Twenty Odds and Ends You Probably Didn’t Know About New Jersey’s Heartland
There are a lot of interesting “facts” about New Jersey’s Heartland that many people who live and work in the four-county region don’t know.
For example, did you know that:
- The Pinelands is home to the Kirkwood-Cohansey Aquifer, which holds an estimated 17.7 trillion gallons of water—that’s enough to supply half the water used in the entire country in a year and also enough to cover the entire Garden State with 10 feet of water?
- The Pinelands is also home to 92 threatened or endangered species among its 850 species of plant life?
- Tuckahoe Turf Farms in Hammonton boasts more than 700 acres of cultivated turf grass that finds its way to sports venues across the country—from Green Bay’s Lambeau Field to Boston’s Fenway Park?
- An estimated two-third’s of the entire world’s eggplant production comes from New Jersey…and most of that comes from South Jersey (mostly Gloucester, Cumberland, Salem, and Atlantic Counties?
- The annual economic impact of Rowan University’s operation at its main campus in Glassboro is $108 million…Rowan directly spends $650 million in New Jersey, generating a total statewide impact of $1.23 billion?
- South Jersey’s role as a center of glassmaking began in the 18th century when Caspar Wistar opened his glass factory, Wisterburgh, in Alloway in 1739?
- The American shad was the most plentiful species found in the state Division of Fish and Wildlife’s most recent “fish census” in the Delaware River; the annual count also included the bay anchovy and that household pet staple, the goldfish?
- Clayton in Gloucester County was crowned the state’s most affordable place to live last year…Pitman also made the list at #8?
- Woodbury was named among the ten best places (#5) to retire in the state and #101 nationally, according to the website SmartAsset?
- More than 100 years of Jersey Devil sightings have cemented the legend of the horned, fanged, and clawed monster that allegedly lurks in the Pine Barrens…sightings date back to the 1730s, but a deluge in the third week of January in 1909 included accounts from “reputable officials,” including a Bristol, PA police officer and a Trenton councilman?
- A beech tree in Woolwich Township is estimated to be more than 400 years old…the markings “engraved” into the trunk of the tree include the dates, 1705, 1755, and 1873?
- Tricia Miller, the tough but tender drug addict and small-time thief in the hit comedy ”Orange is the New Black,” was played by Madelline Brewer, Miss Pitman of 2010?
- Robert Comey, a hat maker whose historic 1901 home in Mantua recently sold for more than $1 million dollars, owned a half-dozen factories making Panama-style straw hats in the US and Canada; his fortune was assured when President Teddy Roosevelt was photographed wearing a straw hat on a visit to the Panama Canal?
- The fossil quarry in Mantua Township that has been purchased by Rowan University for $1.95 million will become a science center and the site will be preserved for research?
- Hammonton is home to South Jersey’s largest independent store, the “Toy Market”…the store and owner Kelly Donio were featured in an American Express online article about Small Business Saturday?
- Washington Township native Al Guido, 36, has enjoyed a meteoric rise in his 10-year old professional sports career and now is the chief operating officer of the NFL’s San Francisco’s 49ers franchise?
- St. Augustine Prep chemistry and environmental science teach Nancy McHugh, has been selected as the 2015 New Jersey Nonpublic School Teacher of the Year for her 11-year career as an educator at the Buena Vista Township school?
- And, while we’re on the subject of Teachers of the Year, Chelsea Collins, a sixth grade language arts teacher in the Wodstown-Pilesgrove school district was been named New Jersey’s Public School Teacher of the Year last year?
- The recently opened athletic practice field complex opened by Rowan on 17.5 acres at the intersection of Route 55 and Route 322 cost $4.6 million?
- Superior Court Judge Sandra Lopez is the first woman and the first Hispanic to ever serve on the Superior Court in Salem County…only 148 of the state’s Superior Court judges are women and just 17 percent are minorities?
If you have any questions or additional NJ Heartland facts, please contact us!