"Only a few people get to experience the great storms and they tend to remember every detail of every moment. And while most hope they never have to go through one again, only a few wish they’d missed it in the first place."

— from the Preface

Great Storms of the
Jersey Shore

By Margaret Thomas Buchholz and Larry Savadove

Foreword by Senator Bill Bradley

203 pages, 192 illustrations, index, bibliography, 11" x 11" ONLY 2 LEFT!
trade paper $26.95
ISBN 0-945582-51-x

Updated expanded edition including Superstorm Sandy due out
Summer 2019

Click here for sample images...


Great Storms of the Jersey Shore is a dramatic history of major coastal storms which have hit the Jersey Shore.

Generously illustrated with nearly two hundred photographs, engravings, and maps, the book is an opportunity to appreciate the horror and beauty of the great storms. This oversize book is beautifully printed, with many duotone reproductions, on heavy matte stock.

The authors have combined exhaustive research of archival reports and old news accounts with interviews of more than 200 people who experienced major storms first-hand. Much of the book is devoted to these vivid stories, with extensive narratives of the devastating 1962 nor’easter and the great hurricane of 1944. Those who have known the power of the great storms draw us in to a time and place where survival is uncertain. Few living at the shore today have experienced extreme storms, but for those who have — as they describe in this book — it is a defining moment in their lives.

The book also touches upon the mythic nature of great storms, with excerpts from literature, the meteorology of coastal storms, and environmental implications for those living along the coast. It is a significant reference — covering storms from the voyages of Columbus to the big northeaster of December ’92 — a must for every shore resident’s library as well as an attractive coffee-table book.


"One of the best documented compendiums ever published of what it meant to be there."

— Shirley Horner, The New York Times

"Just as the title promises; this is a history of wild weather on the Jersey shore...The authors set the scene in colonial history and then take you — with harrowing eyewitness accounts — through the famous modern storms of 1944 and 1962."

— John Mort,

"... a human tapestry of loss, heroics and, most important, the resilience of the human spirit."

— Winnie Bonelli,
The North Jersey Herald & News

"...A terrific job of chronicling the devastation and rebirth that has marked the Shore’s history."

— Thomas H. Kean

"...As much an adventure story as it is a scientific chronicle of natural disasters."

— Barbara Bogaev, "Radio Times," WHYY-FM

"It should be required reading...."

—Dr. Robert C. Sheets, Director National Hurricane Center,
Coral Gables, FL

"It is simply one of the best weather books I have ever seen."

— Richard DeAngelis,
Editor Mariners Weather Log

"It startles, intrigues, challenges the imagination, and commands attention."

—John T. Cunningham, author and historian

"It is evocative and provocative, gritty, beautiful, a rare historical record of some of nature’s greatest moments."

— Senator Bill Bradley, from the Foreword

"If you want to work up a cold sweat... I recommend you pick up a copy."

— Clark DeLeon, The Philadelphia Inquirer


Recalling his experience in the 1962 nor’easter in Sea Isle City, Adolph Wilsey considered himself "one of the lucky ones":

Those tides! Tuesday morning was a bad one. Waves came banging into the bulkhead like the wrath of God. The bulkheads held but the sea, whipped by the wind, came right over the top of them. That was only the beginning. Tuesday night’s tide was worse. The granddaddy of them all came Wednesday morning. It smashed the bulkheads like kindling wood and the ocean came roaring at us, rushing into the streets. It ripped away an eight-foot section of my living room wall and pounded out two windows. Water and sand poured over my floor. Furniture was knocked over. Between my house and the ocean there used to be three houses. They were swept away. Not a trace of them was left. The night before the last tide I tossed on my bed, fully clothed. Since my wife died in January I’ve lived alone. Sometimes the house is pretty quiet but it wasn’t quiet that night. The ocean was rolling right underneath me. When I got up in the morning, that big tide had done its work. I figured it was time to get out.

He grabbed a photograph of himself with his wife, eight children and sixteen grandchildren, shut off the gas — the electricity and phone had been out since Tuesday — and waded to the house of a friend, Tom Jefferson.
It was a little scary. The water was deep and the current was swift. I finally found a board to hang onto in case I got swept off my feet. We went up to the third floor and looked out over the city. It was a sight to see. It was like a vast, half-drowned junkyard. For a while we watched the dismal sight of our neighbors’ homes being washed into the ocean.


Larry Savadove is the author of the novel The Oyster singer. Currently living in Beach Haven, NJ, he continues to write a topical weekly newspaper column, and is at work on two more novels, both set at the shore.

Margaret Thomas Buchholz is the editor of the historical anthology Shore Chronicles: Diaries and Travelers’ Tales from the Jersey Shore 1764-1955, Island album, New Jersey Shipwrecks and Seasons in the Sun, a pictorial history of Harvey Cedars. She is editor of The Beachcomber, a weekly newspaper on Long Beach Island, where she lives.

P.O. Box 100, West Creek New Jersey 08092
email info@down-the-shore.com • fax (609) 812-5098

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