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The Eden Woolley House

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Ocean’s Heritage, Summer 2017



October 4, 2017 marks the 60th anniversary of the launching of the Soviet Sputnik

Deal Test Site first to track Sputnik I, 1957 It's not hard to defend the claim that Deal Test Site (today's Joe Palaia Park) is the most historically significant acreage in the 11.1 square miles that make up present-day Ocean Township. Aside from the mastodon skeleton unearthed there in 1823, and the breakthrough research conducted by Western Electric (later Bell Labs) on wireless communications, there is 1957, when Deal Test Site—then occupied by the Army Signal Corps—became the first U.S.-based facility to track the Russian Sputnik. Or at least that's the story we've been telling visitors since the Museum opened its doors. But recently, a visitor gave us pause. She told us that her father, a scientist at Fort Monmouth in Eatontown, was the first person to sight Sputnik I and that she had the newspaper clippings to prove it. Had we been misinforming the public for decades? A troubling thought. And what better time to straighten out who did what, where, and when than for the 60th anniversary of the launch in question?

The simple (ish) answer Turns out both claims are correct. On Oct. 12, 1957, Stan Schodowski (our visitor's father) was the first American to optically sight (with aid of a telescope) the Sputnik, its nose cone, and booster rocket— three objects. His story is told in the "I Remember . . " column on page 5. But a week earlier, at 7:50 a.m., Oct. 5, just hours after the launch, the Astro-Observation Center, an outpost of Fort Mon-

Deal Test Site, 1957. This new H-shaped combat antenna had recently been designed at Deal Test Site to locate enemy ground radio stations. Having it gave engineers there a unique ability to pinpoint the location of the orbiting Sputnik. mouth's Signal Corps on Deal Test Site, was the first U.S. government facility to pick up radio signals from the Soviet satellite (an instrument sighting).

The full (er) story The launch of the first man-made moon—as satellites were then called— was not a surprise. Several years earlier, scientists from around the world set it as

Astro-Tracking Center, Deal Test Site, 1969. Operations at Deal Test Site were in the news often after the historic tracking of Sputnik I. An elaborate (this time official) monitoring operation was set up in time for Sputnik II, launched Nov. 3, 1957. (America sent up its first successful satellite, Explorer I, Jan. 31, 1958.) The Test Site continued as a 24/7 tracking station until its role waned as NASA developed its own monitoring facilities in the late 1960s. It closed officially June 30, 1973.

a goal for the upcoming 1957/58 International Geophysical Year (IGY), a global, collaborative initiative to learn more about the earth and space. The surprise was who did the launching. The Navy had won the bid to develop a U.S. satellite. IGY and U.S. government resources around the world were preparing to track what they expected to be the U.S. Vanguard. But at 3:30 (EDT), Thursday, Oct. 4, the Soviets shocked the world by putting the first man-made moon (22" in diameter, 184 lbs.) in orbit. Deal Test Site was already geared up for satellite tracking. It had a unique capability to pinpoint the source of radio signals on the very frequencies the Sputnick was broadcasting. It had engineers trained and ready to go into action. For 500 hours, from Oct. 5 until the satellite batteries ran out, 30 Deal Test Site engineers (who called themselves the "Royal Order of Sputnik Chasers") worked—unofficially—round the clock seven days a week without overtime pay to detect and record Russian signals. The Site's significance is real The stories behind the claims show no contest for first. Both Stan Schodowski and the Deal Test Site have earned their place in history. Thanks to the U.S. Army CECOM History Office Aberdeen Proving Ground, MD, for sharing its

records and photographs.


Ocean’s Heritage, Summer 2017

Families of the World War I veterans featured in the Museum's new exhibit attend the openings. Left: Harvey Duze of Germantown, Maryland, and Museum member Beth Woolley pose before the story of their grandfather, Silver Star recipient, Max Duze. Center: Member Don Bruno (right) shows his grandson, daughter, and son-in-law—Alex, Donna, and Bryan McMillen of Oceanport—his father's display. Right: Joe Marino of Ocean Township stands beside the tribute to his father, Giuseppe Marinaccio.

