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NJ WWI Related Locations

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Camp Kendrick - Lakehurstloupe
USA 08527

A portion of the land that later became the Naval Air Engineering Station Lakehurst was developed in 1916 as a munitions testing site for the Imperial Russian Army. When the United States became involved in World War I, the United States Government acquired the land and named it "Camp Kendrick." It was used as a troop training base, and was, for a short time, the home of the 1st Gas Regiment, a chemical weapons unit.

Narrative adapted from Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst official website

Photo courtesy of:  US Naval Aviation News

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Camp Merritt - Cresskill loupe
Grant Avenue & Knickerbocker Road
USA 07628

With the 1917 US entry into World War I, an embarkation camp was needed near Hoboken, NJ where troops could assemble for ship transport to France.  Brigadier General William Wright selected a site centered on the intersection of Grant Avenue & Knickerbocker Road, occupying 770 acres in the boroughs of Dumont, Cresskill, Haworth, Demarest, Bergenfield & Tenafly.  More than one million servicemen passed through the site.  578,566 went overseas and 509,515 returned.  About half of the troops left from Alpine Landing by ferry, and half left by train for Hoboken where they boarded ships for overseas. 

The largest embarkation camp in the US during WWI, a total of 1,302 buildings were erected to train 50,000 men at a time. With the end of the war, the camp was closed and its buildings removed.  Today, the area is residential. 

Photos courtesy of:  Rutgers University Libraries, Special Collections and University Archives & Bergen County Historical Society 

Camp Merritt Memorial - Cresskillloupe
Madison Avenue & Knickerbocker Road
USA 07627
Capt. Robert Ingersoll Aitken

In August 1919, Bergen County purchased land for a monument commemorating the role of Camp Merritt during the Great War at the intersection of Madison Avenue & Knickerbocker Road in Cresskill - marking the center of the largest embarkation camp in the US during WWI.  Modeled after the Washington Monument, the obelisk is 65 feet tall and made of granite.  Inscribed on the base are the names of the 578 people who died at the camp, mostly as the result of the 1918 influenza epidemic.  A large carved relief by the sculptor Robert Ingersoll Aitken shows a striding doughboy with an eagle flying overhead.

Set into a large boulder is a copper plaque with a relief of the Palisades, illustrating that the Camp Merritt site was used as an area of embarkation.  The plaque was designed by artist Katherine Lamb Tait.

The monument was dedicated on May 30, 1924.  A crowd of 20,000 heard a dedicatory address given by famed Army General Pershing.

Narrative adapted from Bergen County, NJ official website. 

Photo courtesy of:  Smithsonian Institution Research Information System (SIRIS)

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Camp Wissahickonloupe
Sewell's Point
USA 08204

Camp Wissahickon was a WWI Naval Base located at Sewell’s Point, NJ.  A strategic location, as it guards the mouth of the Delaware River – the only navigable waterway to the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard and associated defense industries. During the war, it provided operational support to minesweepers and submarine chasers. A submarine base was located across Cape May Harbor. The base also included a Naval Air Station, including a dirigible hangar built in 1918.

After the end of the war, the Navy & Coast Guard jointly used the base from 1920-25, when the Coast Guard took over.

The Navy Section Base 9 / Camp Wissahickon was constructed in 1917, on the site of the Fun Factory Amusement Park & Corinthian Yacht Club built in 1913 at Sewell’s Point.
The Fun House became Navy Section Base 9.
The Skating Rink became the mess hall & sleeping quarters.
The Corinthian Yacht Club became Section Base Headquarters in 1918.

A year after it was built, a suspicious fire destroyed the base while base personnel were participating in a nearby parade. The fire, suspected as arson, erupted simultaneously in four places. Personnel lost all possessions, and $200,000 worth of naval equipment was destroyed. The base was rebuilt, although soldiers had to wear donated civilian clothes for weeks until new uniforms arrived. 

Camp Wissahickon accommodated 3,000 men.  Reservists trained in: aiming & shooting guns; marching; seamanship; knot-tying; signals; boating; climbing masts; raising & lowering sails; and honing balancing skills. 

Today, only the commanding officers’ quarters remain, but the buildings have been moved to Columbia Avenue & Stockton Place.

Narrative adapted from US Coast Guard official website. 

Photos courtesy of: Rutgers University Libraries, Special Collections and University Archives

Citizen Soldiers Monument - Irvingtonloupe
Springfield Avenue & Nesbitt Terrace
USA 07111
Charles Keck

This monument was erected to honor the soldiers & sailors of Irvington, NJ who fought in World War I. It depicts a bronze soldier dressed in a military uniform with an open-collared shirt, holding a bayonet in his lowered right hand. In his left hand, he grasps an upright flagpole topped with a small eagle. A partially unfurled American flag wraps around the flagpole.

In the back of the figure, an anvil is placed atop a tree stump and topped with an open book and an oil lamp. The statue stands on an inscribed marble base decorated in its upper portion with a relief of garland leaves.

Narrative adapted from Smithsonian Institution Research Information System (SIRIS) inventory #NJ000277.

