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Timeline Mysteries: Solve a Mystery, Win a Prize!


From time to time, we at Monmouth Timeline come across a great story that has fundamental questions that we cannot resolve.

We want your help! If you can provide the information we need to resolve one of our Timeline Mysteries, you win a free “This Day in Monmouth County History” t-shirt! You will also be celebrated for your achievement on our social media pages as well as the Timeline post we’re able to add thanks to you.

As we solve these Timeline Mysteries, we’ll add new ones, so check back to see what’s got us stumped this time!


Did Harry Houdini ever perform in Monmouth County?  We know he came to Asbury Park in 1914, but not to perform; in fact, one of the world’s most famous celebrities went completely unnoticed on this occasion.  We have documentary evidence that suggests the great escape artist performed at a fundraiser for Monmouth Memorial Hospital at the Ross-Fenton Farm on August 11, 1924, in Wanamassa (Ocean Twp.).  But there is much about this document that does not appear to hold water.  We want to know if this event ever took place, if so, where and when, and was Houdini really ever here?  

Where and when was Bud Abbott born? Bud Abbott was the straight-man half of the legendary comic duo Abbott and Costello, who made history as stars of movies, TV and radio. Virtually every biography states that Bud Abbott was born in Asbury Park, but the birth dates vary. And, in his bio on, it states that Abbott was actually born in Reading, Penn., and moved to Asbury Park as a youth…and that Abbott himself is the source for the erroneous citations of Asbury Park as his birthplace. We have been unable to reach the author of the IMDB bio.

So where was Bud Abbott born, and when? Somewhere, a birth certificate exists. Other sources refer to his draft card. If you can supply us with an authentic image of Bud Abbott’s birth certificate, or other conclusive documentation of his birthplace, we add it to the Timeline, and you win a free t-shirt! If we receive multiple submissions with the same information at the same time, we’ll give out multiple prizes, but otherwise the prize goes who whomever solves the mystery first.

TIMELINE MYSTERY SOLVED!!!  Was there really no photo of the Dangler Mansion?  In 1928, Edward and Teresa Dangler constructed a large two-story Colonial Revival mansion on the hilltop of their 35-acre property at 152 Red Hill Road that was later owned by noted gangster Vito Genovese.  The house burned down under suspicious circumstances a short time later.  We had been unable to locate a photo anywhere.  Finally, the president of the Middletown Township Historical Society located an image within the archives of the Monmouth County Parks System to solve the mystery. 

A prize of a free “This Day in Monmouth County History” t-shirt is offered as a reward for solving any Timeline Mystery.

You can submit your Timeline Mysteries answers and sources via
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