by Rick Franzen
The story of Paisley’s existence, a land fraud scheme in then Woodland Township and now Tabernacle Township, begins about 1888 and ends within a few years. However, its legacy continues to intrigue history buffs till this day. Just last year one of the last remaining buildings was unceremoniously destroyed as it sat decaying on Route 563 in Chatsworth. We will begin in 1888 and in multiple installments, tell the story as we have discovered it. The easiest way for us to relate this tale is to present our research notes, relevant documents, available illustrations and comments. First the purchase of the lands.
Notes on Paisley Part 1
The H. A. Freeman Era ©
1888 19 June: (deed B V11 p 257) Victor Ritzendollar sells 83.62 acres of land in Woodland Twp. to H. Alfred Freeman, of Queens NY. Price is $209.00. Goes along the road near “200 yards from Old White Horse formerly stood”
1888 24 June: (ad from The World, NY) retyped by person unknown.
1888 4 July: (deed B V11 p 482) Victor Ritzendollar sells 162.48 acres of land in Woodland Twp. to H. Alfred Freeman, of Queens NY. Price is $406.26. “Where the Old White Horse Tavern formerly stood.”
1888 12 July: (deed B V11 p 451) Victor Ritzendollar sells 81.75 acres of land in Woodland Twp. to H. Alfred Freeman, of Queens NY. Price is $203.88. “Where the old White Horse Tavern formerly stood.”
1888 13 July: (deed B W11 p 571) Victor Ritzendollar sells 173 acres of land in Woodland Twp. to H. Alfred Freeman, of Queens NY. Price is $441.00.
A typical Freeman purchase deed looks like this.
And here is the signature at the end of the deed. Note that only the seller signs, and in this case his “mark” is presented because he does not know how to write.
We have not located each and every deed in which Freeman purchased land, but we have documented well over 800 acres. Later on, we will show that this particular land scheme total much beyond 1200 acres. We have also noted that this project was one of at least four, with the possibility of many others. Freeman began by selling swamp land in Ocala, Florida and moved on to land on Long Island, New York and Hawley, Pennsylvania.
In order to keep information in a chronological order, the following 1888 newspaper article is illustrated.
1888 30 July: (The Evening World, New York) News article – Fire and theft at the Freeman office in New York. “Excelsior used as accelerant.” See Henry Beck story 29 September 1941.
And yet another land purchase.
1888 3 Aug: (deed B W11 p 577) Victor Ritzendollar sells 323.2 acres of land in Woodland Twp. to H. Alfred Freeman, of Queens NY. Price is $808.30. “Goes along the road from the Old White Horse Place to Sooy Place.”
Many of these deeds reference “White Horse.” White Horse was Inn and Tavern which by 1888 no longer stood. It is not the same as the White Horse Inn in Chatsworth, which was probably constructed about this time. We are currently putting together a report on Tabernacle’s early inns and taverns, and it will be published after our Paisley report is complete.
1888 4 September: (deed Z11 P 525) Earliest located deed of a land sale at Paisley. Pauline Freeman (relative?) purchased lots 18 and 19 in block 71. The deed is a preformatted “fill in the blank” form. H Alfred Freeman and his wife Vespers have both signed it.
Another sale of land by Ritzendollar to Freeman.
1888 6 September: (deed B W11 p 331) Victor Ritzendollar sells 114.82 acres of land in Woodland Twp. to H. Alfred Freeman, of Queens NY. Price is $286.56.
And now a receipt for the purchase of a few lots.
1888 11 September: (NJ State Archives Lee Collection) Receipt for purchase of land by Henry Cortelyou. He paid $21.00 for two lots. This is the first of three purchases he made.
1888 19 September: (Book 276 page 161) The deed is registered for sale of two lots to Henry Cortelyou.
And another land purchase by Freeman.
1888 10 October: (deed B W11 p 394) Victor Ritzendollar sells 107.09 acres of land in Woodland Twp. to H. Alfred Freeman, of Queens NY. Price is $1000.00. “Old Sooy Place to White Horse.”
And another lot purchase.
