One hundred feet above the Delaware River is Merchantville, a spirited community founded in 1874. Many wealthy Philadelphia merchants established residences while others summered in this key South Jersey center for goods and services. In 1926, the building of the Benjamin Franklin Bridge opened the door to a new era of expansion, which continues today, as Merchantville forges ahead on its prosperous path. A sign of Merchantville's past and a crowning jewel of today is the wonderful Victorian architecture seen throughout town. Many historical homes still stand, lovingly restored and maintained by enthusiastic, caring residents. Merchantville includes a look at these great homes, as well as a chronicle of the town's greatest asset, its people. Boxing champion Jersey Joe Walcott, born in 1914 in Merchantville, trained right in the center of town; Jane Eayre Fryer wrote the Mary Frances series for young girls (1911-1918); and Wallis Warfield Simpson, later the Duchess of Windsor, visited Merchantville c. 1900. But everyday life and everyday residents are what make any study of history vital, and they are what make Merchantville so outstanding.