September 11, 2012
The closer you are to Manhattan, the more people you can find who were directly affected by September 11, 2001.
At the time, I was living about two hours south of Manhattan. I personally didn’t know anyone who was killed, but— six degrees of separation— it seemed like everybody knew somebody who’d lost a spouse, a brother, a mother, a son.
Near New Providence, every day the commuter trains are crammed with what I call “Wall-Street-types.” Eleven years ago… I wonder what it would’ve been like. I’m glad I don’t know firsthand.
Today, there is a memorial ceremony being held at Echo Lake Park’s September 11 memorial, where these photos were taken. The memorial’s two rusty monuments were created from twisted steel girders from the World Trade Center itself.
May 30, 2012
After the parade, there was a closing memorial ceremony in front of the New Providence Memorial Library. (They also paused to say a few words in front of the Methodist Church [plus its cemetery] and Presbyterian Church [plus ITS cemetery] along the parade route.)
Police were keeping an eye on things. Cars kept driving through the middle of this ceremony, since the end of the parade wasn’t well-marked, and the cars needed to go SOMEWHERE.
May 28, 2012
I know this is obvious for most of you, but today is Memorial Day in the United States. A lot of us have the day off from work so we can celebrate the memory of those who died in wars.
One of the ways we celebrate is… parades!
Every town has its own local parade, mostly. So I watched New Providence’s! It’s sponsored by our local American Legion chapter.
The guard, shown in the top photo, was much less busy before the parade started:
I’ve never photographed a parade before. It’s hard to get good photos of a parade! I’ll need to figure out some better techniques for next time.
May 15, 2012
If you happen to pass through Lenape Park in Union, you might notice a tree wearing a white hat.
If you look a little closer, your amusement might turn to sadness.
Although the hat alone tells you pretty much all you need to know, Segundo Padilla was smoothing the path here when his roller toppled off the edge of a shallow embankment (presumably the one near this memorial).
The ink on the hat is fresh, and it’s my guess that the hat was just recently nailed here in memory of the one-year anniversary of his death.
It’s a tragedy, any way you slice it.
April 23, 2012
This statue in Springfield of a Continental soldier has the distinction of standing on the smallest state park in New Jersey. How cool is that!
…It’s almost the sort of thing they’d make a sitcom episode about!
April 15, 2012
This skeletal remnant has been lying near/in a trail on the Watchung Reservation for at least a few months, since the last time I came through this way.
The ribs and tibia make it something bigger than a rabbit, but the molars are reasonably small. The spot is also surrounded by gray fur. A dog, maybe, hit by a car on the nearby Glenside Avenue and rolled over here to die? I sure hope not.
I’m not sure why I’m more upset at the idea of a dog dying here than, say, a badger dying here.
September 12, 2011
People passing through Scotch Plains might note a huge ugly-looking tower right in the middle of town. It is not, in fact, just there because the people of Scotch Plains enjoy huge ugly-looking towers.
It is part of a World War I monument (the entirety of which consists of the 80-foot flagpole [aka. "huge ugly-looking tower"], the traffic island on which it sits, a bronze plaque, and a cannon).
The cannon, which I unfortunately didn’t capture very well, has a slightly more interesting story:
The captured German cannon was a gift from the government, in appreciation of the fact that Scotch Plains had the largest percentage of over-subscription to the Victory Liberty Loan in any non-banking community in the Second Federal Reserve District. This subscription tallied to almost $700,000… against its quota of $25,500 (Bousquet and Bousquet, 1995, p. 124).
From what I understand, Scotch Plains now had a cannon on its hands and didn’t know what to do with it, so the Victory Celebration Committee said “Aha! Let’s make it part of a big memorial. With a flagpole and stuff! That would be so cool.”
So there it is.
Bousquet, R. and Bousquet, S. (1995). Images of America: Scotch Plains and Fanwood. Arcadia Publishing: Dover, NH. ISBN 0738563188.
April 17, 2011
Mulch planted in memory of Arthur Grant Balcom, April 14, 1943. (Found near the New Providence Municipal Center.)
I know, I missed posting yesterday. I’m sorry. And my photo backstock is getting to critically low levels, so it might happen again this week. Argh!
March 26, 2011
This is the cemetery across the road from the New Providence Methodist Church. (Pssst – click here for a Google street view of the cemetery.)
I think it goes with the church, but either way, it’s historical:
This placard near the front of the cemetery reads:
In remembrance of the soldiers of the War for American Independence who are buried in these grounds
Erected by the Passaic Valley Chapter New Jersey Society Sons of the American Revolution
April 19 1929