Shark Attack Anniversary

This historic and heroic event had its centennial anniversary in July 2016 during the week of July 9 through July 17. The fateful 1916 Jersey Shore shark attacks sent a shockwave throughout the world and reconfigured the sentiments of mankind’s fear of the open water. However, the event also conveyed the heroism of those who placed themselves in harm’s way to perform selfless acts of compassion for others.

In commemoration of this anniversary, the Matawan Historical Society, in conjunction with the Borough of Matawan and the Chamber of Commerce, hosted a nine-day event to include a variety of activities to educate and invoke a retrospect of life in 1916.

This event has ended. You must purchase a self-guided tour book if you wish to visit the sites relating to the shark attacks. Self-guided tour books are available at Burrowes Mansion during regular open hours.

Commemoration Events Included

  • Antique Car Show
  • Art Exhibit & Voting
  • Book Signing by Author and Historian Al Savolaine of his 2016 book, Stanley Fisher: Shark Attack Hero of a Bygone Age (The book is available on this web site as well as Burrowes Mansion (during regular hours))
  • Center for Aquatic Sciences at Adventure Aquarium presentation, which included a live shark
  • Hero Walk that retraced Stanley Fisher’s route to the creek from his business
  • Historical Artifacts: displays of the 1916-era images and artifacts wwere displayed at various venues throughout town
  • 1916 Ice Cream Social
  • Jenkinson’s Aquarium Presentation
  • Matawan Creek Kayak Tours

  • Memorial Service at Rose Hill Cemetery
  • Monument Dedication at Memorial Park
  • Music in the Park
  • Presentation by Town Historian, Al Savolaine
  • Scavenger Hunt
  • Self-Guided Tours (Copies of the tour book are available for sale at Burrowes Mansion during regular hours, while supplies last.)
  • Shark-Related Screenings
  • Shark Research Institute presentation
  • Trolley Tours
  • Van Tours


Thank you to everyone who came out to the events and made the commemoration a success!