"NJ and the Great War" now in the Richmond Gallery


e premiered the Museum's newest exhibit, "New Jersey and the Great War: Local Stories of World War I," with a private wine and cheese reception for members and invited guests, Fri., June 23, and a public opening, Sun. June 25. Taken together, close to 100 people were the first to see the Museum's latest major installation. The exhibit's two parts both have a local focus. The first covers the significant role that New Jersey's industry, ports, and military bases played in a war whose devastation and consequences merit more attention than they typically receive. It shows how Wilson (a former NJ governor) transformed from peace proponent to ruthless champion of the war. It illustrates life on the NJ home-

front—from acts of German sabotage that leveled factories and communities to the U-boat sinking of six ships in a single day (June 2, 1918) off the Jersey Shore. The exhibit's second part is personal. It highlights six veterans, all connected to our state, whose individual experiences illustrate broader themes—from the effects of the draft, to the federalization of the National Guard, to the treatment of African Americans. "I'm amazed by what I learned," one visitor admitted. "I'm going to encourage everyone I know to get here before it closes." The exhibit remains through June 2018.

Edith Wilson (aka Sergie Conklin) sits at the desk her husband Woodrow used during his campaign for a second term—a campaign that ironically featured the slogan "He kept us out of war."

WWI Flag-Raising


ore than 60 people gathered on the Museum grounds July 29 to honor the memory of World War I veterans. World War II veteran Lou Parisi set the stage with a brief overview of the war. Don Bruno (whose father is among the WWI veterans featured in the Museum exhibit) read the names of the 60 men who served from Ocean Township and 23 others submitted by Museum members and supporters. Boy Scout Troop 71 raised the flag to the soulful sounds of bagpipes, played by volunteer Boyd Moore. The guests, many first-time visitors, ended the evening with a Museum tour.

Future Exhibit Director?


wo 10th grade history classes from Ocean High School visited in June to learn how to turn a history lesson into a museum exhibit. We stopped by their classroom to see the results. Impressive! Living-history performances, video displays, effective signage, and ingenious artifacts!


Ocean’s Heritage, Summer 2017

"Save the Tower"


T Museum Speaker, 7:15, October 24, at the Board of Ed. Building

Intriguing new theory on Molly Pitcher “Will the real Molly Pitcher please stand up?”


his question from the ‘50s game show, “To Tell the Truth,” might come to mind when John Fabiano, Executive Director of the Monmouth County Historical Commission, presents his research on the woman known as the heroine of the Battle of Monmouth. Did she really throw down her water pitcher and start loading the cannon when her husband collapsed at his post? Was she nearly hit by a cannon ball? Did General George Washington make her a non-commissioned officer in the army? What is her real name? John offers his take on these and other questions when he speaks to the Township of Ocean Historical Museum audience, 7:15 p.m., Tues., Oct. 24, at the Ocean Township Board of Education Building at 163 Monmouth Road, Oakhurst. John developed a keen interest in the truth behind the legend when, as a member of the Allentown and Upper Freehold Historical Society, he worked on a project to

preserve open space in the area. As the budget chief for the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection with a degree in Economics, John was well versed in issues related to land use. But as he poured over local archives to develop a rationale for the land preservation, he had a sense that his research was also revealing a “who’s who” in local Revolutionary War history—and fueling a growing personal fascination with the legend of Molly Pitcher. John’s research helped the Historical Society preserve a greenbelt in Allentown that is now known as Heritage Park. As an added perk, his passion for history found him returning to college for a Masters Degree in Public History. Molly Pitcher was his prime motivator. Join us October 24 to learn about the origins of this Revolutionary War heroine’s legend and the possibility that she was a spy for the Patriots. The talk, part of the Museum's Speaker Series, is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.

he outdoor Antique and Flea Market scheduled for Sunday, October 8, takes place—appropriately enough—in the shadow of the handsome tower it's being held to save. The Museum is raising money to rescue the Tower and open it to the public as a gallery telling the story of Monmouth County's rural past. The Antique and Flea Market is an inviting and easy way for you to lend your support to the effort—as a vendor, shopper, or both! Vendors: Applications are coming in, but space is available. If you have antiques, vintage, re-purposed, handmade, home decor, or flea market items, pick up your application on line ( or at the Museum. The fee per 10'x10' space is $35. Food vendor space is $70. Shoppers: Mark your calendar and join the fun. The park area between the Tower and Museum will be filled with treasures, treats, and activities for the family. What better way to enjoy a fall afternoon and support this worthwhile project?

