Posts Tagged ‘edgewater’

The tunnels of Edgewater

There are several tunnels or caves that were mentioned in and around Edgewater. I know where some of these are, others I do not. Edgewater is a very old town. Lenape Indians have inhabited this area for thousands of years. Pirates at one point were frequently in the area of Hudson County not far away. Fort Washington was located right where the GWB now connects to NYC. Prohibition caused many people and businesses to create hiding places for liquor. Any of these could be the source of these caves and tunnels. If anyone has any information on any of them I would love to hear from you.Anyone with information about any of these tunnels is urged to please contact me.

First is a tunnel in The Palisades, supposedly just a few hundred yards from the GWB, just below the top of the cliff. Located (supposedly) directly beneath the old Riviera nightclub, it was hideout for liquor during Prohibition, but now serves as a place where the homeless hide out. I have looked several times and found nothing, and I am not climbing those cliffs for this. Not without a better idea of where I need to be looking.

Just south of there, directly opposite where the Henry Hudson Dr exits from along the river onto River Rd is a gigantic colossal monstrosity called The Palisades. This huge condo tower sits on top of some old tunnel, pictured below. The wall that surrounds it resembles other small walls found up and down the Palisades, many of which date back to Revolutionary days. It is clear that the tunnel was sealed with concrete. Where or how far it went is anybody’s guess.



Then there is the tunnel *under* River Rd, located in front of the Von Dohln Mansion. I searched the area once but didn’t find it and calls to the town historian have gone unreturned. The Von Dohln Marina sits perhaps 1/3 mile south of The Palisades, but I didn’t see any mansion. According to an article in Weird NJ, a sewer engineer stumbled onto what appear to be a very very old tunnel under the roadway which was a few feet wide but looked extremely dangerous and no one would go into it. Presumably it was sealed off. Where did it go? How deep? Who built it? Is it related to the one at The Palisades?

Last but not least is the exit of the Fairview Tunnel. it originates under the Fairview cemetery, and travels straight for almost a mile before exiting near the southern end of town, somewhere near N40 48.856 W73 59.103. The area directly opposite it is now a mall, and I wonder what they will do with the opening as development comes closer & closer. The fence is lying in the water and presents no obstacle at all to curiosity seekers. I hear talk they may try to revive the rail line if the proposed ferry is created, as this would be a way to link up mass transit across the river with the railroad rider. Either way looks like something is going to happen to the tunnel at the east end for sure. and soon.

The Monk Parrots of Edgewater

At the base of Route 5 in Edgewater is a small park which has become overrun with parrots. The parrots are a rare breed which can survive the winters of the tri-state area. Where did they come from? The prevailing theory is that they escaped from a residence or pet shop thru an open window or door.

The small green and yellow parrots have established several large nests in the park and the surrounding streets. Some neighbors are unhappy with the parrots, but despite attempts to destroy the nests, the parrots build new ones very quickly. Other locals are thrilled to have them here. Whatever their origin, they have survived here for over 2 decades and are unlikely to go anywhere, any time soon.

According to the Bergen Record, the Edgewater parrots’ nests are a fire threat and need to be removed. I found this key passage :

In 1998, a nest atop a utility pole on Hilliard Avenue caught fire and knocked out power to 150 customers for more than an hour. Authorities said a spark from a lower line set the nest on fire. Six baby parakeets that were trapped in the nest died. Connell noted that a power outage during the winter would be considerably more disruptive, causing some people to lose their heat. Apparently, where the monk parrots are common, so are electrical fires from their nests. The monks have been in NJ since the 70’s in many areas of the state, but the EPA actively tried to eradicate them in southern NJ because of the threat to local agriculture.

So perhaps the theory that they were an escaped pet from a local homehowner is wrong?

Are there other colonies of monk parrots in NJ that we don’t know about?