As early as 1776, the resort of Cape May in southern New Jersey was recognized as a popular, healthy place for bathing in the Atlantic Ocean. The hotels were boarding houses erected in the early 1800s, and by 1850 the town had nearly two dozen, all built of wood. The establishment of railroad service in 1863 brought a new era of growth and more fashionable hotels. Hailed as the “queen of seaside resorts,” Cape May attracted tourists from Philadelphia, Baltimore, and even Deep South, many who built summer cottages along the oceanfront.
The authors invite the reader on a historic journey to discover how Cape May has changed and developed through time.