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Saturday, November 21, 2009

Hidden In Plain Sight- A Double Outhouse

Just when I thought I had posted my last outhouse for a while, the unexpected popped up. My history and Men's Breakfast buddy, Harry DeVerter, gave me a hot lead. Actually, he told me about it last June but, somehow, it slipped my mind.

Seems there is a double, back to back style outhouse on Route 9, across the highway from the Off Shore Manor development - right behind the old Ernie's TV building.

The double outhouse is nestled behind the old Ernie's TV shop on Route 9, across the street from the Off Shore Manor development. (March 26, 2009 photo by Pete Stemmer.)
I've been riding along Route 9 on my way to Tuckerton from New Gretna for over 30 years and never noticed it. It's been hidden in plain sight all those years. Of course that wouldn't surprise my wife, Jackie. Seems that, often, I can't find that elusive sock in my sock drawer or my favorite shirt in my closet. I swear it's not there but, somehow, she always finds it right away and tells me that it's a male thing. I think that the female species has a special radar. You ladies out in the Blog-O-Sphere know what I mean. Somehow, us fellas just don't get it.

The double outhouse - left side. (June 28, 2009 photo by Pete Stemmer.)

The double outhouse - right side. (June 28, 2009 photo by Pete Stemmer.)

In case you're wondering why Ernie would need a double outhouse, he didn't. The outhouse was not his. It was erected sometime in the 1930's, probably by the Cruise family who operated an Esso gas station and luncheonette on the site. The HIS and HER outhouse was for the use of their patrons.

If you're interested in learning more about the Cruise's gas station and luncheonette click on the January 8, 2009 Blog entry, "Eat and Get Gas", listed below. Scroll about 3/4 of the way down to see info and photos on the Cruise family and their business interests.

Well, hopefully, that takes care of the outhouse situation in Bass River Township for a while, unless, there are more hidden in plain sight. Maybe, I should enroll Jackie to help on my out house quest. Now, where did I put my laptop?

Pete S


  1. When a Male is unable to find something that is right in plain sight, it is referred to as "Male Patterned BLINDNESS."
    Jackie Stemmer

  2. There was an outhouse at Allen's Dock that was a little different than most. It was a - his and hers - so it was twice the size of most outhouses. The doors were on opposing ends with a common wall separating each side. The seats were up against this common wall. You also had to go up two steps to get in the outhouse. I guess this was to fend off the high tides. Since this was used by the customers at the dock there was the usual graffiti written on the walls. What I remember most is the reference to "Kilroy" which I believe was a fictional character around the time of WWII. This outhouse was still in use when my mothewr sold the dock in 1973. Jim McAnney

  3. Jim,

    The outhouse in back of Ernie's TV was also back to back with a common wall and doors on opposite ends. I wasn't able to check the inside for graffiti, but I bet Kilroy was there also.

    Pete S

  4. -



  5. Double seaters that are separatd by a common wall can lead to mischief. A long stick with a feather attached to it can be used to reach underneath the seat opening on one side to tickle the fancy of the person on the seat on the other side of the wall. It's meant to cause a bit of mayhem for one person, and a big laugh for the evil perpetrator. Courtesy of someone who has been on both sides of the wall.