Mrs. Anna B. Mahew

By Wilson J. Purvis

In an interview with Mrs. Anna B. Mahew, who was familiar with this section of South Jersey before Vineland came into being, she says there were three routes to Philadelphia; One through Tuckahoe, another by way of Bridgeton and Salem, but the route over which her husband drove the stage, started from Cape Island, passing through Goshen, Port Elizabeth, Millville to Malaga, Fislerville, Glassborough to Camden, crossing the river to the Ridgway House in Philadelphia. This road went through what is now Vineland and was the mail route, the stage serving eight post offices. The stage driver carried large sums of money in gold and silver. He was never held up or robbed.

When the road was in good condition two horses drew the stage from one relay house to another. When roads were bad five horses were nec essary.

Hundreds of people walked the entire distance and the road was seldom free from travelers. One of the relay houses known as the Gregory place on Malaga Road still stands.

Mrs. Mahew, at the age of ninety, accounts for her long life by being temperate in all things. At ten years of age she went to live in the Quaker family of Furman Mulford in Millville. She had several cows to milk and care for as well as doing a share of the housework. While she had little schooling she was well educated in domestic affairs. She married James Mahew and her wedding journey was in the stage coach over Malaga Road in 1856. After Mr. Mahew's death she was able to support herself by making clothing, raising chickens and ducks and the products of her garden. She never worked too hard, but was always active.