1888 23 October: (deed B 276 P183) Another early land sale, Francis Sinclair purchases lots 8, 9, 10, 21, 22, and 23 in block 52. This deed is also in the “preprinted” format. No need to post it.
1888 25 October: Train excursion to Paisley. Description of the land and its high value.
And here is a first-hand account written about that excursion in 1938.
1888 31 October: Building and Loan Prospectus is issued. A great investment!!
1888 2 November: (deed B W11 p442) Victor Ritzendollar sells 97.04 acres of land in Woodland Twp. to H. Alfred Freeman, of Queens NY. Price is $500.00.
1888: H L Freeman bought at least 815 acres and paid about $4.50 for each acre. A summary by Dr. Alvin Lee suggests he purchased in total some 1400 acres at an average cost of $3.67.
1889 6 January: (The Sun, New York) Newspaper ad – Hotel to open first week in February. Mr. Sturgon and others make a miraculous recover, after three months, from lead poisoning and many other ailments. (Note: A Mr. Sturgon resold his land back to Freeman in September of 1888 after a June of 1888 purchase) (sale: B Z11 P 28) (purchase: B Z11 P 367)
Sale of two lots (22 and 23) by Freeman in Block 27 to James Sturgeon on July 10, 1888.
Sale of two lots (22 and 23) by Sturgeon in Block 27 to Freeman on September 24, 1888.
1889 21 January: (The Sun, New York) Newspaper clipping – “It is announced that over 7,000 lots have been sold in the new town of Paisley, NJ., and that interesting town improvements are now underway.” (Last paragraph in story)
1889 4 February: (Burlington County Postmaster appointments) J Brooks is appointed the postmaster at Paisley. (Last name on page)
1889 5 May: (The Sun, New York) Newspaper article extolling virtues of Paisley.
“High and well drained land, pure drinking water, no typhoid or diphtheria, a sea breeze sweeps over it, the soil is fertile, 40 miles of streets and a mattress manufacturing company.”
1889 24 May: (New York Times) Newspaper story – “Whitings, N. J., May 23. Edward Rowe, a farmer living at Shamong, was found dead this morning on te road that leads from Paisley to the former place. He went to Paisley yesterday, and on his return was kicked to death by his horse. He was about 55 years of age.”
1889 26 May: (The World, New York) Newspaper ad – “Mr. Constant LeDuc came into our office of Thursday three weeks ago, a pitiable case of threatened suffocation from that frightful malady. He went to Paisley that day. The following Tuesday he came bounding up the stairway to our office like a schoolboy, two steps at a time, and stood before us cured.”
1889 4 June: (The Times, Philadelphia) Large ad for “Paisley the Magic City.”
1889 22 June: (The Times, Philadelphia) In the real estate section, H. A. Freeman says he will be in his new 1015 Arch Street office to sell corner lots at one-half the New York City price. One can also call for or send for the “beautifully illustrated newspaper, The Paisley Gazette.”
1889 4 July: (The Sun, New York) An interesting advertisement in the classified section. “A first-class upright piano by a leading maker taken in exchange for Paisley lots: having no use for it will sell for best offer at once: entirely new, very handsome; see it today (4th July) between 9 and 6 PM Paisley Improvement Co., 100 Duane St.”
1889 14 July: (The Sun, New York) Newspaper ad, “Open up a new division in Paisley. A hotel, factory and residence are built and occupied.” A limit of five lots to one person is imposed.
1889 28 July: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee Collection) Newspaper ad – “Lots which we sold a year ago are now worth from eight to fifteen times as much as we sold them for.”
1889 5 October: (The Standard Union, Brooklyn, NY) Newspaper ad, “First ad in the Standard Union, so we will sell you one lot for $5.00 or four together for $20.00.” In addition, a year’s subscription to the Paisley Gazette is included!
1889 4 December: (The Sun, New York) Newspaper ad for a stock subscription to “The Paisley Hotel Company.” Only 100 shares at $1000 each will be sold. This implies it will help bring a railroad spur from Shamong Station to Paisley and, that it will make Paisley “as fashionable as Lakewood.”
