A blog about living in Aberdeen, New Jersey.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Come to Pancakes in Pink This Sunday Morning at MRHS

Aberdeen Township is running a breakfast fundraiser at Matawan Regional High School this Sunday morning 1 June 2014 from 8 am to 11 am. For a $5.00 donation at the door, Pancakes in Pink will offer pancakes, bacon, sausage, home fries, eggs, fruit, coffee, tea, and juice. Donations will benefit Bayshore Hospital's Pink Fund, which provides mammograms for women with little or no insurance.

By the way, the Pancakes in Pink announcement appears on the recently redesigned township website.  Check it out. Nicely done.

Online Local Newspaper Archives Get New Capabilities

For those of you who use the digital images of The Matawan Journal and Bayshore Independent from the archives maintained by The Matawan Aberdeen Public Library, be advised that great improvements have been made to the capabilities of the research tools and the navigation within the archives, as well as the looks of the pages themselves. Be sure to check out the Advanced Search widget, which allows you to search across both papers and to search exact strings of text and to use wild cards.

The old familiar framework still exists for some reason but does not function, so be sure to change the favorite places in your browser to the new links.

If you've not explored the old newspapers, they can be quite fun. They go all the way back to 1869, but the oldest papers can be difficult to read. But you can find the electrification of downtown Matawan, installation of trolley service, construction of Route 35 and Route 36, development of Cliffwood Beach and Strathmore, construction of the dams, it's all there. Society news has stories you would never see in today's press. And the old advertisements are amazing. Pick a year and dive in.

For more details about these and other local newspapers online, see the Research Tools link at the top of this blog.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

One Wall Left to Bring Down

Looks like there's only one wall left standing on the old plant next to the Aberdeen train station. Once that's down, there's lots of sorting and debris removal yet to do. 

Sent from my iPhone

Memorial Day at Cliffwood Beach

A few sunset shots from Cliffwood Beach. We noticed quite a crowd down at the beach, some folks playing beach volleyball on the restored court, and fishermen on the beach and along the seawall. A beautiful day to remember our fallen soldiers.

Poison Ivy in Cliffwood Beach

It's that season again. My wife and I saw poison ivy flourishing along the south side of this service road off Greenwood Avenue in Cliffwood Beach. We also saw it starting to grow in yards along West Concourse. Be alert and be mindful that your dog can rub it on his fur and bring it to you. Been there, done that myself.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Matawan Man Extracted From Wreck Near High School; Taken by Medivac to RWJ

James R Burlew IV was flown by helicopter to Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in New Brunswick after his vehicle went off the road about 3 am today near Matawan Regional High School, where it struck a utility pole, according to an article in The Asbury Park Press. The 21-year-old local man had to be extracted from his Subaru Forester by area fire and rescue personnel. Aberdeen PD is investigating the incident.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Transit Village Demolition Status

Demolition status near the Aberdeen train station as of 7 pm on Thursday.

Aberdeen Transit Village Demolition Continues

I spoke too soon about the completion of demolition work by the train station. They've torn down two more buildings and are sorting the debris to haul it away. It should be an empty lot soon.

History: Patrick A Hagan, Chief of Police, Matawan Township

Patrick A Hagan

Patrick Albert Hagan (May 1865 - July 1932) served as Chief of Police of Matawan Township from 1924 to 1932 and as township constable from 1899 until his death. He came to America from Ireland with his parents when he was about five years old, grew up and married in Jersey City, and had several children there. He moved to Matawan after his wife died in the mid-1890's. He worked with Charles E Close as a contractor for 20 years. He attended St Joseph's in Keyport and is buried in the church's graveyard. Related families include Barham, Murphy and Flood.

Below are some research notes about Patrick:

The 1870 Federal Census showed Patrick Hagan (6) living in the Jersey City Ward 6 household of his parents, Thomas (40) and Ann (32) Hagan. Thomas was a carpenter. Patrick was living with his three older sisters - Rosann (16), Maria (14) and Eliza (12), and two older brothers - Thomas (10) and Pete (8). All were listed as born in Ireland.

The 1880 Federal Census showed Patrick's parents, Thomas (50 Ireland) and Ann (40 Ireland), and his sister Maria Hagan (19 Ireland), plus children Eliza (5), Thomas (3), Katie (2) and Patrick (1) all living together in Jersey City.

The 1900 Federal Census showed Patrick, born May 1865, as a widowed head of household in Matawan. He was a day laborer by occupation. In his household were daughter Annie (Jul 1885) and sons Thomas (Jan 1889) and James (Feb 1892). Patrick's mother, Ann Hagan (Jan 1840), and his sister Marie (May 1860) were enumerated just above him on the same page of the census. Patrick, Ann and Marie were all listed as born in Scotland and having arrived in the US in 1870. Patrick's children were listed as born in NJ.

The 1910 Federal Census showed Patrick (32 NJ) as a widowed head of household in Matawan. He was employed as a house carpenter. His household included his daughter, Anna Hagan (19 NJ), grandson George Hagan (2), and brothers James (16) and Thomas (17). This record is full of errors.

Patrick's brother, Thomas F Hagan (45 Ireland), was enumerated in Matawan that year with his wife Isabelle F (41 Ireland) and adopted daughter Ruth G Hagan (4 NJ). His sister Rosann appeared as Roasan Barham (50 Scotland), widow.

The 1920 Federal Census showed Patrick (51 Ireland) as a widower living in Matawan. His occupation was with the municipal police. He immigrated to the US in 1880 and was naturalized the same year. This record is full of errors.

