Pasadena - Terra Cotta Factory or Brickyards?

Teegate

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All,

I have been in contact with historian and author Paul W. Schopp, and if he is available, he said he would like to come on Ben's 2/15/03 outing. I am not sure if he will want to spend the full day with us, but we shall see. He has mentioned that he will take us to the "true" location of the Pasadena Terra Cotta Factory if Ben wants to add that to the agenda. You may remember he mentioned that what we and Beck believe to be Pasadena, is actually the Brooksbrae Brick Company. At least a few of you I am certain have doubts about that. He will show us the facts as he knows them, and you can again make your own opinions. Again, that is if he is available! I have not heard back from him on his availabilty.

He also will if available accompany us to the Union Clay works where he knows the location of the cellar holes of the company. He informed me that the dot on the Topozone.com map is actually the remains of an old gun club, but the clay works is close by. If we have quite a few members there, we should be able to do a comprehensive search of the area for the grave markers. Paul has reminded me of this link where we discussed it in the past, and one member of the PBE boards says he has viewed the grave stones, and they are 100 yards north of the town. Bob, you seemed interested in finding the stones, and you also Barry. Check out the link.

http://www.familyfishing.com/pbc/toast/toast.asp?sub=show&action=posts&fid=2&tid=129

I have mentioned Aserdaten, the Eureka gun club, and Black's bridge and grave stone to him, but I have not heard back from him as of yet to see what he knows, or if he will accompany us to those locations.

So I am looking forward to this outing, and I am sure Ben would like to hear back from all of you on your status for the 2/15/03 date.

Guy
 

Ben Ruset

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TeeGate said:
All,
He has mentioned that he will take us to the "true" location of the Pasadena Terra Cotta Factory if Ben wants to add that to the agenda. You may remember he mentioned that what we and Beck believe to be Pasadena, is actually the Brooksbrae Brick Company. At least a few of you I am certain have doubts about that.
I'm one of those people who questions it. You can get a quick overview of the history of the area at this page:

http://nynjctbotany.org/njoptofc/pasadena.html

Most of that is from Pauline S. Miller's "Ocean County: Four Centuries in the Making" published by the Ocean County Historical Society. Pauline Miller is the Director Emeritus of the society.

I'd be more than willing to listen to the facts as he presents them and keep an open mind. He knows more about it than me.
 

bobpbx

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You know Ben, you just jogged my memory about something. A piney I know took me to what He thought was Pasaden about 25 years ago.

It was further towards rt 539 on the south side of pasadena road. I even remember pieces of ceramic stuff on the ground, which could have been pottery from an old house from the area for all I know.

It was definitely a disturbed area though. I wonder if it is now hidden by one of thoses houses that were constructed in the 80's.
 

Ben Ruset

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From "Tides of Time, Ocean County, NJ" (1940), p. 81 in the "Whitings" section:

A POWDER MILL
was built at Whitings about 1889. The mill was owned by the Independant Powder Company of New York. Powder and shells were manufactured and the mill was in operation for about five and one half years. The mill was located in what is now called Whitings Terrace. Later it was moved to Padadina (sic) where it continued operating until 1902.

About two miles from Whitings we find the testing grounds where the powder and shells from the mill were tested. This testing dround is now owned by the Du Pont Powder Works and is still used by them for the occasional testing purposes. The greatest period of activity for the testing grounds was during the World War.

THE BRICK YARD
began operating about 1866. It was started by William Torrey and was run by him for about five years.

The bricks were made from clay which was obtained from nearby clay pits. A railroad was run into the brickyard and was used extensively in bringing materials to the yard. The finished bricks were used for building purposes and were often shipped away by the carload.

After five years of unsuccessful operation by William Torrey the yard was sold to a man by the name of Larrabee who in turn sold it to Jake Ireland and Cramer Aker. These two men operated it for about ten years. It was then abandoned.
 
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nodrogyetter

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I just got to get out on sunday after work, to go and see the Pasadena Terra Cotta factroy! It was my frist time that i have visited the site.
A bunch of people were finishing a game of paintball when my friends and I got their, so their is paint all over the place!
The fondations were a truly amazing site.
I got some pics that I might post soon. I also have many pics that I got form inside the tunnels, which were awsome!
 
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nodrogyetter

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Does any body know exacty what the tunnels were used for?
they werent tall enogh for someone to walk through.....
 
N

nodrogyetter

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I sure will... They made a total paint mess out of the whole area.
I still enjoyed the time that i spent there.
hopefully they dont damage any pieces of the remaining structures!
 

diggersw

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The tunnels at Pasadena are drying tunnels. I wrote my master's thesis on the site and spoke extensively with Paul Schopp about it. In fact, he should have a copy of my MA thesis. The name Pasadena is derived from a failed development in the area, the actual terra cotta factory, located in the front of a gun club about one mile north of the brick factory, was first named for Jesse and Ebenezer Townsend who operated, and later changed to the Wheatland Clay Manufacturing Company. The tunnels at Pasadena belong to the Brooksbrae Brick Company, an operation that began around 1901 and was never completed due to the untimely death of its owner. The actual kiln at the brick company lies to the north of the tunnels and was one of a series that were planned to be built.