1889: (The Standard Union, Brooklyn, NY) Newspaper ad selling “$35.00 lots in Paisley for $5.00 each. “Trees, grass, flowers, fruit health and a fortune.”
1889: (The Paisley Gazette, volume 1 number10) A lot of “fluff articles,” some pictures of alleged buildings and a history of Paisley. All images come from the Alvin Lee Collection at the NJ State Archives
1890 26 January: (The Philadelphia Inquirer) Newspaper ad advertising lots for sale in Ocala, Florida. One can call at 1015 Arch Street for all particulars. Lots are $2.00 each and this is just to cover the cost of “plotting and transfer.” Mr. Freeman has expanded his land empire!
1890 23 March: (The Brooklyn Citizen) Newspaper story describing how Mr. Freeman has expanded his sale of land to Ocala, Florida. Lots are selling for $3.00 to $5.00 each. “Mr. Freeman founded the well-known health resort of Paisley.”
1890 23 March: (The Brooklyn Citizen) Newspaper ad in the real estate section touting “Ocala, the Magnificent.”
1890 18 June: (The World, New York) Newspaper ad for lots at Paisley, $5.00 each. One can write to C. Leduc at Paisley for more information. On 1 November 1888 Constant LeDuc had purchased 7.9 acres from H. Freeman for $1070. This land was probably subdivided and sold directly by Mr. LeDuc.
1890 29 June: (New York Times) Newspaper ad for Paisley the Magic City. You can buy a “villa plot for $50.00 in a fashionable health resort.” “There are now 3000 enthusiastic lot owners.”
1890 15 July (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) Deed acknowledgement for F. Sinclair’s purchase of ten lots in block 66. Look at that seal! Is that the Pope?
1890 12 August: (The World, New York) Newspaper ad for $5.00 lots. “Railroad depot will be on my property.” Address; C Leduc, Paisley, NJ.
1890 Sep 7: (The Sun, New York) Newspaper ad “lots that could have been bought for $1.00 three years ago, I sold this month for $75.00 to $100.00 each.” H. A. Freeman, 100 Duane Street, NY. Branch at 565 West Taylor Street, Chicago.
“Subscribe for stock in the $50,000.00 hotel which will pay 10 per cent profit annually, can do so this week at my office.”
1890 9 September: (The World, New York) Newspaper story – Fruits of the Magic
City. Get your tasty watermelon!!
1890 21 September: (New York Herald) News article – A five column, top to bottom almost full-page expo on H. A. Freeman and the Paisley development. A long read. It is this article which burst the dam of Freeman and LeDuc’s land fraud. Note the hand drawn illustrations drawn by the author’s companion, an artist.
1890 24 September: (The World, New York) Letter to the editor attacks the Herald for a story it published about Paisley. Apparently, the story was unkind to H. A. Freeman and his Paisley enterprise.
1890 24 September: (New York Herald) News article – The New York Herald responds to criticism (via a “certificate of character”) of Freeman and his Paisley land scheme.
1890 October 1: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) Tax bill – H. P. Cortelyou is assessed $0.67 for lots 24 and 25, as well as lots 1 and 2 of blocks 322 and 86.
1890 20 December: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) Tax bill – H. P. Cortelyou is assessed $1.79 for lots 16-20 of block four. Net assessed value for the five lots is $40.00. Victor Ritzendollar is the tax collector.
1891 2 March: (The World, New York) Newspaper ad – Selling lots valued at $35.00 for $10.00 each. You can also get a credit of $10.00 on a lot in Hempstead, Long Island, which sell for $75.00 to $100.00. H. A. Freeman – “I never break a promise. I have never gained an unworthy dollar.”
1891 7 March: (The World, New York) Newspaper ad – H. A. is selling other real estate from his 100 Duane Street address. They are in Mt Holly, Monmouth County and Bergen County.
1891 7 March: (The World, New York) Newspaper ad – “Today and tonight closes the great offer this week only to sell two Paisley lots so that they cost you absolutely nothing at last and give you a suburban home one hour from New York City at $1.00 per week.”
