Woolwich Township abandoned missle base for sale

Boyd

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Ben's Branch, Stephen Creek
"A Gloucester County community has put up for sale the command section of a Cold War-era Nike missile base that was part of the nation’s defenses against an attack by the Soviet Union. The Army abandoned the 33-acre site in Woolwich Township and hundreds of others like it around the country in 1974. Now the Gloucester County community hopes a commercial developer will buy it."


Some cool pictures of the abandoned buildings here:


Here's the location of the two parcels - in case you want to make an offer! :D

Block 14 Lot 4
https://online.boydsmaps.com/#17/39.77237/-75.30066/parcelsPro

Block 14 Lot 2
https://online.boydsmaps.com/#17/39.76585/-75.30438/parcelsPro
 
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oji

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I worked on a housing development across the street from Cherokee High School that was a former missle base.
 
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Boyd

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There was one for sale already converted, fairly near to our cabin.
Have read about that. But it is an ICBM silo, and the Woolwich property is an old Nike missle base. These were batteries of small, fast missles initially designed to shoot down bombers carrying atomic bombs. Later, they were upgraded to bigger and faster missles designed to shoot down ICBM's. Those were scarier, because they had nuclear warheads.

I remember getting a tour of a Nike base outside of St Louis when I was a kid, sometime in the 1960's on a school (or scout?) field trip. It was on a hill overlooking the Mississippi River. One thing that impressed me were the Wang electronic calculators they had in the control room, very high tech back then.


Here's an AT&T documentary from 1976 that traces the history of anti-ballistic-missle (ABM) systems, starting with Nike. Pretty interesting - if you're a fan of the Cold War era like me. :D



Here's a PDF of the Woolwich plan

 
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46er

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the Woolwich property is an old Nike missle base. These were batteries of small, fast missles initially designed to shoot down bombers carrying atomic bombs.
We used to live next to three in Middlesex county, Nike Missile Control Site NY-58/60. Gateway NRA Sandy Hook had one, NY-56. The batteries are still there and 2 missile's are on display, one in each lane. There were 2 versions of missile. Lot of war history in that rec area.

 

Teegate

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I worked on a housing development across the street from Cherokee High School that was a former missle base.
I took the photo of the buildings in the front in 1975 that John Flack uses on his site.

 

Teegate

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This was 11/2001. And interesting story. My brother-in-law as a very young child had an imaginary friend named Frank Madelli. I guess that would be the proper spelling of the last name. Anyway, we were there taking the photos and a man came out of the woods in the below photo yelling at us. He was a hunter and had a gun. Started giving us a hard time for being there so we just started talking with him and he relaxed. He told me his name was Frank Madelli and my daughters and I started laughing. Had never heard that name except from my wife and her family.

NikePanaramic_11_2001.jpg
 

c1nj

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The Marlton site also had a second life as the Burlington County Fire Academy.
 
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The Wick

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Did I miss it? They did not mention the base on 539 or the fire that happened there. Before they removed the soil there you could drive up to the front gates of the base. It was such an eerie place. All the buildings just sitting there with the roads between them crumbling. We used to always wonder if there was still anything in there. I always heard stories from older people that when the missile burned they basically just buried everything including the equipment and capped it with cement.
 

ecampbell

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I grew up in the cold war. My father fought it and eventually so did I. It is still going on. In the 1980's I dove Texas Tower #4 twice. It is an early warning station built on an oil platform 75 miles out of Barnegat. It sunk in a storm in 1961. A beautiful dive starting at 85 feet. Swimming through the rooms was a life experience, frozen in time.
 

46er

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I grew up in the cold war. My father fought it and eventually so did I. It is still going on. In the 1980's I dove Texas Tower #4 twice. It is an early warning station built on an oil platform 75 miles out of Barnegat. It sunk in a storm in 1961. A beautiful dive starting at 85 feet. Swimming through the rooms was a life experience, frozen in time.
Also a great fishing spot. :)
 

46er

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Thanks for the update 46er, So BOMARC was for ICBMS not bombers?
I think it was designed to target bombers, whatever it was it had to be flying. I know McGuire was the first Air Force missile defense site; the nike's were used by the Army.
 

Boyd

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Thanks for the update 46er, So BOMARC was for ICBMS not bombers?
BOMARC was designed to shoot down bombers, it was powered by ramjet engines and relatively slow. There were several versions of the Nike missile, the Hercules had a nuclear warhead and was faster, so it could intercept ICBMs. They used nukes so that it didn't need pinpoint accuracy. Not a very good idea to set off nuclear explosions above your own cities, but I suppose they thought it was better than a direct hit from a bomb. ;)
 

RichLewis

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Hi Everyone,
I'm sort of new here, but have been reading many of the threads on this great forum. It's amazing how just about any Google search of the Pine Barrens ends up here.

I photographed this Nike missile site in detail in 2016. I also photographed the Lumberton site before it was torn down and the site in Sandy Hook. These Nike missile batteries were part of a defensive ring around major cities like Phila which had 12 at one point. Nike's were the the Army's program and the Air Force owned the Bomarc program. The Nike Hercules was designed to shoot down bombers and didn't' have the range to hit an ICBM. Plus they took too long too prepare to launch which is why the Nike program was discontinued in 1974. The plan with the Nike Hercules was that one missile exploding a nuclear warhead in the air would vaporize a bunch of Russian bombers and the atomic bombs they carried. It's nice to know that the Pines were one of the potential target areas. Anyway, here is a link to photographs of the 3 sites from my website if you are interested: https://richardlewisphotography.com/galleries/cold-war-nike-missile-sites/ That page also links to my blog which has a lot of comments from guys who served on these batteries.