FIND YOUR TREASURE! Antique and Flea Market 9 to 3, Sun., Oct. 8 (Rain Date, Oct. 15) Museum/Tower Grounds 703 Deal Rd., Ocean

Bus Trip to Winterthur Museum


oin us Thursday, December 7, on a trip to the Francis du Pont mansion (the 5th largest home in the U.S.) in Wilmington, DE. Today a museum housing one of the country’s most important collections of Americana, Winterthur will be fully decked out for the holidays. The $85 ticket includes transportation, admission, a 25-minute tram ride through the gardens, a docent-led tour of the mansion, a lunch voucher, and time for self-guided tours of three exhibits and browsing in the museum shop. There are just a few seats left. Make your reservation now (732-531-2136 or


Ocean’s Heritage, Summer 2017

Museum partners with the Ocean Township Library

World War One film series, select Tuesdays 2 and 6:15 p.m.,Tues., Jan. 16, 2018

The Fighting 69th (1940) James Cagney is the protagonist in this story of the redemption of a soldier whose blunders cost the lives of comrades in New York City's 69th Infantry Regiment. (1 hr., 30 min.)

Message from the Museum


There never was a good war or a bad peace” Benjamin Franklin

2 and 6:15 p.m., Tues., Feb. 20, 2018


or many of us born in the mid 1900's, World War I was an event far in the past. World War II had just ended and our interest was on the present. For these reasons, I found the Museum's new exhibit, "New Jersey and the Great War," a real eyeopener and a condensed history lesson. World War I started in Europe in the summer of 1914. America officially remained neutral until April 6, 1917. By the end of hostilities, Nov. 11, 1918, two million Americans had served in Europe and 116,708 had died—including three men from Ocean Township. These were the days before radio and television, a time of low tech communications. Wireless (radio) research was in its early stages. The army still used carrier pigeon and telegraph. Air planes were flying contraptions made of wood, cloth and wires. Here in New Jersey, German saboteurs blew up industrial sites and a German U-boat sank six ships in a single day off our coast. I invite you to visit and see for yourself. If you're like me, the new exhibit offers surprising insight into the role our state played in a war that deserves remembering. Paul Edelson

Waterloo Bridge (1940)


n conjunction with the Museum's new exhibit, the Ocean Township Library is offering a series of World War One films, free to the public, showing twice on select Tuesdays through June 2018. The movies range from a silent film classic and winner of the first Academy Award for "Best Picture" (Wings) to a 21st century lookback on the WWI heroics of Australian miners (Beneath Hill 60). Check out the line-up, mark your calendar, and stop by the Museum to take in our WWI exhibit on your way to the show.

2 and 6:15 p.m., Tues., Sept. 19, 2017

Wings (1927) A romantic, action-filled silent movie starring Clara Bow and Gary Cooper, featuring lots of footage of WWI aircraft. Some 300 pilots flew U.S. Army Air Corps planes borrowed for the filming. (2 hr., 24 min.) 2 and 6:15 p.m., Tues., Oct. 17, 2017

All Quiet on the Western Front (1930) The Academy-Award-winning ("Outstanding Production," "Best Director") adaptation of the Erich Remarque novel starring Lew Ayres. (2 hr., 16 min.)

Robert Taylor and Vivien Leigh play an army captain and dancer whose lives and love are torn apart by war. (1 hr., 48 min.) 2 and 6:15 p.m., Tues., March 20, 2018

Sergeant York (1941) The bio-pic of Alvin York, a country boy and ace marksman from Tennessee who became one of the war's most decorated American heros. Directed by Howard Hawks, starring Gary Cooper. (2 hr., 14 min.) 2 and 6:15 p.m., Tues., April 17, 2018

Paths of Glory (1957) An anti-war film, based loosely on a true story, directed by Stanley Kubrick, and starring Kirk Douglas as commanding officer of French soldiers who were scapegoated, courtmartialed, and executed after refusing to continue a suicide mission. (1 hr., 28 min.) 2 and 6:15 p.m., Tues., May 15, 2018

Gallipoli (1981) Follows a group of young Australians whose idealized vision of war is shattered by the fierce fighting and Allied defeat in the nearly nine-month Gallipoli campaign. Starring Mel Gibson. (1 hr., 50 min.)

