Let's Go to the White City: A History of White City Amusement Park, Hamilton, New Jersey
by James Colello, Jr.
Archway Publishing

"There were free open-air attractions such as fireworks displays on the lake-front and motor boat rides and water carnivals on the lake. Forty additional arc lights were placed at various points in the park and hundreds of incandescent lamps were scattered throughout making the park as light as day. All of the buildings and fences were painted white and the new Spring Lake Park was referred to as 'White City.'"

Every now and then we rediscover something from our past, reconnecting with and learning about something in American history. Like a ghost town, James Colello, Jr. uncovers and brings to light what was once known to citizens of Hamilton and nearby towns as the White City of New Jersey. The place was a beautiful attraction built and designed on what was formerly known as Spring Lake Park to attract people who might otherwise not afford long, luxurious vacations. For just five cents, people could ride the trolley to and visit the park. Strolling through the grounds, visitors might encounter a carousel, circle swing, roller coaster, miniature railroad and fun houses. Later on, vaudeville acts, Shoot-the-Chute, and a theatre for moving pictures was added.

Colello takes the reader on a trip down memory lane of this little known park that is now filled with suburban homes. The book delves into the history of how the White City Amusement Park came to fruition, what it was like as it existed, and the circumstances that aided in the inevitable end to the existence of the park. It is sad to realize that nothing exists of the park's once glorious days, but with the help of Colello's book, in which he includes archival photographs and representations of the park, readers can appreciate another addition to the preservation of our history. It is an easy-to-read and straightforward narrative that can be enjoyed by all ages.

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