. I hate to think what the taxes must be on the place. Sad if it gets torn down.

  2. Oooh how come I didn't know you were headed to Ocean Grove?! Would have loved a meet and greet. So many of my blogs are about my enchanted little cottage La Vie en Rose in Ocean Grove and the life there at the Jersey Shore. So awful about the fire! LOVE all your photos, old and new and none are "bad". :) pbenjay

    1. Thank you so much! We actually decided to go to Ocean Grove since we were in the area, it wasn't a planned trip! It's such a pretty area.


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