1891 Mar 8: (The World, New York) Newspaper ad – Buy two Paisley lots worth for $70.00 and one Hempstead lot valued at $150.00 by paying $75.00 in once weekly payments.
1891 15 May: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) Land survey – H Cortelyou pays N. P. Todd to survey lots 24 and 25 of block 332. The cost is $2.00. One cannot wonder if markers were set as property boundaries.
1891 14 July: (The Morning Post, Camden, NJ) Newspaper article – “How people from the city are gulled.” The Freeman bubble has burst, and many “truths” are debunked.”
1892 6 February: (Lakewood Times and Journal) Newspaper ad – Constant LeDuc advertises land sales of lots and 2-acre plots at South Park and West End. His address is Paisley, NJ.
1892 3 March: (New Jersey Courier) Newspaper article – Postmaster General changes post office name form Paisley to South Park.
1892 17 May: (Camden Daily Telegram) Newspaper article – The house of Constant LeDuc and the post office at Paisley were destroyed by fire caused by a defective flue.”
1892 7 August: (New York Herald) Newspaper article – Lengthy story in which Freeman blames LeDuc for all his troubles. Freeman is also described as “amplitudinous.”
1892 8 August: (New York Herald) Newspaper article – The Paisley Building and Loan Association is in liquidation.
1892 11 August: (New York Herald) Newspaper article – Story about Freeman’s many land schemes in Ocala, Florida, The Palisades, Brookwood and Blooming Grove in Pennsylvania.
1892 1 September (New Jersey Courier) Newspaper article – “Paisley is said to have died a natural death.”
1892 8 September: (New Jersey Courier) Newspaper article on General Clinton treasure located at Paisley.
1893 25 July: (Mount Holly News) Newspaper clipping – Paisley building lots sold at Public Auction.
1893 1 August: (Mount Holly News) Newspaper clipping – “Constant LeDuc, one of the Paisley magnates, has gone to France to endeavor to get a colony of Frenchmen to come and settle on the sandy lands of Paisley, or South Park, as it is now called.”
1893 7 December: (New York Herald) Newspaper article – Freeman has had Paisley’s name changed to South Park and is now selling farm size lots for $1.00 each (minimum of 20) and get a five-acre plot for free! It’s a one day only offer. The writer also uses the word “sesquipedalian” (long winded) when describing Freeman’s sentence writings.
1894 12 January: (The World, New York) Newspaper clipping – Fine lots in Paisley for sale, close to stores, hotel, church and post office. Looks like Freeman is still at it.
1895 24 March: (The World, New York) Newspaper clipping – Lots at Paisley for sale, $5.00 and up.
1896 15 September (Woodland Township Committee minutes) – Motion to lease township owned Paisley lots to Mrs. Marie LeDuc for $25.00 a year.
1896 17 November (Woodland Township Committee minutes) Several references to Paisley lots.
1897 3 January: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) Letter from South Park resident H. S. Gamblin to “My dear husband,” concerning the executor of her will.
1898 21 February: (Woodland Township Committee minutes) Committee agrees to drop all delinquent taxes (at Paisley) and not assess the properties.
1899 9 February: (Philadelphia Inquirer) News article re water supply canal to be built from Atsion to the Delaware River.
1899 14 March: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) Letter from Constant Leduc to H. Cortelyou regarding tax payment and mention of a canal from Philadelphia as well as a bicycle road to “join the Philadelphia stone road.”
1900 30 January: (Mount Holly News) Newspaper clipping – South Park post office closed with resignation of Constant LeDuc.
1900 8 May: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) Receipt for taxes paid on lots 16-20, block 409 by H Cortelyou. Amount is $0.80.
1900 14 July: (Benjamin Freeman family tree on Ancestry.com) Henry Alfred Freeman passes away in Charlotte, North Carolina.
1900 15 July: (Charlotte Observer Sun, Charlotte, NC) News clipping about the death of Mr. H. A. Freeman, “traveling man from Chicago, died at St. Peters Hospital.”
