Category Archive 'New Jersey'
12 Jul 2017

Old Madeira Found in New Jersey Mansion, Now a Museum

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Museum workers in New Jersey broke through a Prohibition-era wall and a locked wooden cage to discover over 50 bottles and 42 demijohns of rare Madeira wine dating back as early as 1769.

Liberty Hall Museum at Kean University in Union, New Jersey, says the discovery yields the oldest known collection of Madeira in the United States.

“We had no idea the old bottles were there,” said John Kean, first cousin to New Jersey’s former governor and president of the museum. “We knew there would be wine, but had no idea as to the date. That was a major surprise.”

Historians and museum workers have been renovating Liberty Hall Museum, originally just called Liberty Hall, which was home to New Jersey’s first elected governor and signer of the Constitution, William Livingston.

The house was built in 1772, just prior to the American Revolution, and originally had 14 rooms. The estate changed ownership in 1811 to the Kean family and eventually became the 50-room mansion that stands today.

Its wine cellar was chosen to undergo examination and repair, but it was hidden behind a plywood and plaster wall built during the Prohibition.

“First we needed to get the wall down. We took the room apart and performed a complete analysis — paint analysis, mortar analysis, brick analysis to see what needed to be repaired and done to the room,” Bill Schroh, director of museum operations told CNN. “Lo and behold, we found this incredible collection of Madeira.”

The six-month renovation also led to discoveries of more wine in the attic, where demijohns of wine were found buried beneath piles of straw. Demijohns, or large glass vats, commonly held spirits in transit and for storage.
Bottles of Madeira created for the personal use of Robert Lenox, a millionaire and major wine importer from New York City, were among the bottles discovered in the renovation. Lenox died in 1839, according to the New York Historical Society.

“Nothing like this exists,” said president and founder of Rare Wine Co. Mannie Berk, referring to Lenox’s sealed, stamped bottles. “They could be worth up to $20,000.” Liberty Hall Museum would not say how much the total collection of wine could be worth.


HT: Jim Harberson.

If you found a cache of 18th century Bordeaux, you could forget about drinking it, it would undoubtedly be cooked or simply aged into vinegar. Madeira, though, is different. Madeira is the wine variety capable of surviving both heat and age. An 18th century Madeira has a pretty good chance of not only being drinkable, but excellent. We have a bottle of 1796 and a couple of 1863s still in our home collection. Karen finished the last of the 1815 years ago, alas!

23 Sep 2015

Jersey City: Muslim Woman Boasts “We’re Going to Be the Majority Soon”

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Jersey City Muslims demanded that public schools make Eid-el-Adha a holiday. Officials refused to close the schools, but granted Muslim children a religious no-penalty excuse to take Thursday off. Muslims, however, were not satisfied.

Hat tip to Gateway Pundit.

17 Feb 2015

New Jersey Justice: Retired School Teacher Faces Ten Years in Prison For Possession of Unloaded 18th Century Flintlock Pistol

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Legal Insurrection has the utterly outrageous story.

When a 72-year-old retired school teacher faces a 10 year felony sentence (a likely life sentence) for possession of an unloaded 18th century flintlock pistol, one knows immediately that we can only be talking about a handful of states in which such a travesty can happen. In this case, not surprisingly, it’s the “Garden State” of New Jersey. (h/t Sebastian over at the Shall Not Be Questioned blog.)

Gordon Van Gilder, who taught in the New Jersey school system for 34 years, is a collector of 18th century memorabilia. He acquired a genuine antique flintlock pistol from that era, and had it unloaded and wrapped in a cloth in his glove compartment when he was pulled over for an alleged minor traffic violation.

Van Gilder consented to a requested search of his vehicle, and when asked by the officer if there was anything in the car the officer should be worried about, Van Gilder informed him about the flintlock in the glove box. Although not arrested that day, the next morning several patrol cars woke him at his home and placed him under arrest.

New Jersey’s draconian gun laws explicitly include antique firearms such as this 300-year-old pistol. Indeed, possession of a slingshot is a felony under New Jersey law.

