Contributions to the Community: The Canal Project
The Delaware and Raritan Canal is a 66 mile linear State Park running from New Brunswick, NJ to Trenton, NJ then northward on the New Jersey side of the Delaware River to Bull’s Island. Its presence has helped preserve a major portion of Central New Jersey from the over development that has taken over most of the rest of the state.
Life along the Canal is pretty much the way it has been since the Canal was opened in 1834. There are many farms and several small villages along the Canal and people live at a different pace; they’re not consumed by the "Major Metro Hustle" that so many of the state’s residents seem to move to.
I have been drawn to the Canal for years as a place to restore my sense of peace, a place where I can ground myself and put things back in perspective. My wife and I have been raising our family in one of the small villages because of the sense of community it provides. Until recently when it changed ownership, we could go to the general store in the village and run a paper tab with the owner if we forget to go to the ATM machine; most of the people are on a first name basis with each other, and the Post Office is the place to go if you want to find out what’s happening in the village.
Over the last few years I have been photographing the people who live and work along the D&R Canal because I have a sense that the Canal is providing a sociological function as well as its recreational and environmental ones [ it's probably one of the most visited State Parks becasue so many people walk along the towpath and it provides most of the drinking water for Center Jersey].
It’s attracting certain types of people to it; people who seem to want to remain connected to one another, people who love and value life rather than "stuff" and the "bottom line". I want to record these people and their stories before they’re gone forever.