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Meet Norris

Ask Norris

Norris is a young male cat from the marshes of Bayshore, August 2014. He was smart enough to have avoided the terrors of osprey and eagles in the area by hiding under the docks and train car at the Bayshore Center. He also found nice people with food. On Heritage Day, he hid much of the day to avoid the crowd. As soon as everyone left, he came looking for food. He found the food in a cat carrier and and a loving owner to take him to his forever home. Of course his name needed to be purr..fect. All the way home that day I thought of names. I knew then that if the kitty was a male, his name would be Norris. So here he is, meet Norris.

Norris Asks:
Do you know how many churches are in Port Norris?

Answer is Six Churches. See more on the Churches of Port Norris.

Do you know where the Maurice River starts and ends?
Answer: Maurice River begins in Gloucester County, fifty-eight miles from its mouth at the Bay, and flows south, forming the eastern boundary between Salem and Cumberland Counties. From the dam in Millville to the Delaware Bay, the Maurice River is approximately twenty miles long.

What was salt hay used for?
Rope, Line casket mattresses, line French drain ditches.

What was the date for the “Battle” Skirmish of Dallas Landing in Port Norris at Peak of the Moon?
Answer: August 15, 1781.
Learn More

Name the TV movie filmed in part in Port Norris areas in 1974.
Answer: “The Migrants” A stark look at the lives of migratory farm workers, focusing on one family. The film was Emmy nominated as the Outstanding Drama of the 1973-74 season. Learn More

Where was the “Old High School” located?
Answer: Brown Street

Do you know how many streets are named after Presidents in Port Norris?
Answer: Two (Washington & Lincoln)

What date was Port Norris founded?
Answer: Founded in 1811 Learn More

Do you know how many Lodges were in Port Norris during it’s hay day?Answer: This list is what we know. If you know of others in Port Norris let us know.
1. Knights of the Pythias No. 76
2. The Jacob Shinn Post #6, Grand Army of the Republic
3. Improved Order of Red Men
4. Knights of the Golden Eagle
5. Ku Klux Klan
6. Mystic Castle No. 7
7. Pride of Port Norris Council, No 115 - Daughters of America
8. Junior Order United American Mechanics

What Months Are Oysters in Season?
Answer: Oyster eating is a year-round affair thanks to modern day food preservation. It’s been codified since 1599 that you should only eat oysters in months that have an “r” in their name. This leaves out the months of May through August – some of the hottest months of the year in oyster-rich regions. Although this recommendation is not as relevant in today’s modern food environment, it follows common sense.

Was there ever a hotel in Port Norris?
Answer: There were two. One in Bivalve and the Davis Hotel across from where the Township Hall is now located.

Do you know how many Square Miles are in Commercial Township?
Answer: According to the United States Census Bureau, in 2010, the township had a total area of 34.438 square miles (89.194 km2), including 32.129 square miles (83.214 km2) of land and 2.309 square miles (5.980 km2) of water (6.70%).

How Many Telephone Poles Are In A Mile?
Answer: Best guess is that in a straight line, poles can be about 50-60 m apart. That works out to be approximately 10 poles per quarter mile. Source: Yahoo Answers. The distance between Port Norris and Dividing Creek is 4 miles. Just for fun, who wants to take an actual count of those poles? Let us know!

What was the name of the well known store that once occupied the first floor of the K of P Hall?
Answer: The American Store
If anyone has photos of the American Store, we would love to see them. Email us.

Did you know the first woman rotarian in Cumberland County is from Port Norris?
The Port Norris Rotary, membership also includes Evalina Sharp Vidal, a member since 1988 and the first woman Rotarian in Cumberland County.
Source: 75th Anniversary History of District 764, Chapter 31

How many schools are in Commercial Township?
The Commercial Township School District is a community public school district that serves students in Kindergarten through eighth grade.
Haleyville-Mauricetown Elementary School - K through 5th grades - The Tigers
Port Norris School 6th - 8th - The Panthers

Do you know how far back Horseshoe crabs date?
Horseshoe crabs are often called “living fossils” because fossils of their ancestors date back almost 450 million years–that’s 200 million years before dinosaurs existed. They will be coming ashore along the Delaware Bay in May and June. Learn more and see how you can help save the Horseshoe crabs.

How many square feet of canvas sail does the A.J. Meerwald have?
Answer: Everyone sailing on the schooner is invited to help the crew raise the 3,500 sq ft. canvas sail.

Have you heard about Delaware Bay Rocks?
What a great summer activity. Please let us know what you find in Commercial Twp. All you have to do to get started is to find some rocks, paint them and hide them! Here is the Facebook link to joining the group and share your Delaware Bay Rocks. Click Here. Happy Summer!

What was the original name for the Maurice River?
Answer: The original inhabitants of the Maurice River were indians from the tribe known as “Lenni-Lenape”. They affectionately named the river “Wahatquenack”, which translated to “abundance of life” and that is exactly what it meant to them. There was enough fish and fowl in the river to sustain the entire indian population the year round. Theirs was a prosperous life on the Wahatquenack.
Source: Methodist Church History

Do you know where the first meeting of the Port Norris Historical Society was held?
Answer: First public meeting was held at the Port Norris Fire Hall on November 13, 2007. A few private meetings were held beforehand to organize this.
See More

Do you know how often the Delaware Bay has frozen?
On Jan. 5, 2018, with 12 inches of ice on the Delaware Bay, the Cape May Ferry was unable to make the crossing and had to shut down. Prior to that, the last time it happened was 1977. It truly was a sight to behold! Source: SNJToday.

Who is the local author who wrote many books of the bayshore area?
Margaret Louise Mints-Ogden, She was born January 21, 1917and died on November 14, 2000. She wrote “ANGELS IN THE NIGHT” The Lighthouses and Lights Along New Jersey and Delaware, The Fading Trail: A Story of the Eastern Woodland Indians of South Jersey, just to name two of her books. See more about her life on her PNHS Legends page. See More

Do you know the difference between a Schooner and a Sloop?
A schooner has 2 masts, the 2nd mast is taller. It may also have additional masts, up to 7. Normal configuration consists of jib, staysail, foresail and main. You can add topsail, and/or yankee jib and fisherman sail. A sloop rig has 1 mast, with a jib and mainsail. Source: