Doctor's Island

Whereas the property known historically as Doctor's Island, Block 9100, Lot 1 and Lot 6, and Block 9519, Lot 18, and owned by the Borough of Pompton Lakes is of particular historic interest to said Borough, exemplifying the broad cultural, political, economic and social history of the community.

Whereas said property is the dump site of the Ludlum Steel Works and is an important archaeological site which has yielded materials of cultural significance in the past and may do so in the future.

Therefore, the Pompton Lakes Historic Preservation Commission recommends to the Planning Board that the site known as Doctor's Island be declared a local historic landmark in accordance with the procedures established in Chapter 27, Historic Preservation, of the Revised Code of the Borough of Pompton Lakes.


The dump site is located in an undeveloped tract of land located south of Riverview Road and east of Mathes Avenue. The dump extends along a section of and adjacent to Mathes Avenue. This area is an undeveloped tract that is wooded, has an undulating topography and some wetland areas.

Site Contents

This dump contains slag, ash, and brick fragments. A nearly graphite crucible, complete crucible lids plus several fragments were recovered from the surface of this site. The complete crucible measures ten and one-quarter inches in diameter and nine inches in height, while the lids are eight and one-half inches in diameter. The fragments recovered from the site suggest that other sizes of crucible were used at the steelworks as well. The crucibles were used in the steel making / melting processes.

The dump site contained a great deal of coal and ash and this material was used as landfill. However, we recovered one complete graphite crucible from the site that measures nine" in height and ten and one-quarter" in diameter at its orifice. The basal section of another crucible was also found. Several fragments of crucible lids were also found including three complete specimens that measure eight and one-half inches in diameter.

Refractory brick fragments are plentiful at the dump site. These refractory bricks were used as furnace crucible liners during the late 19th century. Although they are generally the same size, they were manufactured by three different firms and bear their makers name:
  • Henry Maurer No. 1 New York
  •  M.D. Valentine and Bro., XX, Woodbridge, NJ.
  • J.H. Gauti, Extra, Jersey City, NJ.

Historical Designation

Doctor's Island was designated an historical site on October 17, 1995.