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A Guide To Its Present And Past
Compiled and Written by the Federal Writers' Project of the Works Progress Administration for the State of New Jersey
American Guide Series

Originally published in 1939
Some of this information may no longer be current and in that case is presented for historical interest only.

Edited by GET NJ, COPYRIGHT 2003

Tour 6
South from the Northwest Corner – Cranberry State Park

At 29.8 miles is (R) CRANBERRY STATE PARK, 42 acres of mountain country with a 1,000-foot frontage on CRANBERRY LAKE. When the State acquired the lake after abandonment of the Morris Canal, the shore property had already been privately developed. For this reason and because provision for access to the State property will be expensive, development of the public land has been delayed.

LOCKWOOD, 32 m., is a few houses at the junction with a graveled and macadamized road.

Right on this road which is flanked by Lubber's Run and the Musconetcong River to the junction with a dirt road; L. on this dirt road is WATERLOO, 2.2 miles (660 alt.), a slumbering hamlet with few people in its old-fashioned houses. Long a deserted village, stranded when the iron industry went West, it lies on the north bank of the Musconetcong beside an old dam. Here was a port of the abandoned Morris Canal, which crosses the river at Waterloo. The towpath and lock remain in fair condition. Flush with the bank of the canal, so that no gangplank was needed from the deck of the boat to the floor of the shop, is the barn-like SMITH'S STORE, the only retail shop in Waterloo. Here, in the large trading-room, newly painted, and heated by a potbelly stove, in a place once given to mule trading and tall stories of adventure on the canal, are flour bins, counter, tea chests, shelves, and harness racks, with a meager stock of modern trade-marked package goods. A central pillar supporting the roof has been worn to a rounded base by the scuffing of numberless hobnailed boots that once trod the towpath beside the mule. The store has been in constant operation by one family since 1831, when the canal was opened.

Close by is an OLD STONE MILL of fine workmanship in dressed fieldstone. To this mill the canal boats brought as a backload from tidewater the famous Nova Scotia stone which was ground in the mill and used as a soil sweetener in cornfields. Water still stands in the old channel and pours over the sluiceways. The lock is ready to be swung; everything seems waiting for the shrill note of the skippers tin horn, the cry of "Hey, lock!" and the bray of the mules. In the village are ruined walls of WATERLOO FOUNDRY, once supplied with iron brought by wagons from Andover Mines. This foundry, named for the victory of Wellington over Napoleon, is said to have given its name to the village.

Straight ahead on the road, which rejoins the macadam for 0.1 miles and then continues R. to FRENCH'S FOLLY, 2.9 miles (R), an industrial dream. In ruins beside a brook is an OLD MILL, built by James French, a native of Hoboken, who came to this vicinity in 1853 and left 50 years later. Some of the first Brussels carpet produced in America was made in the mill, which later manufactured fenders for canal barges. Its last use was as a drying and packing plant for medicinal herbs. Behind the mill, on a steep hill, are the ruins of STONE HOUSES, roofless shells with gaping holes.

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