Smithville founders to be featured at next Medford Historical Society meeting

Fred and Ethel Noyes, founders of Smithville, Atlantic County, will be featured in a talk by author Judith Courter on Thursday, June 12, 7:30 p.m. at the Medford Historical Society meeting. Attendance is free, reservations are not required and all are welcome. The society meets at the Medford Friends Meetinghouse at 14 Union Street in Medford Village.

Thousands of visitors every year flock to the Historic Smithville Inn and Village to enjoy restaurants, shops and festivals. The story behind Smithville and the remarkable efforts of its founders, Fred and Ethel Noyes is as colorful as the village itself. Fred was a World War II veteran and artist with a rambunctious personality. Ethel was an unstoppable visionary and self-made businesswoman. Together, they restored the Smithville Inn and, over the years, added the historic village and started the Noyes Museum of Art. Judy Courter tells the story of this fascinating couple through the memories of family, friends and employees.

Judith Courter and her family moved to Port Republic, New Jersey, in 1972, near the home of Fred and Ethel Noyes. Intrigued by the rich past of this former shipbuilding settlement, Courter was one of the founding members of the town’s historical society. She graduated from Mount Holyoke College in Massachusetts with a degree in American history. She is on the board of the Noyes Museum of Art of Stockton College, a lifetime member of the Atlantic County Historical Society and a member of the Absecon Historical Society.