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Monmouth Racetrack at Fort Monmouth New Jersey


What few people in the Eatontown, New Jersey area realize is that Monmouth Racetrack use to be on the grounds of what is today Fort Monmouth. What even fewer people realize is that there were actually two separate tracks located at Fort Monmouth at two separate times. The first track was opened on July 4, 1870 and featured a 300 ft Grandstand and a course that was a mile long. The entrance to the track was on Park Street, which is directly off Broad Street on the south side of what is today Fort Monmouth. Jockey's would use the nearby husky brook as a cooling shed for the horses to cool off their hooves and legs after they raced around the track. Just to the west was the location of a huge railroad station which brought people from the Jersey shore into Monmouth Racetrack. You would then walk on a covered walk which led across Husky Brook directly to the grandstand. Monmouth Racetrack was a huge success for Monmouth County and New Jersey. In 1890 they closed the first track on Fort Monmouth and made a second, bigger track which was located on what is today Greely Field. However this track was short lived. Soon after, in 1894 an anti gambling law was passed, this began the downfall for the Fort Monmouth Track. In 1897 a constitutional amendment was passed, this time it outlawed gambling. Monmouth Park had no choice but to close up. The land was sold and was soon occupied by the government when it was made into Camp Little Silver around 1914.


Virtually nothing is left today to remind us that Fort Monmouth use to be Monmouth Racetrack and any memory of it being there is long gone. The railroad station, railroad tracks, original racetrack and grandstand have long since been torn down. Part of where the original track was, is today the empty field that is behind the Burger King, the rest was made into residential housing. However the road that led to the racetrack (Park Avenue) is still in existence. Walking the grounds of Fort Monmouth, looking for any remains from those days, I could only find Husky Brook which use to be the location of the cooling station and an indentation in the grass where part of the railroad tracks use to be.


To help better understand where everything was in relation to today, I have made a Map and outlined the important areas. This map only shows the first racetrack at FT Monmouth.