A weekly update of stories previously reported

Five months ago: County seeks to dig up its Revolutionary War roots

In March, the Cumberland County freeholders applied for a $49,500 grant from the Park Service's American Battlefield Preservation Program to study what's believed to be the only documented military action in the county during the American Revolution.

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Last week, the county learned it will receive the grant.

In August 1781, members of a New Jersey militia unit opened fire on British loyalists trying to take a ship on the Maurice River near Port Norris and escape the region for the safety of New York City.

But many of the details of the Battle of Dallas' Landing have been lost over the years, and officials are trying to determine the exact location of the site and the burial sites of the seven loyalists killed in the engagement.

The county hopes finding the site boosts tourism. There are concerns that with climate change, the area could soon be flooded, and they would need to find the site sooner rather than later.

"It's literally a race against time and Mother Nature," said Matt Pisarski, the county's Cultural & Heritage Commission's principal planner. "Our hope is to get a more comprehensive understanding of the battle using tools like ground-penetrating radar and metal detectors. Once water levels rise to cover the site, the archaeological resources will be lost."

The study will take place soon on both banks of the Maurice River in the Port Norris area.

Fourteen months ago: Hamilton Township water tests indicate high amount of lead

In June 2012, the Hamilton Township Municipal Utilities Authority, which serves 17,000 customers, said seven of 30 downtown Mays Landing homes tested had a high amount of lead in the water.

Lead inspection is required every three years. The federal drinking water standard for lead is 15 parts per billion

MUA Executive Director Stephen Blankenship said the high totals were related to a temporary closing of two water tanks, and the residents were warned to take precautions with the water.

At the time, Blankenship said he was confident the levels would go back to normal, and so far they have.

Blankenship said a test of 64 properties in February reported they were all below the required level. The MUA took tests last week and will have the results soon. If the levels are below the threshold again they do not need to take further action, he said.

Two months ago: Walmart wins lawsuit for new store in Egg Harbor Township

On July 1, Superior Court Judge Julio L. Mendez ruled that a new Walmart Supercenter could be built near Fire Road and the Black Horse Pike, at the 35-acre site of Atlantic City Electric's former headquarters.

Village Supermarkets Inc., the parent company of the English Creek ShopRite, filed a lawsuit stating the store did not meet the criteria for the zoning at the area.

The company had until the middle of the month to appeal to the Appellate Division, and they exercised that right, said Mayor James "Sonny" McCullough.

Ronald S. Gasiorowski, attorney for the grocery-store chain, did not return a call seeking comment.

Walmart attorney Stephen Nehmad said the appeal is without merit and was filed to inhibit competition to area ShopRites by delaying competition. He said construction will not start until the appeal is resolved.

Contact Joel Landau:


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