Patrick's 1920 Census household (above) included his daughter Anna Murphy (32 NJ), her husband, James Murphy (34 Scotland), and grandsons James (7 NJ) and George (5 NJ). James's occupation was as a laborer in the buff factory. He immigrated to the US in 1907 and remained an alien. Patrick's son Thomas (28 NJ) was also in the household. His occupation was railroad laborer. Patrick's widowed sister Roseann Barham was enumerated just below this listing as Rosannie.

The 7 Aug 1925 edition of The Matawan Journal (pg 5 col 2) reported that Constable Patsy Sarabuchello of Union Beach and Chief Patrick Hagan of Matawan Township worked jointly on a burglary case. Their investigation resulted in the arrest of two Keansburg teenagers who had broken into James Cerrati's Bakeshop and Pool Room on Poole Avenue in Union Beach. The younger of the two confessed that they stole a nickel slot machine, broke it open at home and split the cash they found inside.

The 8 Jan 1926 edition of The Matawan Journal (pg 1 col 6) reported that Patrick Hagan and Patsy Sarabuchello were bonded as constables by Matawan Township at its organizational meeting in January 1926. The township also named special officers for Cliffwood, Freneau, the east side, Oak Shades and Cliffwood Beach.

The 30 Jul 1926 edition of The Matawan Journal (pg 1 col 2) reported that Patrick Hagan, Chief of Police of Matawan Township and also constable, was serving 30 days in Monmouth County jail for being drunk and disorderly at an event in the back of the Matawan fire house at Oak Shades. When he and two friends were asked to leave the event, Hagan refused and was arrested in front of twenty witnesses by the New Jersey State Constabulary.  Lewis Stemler, Chairman of the Matawan Township Committee, claimed to have warned Hagan several times to mend his ways. The paper opined, "Hagan has made a good officer except at such times as he has taken too freely of intoxicants." (Note: The above link consists of 3 editions of The Matawan Journal - 23 and 30 July and 6 August 1926. The 24 pages should be split up into their appropriate editions and listed separately in the Browse By Date section of this online collection. Presently the collection shows the two latter editions as missing.)

The 5 Nov 1926 edition of The Matawan Journal (pg 12 col 1) included the public announcement of a constable's sale being conducted in Matawan by Patrick A Hagan, Constable.

The 29 Jul 1927 edition of The Matawan Journal (pg 7 col 1) reported six colored persons detained by Matawan Township Officers Patrick Hagan and Patsy Sarabuchello at a disorderly house near Cliffwood Avenue in Cliffwood. "The house is a new one and has had a bad name in the neighborhood," the article said.

Patrick Hagan is likely a match to Pal Hagan (65 NJ), a widower enumerated in the 1930 Federal Census for New Jersey. He was living alone in the Freneau section of Matawan and listed his occupation as none.

The 8 Apr 1932 edition of The Matawan Journal reported that Matawan Township Chief of Police Patrick Hagan and Constable Umberto Sardello planned to arrest a colored man named Toby Rice, of Atlantic Avenue, who accidentally shot himself in the leg with a revolver concealed in his pants pocket and was recovering in the Matawan Private Hospital.

The 15 Apr 1932 edition of The Matawan Journal reported that Matawan Township Chief of Police Patrick Hagan attempted to maintain public order at a fraught meeting of the Township Committee during discussions related to the continuation of the Freneau water project. Heated arguments were being made over footing the bill for this work while a referendum being discussed would allow Freneau to join Matawan Borough.

Patrick Hagan died in office on 20 July 1932. His obituary, as follows, appeared in the 22 Jul 1932 edition of The Matawan Journal: Obituary - Patrick A Hagan, who for the past 33 years has served as constable for Matawan Township, died at his home, Tuesday afternoon, from kidney trouble. For the past eight years he has been Chief of Police in the township. Chief Hagan was born in Jersey City in 1864. While in Jersey City he served for many years as a plumber in the City Water Department. About 40 years ago he and his children came to settle in Matawan and in recent years he has made his home on Bank Street in the township. For about 20 years he worked under Charles E Close in the contracting business until he had a breakdown in his health. Since then he has had no regular occupation but was always to be seen in his official capacity until a week ago, when he became confined to his bed. Mrs Hagan died before the family moved to Matawan. Surviving him are three children, Joseph Hagan, Mrs Annie Murphy, and Thomas Hagan; a sister, Mrs John Barham, and a brother, Thomas Hagan, of Keansburg. Funeral services will be held Saturday morning from St Joseph's Church and burial will be in the church cemetery. 

The 6 January 1933 edition of The Matawan Journal (pg 1 col 1) reported that Angus McKenna would fill Patrick Hagan's unexpired term as Matawan Township Constable.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Construction Equipment & Rubble All That Remain At Demolition Site

The demolition team left only rubble to mark where part of the Transit Village will stand. How quick it will all proceed is anyone's guess but so far they're cruising along.

UPDATE: They've been demolishing two additional buildings on the lot and hauling debris away for the past few days.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Transit Village Demolition Proceeds Apace

The developers did a lot of work today. Compare this morning's picture to this evening's.

Aberdeen Transit Village Redevelopment

Rent-a-Fence has been erected and demolition seems to be underway next to the Aberdeen Train Station as the long-awaited Transit Village redevelopment plan is finally underway.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Room With A View: W Front St Keyport

Someone is having a house built on West Front Street overlooking the Keyport waterfront park. It is between Burlew's and the plaza across from Espresso Joe's.