Photo courtesy of: Smithsonian Institution Research Information System (SIRIS)

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Doughboy - Cliffside Parkloupe
Memorial Park, Edgewater Road & Palisade Avenue
Cliffside Park
USA 07010

This monument commemorates the soldiers from Cliffside Park, NJ who served in World War I.  It was dedicated on Decoration Day 1929. 

The bronze sculpture depicts a WWI soldier leaning on his left foot. He is wearing his uniform, ragged on both arms, a helmet and carrying a rifle on his left shoulder. His left hand is holding the rife strap, his right hand is hooked to the ammunition belt hanging around his hips. He is wearing a gas mask on his chest & a canteen on his right hip. 

On February 12, 1950, the monument was rededicated and a new plaque was added to include the names of the soldiers who gave their lives in WWII. The new plaque, made of polished labradorite, covers the original inscription on the stone base. 

Narrative adapted from Smithsonian Institution Research Information System (SIRIS) inventory #NJ000379.

Photos courtesy of: Smithsonian Institution Research Information System (SIRIS) 

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Doughboy - Eatontownloupe
Veterans Plaza, Wampum Park, Route 35 & West Street
USA 07724

This World War I monument consists of an approx. 5' tall sculpture placed upon a square base about 5' high.  A plaque with raised lettering on the front of the base indicates this was erected to honor the men of Eatontown who served in the war. 

The sculpture itself depicts a WWI doughboy at parade rest with his left foot forward.  The soldier clasps the barrel of a rifle with both hands. The butt of the rifle rests on the ground near his right foot.  He wears a wide-brimmed hat, a belted jacket and his pants are tucked into wrappings that cover both calves. There is a tree trunk behind his left leg.

The monument was purchased from LL Manning & Son, a Plainfield, NJ monument company. 

Narrative adapted from Smithsonian Institution Research Information System (SIRIS) inventory #NJ000434. 

Photos courtesy of:  NJ State Historic Preservation Office

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Doughboy - Haddon Townshiploupe
Westmont Fire Company, 120 Haddon Avenue
Haddon Township
USA 08108
Richard Walter Bock

The Haddon Township Doughboy is one of the iconic figures not designed by Visquesney. It was, instead, designed by sculptor Richard Walter Bock who had been born in Germany in 1865. In 1870, his family emigrated to Chicago where his father opened a cabinet making business. Bock began his art education in the United States but returned to his native country and France to complete his training.

Bock opened a sculpture studio in Chicago, designed sculptures for the World’s Fair Columbian Exposition, and gained notice by his interior bas-reliefs for the city’s Schiller Theatre designed by famed Chicago architect, Louis Sullivan. While working with Sullivan, Bock became acquainted with the architect’s draftsman, Frank Lloyd Wright. Bock became a friend of Wright’s and designed numerous sculptures for Wright buildings.

In 1928, Bock was selected as head of the Sculpture Department at the University of Oregon. He retired from the University in 1932, and died in 1949. In his memoirs, Bock described the Haddon Township commission:

Following the War, I had  a number of commissions commemorating that unhappy event. One was a very conventional statue made as a civic monument for Jersey City, New Jersey. It was a realistic charging soldier with a fixed bayonet, titled “Over the Top.”…In a small size, about four feet tall, it was widely copied for schools all over the county.”

One cast of his Jersey City sculpture is located in Haddon Township, Camden County. It includes a pedestal on which the 81 Township residents who served in the war are commemorated, The monument originally stood in front of Westmont School #1, located at the intersection of Haddon and Reeve Avenues. In 1961, the sculpture was moved to its present location, in front of the Westmont Firehouse on Haddon Avenue. The monument was dedicated in 1920.

Narrative adapted from Sandra White-Grear, “The Haddon Township Doughboy,” edited and added to by William Brahms, Haddon Township Historical Society, 2010.

Photos courtesy of:  Haddon Township Historical Society

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Doughboy - Highland Parkloupe
Veterans Memorial Park, 609 Raritan Avenue
Highland Park
USA 08904

This monument depicts a World War I soldier in uniform standing at parade rest. Both hands grasp the barrel of his rifle, the butt of which rests on the ground.

The monument was sponsored by Amos Wheatley and dedicated to veterans of The Great War. It was purchased from LL Manning & Son, a Plainfield, NJ monument company. 

It was rededicated in 1989 as part of a refurbishing project at Veterans' Memorial Park. The figure was knocked slightly off its original position by a collision with a tractor trailer truck.

Narrative adapted from Smithsonian Institution Research Information System (SIRIS) inventory NJ000048.

Photos courtesy of: Sheena Chi

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Doughboy - Middletownloupe
Church Street
USA 07718

This World War I monument consists of a life-size statue of a doughboy standing at attention in full uniform with the barrel of a rifle in his right hand and the butt of the rifle on the ground.  The figure is set upon a granite plinth, square in cross-section, with an angled top, resting on a rusticated granite slab. 

A bronze plaque mounted on the front of the plinth contains the names of local soldiers from Belford, Port Monmouth & New Monmouth, NJ who served in the war.  The monument sits on a low mound to heighten its prominence.  It was purchased from LL Manning & Son, a Plainfield, NJ monument company. 

Photo courtesy of:  NJ State Historic Preservation Office 


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Contact: NewJersey@worldwar1centennial.org


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