Van Gilder is represented by Evan Nappen, a well-known attorney specializing in gun law cases, and thus is as well-represented as could be hoped for in this case. It was Nappen who successfully represented Philadelphia nurse Shaneen Allen when she was charged with unlawful possession of her PA-licensed handgun in New Jersey. The mother of two small children was ultimately permitted to enter pre-trial intervention rather than be subject to trial and New Jersey’s mandatory minimum sentence of 3 1/2 to 5 years imprisonment. That outcome, however, took direct intervention by the state Attorney General, likely at the prodding of the presidential-aspirant Governor Chris Christie.

(We covered the Allen story here PA Nurse Arrested on Gun Charges Given Reprieve and here The Memo that let Shaneen Allen — and Chris Christie’s political future — off the hook.)

Van Gilder will be fortunate indeed if Nappen can win him a similar arrangement. Even a plea agreement that avoids jail time but convicts Van Gilder of a felony would likely jeopardize the teacher’s pension he spent 34 years earning.

As Van Gilder states in the video [below]–”Avoid New Jersey. Don’t come here.”


Via Bird Dog.

02 Nov 2014

Bear Fight in Jersey Suburb

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Don’t miss the comments by really dumb liberal girls who live a statist and Disneyfied dream world.


This is a blatant case of animal cruelty. The person filming this video is clearly goading two very distressed bears into fighting for the internet’s amusement. The appropriate bear authorities should have been called and the bears given a nice warm bowl of milk to calm down.

02 Feb 2014

The Saddest Super Bowl

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Joshua M. Brown, aka The Reformed Broker, at Business Insider, deplores the judgement of whoever decided on this year’s Super Bowl location.

This Sunday, Super Bowl XLVIII (48) will be played in an open-air stadium, built atop a New Jersey swamp, in 2 degree weather, while pretending it’s actually taking place in New York.

I don’t know what confederacy of dunces within the NFL thought this was a good idea. It might be the worst idea. It’s shaping up to be the saddest Super Bowl ever.

For starters, it’s certainly going to be the coldest. Weather guys are talking about 2 to 7 degrees. Ticket prices are dropping by thousands of dollars. People are trying to get rid of their seats rather than sit through the pain of a sub-arctic February night outdoors. Not to mention the shlep. If it snows that day, the highways and byways between NY and NJ will become so impassable you’ll need to leave your family permanently and start a new one somewhere around Teaneck Township off of the I-80.

As far as the pre-game festivities, if there were ever a city that couldn’t give a f*** about something the rest of the country is excited about, it’s New York City. Specifically Manhattan. When the Super Bowl hits other cities, like Miami or New Orleans, all the stops are pulled out and the week-long party literally takes over the town. The locals get into the spirit, businesses play it up and people from around the country (along with their tourism dollars) are welcomed warmly. …

The two main focal points for the [“New York”] pre-game “party” are located at Times Square and Herald Square. There are two places in Manhattan that no native New Yorker will ever set foot in, for any reason, ever: Times Square and Herald Square. I know people who’ve quit jobs or broken up relationships because their route involved traipsing through either of these places. Times Square is essentially a petting zoo New Yorkers have set up so that they can see real-live Americans up-close in a protected environment and maybe feed them something. Herald Square, the triangle anchored by Macy*s, is what your town’s main strip mall would look like if they were to airlift unnavigable crowds and an aggressive traffic snarl right smack in front of it and slather the pavement in a gauzy layer of perma-grime and chewed gum.

Read the whole thing.


And it’s not only the weather, the characteristic obnoxia of New Yorkers, and the lack of suitable locations to party in Manhattan that represent unpleasant aspects of the situation. If you choose to attend, you are going to have the endemic chickenshit fascism of rustbucket Northeastern governments to put up with as well.

CNS Sports

It doesn’t matter if you’ve dropped thousands of dollars on tickets. It doesn’t matter if you’ve traveled 3,000 miles to get there. And it doesn’t matter if you offer to shovel the snow that’s sure to come to the Meadowlands.

