Glad to help

In December, Joe Makoviecki, a songwriter, guitarist, and vocalist in a folk music group called Jackson Pines, contacted me and asked permission to use an image from our website.

They needed a picture for the cover art for their single about the old Mount Holly Jail, part of their soon-to-be-finished collection of folk songs from the Pine Barrens of New Jersey.

Burlington County Jail House, Mt. Holly, NJ
Burlington County Prison, Mt Holly, NJ 1906

It seems that a Google image search for “Mt. Holly Jail” led him to rivertonhistory .com, where I had posted scans of Mt. Holly area postcards.

Pat McGrath (a postcard collector in Ohio with whom I’ve since lost touch) generously gave me nine of them in 2005, and there were two of Mt. Holly Jail.

How quaint – Joe found a picture on the web and actually asked permission to copy and paste it.

I was intrigued by the man’s civility.

As I pressed Joe for more details, I came away impressed with his commitment to reviving and keeping alive the authentic folk songs of the Pine Barrens. His search led him down the “…rabbit hole searching for and researching the origin of the folk songs and tracking down the stories behind [them].” He tells more about his motivation here.

Researching “down the rabbit hole” is my job description.

Ergo, I immediately commiserated and agreed to send Joe both postcard scans in higher resolution than what he found on the website, encouraging him to use either or both and alter them as he pleased.

I wished him good luck and asked him to update me on how things develop.

Joe just checked back with an update. His band has released the single “Mt. Holly Jail” and the album Pine Barrens: Volume One.

Clicking on the cover art or the titles above to listen to the single track or the other songs in the album. Follow the group on Facebook and Instagram.

Glad to help. I always wanted to be in a band. -JMc

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John McCormick

Teacher at Riverton School 1974-2019, author, amateur historian, Historical Society of Riverton Board Member 2007-2023, newsletter editor 2007-2023, website editor 2011-2023

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