Latitude / Longitude:
39°54′39″N 74°37′15″W / 39.91083°N 74.62083°W / 39.91083
30 m (98 ft)
Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
Ong’s Hat (also Ong) is an unincorporated community and ghost town in Pemberton Township, Burlington County, New Jersey, United States. It is located on Magnolia Road (County Route 644) west of the Four Mile Circle, where New Jersey Route 72 intersects with New Jersey Route 70. It is the northern terminus of the Batona Trail.
Although it was never more than one hut (“Ong’s Hut”) it still appeared on some maps as of 2006. A road in the area is named Ong’s Hat Road. It is also called the Buddtown-Ong’s Hat Road. It was completed in 1929, replacing an earlier dirt path. Tha name of the place may have originally been Ong’s Hut, referring to an overnight shelter built by a farmer of that name.
The name of the area predates the revolutionary war. The location “Ong’s” appears on a 1778 map of Hessian encampments in New Jersey. According to Forgotten Towns of Southern New Jersey by Henry Charlton Beck, Ong’s Hat was a real village. According to Beck, around the 1860s, Ong’s Hat was a lively town and served as a social center for the surrounding area. It was known for the availability of alcohol and one of the first arrests of a bootlegger occurred at Ong’s Hat. Prizefighting was also popular.
As a long-abandoned small settlement, Ong’s Hat remained obscure until its name and location was co-opted in a book called Ong’s Hat: The Beginning by Joseph Matheny, which was based on stories that had circulated on computer bulletin boards which held that a cult of outcast scientists opened an interdimensional gateway in Ong’s Hat. Matheny was not clear as to whether his book was intended as fact or fiction.