Historic Places in South Jersey

Historic Places in South Jersey - Places to Go and Things to Do

A discussion of things to do and paces to go, with the purpose of sharing, and encouraging exploration of South Jersey.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

The Stories that Stick

Okay, I apologize, I was supposed to have posted some Eastern State Penitentiary photos by Sunday, but I've been busy hiking at Pakim Pond on the Cranberry Trail both Saturday and Sunday and today, at Parvin State Park to celebrate EARTH DAY!

My pals Barb Spector and Trixie and I enjoyed a picnic lunch alongside Thundergust Lake in this deliriously delightful spring weather then did the 3 mile hike.  

While the days have passed since the trip to Eastern, though, I had time to let the information settle and I'm always interested in what stories stick after time has sifted.  For one thing, I am a docent at a historic site, as many of you know, James and Ann Whitall House, Red Bank Battlefield, National Park, so I like to know what aspects of a historic site experience stay with people.  As always, it is the individual stories.  I was most interested in the story of the Jewish group that provided a synagog so Jewish prisoners could attend an appropriate religious service, and then the Jewish prisoner I read about who was a poison expert and poisoned 30 people in scams engineered with spouses to kill and collect insurance.

Also interesting to me was the coincidence that the only woman prisoner I could find info on was also a poisoner who killed her husband.  So these were the stories that stuck.  Also, that they kept prisoners in solitary confinement so that they could be penitent and think about their crimes but they learned that was inhumane so they put prisoners together and that begat sexual exploitation that plagues the weaker prisoners in prisons up to this very day.

Hope you had a happy Earth Day and spent it in the woods or gardening or in some way communing with nature!
Jo Ann

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