Ruins by a River

Harrisville Paper Mill by theanthracite
Harrisville Paper Mill, a photo by theanthracite on Flickr.

“Because most people are incurably romantic about ruins, Harrisville is the glamor exhibit of the Wharton tract. Nowhere have the Pine Barrens demonstrated more clearly their capacity to obliterate man’s handiwork than at this ghost town. Egypt’s pyramids have survived pitiless exposure to the elements through four thousand years. Many other monuments to ancient civilizations remain intact. But in less than a century Harrisville, New Jersey has been reduced from a prosperous, stoutly built industrial community to a cluster of fast-vanishing ruins and scattered piles of rubble.”

–Arthur Pierce, Iron in the Pines: the story of New Jersey’s ghost towns and bog iron

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One thought on “Ruins by a River

  1. Reminds me of John McPhee’s book on the Pine Barrens. The area is so close to so much, right on the edge of the North-East megaregion stretching from Boston to Washington DC, but is so remote at the same time.

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