1900 16 July: (Charlotte Observer Sun, Charlotte, NC) Newspaper story about Mr. H. A. Freeman, of Jamacia, NY. His wife and personal physician, Dr Wilcox, have arrived in town.
1900 17 July: (Charlotte Observer Sun, Charlotte, NC) News clipping – Son Mr. Edward Freeman has arrived in Charlotte.
Paisley was not the only land fraud Mr. Freeman initiated. In addition to the previously mentioned Ocala, Florida, there were at least three others. They were in Hempstead, Long Island; Brookwood, Pennsylvania: and Palisades, New Jersey. Ads for each of these are shown below and no further notes will be presented about them. You can see from the dates of the newspapers that Mr. Freeman was actually engaged in all five schemes at the same time!!
Hempstead, Long Island
Brookwood, at Blooming Grove, Pennsylvania
Castle Hill at Palisades, New Jersey
This concludes the H. A. Freeman era at Paisley in Tabernacle, New Jersey. Next, we will explore the Constant LeDuc era.
Notes on Paisley Part 2
The Constant Leduc Era ©
1900 31 July: (Mount Holly News) Newspaper clipping – Question of Paisley land value. “Paradise Park,” a section of Paisley, valued at $2.00 an acre.
1900 13 September: (Woodland Township Committee minutes) Township Committee gives Ira Gamble a permit to use and improve Lincoln Park at South Park.
1900 13 November: (Mount Holly News) Newspaper clipping – An individual from South Africa asked about lots in Paisley, and a deed was recorded which had Brigham Young’s signature on it.
1901 28 December: (Woodland Township Committee minutes) Tabernacle and Woodland Townships meet to discuss duplicate taxes, presumably at Paisley.
From Barry Foulks we have the following additional information (9 August 2022 Facebook posting)
“Two names that stand out in this meeting are Victor Ritzendollar , who sold lots for Paisley in the first place to H. Alfred Freeman, as being on the Woodland Township Committee, and W. J. Buzby, “The King of the Pineys”, owner of Buzby’s General Store in what became Chatsworth, as an assessor. Several Haines mentioned here, and I wonder if the “C. Haines” Committee member is Carleton Haines (1869-1935) of Tabernacle, who also became the tax collector there? Woodland Township minutes for other meetings on this page show “Chatsworth Club House” tax was reduced from $13,000 to $7,500, and a Jonathan Godfrey to purchase, mostly at his own expense, a new road machine for Woodland Township. Jonathan Godfrey became one of the purchasers of that Chatsworth clubhouse property in 1908, see: https://forums.njpinebarrens.com/threads/tidbit.2986/ , Post #18. It was eventually bought by Anthony DeMarco (his son Garfield was a multimillionaire cranberry grower & the most powerful Republican in Burlington County), whose wife, Gladys Alloway, had ancestry going back to the beginning of our township, and connections to Tabernacle families even now.
Constant Leduc is an incorporator of a Terra Cotta Company.
1902 18 March: Constant Leduc named Justice of the Peace.
1902 3 May: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) Receipt for taxes paid on lots 16-20, block 409 by H Cortelyou. Amount is $1.60.
1906 1 May: (Mount Holly News) Newspaper article – Constant Leduc indicted for selling liquor without a license.
1906 May: (Mount Holly News) Newspaper article – Constant Leduc fails to answer complaint and an arrest warrant is issued.
1907 18 December: (New Jersey Mirror) Newspaper article – A New York will executor came to Mt Holly to determine the value of two inherited Paisley lots. He found they had no value.
