East Side Bund Camp Foundations
Foundations North of Well
Bund Camp Gatehouse
Nazi Bund Camp Pool
Northwest Large Foundation
West Side Foundations
The Iron Door
Rt. 287 Views
Federal Hill is located in Bloomingdale, NJ just north of where Rt. 287 and Hamburg Turnpike intersect, and right next to Pompton Lakes. It is the site that the Bergwald Nazi Bund Camp was built on in the 1930s as a Hitler Youth Camp. There were a number of these camps set up along the eastern seaboard (another is located just west of Morristown, NJ) for the recruitment of American youth to the Ayrian (Nazi) cause. It is also believed they were to be used as a toe hold for a Fifth Column Front for a possilbe future invasion of the US, as fantastic as that seems. The camp remained in operation until 1941 when the FBI swept in and shut it down and rounded up some of the principals of the organization. If you go under 287 on Hamburg Turnpike there is a small county park on the right about 1/3 mile up the road where you can park. From there you need to cross the stream. The only way to cross from this location feet dry is to use an active railroad trestle next to the park, but I would not recommend it. I've also been told if you go further north on Hamburg Turnpike to Van Dam Ave and turn right, there is a vacant area on the right where you can park and hike in. I have not tried that way in yet.
The area is slated to be developed for low income housing, but an effort to preserve Federal Hill for its Revolutionary War history has been ongoing. I've listed the photos more or less geographically as to where they are on the Hill. The Bergwald Nazi Bund Camp pool is more towards the west side. Somewhat right of center is a steep road (there are now two steep roads running parallel) up the hill that more or less bisects Federal Hill north to south. I'll give a quick run down of the galleries:
I can't say that any of the individual ruins or relics are terribly exciting. But what they represent in the way of a camp supporting Nazi ideologies right here in NJ is truly astonishing (and creepy!). When I first heard about the existence of this Bund Camp I was told that it was located in Pompton Lakes, NJ, but as far as I can see on the map Federal Hill is located within the town limits of Bloomingdale, NJ.
6/13/2013 - On each index page I have included GPS coordinates for each foundation or location. Satellite reception in some parts of the Bund Camp were spotty, but they should get you pretty close.
Nazi Bund Camp Links
An article by Bill Ervolino about searching for and locating the Iron Door on Federal Hill in Bloomingdale .
A Youtube Video of the Weird New Jersey folks exploring Federal Hill. Their encounter with the cave crickets is very amusing.
Another Youtube Video of the Bergwald Nazi Bund Camp, this time period footage in color (very short).
Here's a much longer Youtube period video of the Bloomingdale Bergwald Nazi Bund Camp . The short clip above is included but the color is not as good. The Bergwald Bund Camp pool is recognizable, and at 2:46 you can clearly see one of the spillways on the dam. The terrain is familiar as is the road coming up the hill. The blue flags with the red D in the middle signify Deutschland. You will also see flags with a single stylized "S" called Sieg Runes (roughly translates to "Victory Letter" Runes are letters in the Runic Alphabet, an old Germanic alphabet. Those familiar with WWII history will immediately recognize they were used two together to form the symbol for the Nazi SS or Schutzstaffel. A single Sieg Rune was adopted and used by the Hitler Youth organization for their Troop Flag and Pennant. If you're under the impression that this was just another boy scout camp, take a another good look at those flags in the video. Then read up on the Hitler Youth, especially in regards to atrocities committed against civilians and allied prisoners towards the end of WWII in Europe.
Federal Hill also has a Revolutionary War background. In 1871 there was one of several mutinies of Colonial Troops over lack of pay and poor living conditions in several locations. After on of the mutinies on Federal Hill, two of the instigators were ordered shot by their fellow troops. Here is an article about the executions on graphicwitness.com.