You will not be allowed to tailgate at Super Bowl XLVIII. Unless you literally stay inside your car while you do it.

“You will be allowed to have food in your car and have drink in your car,” game committee CEO Al Kelly said during a Monday news conference. “And provided you’re in the boundaries of a single parking space, you’ll be able to eat or drink right next to your car. However, you’re not going to be able to take out a lounge chair, you’re not going to be able to take out a grill, and you’re not going to be able to take up more than one parking space. And it’ll all be watched very carefully.” …

Don’t even think about hiring a taxi or limo to drop you off at the front gates. If a car doesn’t have a parking pass, it won’t get near the stadium.

“Nobody’s going to be dropped off by black car,” Kelly said. “You can have a black car, a green car, a white car, a red car as long as you have parking, and the car needs to stay on the premises the entire time.”

Oh and by the way, there are only 13,000 parking spots for the use of fans.

Don’t even think about walking to the Super Bowl either.

“You can get your hotel to drop you off at one of the New Jersey Transit locations or get the shuttle to take you to a Fan Express location, but you cannot walk,” Smith said.

-Here’s one thing you can do. Take public transportation, or as ESPN New York explains, you can take a charter bus called the Fan Express, “which will cost $51 and pick up and drop off passengers at nine locations around the region.”

If it snows, it’s every man for himself. Hunger Games style.

10 Jan 2014

Road Closed

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18 Dec 2011

Places to Go, Things to Do

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These local festivities are characterized by a prominent humor site as insane, but I think several of the are of distinct historical or anthropological interest and the ones where you throw fiery things around sound like fun.


Once you’ve finished attending all of the above list of seven events, you’ll want to get right to work on Figaro’s list of 100 things you need to do in Paris during your life.


Demographic map of New Jersey. (I have been pretty successful in avoiding that state myself.)

17 Mar 2011

Humor-Impaired Authorities in New Jersey

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CBS local news in New York reports that police and high school authorities in Woodbridge, New Jersey recently lost all sense of proportion.

It was supposed to be a senior prank, but now three students in Woodbridge said they’re facing criminal charges — and may not be able to walk through graduation ceremony and take part in other senior activities.

Does the punishment go too far?

It wasn’t the T-shirts that got two 17-year-olds in trouble, but the actual chickens they said they released into their high school as part of a senior prank back in February.

“So we confessed. We told the truth. Now we’re getting charged with trespassing, disorderly conduct, not allowed to go to prom, not allowed to go to graduation, and all that,” Anthony Cesareo told CBS 2’s Christine Sloan.

Cesareo and Tyler Bruno said they bought live chickens from a store in Newark and pushed the chickens through a window at Woodbridge High School in the middle of the night. A janitor found them in the morning before school started. …

It may have been a joke to them, but police said it wouldn’t have been so funny if a student got hurt.

I think myself that the principal and police chief of Woodbridge, NJ badly need the trees in front of their houses TP’d.

Hat tip to James Coulter Harberson III.

Well I was born down south on a chicken farm near Nashville, Tennessee
T’weren’t nobody there, but a sky full of air, 17 billion chickens, and me
And then one day I said “Hey, hey, hey, think I’ll drop a little LSD.”
Well, it blew my mind,
I got real kind,
And I set my chickens free.

And there was
Chickens in the pasture,
Chickens in the barn,
Chickens in the cauliflower,
Chickens in the corn,
Chickens driving Cadillacs to Washington DC,
When I set my chickens free. –Gilbert Shelton

04 Feb 2011

New Jersey 7-Year-Old Charged For Bringing Toy Gun to School

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More Hoplophobic insanity

NBC Philadelphia:

A 7-year-old child allegedly shot a Nerf-style toy gun in his Hammonton, N.J., school Jan. 18. No one was hurt, but the pint-size softshooter now faces misdemeanor criminal charges.

Hammonton Police began an investigation into the “suspicious activity” at the Hammonton Early Childhood Education Center Jan. 18 after school officials alerted them to the incident.