“A. D. Rice, of Poughkeepsie, N. Y., the executor of a deceased relative’s estate (unable to determine name of decedent), came all the way down into Burlington County the other day to consult the records and ascertain what he could concerning two “building lots” at Paisley, which he found to be among the assets of the estate which he was administering. A few inquiries ventured at Burlington while waiting for a trolley car did not encourage the stranger much, and he looked as though he felt like turning around and starting back without even going over to Mount Holly, when the chance acquaintance whom he questioned said that it would probably have been better for the estate if he and saved the expense of carfare and let the lots go by default. This gloomy view was confirmed when after reaching Mount Holly he entered the County Clerk’s office just as the force was quitting work for the day. When the Poughkeepsie man explained his mission one of those connected with the office said with a smile, “as far as those lots are concerned, I would not stay here five minutes after hours to look up the record if you gave me the lots to pay me for the trouble.” He did stay, however, and the executor from Poughkeepsie concluded that he would not waste any more time or money in looking after the lots, especially as they were in arrears for taxes many years. Possibly there will be others in the Clerk’s office looking up city lots in Paisley, which is situated in the pines in Woodland township, several miles from the railroad station, which is at Chatsworth. Some years ago a good many “building lots” were sold to non-resident investors, it is said, who liked the prospectus and who had never seen the town of Paisley. …
18 December 1907 transcribed from The New Jersey Mirror
1908 13 March: (Woodland Township Committee minutes) Walter Sloan is given permission to move his house over the roads from South Park to Chatsworth. The railing on Union Dam is to be left in the same condition as it was found. This is the first relocation of Paisley buildings. It became a store in Chatsworth. Later a second building was moved all the way to Lumberton, where it remains today as a residence.
1908 5 May Unknown Leduc lawsuit. Perhaps his business partners in an unrecorded venture.
1909 3 March: (Mount Holly News) Newspaper clipping – Constant Leduc and others form the Cooperative Cranberry Company.
1909 6 May: (NJ Courier) Newspaper clipping – Constant Leduc sold 3,000 acres (for $15,000) of land at South Park to the Cooperative Cranberry Company of Philadelphia. An Italian colony is proposed there to start cranberry bogs and make improvements.
1909 1 July: (deed Leduc to Cooperative Cranberry Company B 452 P 42) In this deed Constant Leduc sells 3000 acres for $15,000 to the Cooperative Cranberry Company. The land is known as the “White Horse Meadow” and is on both sides of Main Street in South Park.
1910 13 Sep: (Mount Holly Herald) Newspaper clipping – note that Constant Leduc has collected $506.00 on an insurance policy for which he paid $2.40.
1910 20 December: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) Blank, generic Tabernacle Township tax form for “South Park, late Paisley.” Carleton Haines, the tax collector, will be at Arthur Haines’ store to collect taxes on the 20th of December.
1910: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) Handwritten list of 1910 uncollected taxes for South Park.
1911 2 August: (Mount Holly Herald) Newspaper clipping wherein “Squire” Constant Leduc performs the marriage ceremony, at South Park, for Willis Brewer and Deborah Hart, both of Chatsworth.
1912 23 July: Dr. Martin Curran swears out a warrant against Constant Leduc. Leduc allegedly horse whipped Curran over disagreements concerning Pine Crest Sanitarium on Apple Pie Hill.
1913 10 April: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) Tabernacle Township tax sale announcement for several properties, probably includes Paisley lots. Sale to be held at the Mechanics Hall and conducted by Carleton Haines.
1913 29 April: (Mount Holly Herald) News clipping – Constant Leduc sues Ethelbert Haines, for unknown reasons.
1913 30 December: (Trenton Evening Times) News clipping – Constant Leduc and nephew Albert, were indited, along with several others, for not filing required expense statements.
1914 9 June: (Mount Holly Herald) Newspaper clipping which reports Constant Leduc earning $21.00 for “fox bounty.”
1914 30 June: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) – Newspaper letter from Dr. Curran defending his actions and attacking the newspaper’s “disapproved of the sense which your reporter intended to report.”
1914 29 December: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) – Newspaper story of “shrewd investigators” visiting Tabernacle, South Park and Chatsworth in connection with postal frauds.
1918 31 December: (Mount Holly News) News clipping – Constant Leduc vs Ethelbert M. Haines lawsuit, notice only.
1924 19 July: (Courier Post) Obit of Constant Leduc.
14 November 1925: (Newark Evening News) Newspaper story – “a journey through the pine wilderness” includes a short recollection of a meeting with a Paisley resident.
