The Rise and Fall of Camden, New Jersey – America's most dangerous city – IT'S HISTORY


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Camden City long served as the heart of the South Jersey region. Located directly across the Delaware River from Philadelphia, Camden capitalized on its strategic location for shipping and is the home to the Campbell Soup Company. Unfortunately, Camden lost its once premier standing as it struggled with high poverty, crime, and environmental degradation. But what was the cause of Camden’s fall? What became of the city that once was at the height of an industrial economy? 

IT’S HISTORY – Weekly tales of American Urban Decay as presented by your host Ryan Socash.


00:00 Introduction: Camden the city that long served as the heart of South Jersey.
00:58 Become a Lord or a Lady with Established Titles.
02:20 Camden’s location in New Jersey.
02:33 Camden’s Original European Settlers in the 17th century.
02:57 William Penn encouraged Quaker settlement in the area.
03:14 The Families of William Cooper, John Kaighn, and Archibald Mickle were among the first settlers.
03:33 William Cooper settled at Cooper’s Creek.
03:50 When Jacob Cooper turned his 40 acres into streets and lots.
04:36 When Joshua Cooper created Cooper Village.
04:51 How Edward Sharp created Camden Village.
05:36 Camden’s Ferry Services were developed and the population began to grow.
06:26 The earliest structures were built including Hotels and Taverns.
06:53 A canal was cut through windmill island in the middle of the Delaware River.
07:14 Introduction to important industries such as the Campbell’s Soup Company.
08:29 Introduction to the Camden and Atlantic Railroad and significant improvements in transportation.
10:37 Blocks of Row Housing became available for factory workers Called Factory Row Streetscape.
10:58 Camden’s ethnic population and immigration.
11:44 Places of worship began to develop all over the city from churches to synagogues.
12:49 The life and Death of the Poet Walt Whitman who lived in Camden.
13:45 Camden’s survival of the Great Depression and World War II
14:16 Why Campbell’s Soup company decided on decentralizing and many businesses followed.
15:13 Suburbanization affects the drop in population.
16:07 Urban Decay and Political corruption result in three mayors being jailed.
16:25 Camden’s middle-class residents accelerated their departure from the city causing an urban renewal program.
17:14 Years of rising crime make the Morgan Quinto press rate Camden as the top 10 most dangerous cities in the US.
18:27 The rise of protests including the anti-Vietnam war activists the Camden 28.
19:07 Local Gems of Camden City that should be admired.
20:29 Camden’s Medical Schools, Colleges, and educational programs.
21:43 The mayor announces a plan to continue development on the waterfront
22:24 Closing: Camden will once again become one of New Jersey’s greatest cities.

Scriptwriter – Camrin Dekis,
Editor – Sebastian Ripoll
Host – Ryan Socash

Work Cited
History. Camden County, NJ. (2021, January 4). Retrieved April 12, 2022, from
Encyclopædia Britannica, inc. (n.d.). Camden. Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved April 12, 2022, from
About Us. The City of Camden. (2020, July 21). Retrieved April 12, 2022, from
Jr., H. G., & Jr., H. G. (2022, March 14). Camden, New Jersey. Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia. Retrieved April 12, 2022, from
Camden, New Jersey Facts for Kids. (n.d.). Retrieved April 12, 2022, from,_New_Jersey
THE Camden City Board of Trade. Camden, NJ – 1890 – historical and Industrial Review of Camden, new jerseyDS. (n.d.). Retrieved April 12, 2022, from
Camden, New Jersey. Familypedia. (n.d.). Retrieved April 12, 2022, from,_New_Jersey#Crime
Camden County College. Camden County, NJ. (2021, January 28). Retrieved April 12, 2022, from
Virtua our lady of Lourdes Hospital. Hospital in Camden, NJ. (n.d.). Retrieved April 12, 2022, from

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