The “gun” the child brought to school was a $5 toy gun, similar to a Nerf gun, that shoots soft ping pong type balls, according to the school’s superintendent.

Officials also say that there was no evidence of anyone being threatened. The child’s mother told school officials that she didn’t know her son brought the toy to school.

Dr. Dan Blachford, the Hammonton Board of Education superintendent, said the school has a zero tolerance policy.

“We are just very vigilant and we feel that if we draw a very strict line then we have much less worry about someone bringing in something dangerous,” said Blachford. …

Police charged the 7-year-old with possessing an imitation firearm in or on an education institution – a misdemeanor and a minor juvenile offense in New Jersey.

Hat tip to Walter Olson.

15 Sep 2010

Koran Burner Fired By New Jersey Transit

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In its 1989 Texas v. Johnson decision, The US Supreme Court ruled that burning the American flag constituted “expressive conduct” protected by the First Amendment’s free speech guarantee.

Burning the Koran, on the other hand, gets you detained and questioned by New York City police, and fired by your employer, if you work for NJTransit.

NY Daily News:

The protester who burned pages from the Koran outside a planned mosque near Ground Zero has been fired from NJTransit, sources and authorities said Tuesday. …

“Mr. Fenton’s public actions violated New Jersey Transit’s code of ethics,” an agency statement said.

“NJ Transit concluded that Mr. Fenton violated his trust as a state employee and therefore [he] was dismissed.”

Fenton was ushered from the protests by police on Saturday and questioned, but he was released without charges.

Mr. Fenton has the grounds for a successful law suit against NJTransit.

27 Aug 2010

Vindictiveness Backfires

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Daniel Foster commented on the Obama Administration punishing New Jersey for insufficient compliance to the demands of the teachers’ union by disqualifying the state for hundreds of millions of dollars of federal education funds based on a trivial error in more that 1000 pages of paperwork.

This 5:29 video of Governor Chris Christie’s response is making him a national star and producing a wave of “Christie in 2012” enthusiasm.

10 Aug 2010

Obama Becomes Popular Icon

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Seaside Heights, New Jersey “Hit the villains with a baseball” game

President Obama’s performance has been so memorable that already, after less than two years in office, he has won a special place in the hearts of ordinary Americans: a place resembling Osama bin Laden’s as one of a series of carnival targets you throw baseballs at and win prizes for knocking down.

Gawker positively squeaked in protest at the political incorrectness of it all, headlining the story as “Horrible Obama-Smashing Game.” (chuckle)

That didn’t keep them from uploading a video of a young man hurling baseballs at the target of the president prefaced by “F**k you, Obama.”

1:36 video


Hit the alien invader with the health care bill & presidential seal game

The Jersey Shore boardwalk game, however, was not the great man’s first recognition by amusement park popular culture. Even earlier, a church fair outside Allentown, Pennsylvania attracted the attention of the Secret Service when a rented shooting game featuring You-Know-Who holding the health care bill appeared as the target.

The Morning Call reports that the feds were not amused and the games company was quickly strong-armed into removing this threat to his Imperial Obamaness.

The game’s target is a painting of a black man in a suit who is holding a scroll labeled “Health Bill.” He sports a belt buckle fashioned after the presidential seal, antennae and a troll doll on his shoulder.

Players paid $1 per shot, or $5 for six shots, to fire foam darts at targets on his head and heart. Those who hit their mark won a stuffed animal.

Cindy Wofford, special agent in charge of the Philadelphia office of the Secret Service, said her agents are looking into the game and will determine if there were any direct or indirect threats to the president. They will share their findings with the U.S. attorney’s office.

“We take these kinds of things very seriously,” Wofford said.

The White House issued a statement Wednesday through spokeswoman Moira Mack saying it disapproves of using the president’s name and likeness for commercial purposes. The longstanding policy precedes Obama.


There was no Secret Service intervention that I can recall when representatives of the liberal urban intelligentsia produced a fantasy documentary and a play featuring the assassination of George W. Bush. (link)

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