Notes on Paisley Part 3
The Albert Leduc Era ©
Albert Leduc is the nephew of Constant Leduc.
1929 12 April: (Courier Post) Newspaper story – Albert Leduc leases land to the National Guard for an outdoor pistol range.
1929 2 July: (Morning Post) Newspaper story – Section Fire Warden Leduc catches camper with open fire and Judge imposes fine.
1931 5 May: (Trenton Evening Times) Newspaper story – Albert Leduc has been hospitalized in a near fatal accident on Eayerstown-Vincentown Road. His injury is probably “fatal.”
1934 25 January: (Courier Post) Newspaper article – Henry Beck provides a history of Paisley. Mrs. Constant LeDuc interviewed.
1935 27 February: (The Record) Newspaper article – Fire Warden Albert Leduc investigates fatal oil stove fire.
1936 2 July: (Home News) Newspaper article – Fire Warden Albert Leduc heavily criticized method to extinguish forest fire in which five were killed.
1937 24 September: (Mount Holly Herald) Obituary of Marie Leduc.
1938 20 August: (The Morning Post) Newspaper article – Albert Leduc was elected Commander of Mount Holly Post #11 of the American Legion.
1944 24 July: (Courier Post) Newspaper article – Albert LeDuc retires from Forest Fire Service after 21 years.
1950 15 January: (Trenton Evening Times) Newspaper article – Albert Leduc’s wife Maude retires as missionary at Johnson Place after 32 years.
1951 20 September: (Courier Post) Obituary for Albert LeDuc. He was an organizer of the Carranza Memorial ceremony.
Notes on Paisley Part 4
Dr. Alvin Lee Study of Paisley and other articles ©
1937 28 November: (Asbury Park Press) Newspaper article – Dr. Alvin Lee is interviewed on his study of land schemes in the pines. The pines are a “haven for people who promote various types of unsound land development schemes.”
1938: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) Questionnaire page 1 – Dr Lee sent out a few hundred of these to current and former owners at Paisley.
1938: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) Questionnaire page 2 – Dr Lee sent out a few hundred of these to current and former owners at Paisley.
1938: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) Questionnaire page 3 – Dr Lee sent out a few hundred of these to current and former owners at Paisley.
1938 26 May: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) Page 2 of questionnaire response from Benjamin Liffler.
1938 26 May: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) Letter from Dr. Lee to Philip Tischler regarding taxes paid on a Paisley lot.
1938 7 June: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) Letter from Dr. Lee to Mrs. Hosea Moore, tax collector regarding an address.
1938 August 25: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) Letter from Tabernacle tax collector Belle Moore to Alvin Lee regarding tax collections.
1938 14 September: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) letter and firsthand account of 1888 excursion to Paisley. See 1888 date.
1938 11 October: (The Daily Journal) Newspaper article describing “paper towns” in the Pine Barrens.
1938 November: (New Jersey Archives Alvin Lee collection) Letter from Francis Sinclair describing his family’s summer vacations in Paisley. He also notes he has deeds from some “Florida lots, mostly underwater.”
Dr Alvin Lee report
In July of 1939 Dr. Alvin T. M. Lee released his 50-page report entitled “Land Utilization in New Jersey: A Land Development Scheme in the New Jersey Pine Area.” The landmark report analyzed sales promotion, land development, purchasers, tax base impact and presented solution concerning future growth in the forest. The entire report is presented below. It is a long read but it fully captures the extent and impact of the actions that Mr. Freeman and Mr. Leduc acted upon some 140 years ago. It its entirety, the report appears next.
1940 15 February: (Ridgewood Herald) Newspaper article about “Paisley promotion scheme.”
1940 29 February: (Daily Home News) Newspaper article on property tax delinquencies mentions Paisley.
1940 May (American Society of Planning Officials) Land speculation story drawing from the Dr. Alvin Lee report.
1941 29 September: (Courier Post) Newspaper article by Henry Beck discusses Paisley and mentions “excelsior” lying about the mattress factory area. See 30 July 1888 article. “Excelsior” was used as an accelerant for an arson fire at H. A. Freeman’s office building.
