Sunday, November 27, 2005

Sea Bright New Jersey

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Bob, the station and rail line in your postcard were once owned by the Central RR of New Jersey, which ran passenger trains from its terminal in Jersey City (now Liberty State Park) to Sandy Hook, Sea Bright and Long Branch, where it connected with the New York & Long Branch trains to Bay Head and Seaside Park. The line ran just north of Route 36 through Leonardo and Atlantic Highlands and is now a bike trail. The line through Sea Bright ran just west of Route 36 and is now privately-owned, save for a narrow utility right of way.
I knew The Contrarian - who can hear trains from his home - would find this postcard irresistable. It's a trip we both wish we could take, all the way to Seaside Park. Heck, I'd settle for Keansburg.
The line to Seaside Park was torn up in the late 1940s after a fire destroyed the bridge across Barnegat Bay. What's left of the right of way is now parking in Seaside Park (between the north and southbound lanes of Rt. 35) and homes through Ortley, Lavalette, Brick Twp. and Mantoloking. The remnants of the old RR bridge were made into a fishing pier.
At one time, that bridge carried passengers to Toms River, Whiting and on to Phila.
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