Stafford Township - Dr. Newell - Shipwrecks

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Stafford Township - Dr. Newell - Shipwrecks

Shipwrecks along the New Jersey coast have always been a problem. Between February 1846 and July 1848, there were 122 boats wrecked and many passengers lost. Dr. William A. Newell, a young man living in Manahawkin, had an idea for saving lives. He invented a lifeline which was fired by rocket out to a stranded ship, enabling a life car to be pulled along it to shore. At frst, no one listened to Dr. Newell's idea, but eventually, the New Jersey State Legislature put up $10,000 to buy lifelines, rockets, and life cars. Many lives were saved by Dr. Newell's invention. In 1865, Dr. Newell became New Jersey's first Republican governor.