1950 16 March: (Mount Holly Herald) Newspaper article – Nat Ewan writes about Paisley and displays “Paisley Gazette” owned by Albert Leduc.
1982 27 May: (Courier Post) Newspaper article – About the Higgenbothem family and their connection to Paisley.
1996: (Batsto Citizen’s Gazette) Newspaper article – discusses Paisley as a land scheme.
Dr. Alvin Lee has outlined the fate of the Paisley buildings in a chart on page 22 of his report. Two of the buildings were noted as “moved.”
One, a store and dwelling was moved to Main Street in Chatsworth. According to the minutes of the March 13, 1908, Woodland Township Committee, one Walter Sloan was given permission “to move his house on our roads in Woodland Township from South Park to Chatsworth.” “The railing on Union Dam to be left in same condition as found.”
The building was used as a store for many years and was ultimately purchased by a property developer in recent times. Due to a series of legal events his ambitions were never fulfilled. And in an act of “thoughtful” desperation, it was demolished in 2021.
We can look at census data and deeds to show us a little more info on the store’s new location. Dr. Lee cites 1890 as the year of construction and 1904 as the year the house last existed at Paisley. It was known then as the Todd Store and was used as a residence and a store.
Walter Sloan seems to have moved it in 1908 and in 1910 it was operated by a John Applegate. Also living with him was a son in law Fred Dunfee as well as his daughter Bertha and grandson Fred. In the 1920 census its location is noted as Main Street and the store is still operated by John Applegate (now 62 years old). By 1930 we see that Walter Sloan is a merchant for the Main Street store. And in 1940, the Pemberton Road store is occupied by both Sloan and his son in law Elmer Dunfee. No occupation is given for either. Elmer’s wife is Florence, and in 1950 she is the head of household for the location and works as a matron in the local school. Walter is now 83 years of age.
Deed research does reveal a few things for us, but the deed research is a bit complicated after we try to go further back and forward in time. In 1925 Walter buys the property from a Jonathan Godfrey, for the sum of $90.00. The deed mentions the bordering streets of Peacock, North Giles and Main. Two lots are actually purchased. They are numbered 294 and 295. In later years, after the lots were split apart, there was still much confusion about the property lines between the two.
In 1945 Walter sold off lot number 294 to Roxanna Lemmon for “$1.00 and other valuable consideration.” There is opportunity to further research in this area and that may be a future endeavor.
The second property moved, according to Dr. Lee, was the Daly House. It was built in 1890 and last existed in Paisley during 1911. According to a newspaper report we have seen (but cannot relocate), the house was moved to Lumberton (Ross Street) about 1922 and still is existent today.
Deed research reveals the following. In 1923 a J Harvey Crain of Lumberton, purchased several lots on Ross Street in Lumberton. This was after his 1922 purchase of 4 lots in Paisley. The speculation is that he bought the house in Paisley in 1922 and later moved it to the Ross Street address in 1923 or so. Much more research can be explored on Crain’s ownership.
The 1930 census does show J Harvey Crain on Ross Street with his family. He is a mailman. Nothing changes in the 1940 census. In 1920 he works for the Post Office and lives on Brian Street in Lumberton.
The last building to mention is the Hay House. When Dr Lee wrote about Paisley in 1939 it was still standing and known as the Hay House. Most likely this was the home of the Leduc family.
And finally, the last picture from Dr Lee’s chart we will briefly discuss, is the Moore House. It’s date of build is listed as 1890 and at some point, it became the home of the South Park Deer Club. Dr Lee does not mention this, and one could speculate that the deer club did not take it over until after 1939. However, our belief is that they had it long before then. An upcoming history of the club is awaiting completion and perhaps that will clarify when it was first and last used.
This concludes our notes on Paisley. From time to time there may be some additions, we’ll try to let everyone know.
The Taverns of Tabernacle
At least eight 18th and 19th century taverns or inns have been identified as within the current township’s political borders. Here is what we know about each of them.