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Plane No. 7: 1900

Plane No. 7: 1900

Boonton, New Jersey, circa 1900. "Top of plane, Morris and Essex Canal." 8x10 inch dry plate glass negative, Detroit Photographic Company. View full size.


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The building on the left with the bay windows is still standing:

The inclined plane started by the intersection of Main Street and School Road. You can see where the canal and inclined plane were on this old map of Boonton.

Lots of great then-and-now photos (including another view of the top of the plane) at

D&H Canal

Very cool. I remember my father mentioning it a few times, he was born in 1917 in Irvington. Up here in Ulster County there are a couple of museums celebrating the Delaware and Hudson Canal, roughly the same time period, running from Pennsylvania coalfields to the Hudson River. Coal then moved on barges down the Hudson. It was built in ten years. There's an inland town along it’s its length called Summitville because it was the highest point on the canal. This being a more rural area, there are lots of parts remaining.

Painting of the Boonton Lock

I am so very happy to see this image Shorpy-fied!

My grandparents lived two blocks from the Boonton lock and plane. He, F. C. Wells, was a Manhattan architect and painter. In the 1940s (or maybe '50s) he created a rather surreal image of the "guard lock" at Boonton (attached). I don't know for certain, but I think he painted this collage of imagery over another painting -- as suggested by the church turrets in the background and the forested mountain on the right.

This would be the long way round

At least it would be today. Between 1824 and 1924 the Morris Canal served Boonton's iron industry between Phillipsburg and Jersey City. Iron crossed over the Jersey Hills by use of 23 lift locks and 23 inclined planes. Thank you, Kiwanis.

Read if so inclined

I didn't know this, so maybe others don't too:

A [canal] inclined plane is a type of cable railway used on some canals for raising boats between different water levels. Boats may be conveyed afloat, in caissons, or may be carried in cradles or slings.

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