The site is definitely intersting, but be careful as the concrete is becoming friable in its old age.
 
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bach2yoga

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You know, we've been trying to figure out for the longest time where the real Pasadena (not Brooksbrae) was.
The drying tunnels are similar to the ones at Atlantic Brick Manufacturing.
Renee
 

diggersw

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Renee,
The tunnels may be similar, but Brooksbrae's unique character was that it incorporated a fully integrated waste-heat drying tunnel in the factory design. Alan Mounier's examinations of Atlantic Brick were interesting. But, I believe the tunnels there were independent of the kiln and used separate heaters. If you search the articles on this site, I have one on the clay industry in this region that, I believe, locates the Wheatland factory. There is not much left of it, just the base of a muffle kiln and a partial brick floor. I have been after Chris Bethmann to urge the current property owners to allow me to perform a limited archaeological excavation to determine the extent of the site and locate any other major site features. I would like to do the same at Lewis Neill's brick works (Union Clay).
Scott W.
 

Teegate

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Don't take this the wrong way, but it seems to me that Union Clay Works should be left alone. If you do a limited dig there, I would assume it would then be covered over as was Martha.

BTW, has Chris Bethmann mentioned to you if he has heard anything on who may have stolen the Hanover 1824 stone? He told me he would report it missing, but the chance of finding it is slim.

Guy
 

JIMBO

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diggersw said:
Renee,
The tunnels may be similar, but Brooksbrae's unique character was that it incorporated a fully integrated waste-heat drying tunnel in the factory design. Alan Mounier's examinations of Atlantic Brick were interesting. But, I believe the tunnels there were independent of the kiln and used separate heaters. If you search the articles on this site, I have one on the clay industry in this region that, I believe, locates the Wheatland factory. There is not much left of it, just the base of a muffle kiln and a partial brick floor. I have been after Chris Bethmann to urge the current property owners to allow me to perform a limited archaeological excavation to determine the extent of the site and locate any other major site features. I would like to do the same at Lewis Neill's brick works (Union Clay).
Scott W.
The ruins in the woods : the history of the legendary Pasadena Terra Cotta Company : fact and fiction / by Scott Wieczorek
Is this you I found it on the Library site but have not gotten a chance to read it yet.
 

diggersw

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Guy,
Any excavations at Union Clay would be limited and have particular research questions. I have several questions in mind that I would like to see if material evidence exists to answer. I am a professional archaeologist/historian and would never think of damaging such a unique archaeological resource. It is a true shame what people have done to some of these old pine barrens industries, such as the furnaces that were protected and covered by Archaeologist Alan Mounier. My field of specialty is 19th century industrial history and I use material culture as one of my research tools. Rural industries, such as these clay works are simply fascinating.
Scott W.

p.s. what library did you get my thesis from?
 
B

bach2yoga

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diggersw said:
Renee,
The tunnels may be similar, but Brooksbrae's unique character was that it incorporated a fully integrated waste-heat drying tunnel in the factory design. Alan Mounier's examinations of Atlantic Brick were interesting. But, I believe the tunnels there were independent of the kiln and used separate heaters. If you search the articles on this site, I have one on the clay industry in this region that, I believe, locates the Wheatland factory. There is not much left of it, just the base of a muffle kiln and a partial brick floor. I have been after Chris Bethmann to urge the current property owners to allow me to perform a limited archaeological excavation to determine the extent of the site and locate any other major site features. I would like to do the same at Lewis Neill's brick works (Union Clay).
Scott W.
That's very interesting! What exactly is waste-heat? Yes, the drying tunnels are separate from the kilns. The kilns are beehive kilns. So there were no kilns there?
I did a pwerpoint lecture yesterday at Atlantic Community College yesterday on Pinelands orchids, and had a few homeschoolers with me; We stopped at the brick factory on the way home. It seemed that the kilns were falling apart more than I remember a couple of months ago. Your masters thesis is on this site? I'd love to read it!
I have read Alan Mounier's article, it was most helpful when we set out to explore the site. Are you on ASNJ yahoogroup? I'm the Renee associated with the Cumberland Furnace that Alan has mentioned on occasion.
Joe and I have really enjoyed getting to know Alan. He was over on Sunday showing us how to use an alidade (obolete, but does the job!) He's asked Joe and me to help map a couple of sites with him. He's also been our firemaking buddy--he showed Joe how to make a fire with a bow and drill on Sunday, and Joe was able to get the hang of it. We, in turn, set him off on a quest to find the right hardness of steel that will spark with flint. He finally found one yesterday. :lol:
The problem with leaving things alone--especially those areas--is that many people don't, and eventually there will be few remains that are pertinent to interpreting the site, and also, natural materials weather (part of the reason we covered in the furnace). Eventually it will be gone. Should I leave it alone? Yep. But I think an archaeological dig is different. Archaeology is about finding out about history, or rather finding the truth, which is often not history--before it's too late. It's not a hunt for treasure or loot. JMO.
Renee