Tuesday, July 12, 2011

July 16 Boonton Walk, Industrial Heritage Tour MCPC

Boonton Walk, Industrial Heritage Tour MCPC
One of the benefits of living in an area so rich in history is taking part in the Morris County Park Commission (MCPC) Industrial Heritage Tours. The next one takes place this Saturday 7/16/11 for a walk through the Boonton Historic District.

Joe Macasek, whom you may remember from the Split Rock Village Furnace Tour & Hike  and Roxbury's Ledgewood Inclined Plane, Morris Canal Hike, will be leading the Boonton Walk. Joe explains that this is a walk "included in this year's schedule by popular demand."

If you plan on participating, please send Joe an email.

Here are details:

When:  Saturday, July 16, 2011 at 10am

Where:  Meet on Main Street in front of the Boonton Post Office near the corner of Williams Street.

Parking: Since the tour will probably run longer than two hours [the limit on the Main Street parking meters], you are better off parking in the residential area north of Birch Street where there are no meters. The parking authority is active giving tickets on expired meters.

Directions: From the south get off I- 278 at Exit 44. From the north take Exit 45 and follow Myrtle Avenue south to Main Street.

Historical Background on Boonton

The story of Boonton’s growth from a small iron making village to large industrial town involves real estate speculation, venture capital, and insider information and would fit right in to today’s headlines. It started in 1831 when the New Jersey Iron Company brought cutting-edge technology to a spot where abundant waterpower and the newly completed Morris Canal would make it possible to build what would become one of Morris County's largest industrial complexes employing as many as 600 workers.

On this tour we will walk to entire site and see the remains of the iron works, a Morris Canal Inclined Plane, the bases of two anthracite blast furnaces and the oldest workers houses in town. The walk will end with a visit to the Boonton Historical Society Museum. For those who want more there will also be an opportunity to visit the nearby railroad trestle and turntable.

This moderate hike will involve walking along trails, city street and include some off-trail exploration.

Don't forget to let Joe know if you are attending. If you do go, I hope you'll take photos and share with us what you enjoy most!


Mary Beth said...

For those of you that cannot make the Boonton Historical walk (like me), you can still email John and let him know that you are interested. He will put you on his mailing (emailing) list for upcoming walking events.

Did you know that there used to be a Limestone Quarry on Turkey Mountain? Yes, I lead a hike there several years ago and taught the young hikers about how the limestone was used to melt the iron ore. I also discussed the big industry in these parts : Boonton Iron Works. I believe the original location is now underwater in the Reservoir that is seen off of Route 287.

CB Whittemore said...

Mary Beth, how fascinating! I know some of the Charlotteburg iron works are under water along Rte. 23. In an early post I recaptured some of that story.

Joe's heritage walks are amazing and it's worthwhile for anyone interested in understanding this area's history particularly as it relates to the Canal system and the ironworks to get on his email list.

Thank you!


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