Wildwood Historical Society
3907 Pacific Ave, Wildwood, NJ.
“Take a walk back in time, history is waiting for you at the
George Boyer Museum“
WE ARE OPEN FOR BUSINESS TODAY at 9:00am
!!! FREE ADMISSION !!!
Is anybody looking for something to do at the shore on a rainy day? How about visiting The Wildwood Historical Society/George F. Boyer Museum. I promise you there’s something for everyone. There are over a hundred binders showcasing almost every segment of Wildwood’s history. From the beach, boardwalk, amusement piers, the fishing industry that was the life’s blood of this island, transportation and the old trolleys that ran up and down Pacific Avenue, commercial establishments including hotels and the rooming and guest houses that were popular until the motel building boom in the late 1950s.
Two favorite albums of our visitors are the “Entertainment” binders. They include many of the nightclubs and the entertainers that performed there. Did you know that in 1954 Bill Haley and the Comets introduced “Rock Around the Clock” right here in Wildwood at the Hof Brau Hotel at Oak and Atlantic Avenues? In fact, Tony Bennett credited Wildwood’s lively night clubs with being the birthplace of rock ‘n’ roll.
In July, 1960, Chubby Checker wowed everyone when he introduced his version of “The Twist”. By June, 1962, Chubby Checker had formally signed a contract with the Rainbow Club in Wildwood that he would be appearing exclusively at that club. It was said that “his effect on the crowd was magical.” First, the audience began to snap their fingers, then to beat their feet, and by the time the dance band quit, there was hardly anyone in the place who had not shown the world that he too could compete with the Peppermint Lounge twisters.
One of the most popular restaurants in this area was Zaberer’s Anglesea Inn. We have a corner dedicated to Ed Zaberer’s restaurant, including one of the tiffany-like lamps that was donated by Ayne Zaberer’s son, Don. We also have a room dedicated to our schools with a large collection of yearbooks from the two local high schools, binders supporting sports and band activities, and many, many class photos.
Another room is dedicated to fire, police and lifeguards. On more than one occasion we have gentlemen bring their families in and show them photos of when they served as a “guard” on the Wildwood Beach Patrol. We have books dedicated to the major fires on the island and the firefighters who fought them.
We also have an extensive collection dedicated to one of the most successful businessmen of this island, W. C. Hunt. We can trace his history back to when he came here and opened movie theaters and then branched out to an amusement pier, starting with the Ocean Pier that burned down in 1943. By 1957, the fabulous Hunt’s Pier was built and continued under the auspices of the Hunt Family until 1985 when it was sold.
The staff of the museum urge you to come and browse around a bit. Come in and see the Wildwoods your grandmother and grandfather knew. You won’t be disappointed.
Anne Vinci, President
The Wildwood Historical Society