What comes to mind when you think of the Jersey shore? Sun, sand, and sea, right? The shore area of New Jersey has been a popular tourist destination for generations. People have come to enjoy the beaches, the boardwalks, and the nightlife.
But what is the history of this region? How did it become what it is today? In this article, we will take a look at the history of Long Beach Island, Barnegat, Forked River, Manahawkin, and Little Egg Harbor. We will explore how each town developed and grew over time. So pack your sunscreen and put on your shades – it’s time to hit the beach!
Long Beach Island is a barrier island off the coast of New Jersey. It is 18 miles long and about half a mile wide. The island is home to many towns, including Beach Haven, Ship Bottom, Surf City, and Barnegat Light. Long Beach Island was originally inhabited by the Lenape Native Americans. In 1609, the first European explorer to visit the region, Henry Hudson, sailed up the river that now bears his name. The Dutch soon settled in the area, and in 1664, they took control of the colony from the English. The Dutch named the island “Longa Eylandt,” which means “long island.”
In 1782, during the American Revolutionary War, British troops occupied Long Beach Island.
After the war, the island became a popular summer resort for wealthy Philadelphians. In 1854, the first hotel was built on the island. It was called the Surf Hotel, and it was located in Beach Haven. More hotels were built in the following years, and the island became known as a summer playground for the rich and famous.
In 1927, a massive hurricane struck Long Beach Island, causing extensive damage to the island’s towns and infrastructure. Many of the island’s hotels were destroyed, and many people lost their homes. The hurricane was a turning point for Long Beach Island. It was no longer seen as a safe place to vacation, and many people stopped coming to the island.
In the years following the hurricane, the island’s economy declined. Many of the island’s residents left, and those who stayed behind struggled to make ends meet. In 1962, another hurricane struck Long Beach Island, causing even more damage than the first one. This time, the island was hit by a tidal wave that was nearly 20 feet high. The waves destroyed homes, businesses, and infrastructure. Once again, the island’s economy took a hit, and many people left.
In recent years, Long Beach Island has made a comeback. Thanks to its natural beauty and its convenient location (it’s just a short drive from New York City and Philadelphia), the island has become a popular destination for tourists and second-homeowners. Today, Long Beach Island is a bustling community with a vibrant economy and is among the wealthiest communities in New Jersey.
Barnegat is a township in Ocean County located on Barnegat Bay, and it is home to the Barnegat Lighthouse. The town was originally named “Barent Gat” after its founder, Barend Janssen Gat.
Forked River is home to the Forked River State Marina. The town was originally named “Voorhees” after its founder, Cornelius Voorhees.
Little Egg Harbor is home to the Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge. The town was originally named “Foure Mile Run” because it was four miles from the nearest Dutch settlement.