Stone Harbor has a total area of 2.0 square miles, which by year 2000 composed of 1,128 citizens. The harbor is governed by New Jersey municipal, with the current mayor being Suzanne Walters. The stone of harbor occupies the seven mile beach island that covers the 80th street to the ends of the Hereford inlet.
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In 1891, the first building in this island was an inn inclusive of seven cottages. According to the Stone Harbor Chamber of Commerce (Para. 5), “it was not until 1907 that dunes were leveled off and salt marshes filled in. Streets, pavements and curbing were laid out, two basins dredged from land adjacent to the Inland Waterway and one natural basin deepened.” Today, there are seven basins, while bulkhead and seawalls have been built to protect the beaches from soil erosion.
There are also 30 miles of operating sewage lines, and a number of wells have been drilled to ensure sufficient supply of pure and clean water. Nevertheless, the Stone Harbor has one of the oldest water towers pumping station, which was constructed in 1924, and is 132 feet high.
In addition, Stone Harbor consists of several attractions, such as Stone Harbor Museum, Harbor Bird Sanctuary, the Wetlands Institute and the Cape May County Park and Zoo. Stone Harbor was a hunting and fishing area in its first years; however, today, it has a cool atmosphere encompassed with beaches, bird watching and wildlife, among others (New Jersey shore Para.3).
Fig 1: The Stone Harbor map.
Source: Google map.
Another historic component of Stone Harbor is the below postcard.
Fig 2: postcard
Source: Cwik & Henchek, p5.
The architectural styles in Stone Harbor are outstanding and one of the most preserved sites in America. Each of these buildings represents a community’s value and customs, nevertheless the buildings varied with time; in the 1900’s there existed the Wilson’s cottage, while in 1912 the leridich cottage were famous, (Cwik & Henchek, p9).
Fig 3: Wilson’s cottage
Source: Cwik & Henchek, p9.
Fig 4: leridich
Source: Cwik & Henchek, p9.
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Stone Harbor was developed with tourist attractions in the 1800’s; and in 1912, the first policeman was elected and named a watchman. However, today, there are several sworn in policemen. The first school in Stone Harbor started in 1910 with five students and only one teacher; however, the school was conducted in a private home.
Between 1912 and 1915, two schools were established on the 93rd and 94th streets respectively. The school consisted of four classrooms and an extra room for training. Moreover, 115 pupils from grade one to the eighth grade were enrolled and five teachers were employed.
When the pupils qualified for high school education, a bus would transport them to middle township high school. However, today, there are sufficient schools, both private and public in Stone Harbor and the parents have a variety of choices to make on where to enroll their children. Stone Harbor has had a number of services for its residents including a volunteer fire company, which is today known as Stone Harbor Fire Department.
This was established in December 1912, as the ten founders felt that, with the growing population, there was need for assistance when others were faced with fire issues. Their main aim was to protect human life and their property from fire disasters. Despite life and property being the company’s main priority, today, it has grown to motor accidents cases, rescue operations around the beaches and bomb scares among others.
Fig 7: 1912 Stone Harbor volunteer fire company
Source: Stone Harbor volunteer fire company.
Fig 8: 2011 Stone Harbor volunteer fire company
Source: Stone Harbor volunteer fire company website
Stone Harbor is home to very old buildings, some over 90 years old. In 2010, a new plan was made on preserving such historic buildings, which have a historic significance on them. The man purpose for the historic preservation is to safeguard, enhance and preserve the uniqueness of these historical resources, as a tool for education, and pleasure for the residents of Stone Harbor and the visitors, inclusive of the upcoming generations. Secondly, the preservation of historic resources will enhance their continuous use and reuse.
Thirdly, by conserving the historic resources, there is the possibility of promoting historic sites. Nevertheless the benefits of historic preservation, lie in the preservation of the Stone Harbor sense of belonging, visitor will be in a position to visit and access the stone harbor’s history.
The pride of the borough’ beauty will be protected and enhanced. In addition, a historic presentation maintains the culture and identity of a place.
Other historic buildings include the Cape May county Chamber of Commerce, which was established in 1916 and was known as the seashore association chamber of commerce, its main aim being to promote tourism in areas that surrounds the Stone Harbor.
However, it had collapsed in the late 1920’s, but in the 1940’s, it regained its shape and commenced operations once again. Today, it is one of the developing firms representing close to 1000 members.
Marriage is considered religious in Stone Harbor; first, one should apply for a marriage license, which should be obtained from the registrar of vital statistics where either citizen resides.
A marriage can be either officiated by a judge of the superior court, any mayor, a chairman of a town or a minister of a religion. In addition, the involved persons must be of legal age of 18 years to access the application of a marriage certificate. Moreover, the applicants must bring along a witness above 18 years old, (New Jersey department of health & senior services Para. 4).
In 1910, the Stone Harbor town had grown to a fifty two residence population and there was need for spiritual guidance for this growing town. Some churches had been established by then, inclusive of a Sunday school. In addition, in 1913, a fire house was built for religious service purposes.
