1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

We interrupt this program....

Discussion in 'Campfire Chat' started by Glockensig, Oct 12, 2017 at 10:40 AM.

  1. Glockensig

    Glockensig Well-Known Member

    Jan 24, 2016
    Likes Received:
    ...and so started a panic in 1938! You see, the martians had landed and Grovers Mill, NJ! I'm sure you remember? Orson Welles?
    Well, as my son lives just a few miles from Grovers Mill, I had a chance to visit the town! Funny how my son lives by one alien landing site, and my daughter by another site- as reported on here:


    The Orson Welles broadcast created such a panic, that some of the locals actually shot at a water tower that looked suspiciously like the aliens (or alien machine) described in the broadcast! The tower still stands today but is in the backyard of a private residence! The yard is fenced in and, with heavy overgrowth, is a little hard to see from the street. Our first view looked something like this:
    water tower 2 tab.jpg

    Can ya see it in there? its tough! As discreetly as we could, we crept up to the fence and got a shot thru the missing slat. Here you can more clearly see the would-be alien invader!:

    water tower 3 tab.jpg

    On the far side of the house/yard from where we snapped this pic is an old barn that has been remodeled into a realty office. The office was closed at that time... so we snuck down between the building and fence to get some pictures from the reverse angle. Here (water)towers the monster!

    water tower reverse side 1.jpg

    This is probably the clearest shot we got. You can tell it is a very old and very odd shaped water tower!
    water tower reverse side 3 tab.jpg

    Hard to imagine so many people getting into such a panic...but it was a different time back then! And if you were in full panic mode, I could see that... on a dark, misty night...this tower might look like the tripod fighting machine described in the broadcast!

    water tower reverse side 5 tab.jpg

    The water tower was a little tricky to find and even so was the local park, that has a plaque commemorating the event. When we arrived at the park, we followed a paved path and found that a Scout had done an Eagle project which greatly enhanced the visit to the park! The project was several stations that , as you went along the path, described the broadcast, the ensuing panic and the fallout from the eventful night.

    WoW eagle project 2 tab.jpg

    WoW eagle project 4 tab.jpg

    My son (an Eagle Scout himself) and I have a fondness for Eagle projects! But, I won't include all the plaques. We were really fighting the sun at this point, and my son did a great job even getting these to show well. We had to use our own shadows to get this one at all:

    WoW eagle scout project 7 tab.jpg

    Near the midpoint of the loop, the bronze plaque, depicting events of the fateful night, was on display!

    WoW plaque 4 tab.jpg

    At the left top - very faint - it says martian landing site! Then there is the "Tripod monster" and Orson Welles doing the broadcast! WoW plaque 2 tab.jpg
    #1 Glockensig, Oct 12, 2017 at 10:40 AM
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2017 at 10:35 PM
  2. Glockensig

    Glockensig Well-Known Member

    Jan 24, 2016
    Likes Received:
    The bottom of the plaque depicts some frightened listeners in Grovers Mill, NJ that night!

    WoW plaque 3 tab.jpg

    Behind the plaque and hedgerow, My son got a nice photo of the lake with sign that says Grovers Mill

    lake by park 2.jpg

    Now....we heard there was a interesting coffee shop several miles away that had a lot of War of the Worlds paraphernalia...so off we went in search of stop #3!! The coffee shop was in West Windsor, NJ in a strip mall:

    coffee shop 3 tab.jpg

    My son got a specialty coffee, and I got coffee and pie, and we spent our time just looking around. Everywhere you looked, there was something War of the Worlds related - books, toys, posters, newspaper articles,etc. Even the men's room had something!

    coffee shop 3.jpg

    We actually ran into the owners and they said that they did not furnish ONE item! Everything had been given to them by various customers to display. They also directed us to two framed letters in the hallway - one FROM Orson Welles to a local lady who had written a complaint...and one TO Orson Welles from the Police Chief in Trenton - who explained that he wished they hadn't use the name of his town. He stated their "communications center" (and who knows what that was in 1938?) had been overwhelmed by as many as 2,000 calls - many by folks from out of state worried about their relatives in the local area!

    This is a mural as you enter the shop depicting the barn (now a realty office...remember) the water tower and the "tripod alien". coffee shop 2 tab.jpg

    The owners of the coffee shop were originally going to open the shop in the red barn... but it was cost prohibitive to make-over the barn.... so settled for the current location.
    My favorite little advert in the shop:

    coffee shop 5 tab.jpg

    A fun way to spend the afternoon. I have now seen (not by design) not only Grovers Mill but also the areas where The Blob was filmed and where the Romero zombies first appeared! as noted here:

    #2 Glockensig, Oct 12, 2017 at 11:08 AM
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2017 at 10:42 PM
    livingsurvival likes this.
  3. Glockensig

    Glockensig Well-Known Member

    Jan 24, 2016
    Likes Received:
  4. Whirlibird

    Whirlibird Well-Known Member

    Apr 5, 2017
    Likes Received:
    A once a year listen.
    Still like to go back to that simple story.

    Have the book around here somewhere.

Share This Page