2 and 6:15 p.m., Tues., Nov. 21, 2017

The Dawn Patrol (1938) David Niven, Basil Rathbone, and Errol Flynn star in this story of British combat pilots. (1 hr., 43 min.) Ocean’s Heritage is published quarterly by the Township of Ocean Historical Museum Museum President, Paul Edelson Newsletter Editor, Peggy Dellinger

2 and 6:15 p.m., Tues., Dec. 19, 2017

Joyeux Noel (2005) A recount of the real-life spontaneous truce in the trenches between German and Allied troops, Christmas Eve, 1914. (1 hr., 56 min.)

2 and 6:15 p.m., Tues., June 19, 2018

Beneath Hill 60 (2010) Based on the true story of an Australian miner who, with a secret unit of tunnelers, works underground to shore up a web of tunnels packed with enough explosives to change the course of the war. Starring Brendon Cowell. (2 hr., 2 min.) The Ocean Library is located directly behind the Museum at 701 Deal Road, Ocean.


Ocean’s Heritage, Summer 2017

Stan Schodowski spent his career as a scientist at Ft. Monmouth, Eatontown. In 1991, the NJ Inventors Hall of Fame honored him as a "NJ Inventor of the Year" for his patented design of a quartz sensing device used widely in today's communication systems. He and his wife Mary have lived in the Wayside home where they raised their eight children since 1957. Here, Stan remembers the pre-dawn hours of October 12, 1957 when he became the first person in the U.S. to see the Russian Sputnik, its nose cone, and rocket booster orbiting the earth. This first optical sighting of all three objects was news in papers around the country.

I Remember . . .

Sighting the Russian Sputnik


ix of us were on the roof of the Hexagon Building at Ft. Monmouth in the early morning of Saturday, October 12, 1957. We were the Ft. Monmouth Moonwatch Team, there to scan the skies for a glimpse of the Soviet satellite whose launch eight days earlier had shocked the nation.

The Moonwatch Project Ours was one of 150 volunteer Moonwatch Teams organized by the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO) in anticipation of the launch of the first "man-made moon" during the International Geophysical year (July 1957 to December 1958). The SAO—and the rest of the world—had expected that first satellite to be the American Vanguard, under development by the U.S. Navy. But, on October 4, 1957, at the height of the Cold War, it was the feared Soviets who were the first to successfully launch a satellite into space. The Moonwatch Teams were called into action. After a week in orbit, enough data on the path and speed of the Sputnik had been collected to predict approximately when and where it would appear in the early dawn or twilight sky. Our team was alerted to be on watch the morning of the 12th.

I was the lucky one

I was the lucky one. At 6:22, I spotted two objects in the northern sky moving in parallel paths about 22 degrees above the horizon. Seconds later, a third object, not as bright, appeared. I yelled the time, as we had been trained to do. The team leader relayed the data to SAO headquarters in Cambridge, MA. where it was entered into an early computer.

The three objects I remember being surprised to see three objects. Our training for the anticipated Vanguard tracking had prepared us to expect just one. For the first few days, various theories were offered, most speculating that the three objects were the debris of the rocket breaking up. I was convinced, and I believe I was proven correct, that the three objects I saw were the booster rocket, the nose cone, and finally the satellite itself. The Sputnik was a little less than 23" in diameter and visible only by reflected light. A telescope was needed to see such a small object. (Many of the reported unaided sightings were likely of the larger piece of rocket.) I believe the third image I saw was the satellite itself. And my understanding is that I was the first in the country to optically spot all three objects.