Moreover, in the same year, some few ladies formed the union church club of Stone Harbor with an aim of furnishing Sunday services. The Lutheran Church of Our Savior had grown by 1942 and more so did its church members (Lutheran Church of Our Savior Para. 6).
Some other churches that are situated in Stone Harbor include St. Paul’s Roman Catholic Church, St. Mary’s Episcopal Church, Calvary Baptist, the Evangelical Lutheran Church of our Savior, and Beth Judah Temple among others. Most of the church services run from 8am to mid-day on Sundays.
There were no churches in Stone Harbor by 1911 and those who wished to attend church service were provided with a motor boat to a catholic church, St. Ann’s church in wildwood, as there was no bridge available for people to use. In addition, it is clear that Stone Harbor consists of both Protestants and Catholics.
Economic issues in Stone Harbor New Jersey
According to Strauss (Para. 4), New Jersey is one of the wealthiest states in America, with highly paid employees; however, it has been faced by economic challenges such as mortgage debacle, problems in credit markets, fall of stock prices, disappointing energy and commodity costs among other issues.
In 2008, the state had the lowest economic momentum when compared to other states, hence, its employment rate was zero and its growth was very slow. However, the economic situation was solid, due to the wealth of the state. Below is the diagram that elaborates the Stone Harbor per capita income.
Source: Stone Harbor community info.
There are a number of unemployed residents in Stone Harbor; however, the presence of unemployment insurance has been a great aid to these citizens. Stone Harbor is leading in unemployment with 16% compared to the overall country’s rate, which lies at 9.10%. However, the job growth rate of Stone Harbor is at 1.92% compared to the country’s -0.12%, thus having a higher income per capita compared to the whole country. In summary, Stone Harbor’s economy seems stable and developing compared to other parts of the country.
Culture and arts in Stone Harbor
Culture & Arts in Stone Harbor are symbolized by the beautiful new Performing Arts Center in Middle Township. The Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts and the equity theaters in both Cape May and Somers Point provide several continuous cultural events throughout the year at the shore including music festivals, classical music, photography, live theater, ballets jazz, and art exhibits, for instance, the mid-Atlantic centers for arts in collaboration with the east Lynne Theatre Company has presented several plays, among them the Ghost of Christmas, Trolley Rides, and the Twelve Guests among others (BWW News Desk, Para. 2).
Social issues in Stone Harbor
Social issues affect people either directly or indirectly, and they are related to moral values of a society. According to Adubato (Para.1), in 2007, there was a prolonged shortage of nurses in Stone Harbor, which had started since 1998.
The author’s main concern is the repercussions associated with this social problem, which include delays in the care of patients, increased risk of loosing patients, and divided attention of patients among others. Stone Harbor has not been spared in terms of crimes; crime statistics indicate that the level of crime has continued rising as years progress. For instant, the city property crimes are reported to be higher compared to the overall national property crime (City Rating Para. 3).
Fig 5: the level of property crime in Stone Harbor.
Fig: 6: the level of violent crime in Stone Harbor.
Nevertheless, there are a number of free medical clinics in new jersey that provide a variety of services for the residents, for instance, Camden Free Dental Clinic, and Caring Neighbor Health Care among others.
Environmental issues in Stone Harbor
There have been seven cases of earthquakes since 1973 to 2010 that ranged from a magnitude of 2.3 to 3.8. In addition, Stone Harbor is prone to tornados as between 1976 to 2004, about 40 cases with several causalities involved especially in 1988 where about 30 victims were injured, though no deaths were reported.
Moreover, Stone Harbor is dedicated to promoting environmental health by ensuring that hazardous waste is disposed appropriately. For instance, the Cape May county residents pay a substantial fee intended to assist in collection of waste, which is normally carried out on weekends.
In addition, Stone Harbor is a home to beautiful ecology, which includes sandy beaches, a habitat to both plants and animals. Seaweeds are evident in the beaches, and the beaches harbor a community of different sea species such as crustaceans, worms and bivalves among others. Erosions are witnessed in the beach; however, they may negatively affect the beach’s ecology by affecting its habitats. Beach grooming and other maintenance activities may also affect the beach negatively.
Nevertheless, there are a number of measures that have been proposed to ensure that there is healthy assessment of the beaches. They include the quality of the habitat, the nature of the species, the maintenance of the richness of the species, and the management practices involved.
In addition, several initiatives have been put in place to ensure that the Stone Harbor ecology is protected from both physical and environmental dangers. The undersea exploration began in the Stone Harbor after the World War II, when divers dived in pairs and went up to 130ft deep. The compressed air enabled the divers to go to a depth of 250 ft, and later on the helium –oxygen was introduced, which further enabled the divers to extend to 2165 ft.
Thereafter, there was the introduction of bathyspheres, which allowed the divers to explore up to 3,028 feet deep. Today, the bathyspheres have been neglected and titanium metal has replaced them due to the fact that it is strong and light at the same time, and has the ability to resist the sea’s corrosion. The historic bathyspheres were associated with uncomfort and cold, however, today’s are aired, colored and comfortable (Semyorka Para.32).
