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Ocean City New Jersey

Historic Sites, Monuments, Landmarks, and Public Art (State Historical Landmark)
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Ocean City New Jersey is known for their wonderful beach, accommodations, town life and most of all their boardwalk. Built in 1880, the boardwalk has been part of the Ocean City community 136 years and still brings the community together like it did from the beginning. Serving many purposes: providing a place to ride your bike in the morning, supplying plenty of restaurants to visit during your beach trip, and at night creating a safe atmosphere for the whole family make memories. The boardwalk is a big part of Ocean City New Jersey’s identity and will continue to be for many years to come.

Fireworks on the OCNJ Boardwalk
Tourists and locals enjoying the boardwalk's biking hours
Father and daughter enjoying the view from the boardwalk
Ocean City New Jersey Boardwalk in 1938


Being a placed loved and cherished since its opening, the boardwalk holds a lot of rich history in its wood. As stated previously the boardwalk has always been a place that the community gathers and make memories. Many famous people have walked on the boardwalk such as Grace Kelly and Marilyn Monroe. The Ocean City community took pride in their boardwalk. Though unfortunately on October 11, 1927, the community lost the boardwalk to a devastating fire. The cause of the fire to this day is still unknown, but the fire destroyed two blocks of the central city boardwalk. That day the community lost: a candy shop, two hotels, residential homes, and an amusement park. The community was heartbroken. Fortunately,  not long after the fire Mayor Joseph Champion announced his plan to rebuild the boardwalk and to make it better than ever. After $227,000 spent and a great amount architectural improvements the boardwalk was back open for business which was celebrated with a parade. The actions put forth to rebuild the boardwalk just proves how much the boardwalk means to the community. And still to this day the boardwalk is cherished both by locals and tourists.

Through its religious heritage the town has gotten the reputation of being a clean and safe place for the family. Especially following its methodist background by being a dry town (meaning no alcohol is allowed to be sold nor consumed publicly in the town). And because of its great reputation Ocean City has become a beloved summer vacation for tourists. Ocean City has become very prosperous through its focus on accommodating their visitors. Originally building a railroad and a ferry system to bring vacationers into the island. And hotels and restaurants were built to accommodate the visitors. And most importantly the boardwalk was built to attract tourists and give the community a place to gather and enjoy.

Today the boardwalk 2.5 miles long and services both residential locals and tourists by providing a spot to gather and enjoy throughout the day. Creating a fun and enjoyable atmosphere for everyone who visits. The boardwalk may seem as just a spot for tourists though it is much more. For locals it is a place that helps build the identity of Ocean City New Jersey. Since the boardwalk was built in 1880, locals and tourists have created memories and shared experiences making the boardwalk into a place. The boardwalk will continue to serve as not only a main attraction in Ocean City New Jersey though an important and meaningful place for the community.


Aftermath of the Fire of 1927. Photograph. Ocean City New Jersey History Museum, Ocean City, NJ.

Boardwalk. Photograph. Ocean City New Jersey History Museum, Ocean City, NJ.

Bruno, Karen. “Great October Fire of 1927 Destroyed the Boardwalk.” Ocean City Sentinel (Ocean City, NJ), 2012.

Community Enjoys Boardwalk. May 24, 2016. Photograph. JSHN, Ocean City, NJ.

Ebrahim, Noor. Noor’s Story: My Life in District Six. N.p.: District Six Museum, 1999.

Miller, Fred. Images of America: Ocean City New Jersey. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing, 2006. Google Book.

———Ocean City: America’s Greatest Family Resort. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Publishing, 2003. Google Books.

Miller, Jen A. Explorer’s guide: The Jersey Shore. Woodstock, VT: Countryman Press, 2011. Google Book.

O’Connor, Kit. “Welcoming Syrian Refugees to Vermont.” Lecture, Saint Michael’s College,  Cholchester, VT, October 6, 2016.

Two Vacationers Enjoying the Beach. Photograph. Ocean City New Jersey History Museum, Ocean City, NJ.

WebpageFX. “History of Ocean City.” Ocean City New Jersey.

1132 Boardwalk
Ocean City, New Jersey 8226
Phone Number
Biking(in season)- 7am-11am Shops(in season)- 9am-11pm Boardwalk is open for walking 24 hours
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This location was created on 2016-11-09 by Rachel Colletti, Saint Michael's College; Instructed by Micalee Sullivan.

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