An exciting time

The sighting was carried in papers around the country, and our phone started to ring. It was an We had received some elementary training, but this was our team's first time on Front page, Asbury Park Press, exciting time. I was proud to have had a role at this, the dawning of the Space Age. And, there's Sunday, Oct. 13, 1957 the roof for a live observation. Five widerecent evidence that the legacy of my participation angle, 8-power telescopes had just been lives on. I took my two sons to the Astronomy delivered. We set them up in row along a wooden plank, Club that grew out of the Moonwatch Team in the years that foleach oriented to a different section of the sky. A team memlowed—and one just traveled with his family hundred of miles ber sat at each telescope, watching and waiting. The team to witness the recent, once-in-a-lifetime total solar eclipse! leader stood by. Stan Schodowski

6 Ocean’s Heritage, Summer 2017

A perfect day for a tea party at the Museum M

other Nature and the contributions of nearly 50 volunteers made the 9th American Doll Tea, held Sunday, July 16 on the grounds of the Eden Woolley House, a perfect day for our 75 guests and a recordbreaking event for the Museum. Inside the Museum, Living History Interpreters introduced girls to the charms and challenges of 18th century life. Doll and bear collections filled the galleries— American Girl historic dolls (including the first boy doll, Logan), Charlie Bears, and many versions of Raggedy Ann (celebrating 99 years since her creation by author Johnny Gruelle). Professional artist Laura Tuzzio Ross was on hand to exhibit her

life-like dolls and explain how they are made. Outside, guests visited the Playhouse. With the help of our junior docents they completed a craft—this year decorating a canvas backpack. The girls and their dolls took part in a fashion show. They sat under the trees to listen to an original story of the Woolley Sisters and returned to Elizabeth Woolley (aka Heather MacDonald) introduces their tables for lemonade, iced guests and their dolls during the afternoon's fashion show. tea, and homemade treats. The 2017 American Doll Tea Doll Shop. Best of all, many girls left sayraised $1400 in ticket sales and over $700 ing, "See you next year!" from the sale of hand-made items in our

Quilters, from left to right: Jeanne Ribsam, Lois Landis, Sergie Conklin, Donna Gleason, Gail Levenson, Marge Edelson, Sarah Salmon, and Marion Vogler. Not pictured: Gerri Applegate, Annmarie Capponi, Barbara Lomasson, Eileen McCormack, Hilda Vafiadis, Betty Wilderotter, and Joan Wobser.

Hundreds of hours of skilled effort pay off


hen asked how many hours went into crafting the quilt for this year's Museum raffle, the women whose talents and time created it were at a loss to answer. "Every stitch is done by hand," team leader Marge Edelson explained. "However you estimate, it adds up to hundreds of hours." We can trust her judgment. This is the 30th quilt Marge has worked with Museum volunteers to create. Each year, she searches for a new pattern, shops for the perfect fabrics, meticulously cuts the material into the pieces that add up to the overall design (one small error and the puzzle doesn't fit together), trains the crafters, assembles their squares, and oversees the hand-quilting of the finished product.

This year's pattern, called "Hunter's Star," is done in handsome ivory and cranberry. And the more you study the completed quilt, the more there is to appreciate. The individual crafters' squares come together to form eye-catching two-tone stars. The quilting stitches themselves form flower shapes, subtly distributed over the whole. It is a piece of genuine Americana and a true work of art. Over the years, the quilts have earned the Museum over $80,000. Raffle books are available at the Museum and will be mailed to members in the coming weeks. Please look for yours. The winning ticket will be drawn Sunday, December 3, during Holiday Weekend.


Ocean’s Heritage, Summer 2017

Mark your calendar

Coming Events “Save the Tower” Flea Market Joe Bilby


Randy Gabrielan

A full lineup of talks and shows

etween our Speakers Series and our television show "Hometown Histories," the Museum has filled the summer with enjoyable and enlightening entertainment. Award-winning historian and author Joe Bilby returned to the line-up of Museum speakers May 16 to talk about his book, Submarine Warfare Along the Jersey Shore. He surprised many with his tales of submarine strikes off our coast in both World Wars and made a convincing case that New Jersey was the birthplace of the modern submarine. County Historian and prolific author Randy Gabrielan, also a frequent speaker in