Stone harbor tourist attractions
The Cape May County Park and zoo is one of the attractions in Stone Harbor, which was started in 1978. The main function of the park administration is to maintain, develop, acquire and plan the recreation facilities, with these strategies being aimed at benefiting the whole county.
When the zoo was started, it consisted of lions, spiders, and monkeys among others, but by 2008, the zoo consisted of 550 animals of 250 different species. Among these are 13 flamingoes. The zoo celebrated 30years of existence in 2008 (Cape May county park & Zoo Para.16).
The wetlands institute is another attraction site that encompasses native spartina grass in the wildlife area. The third is the island water sport, which involves boating, competition boats and related lessons. Golfing is another attraction site for the visitors such that golfers engage in challenging courses.
These gold clubs include Sand Barrens, Stone Harbor, and Wildwood and Cape May golf clubs among others. Bird watching is another exciting activity, especially when over 250 species of birds travel from north to South America. The Stone Harbor museum is also one of the major attractions that symbolize the history of Stone Harbor.
Among the displays in the museum are some historic bathing suits, Stone Harbor boardwalk, some items that were recovered from a ship wreck and a number of beach tags that existed since 1971 to date. Vintage postcards also exist inclusive of a history on land marks (Rotondo Para. 3).
The seven mile beach, which is shared by the Stone Harbor and the Avalon, is very wide, with Stone Harbor occupying the north island. This beach is a tourist attraction; hence a great effort is taken in preserving it. However, life guards are always present when swimming takes place. Other activities in the beach include surfing and rafting.
Importance of preserving historical resources
Conservation and protection of historical resources is very important in any society, as it boost a nation’s heritage. Maintaining of historical resources mainly leads to maintenance of a society’s culture. It could involve buildings such as libraries, museums and old ferries among others.
It mainly involves protecting the cultural property of a state or a country. In addition, it is important for the future generation to learn more about their fore-fathers past practices and lives, as this marks the knowledge one one’s origin. Therefore, museums are one of such buildings that should be preserved with its contents and they symbolize a rich culture of Stone Harbor.
Much emphasis should be laid on the preservation of culture, as much as tourist attraction. Preservation of historic buildings can involve restoration. Normally, historic buildings bring in a unique culture to modern society, as they are a constant reminder of our origin. These buildings simply assist the current and future generations in understanding the past and hence having hope for the future. In addition it is wise to repair the old buildings that bring them down and build other new ones; this generates high expenses.
Historical resources bring out the significance of a country by referring to its roots of origin. Stone Harbor is a tourist attraction solely because of its inviting beaches and historical attraction; however, if all these sites are replaced with new buildings, tourist will definitely loose their tastes, as there will be no historical resources to relate to.
In addition, the future generation will be denied an opportunity of experiencing the past via visiting the historical sites. Just as our fore-father’s language is maintained, the same should apply to their buildings and resources. Therefore, the government should ensure that the Stone Harbor culture is maintained for many generations.
Destroying these historical buildings should be unheard of and Stone Harbor should preserve its historical Buildings regardless of their age, as preserving these resources could imply respecting and minding the past generations. A culture is only important when it is maintained, as there is proof that it existed, otherwise when it is demolished, it ceases to be important. Therefore, it is very important for the administration of a city to consider the above reasons before demolishing the historical buildings.
Stone Harbor in New Jersey is one of the historic sites in the United States. Its historic buildings, some close to 100 years, symbolize the culture of the then existing society and should be preserved other than being brought down when they attain the age of 100 years as per the policy.
When historic resources are preserved, the society’s culture is maintained and paves way for foreign currency due to tourism. In addition, the future generation will learn more about their origin and learn how to appreciate it. Historical resources can also be used as an educative tool when studying the history unit, such that, students are able to relate the historical sites and resources with academic.
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BWW News Desk. Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts and East Lynne Theater Company. 2009. Web.
Cape May County Park & Zoo. History of The Cape May County Park & Zoo. 2011. Web.
City Rating. Stone Harbor Crime Rate Report (New Jersey). 2011. Web.
Cwik, Terrie and Henchek, Barbara. Stone Harbor Borough, Cape May County, NJ; Historic Architectural Styles of Stone Harbor; Stone Harbor Historic Preservation, Master Plan Element. 2010. Web.
Google Map. Stone Harbor. 2011. Web.
Lutheran Church of Our Savoir. Stone Harbor New Jersey: A Brief History. 2011. Web.
New Jersey Department of Health & Senior Services; Vital Statistics. Getting married in New Jersey. 2011. Web.
New Jersey shore. Stone Harbor NJ Brief History. 2011. Web.
Rotondo, Christie. Stone Harbor Museum offers glimpses of history. 2011. Web.
Semyorka, Stone. World History: Who needs history? 2011. Web.
Stone Harbor chamber of commerce. ABOUT STONE HARBOR: Stone Harbor, New Jersey. 2010. Web.
Stone Harbor Volunteer Fire Company Website. Stone Harbor Volunteer Fire Company No. 1. 2011. Web.
Strauss, Eric. New Jersey economy bruised, but not broken. 2008. Web.