The War Memorial honors Bass River Townships fallen heroes - Orval Gerew (1894-1918), WWI; George Heun, Jr. (1894-1919), WWI; John H. Sears (1919-1945), WWII; and William F. Ayres (1938-1966), Vietnam. May 22, 2009 photo by Pete Stemmer.
New Gretna Old Home Day Drew VisitorsHUNDREDS OF FORMER RESIDENTS GREET OLD FRIENDSON MEMORIAL DAYNew Gretna, May 30.—Several hundred former residents of New Gretna, now living in Atlantic City, Philadelphia, New York, and other places, gathered here today to celebrate Old Home day, the tenth anniversary of the New Gretna Old Home Society. This society numbers 450 members, the larger number of them living away from this but natives of New Gretna.The day included exercises at the two cemeteries which are kept in fine condition by the society this being the original purpose in the formation of the association. A chicken dinner was served from 12 P.M. to 2:30 P. M. in the Community building by the women of New Gretna and none left the table hungry. In the afternoon there was a business meeting in the hall, and on the school field next door was a baseball game. In the evening, after supper, was put on an unusual feature. Photographic slides had been prepared by Prof. Moore of Atlantic City, from old pictures showing the old homesteads and other old scenes in New Gretna, and were flashed on the screen. Prof. Maja Mathis, supervisor of schools at Florence, N. J., described the pictures and gave bits of history about the families who formerly dwelt in the homes.At the annual meeting officers were chosen as follows: President emeritus, Leonard K. Algar; president, Kirk Loveland; vice president, Samuel H. Headley; treasurer, Hiram Mathis, all of Atlantic City; secretary, Mrs. Lela F. Hilliard, of Manahawkin; assistant secretaries, Miss Margaret Adams and Mrs. Helen Mathis of New Gretna.Directors were re-elected as follows: Harry Headley, Joseph B. Cramer, Augustus Cramer, Wm. E. Mathis, C. Stanley French, Russell Adams, S. Crowley Loveland, Rollin A. Cale, Augustus R. Miller, Joshua Hilliard, Arnold Cramer, J. H. Leek, Norris Sears, Thomas A. Mathis, Maja Mathis, John S. Mathis, Richard M. French, Thomas A. Cale, George Leek and P. K. Hilliard.The treasurer's report showed a balance in current funds of $384.80, and receipts for the year of $697.20. The endowment fund amount to $2419.03, and there are also shares in both the New Gretna and Atlantic City, amounting to several hundred dollars.Remarks were made by City Commissioner Harry Headley of Atlantic City, Kirk Loveland, Samuel Headley, Maja Mathis, George Leek, Miss Margaret Adams, Norris Sears, Postmaster R. A. Cale of Pleasantville, and Wm. H. Fischer of Toms River.Dr. Joshua Hilliard of Manahawkin gave the historical review of the society. He said about ten years ago Mrs. Hilliard and Kirk Loveland got some old time New Gretna friends together to clean up the cemeteries in that village. The result was this society. Five years ago it was reorganized, and since then had been incorporated and had flourished. It now has 450 members scattered all over the United States - some of them descendants of old New Gretna families, who have themselves never been in New Jersey. The society has lost 35 members by death.Mrs. Hilliard, R. A. Cale of Pleasantville, Maja Mathis and others are gathering historical data, and carrying out the genealogies of the old families.The society the year round meets once a month for dinner on Saturday nights, in summer at New Gretna, and in winter at Atlantic City.Transcription from a June 5, 1931 Toms River Newspaper
Editor's Note: The glass slides mentioned in the above article, prepared by Professor Moore and discussed by Maja Mathis, were found in the attic of F.A. Gray on Route 9 in New Gretna. Unfortunately they were not labeled and there were no notes with them. Steve Eichinger and Budd Wilson took photos of the slides which were then scanned into my computer. We were able to identify most of the the scenes, homesteads, and people in the slides, but about a half dozen homesteads have not been identified. It is likely that they no longer exist. Perhaps at a future Old Home Society dinner we will show the old slides and see if anyone can identify the mystery homesteads.
New Gretna Old Home SocietyHeld 15th Reunion Sat.Annual Memorial Day Gatherng Most Successfulin History of OrganizationThe New Gretna Old Home Society held its Fifteenth Annual Reunion in New Gretna on Memorial Day, Saturday, May 30, 1936, and it proved to be the most successful in the history of the organization which was founded in 1921.More than 300 people came to New Gretna to take part in making the occasion such an outstanding; success and to renew old acquaintances.The program for the day was as follows:Dinner 12:30 to 3:00 in the New Gretna Civic Hall, sponsored by the New Gretna Civic Society.Brief Memorial Services.Music.Election of officers of the organization for the ensuing year.In the evening the entertainment was presented by the New Gretna Civic Society and was in the form of presentation of plays which received the hearty approval of those assembled.The officers and directors of the organization were re-elected and the only change in the official staff was for the office of Assistant Secretary with Mrs. Laura Loveland assuming the duties which had been previously carried on by Mrs. Hiram Mathis.The officers and directors of the organization are as follows: Leonard 11. Algar, President Emeritus; Kirk Loveland, president; Samuel H. Headley, vice president; Hiram Mathis, treasurer: Mrs. Lela F. Hilliard, secretary, Manahawkin, N. J., Mrs. Laura Loveland, assistant secretary.Directors- Harry Headley, Joseph B. Cramer, Augustus Cramer, C. Stanley French, Russell Adams, C. Crowley Loveland, Augustus R. Miller, J. Hilliard, Arnold Cramer, J. H. Leek. Norris Sears, Thomas A. Mathis, Maja Mathis, John S. Mathis, Richard M. French, Thomas A. Cale, George Leek, P.K. Hilliard.Transcription from Tuckerton Beacon - June 4, 1936