Cape May County, NJ
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2600 Bayshore Rd
Villas , NJ 08251
A Cultural, Educational and Community Center.
Welcome to the Fishing Creek School! This is a real one-room school built in 1888 to provide an education for the children of the Fishing Creek section of Lower Township. It served Fishing Creek for 38 years before closing in 1926, at which time it became a private home.
Cape May County was a far different place in 1888. The president of the United States was New Jersey-born Grover Cleveland and our nation had just 38 states. Many county residents still worked in agriculture. While the city of Cape May had begun hosting summer visitors in the 1760s, the barrier island communities that are now filled with tourists each summer had only begun to be developed nine years before with the creation of Ocean City in 1879, followed by Sea Isle City in 1882 and Anglesea, now North Wildwood, in 1885. This area was also far more rural and less densely populated. The census done in 1890, two years after this school was built, counted just 11,268 people residing in Cape May County, far fewer than the 96,304 living here in 2014.
The Fishing Creek section of Lower Township is located approximately three miles north of the first European settlement in Cape May County, known variously as Portsmouth, New England Town, Cape May Town or Town Bank, though Town Bank is the name commonly used today. The site of the original Town Bank has long since eroded away and would have been several hundred yards offshore from the site of the present community that bears the name.