Port Norris Legends

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Legends of Port Norris

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Louise E. (Davis) Moore
b.1929 - d.2003

Louise Elizabeth Davis was born on August 12, 1929 in Millville, N.J. to Virgil and Bertha Davis of 344 Cedar St. Her father was a fisherman and a glass blower, her mother sewed at the local cotton mill. She had two brothers, Henry and Virgil "Butch" Davis. Many of her relatives lived in the surrounding block, so she grew up surrounded by family.

Her father died of a heart attack when she was 13. The country was in the throes of World War II and rationing was a part of American life. Louise and her mother received ration coupons for food and dry goods. It was during this time that Louise took over cooking duties at her mother's house - a chore she gladly exchanged for the cleaning duties she had been doing.

She graduated from Millville High in 1946, and soon met Oscar Herbert "Herb" Moore, the brother of her neighbor, Helen Scudder. They would marry on December 7, 1953.

In 1956, they moved in with Herb's Aunt Annie and Uncle Joe Newcomb, who lived at 1612 Main St, in Port Norris, at the corner of Main and Cobb Sts. The Newcombs helped raise Herb as a child, and as they grew elderly, Herb and Louise helped care for them. Joe Newcomb had been a very big player in the oyster business, and very influential in the community. He was also quite old fashioned and headstrong. According to Herb "Louise cried every night when we first moved here."

Louise would eventually raise her own family in that house, having three sons: Herbert (1958), Mark (1960), and Stephen (1962). While raising her family, Louise was always helping her aging relatives or getting involved in community or school events. in the 1960's and early '70's, she was a member of the Ladies' Auxilliary of the Port Norris Fire Co.

In 1977, Cumberland County started a lunch program for senior citizens. Louise was hired to manage the operation in Commercial Township. It was run from the hall next to St. Anthony's Church on Main St. until the Senior Center in Haleyville was built in 1991. Louise took special interest in the seniors who came to the lunch program. She regularly went beyond what was required of her to help "her seniors", as she would call them. She would always check on their well-being if they lived alone and had not attended lunch that day.

Louise continued running the senior program long after she had reached retirement age herself. Her last day of work was December 18, 2003, a Thursday. She took a rare sick day that Friday, feeling like she had caught the flu. In fact, she had unknowingly suffered a heart attack. A few days later, December 22, she died suddenly at Bridgeton Hospital.

In 2004, the Township Committee named the Senior Center after her. A walking garden was installed there by her son Stephen, and his wife Donna, in her honor.

On November 20, 2011, she was posthumously honored as a Legend of Port Norris. Source: Stephen Moore