Page 9 - March 2, 2022
P. 9

{ 8 }  SNJ Today  |  MARCH 2, 2022                                                                                 MARCH 2, 2022  |  { 9 }
 THE GREAT OUTDOORS                       Afro-Americans were integral to the oyster
                                          business especially with the advent of shuck-
                                          ing and canning. Workers were paid by the   Winter
                                          pint. The most gallons shucked in a day was
                                          35. PHOTO: HARVEY PORCH, COURTESY OF
                                          CUMBERLAND COUNTY HISTORIC SOCIETY
                                          (CU MAURICE RIVER COLLECTION)

                                          BELOW: Portion of waterfront known as Shell-
                                          pile. Shells were used to reseed the oyster beds
                                          providing a hard surface where oyster larvae
                                          could attach. PHOTO: LIBRARY OF CONGRESS
                                          ROTHSTEIN 1938

                                                                                                           BOOT  SALE

     feed, and mulch. They were also prized   a child growing up in this environment, it
     by our predecessors, and half-buried oys-  all comes to life in the words of people who   Layaway  Available   •  Gif t C ertifica  tes
                                                                                       Layaway Available • Gift Certificates
     ter shell middens show us where Lenape   lived along the waterfront—part of a heri-
                                                                                               We Carry Men’s Sizes 5–17
     encampments once stood.              tage that is explored in this book.                  W  e C arry Men’     s Sizes 5–17
        Aspects of the industry’s oyster lease   My thoughts return to my first encoun-
                                                                                 Women’s Sizes 4–13 • Children’s Sizes 0 & up
     grounds, harvest methods, and the many   ter with the A.J. In retrospect this was a   W omen’ s  Sizes  4–13  •   Childr en’ s  Sizes  0  &  up
     ancillary enterprises that supported the   memorable day. Two organizations, both
                                                                                 Orthopedic & Diabetic Shoes
                                                                                                                     Shoe R
                                                                                                                                      Shoe Dyeing
     oyster business are part of the text. Trains   now well-established in the community,   Orthopedic & Diabetic Shoes • Shoe Repair • Shoe Dyeing
     were used to deliver oysters to restaurants   were then in their non-profit infancy. The   CLIP & SA VE         C OUPON
                                                                                       CLIP & SAVE         COUPON
     all over the east coast. The advent of can-  Schooner Project, known today as the
     ning led to the shucking of oysters and   Bayshore Center at Bivalve, and Citizens   $    00
     huge piles of shells. Thus sprang up the   United to Protect the Maurice River, and   5              OFF
     riverfront villages of Shellpile and Bivalve.   its Tributaries, Inc. aka CU Maurice River
        For many years oysters could only be   met on that day. Each had their own lofty
     taken under sail, but during and after the   ideas of what they could accomplish.       $25 or more
     war motorized crafts were permitted. The   These two organizations continue to have   Not to be combined with any other offer. Expires 3/31/22.
     evolution of the industry as each of these   many intersections in their missions,
                                                                                                                CLIP & SAVE         COUPON
     modifications took place changed the face   which shine a light on our natural and cul-                    CLIP & SA   VE         C OUPON
     of the business landscape and the health   tural history. We are using different tools                 $               00
     of the harvest.                      but exploring the same region.                                       10
        Prior to spread of the disease MSX in   Today, osprey numbers exceed 650                                                     OFF
     the late 1950s, millions of bushels of oys-  pairs; of the oyster schooners only a hand-
     ters were harvested each year from 50,000   ful are left. But because of the visionaries                        $100 or more
     acres of oyster beds. By 1957 the disease   of the Bayshore Center at Bivalve, one                    Not to be combined with any other offer. Expires 3/31/22.
     had reduced the harvest to 10,000 bushels.   magnificent vessel graces the Maurice
     In recent times the harvest has rebounded   River. In 1998 the NJ Legislature declared
     to around 100,000 bushels annually.  the AJ Meerwald New Jersey’s Official
        With shucking came the shuckers. The   Tall Ship. n
     Afro-American contribution to the industry
     is both striking and poignant. The sharp,    J. Morton Galetto served on the Board
     rhythmic sounds of many workers open-  of the Bayshore Center at Bivalve for a   639 Landis A ve.  • V ineland
     ing the shells to release the meat inside   decade or more. She was involved in many
     are described by those who worked there.   partnerships between the Center and    856-691-1180 •
     From the ramshackle housing to the joys of   CU Maurice River.
   4   5   6   7   8   9   10   11   12   13   14