Builders discovered the 19th century wooden boat while work was being carried out on the bungalow in New Jersey, USA. It is believed to be a coal barge.


For years, there were rumours of a boat underneath one of the beachside bungalows in Highlands, New Jersey.

Now the myth has been confirmed with the discovery of a 43 foot coal barge.

Russell Card of the Historical Society of Highlands shared photos of the boat on his Facebook page.

Boat underneath New Jersey bungalow

The boat is believed to have been a coal barge. Credit Russell E Card.


The boat was found on 25 May when the waterfront bungalow was raised on pilings for building work. Pieces of coal are also reported to have been found in the vicinity.

The bungalow was built in the 1920s.

Speaking to the Asbury Park Press, Card said: “It was beyond amazing. I’ve heard about it before and the first time I ever saw it was yesterday. I never realised it was so big. I was amazed at the craftsmanship of it.”

19th century boat discovered underneath New Jersey home

Bow of the vessel. Credit Russell E Card.


The boat, which measured 12 feet wide, has now been destroyed, as there was no place large enough in the New Jersey town to preserve the find.

“Yesterday, sadly the boat was razed and has become part of our past,” posted Card on his Facebook page on 27 May.

However, the bungalow’s owner, Eileen Scanlon is reported to have planned to keep the bow in her garden as a memento.

As to how the boat got there, Card said: “People used to roll the boats in on wheels and they probably left it laying there and just built around it.”