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January 14 , 2009

Remembering South Cape May

The Jersey Shore Town that Vanished into the Sea


Few would imagine that the land currently occupied by the Nature Conservancy’s Cape May Migratory Bird Refuge, or “the Meadows,” was once the picturesque Jersey Shore town of South Cape May. By the early twentieth century, a striking hotel and homes designed by renowned Victorian-era architects dotted the landscape. Residents and visitors alike spotted rumrunners racing across the beachfront during Prohibition and endured World War II with German submarines lurking just offshore. But by 1954, barely a trace of the town remained except for about twenty of the original houses, which were moved a mile away. Join one of the town’s last residents, Joseph Burcher, as he chronicles life in South Cape May before the angry Atlantic swallowed this serene town.

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