The History of Clarks Landing…A FISHERMAN’S TALE
In 1862, Roderick A. Clark was one of the first in a group of volunteers to enlist in the Union Army. As a sergeant in Company F, 14th Regiment of the New Jersey Volunteers, he was wounded at the Battle of Manoxic Junction and thus began receiving an $18 per month pension from the U.S. Government in 1863.
Some 16 years later on July 1, 1879, Mr. Clark purchased a wooded parcel of land on the Manasquan River for $1, 141 (only one dollar more than the next best offer) and developed the area into one of the finest tourist spots in the area.
Clarks Landing began as a boat building business, but soon evolved into boat rentals, fishing, crabbing, canoeing, swimming, picnic groves and bath houses.
In 1894, a two-story pavilion was added on the riverfront and in 1896, a steam organ, an electric merry-go-round and a steam-powered ice cream machine. With the addition of outdoor music, in 1903 a large pavilion and a dancing platform were added.
Rosia Clark, Roderick Clark’s son, joined the family business in the 1920’s, when sailing regattas were the rage and friendly rivalries developed on the Manasquan River.
Subsequent owners of Clarks Landing included H.R. Bills and Leonard Patrick, whose only change was the addition of several summer cottages. With the accessibility of Treasure Island, the canal and the upper reaches of the Manasquan, Clarks was the best place to spend a relaxing day!
Roderick Clark’s vision of Clarks Landing became a reality and his vision still remains today under the ownership and guidance of the Truesdale Family.