JAPHET B. JOYCE JR. was born around 1855, on of at least five children of Japhet B. and Elizabeth Joyce. When the census was taken in 1870 the family lived in Evesham Township, where the elder Joyce was a farmer. Japhet Jr. attended school until at least the age of 15.
When the Census was taken in 1880 Japhet Joyce was married and living in Chester Township, which today is called Maple Shade. He was married and his wife Buelah had bore him three children, Albert, William, and Sarah. He was then working as a laborer.
By the summer of 1887 Japhet Joyce had moved to Camden. He was then living at 518 Vine Street in North Camden, and was working as a salesmen. He moved shortly thereafter, and lived until at least 1890 at 607 North 6th Street. He worked in the produce business for a short time, and by 1890 had found a job as a fireman on the Vine Street Ferry. He would stoke the ferry's boiler for the next 20 years, crossing back and forth across the Delaware countless times with pilot John Keen and engineer James Kirby. The 1906 City Directory lists him at 2725 Cramer Street. According to Census records, by 1910 Japhet Joyce and wife Beulah were living at 12 North 34th Street in the Rosedale section of East Camden. The 1914 City Directory shows that he returned to North Camden, living at 521 York Street, and that he had remarried. By the end of 1919 he and his wife Anna had left Camden for Haddon Township.
Japhet B. Joyce later moved to Fort Worth Texas, where he was living in December of 1928. He and his wife Anna were still residing in Fort Worth as late as April of 1930.
Camden Courier-Post - January 2, 1928
To the Editor of the Evening Courier:
Sir: I am writing to you a few lines from my home down here in Texas. I just want to say how much I appreciate the Courier.
We have lots of papers but none of them has the news as yours does.
We had our first snow December 21, but by noon it was all melted and next day was clear and like spring.
I was overjoyed to read in your paper about my old comrade, with whom I spent so many years crossing the ferry at Vine Street. John Keen. He was pilot, I was fireman.
I first read where he was so sick. I watched every day to see if he had died, but one morning I said to my wife, "Here it is. John Keen is improving and can eat now." How it thrilled my with joy.
Our engineer died last year. I fired for him 20 years and was with the company 28 years.
Our engineer's name was James Kirby.
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