our series, came June 6 to talk about the fascinating personalities who shaped the character of the Jersey Shore—and who populate his recent book Birth of the Jersey Shore. Author, artist, and Museum member Lois Kiely, whose essay on her father appears in the recently published Chicken Soup for the Soul: Military Families, spoke Aug. 22 on the effects of war on those left behind. Lois is generously donating profits from her sale of the book to the Museum. Catching up with Hometown Histories The newest Hometown Histories episodes (see below) are available on our website and on Ocean TV, Channels 77 (Cablevision) and 22 (Verizon). Top: Marge Edelson interviews Dave Osborn and his sister Marty Siver, about growing up on a farm in Ocean Township. Bottom left: Former councilman John Huss and Wayside School Principal Denise Palaia sit down with Paul Edelson to share their memories of Joe Palaia, former Township Mayor and State Senator. Bottom right: Hometown Histories Host Dallas Grove completes her series of interviews with former Township Managers in a talk with Dave Kochel.

Sunday, October 8, 9 to 3—The Woolley House grounds. General meeting and talk

"Local Origins of the Molly Pitcher Legend," Tuesday, October 24, 7:15—--Bd. of Ed. Building, 163 Monmouth Rd., Oakhurst. John Fabiano, Executive Director of the Monmouth County Historical Commission, offers his theories on the identity of the Molly Pitcher of legend.

Holiday Weekend and miniexhibit opening. 11 to 4, Saturday and Sunday, December 2 and 3--Eden Woolley House. Holiday decorations, Craft Boutique, Homemade Bakery, and the opening of a new mini exhibit that tells the story of the Tower behind the Ocean Library and why it is worth saving.

Bus Trip: Winterthur Museum Thursday, December 7. Trip to Francis du Pont’s former Wilmington, DE home. Call 732-531-2136 for reservations ($85).

Ross Fenton Exhibit held over


he mini exhibit on Wanamassa's legendary nightclub, Ross Fenton Farm, continues to generate interest and is being held over. The mini exhibit "What Is that Tower?" originally scheduled to open Sept. 10, will instead premiere during Holiday Weekend, Dec. 2 and 3.

How about a history book club?

We remember . . . Edwin White, 91, Museum member and lifelong Oakhurst resident, died May 28. Eddie graduated from Long Branch High School and was a World War II combat Navy veteran. For 27 years, he owned and ran White's Food Center in the site of the old Oakhurst general store on the northwest corner of Monmouth Rd. and West Park Ave.

If the idea of sitting down to talk with people about a book you've all just read on an interesting historical topic appeals to you, write or call Lois Kiely (llkiely@ or 732-531-4648). Maybe there's a "Museum History Reading Group" in your future!

Ocean’s Heritage, Summer 2017

9 to 3, Sunday, October 8 (rain date October 15) “Save the Tower�

Antique and Flea Market Museum/Tower Grounds

The Eden Woolley House

Home of the Township of Ocean Historical Museum

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Museum Hours

/-365(-365Äť/,-395g5.)5j Thursday evening: 7 to 9 (April to November) g-.5(5h(5/(3-5) 5."5')(."95g5.)5j5 Funding has been made possible in part by an operating support grant from the New Jersey Historical Commission, a Division of the Department of State, through grant funds administered by the Monmouth County Historical Commission.

The Township of Ocean Historical Museum

2017 Household Membership Application New____ Renewal____


Name(s) as you would like it (them) to appear on your membership card and correspondence.

_______________________________________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________________________________ Number of people in your household (your membership includes them all) ___________________ Street ________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Town_______________________________________ State________________________ Zip________________________________ Phone________________________ Email (used only to send notice of Museum events )_____________________________________________ Please check your level of support ___ Friend of the Museum $5000+ ___ Silver Member $250 ___ Supporter $25+

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Please check the area(s) where you might like to participate ___Historical research ___ Grant preparation

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Detach and mail to Township of Ocean Historical Museum, P.O. Box 516, Oakhurst, NJ 07755 ------For Office use only:----Check $___________________

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2017-08 - Ocean's Heritage  
2017-08 - Ocean's Heritage  

The quarterly newsletter of the Township of Ocean Historical Museum, Monmouth County, New Jersey, USA. The Township of Ocean Historical Mus...