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Friday, November 29, 2013

Weekend Historical Happenings: 11/30/13 - 12/1/13

WEEKEND HISTORICAL HAPPENINGS
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Friday - Saturday, November 29 - 30 - Union Township, Union County
Christmas Tours
Children Friendly

Liberty Hall Museum will be open for tours on Friday and Saturday! Opening on Friday will be the Christmas tour "From St. Nicholas to Santa Claus," when Liberty Hall will be decorated to celebrate five different styles of Christmas; the Dutch tradition of St. Nicholas, the English tradition of Twelfth Night, The Night Before Christmas, a Victorian Christmas, and a World War II Christmas. Tours start at 10:00 am and leave every hour with the last tour of the day leaving at 3:00 pm. Adults: $10.00; Kean Alumni: $8.00; Seniors, College Students, Children: $6.00; Under Three: Free. Liberty Hall Museum is located at 1003 Morris Ave, Union, NJ 07083. For more information, call 908-527-0400 or visit www.kean.edu/libertyhall.

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Saturday, November 30 - Newton, Sussex County
Sussex County Authors Day and Book Signing

On Saturday, attend the Sussex County Authors Day and Book Signing from 10:00 am - 4:00 pm. The event will feature book signings and sale by local residents whose work has been published by the History Press. Local authors will be present to sign the perfect holiday gift for the history lovers. This is a free event. The public is invited. 

Among the History Press authors in attendance will be:
Linda J. Barth, A History of Inventing in New Jersey: From Thomas Edison to the Ice Cream Cone
Valerie Josephson, Stirring Times: The Lives of New Jersey's First Civil War Surgeons
Wayne McCabe, Newton and other titles
Kevin Wright, A History of the Andover Iron Works; The Andover Forge
Peter Lubrecht,  Germans in New Jersey; New Jersey Butterfly Boys in the Civil War
Jude Pfister, The Jacob Ford Jr. Mansion; The Fords of New Jersey
Tom Austin, Bill Miller's Riviera
Michael Gabriele, The Golden Age of Bicycle Racing in New Jersey; The History of Diners in New Jersey

The event will be held at the Hill Museum, home of the Sussex County Historical Society, 82 Main Street, Newton NJ. For more information, call 973-383-6010, e-mail sussexcountyhs@gmail.com, or visit www.sussexcountyhistory.org.

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Saturday, November 30 - Hopewell Township, Mercer County
Thanksgiving Hayrides, Wreath, and Sleighbell Sale
Children Friendly

Sleighbells will ring at Howell Living History Farm on Saturday when the Farm holds its annual Thanksgiving program featuring free horse-drawn hayrides, a wreath and sleighbell sale, and a special children's craft program.

Horse-drawn hayrides (or sleighrides!) will be offered on a continuous basis from 11:00 am - 3:00 pm. There is no charge for the rides, but donations of canned goods will be accepted for distribution to local food banks. At 3:00 pm, donors will be eligible to win door prizes - including bells worn by the Farm's horses.

Sleighbells will be sold throughout the day by The Friends of Howell Farm to benefit the Farm's restoration projects. The bells are made by harnessmaker Mervin Martin, who makes the harnesses and sleighbells worn by the Farm's workhorses. Brass and nickel plated bells will be sold in straps of six, twelve, and twenty bells. Reproduction cast bells, bell door ringers and bell ornaments will also be available.

Other holiday items featured at the annual fundraiser include fresh evergreen wreaths and door hangings; the Farm's flour and honey; and beautiful handmade items sewn by the Pleasant Valley Stitchers.

A children's craft program, "Pine Cone Bird Ornament," will be held on a walk-in basis, from 11:00 am - 3:00 pm. Projects take 20 minutes to complete and cost $3 each. Groups (eight or more) must pre-register.

Howell Living Farm represents typical farm life between 1890 and 1910. The farm is operated by the Mercer County Parks Commission. It is located at 70 Wooden's Lane, Lambertville, NJ. For more information or to register for the program, call 609-737-3299. www.howellfarm.org

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Saturday - Sunday, November 30 - December 1 - Alpine, Bergen County
After-The-Holiday Open House
Children Friendly

Stop by for “Thanksgiving Time” at Mrs. Kearney’s tavern, the annual after-the-holiday open house, 19th-century-style, at the Kearney House in Alpine, New Jersey on Saturday and Sunday. Free and open to all, sip hot cider by the fireside, there will be games and fun for kids, and music with Mr. MacGregor, all beginning around 1:00 pm, followed by a special reading aloud with Mr. Nelsen around 3:00 pm. Each day's events will conclude at 4:00 pm. The Kearney House is located at Alpine Boat Basin in Palisades Interstate Park, Alpine, NJ. For more information, call 201 768-1360 ext. 108 or visit www.njpalisades.org/kearney.html.

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Saturday - Sunday, November 30 - December 1 - Bedminster, Somerset County
Celebrate Christmas Past and Present in Bedminster
Children Friendly

Step back in time (to the winter of 1778-79) and visit Bedminster’s historic Jacobus Vanderveer House and Museum on Saturday and Sunday when it opens its wreath-clad doors for the eleventh annual Colonial Christmas show house and tour for two  consecutive weekends.

The fundraiser features: house tours, artisans selling handmade items, Colonial holiday decorations, Colonial musicians and reenactors, Santa visits, and permanent exhibits - The Kitchen Hearth, The Vanderveer Parlor, The Knox Bedroom, and the Lumber Room.  


Schedule of Events
Saturday, November 30
* 10:00 am - 4:00 pm – Lambs Artillery Encampment
* 10:00 am - 4:00 pm – Vendors
* 10:00 am - 4:00 pm – Colonial Re-Enactors
* 11:00 am - 1:00 pm – The Enslows perform Colonial American Christmas Music
* 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm – Santa Visit

Sunday, December 1
* 10:00 am - 4:00 pm – Vendors
* 10:00 am - 4:00 pm – Colonial Re-Enactors
* 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm – Santa Visit
* 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm – Harmonium Choral Group

Admission is $10 (children 12 and under, free). The house is open from 10:00 am - 4:00 pm on Saturday and Sunday, November 30 and December 1 and Thursday through Sunday, December 5 - 8. The Jacobus Vanderveer House is located at 955 Route 202/206, Bedminster, NJ, behind River Road Park. The entrance to the house is via River Road Park. For more information, call 908-396-6053 or visit www.jvanderveerhouse.org.

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Saturday - Sunday, November 30 - December 1 - Montague, Sussex County
Old Fashioned Holiday Tours
Children Friendly

M.A.R.C.H. will kick off its free 2013 Old Fashioned Holiday Tours this year at the Foster-Armstrong House on Saturday from 1:00 - 4:00 pm. Six specially decorated rooms will also be open on Sunday, December 1, Saturday, December 7, Saturday, December 14, and Sunday, December 15 from 1:00 - 4:00 pm.  

A very special candlelight tour with a luminary light walkway is scheduled for Sunday, December 8th from 5 p.m. - 7:30 p.m.  All dates are weather permitting and cookies and cider will be available. 

The decorative theme for 2013 is "A Natural Holiday". Each tree in the rooms will be decorated with different types of ornaments. There will also be a natural decoration workshop with pine cones set up in the Cole Room and handmade ornaments from our crafters will be for sale in The Foster General Store. The Foster-Armstrong House is located at 320 River Road / C.R. 521 in Montague, NJ, about 1 mile north of the Milford-Montague Bridge. For more information, visit www.montaguehistory.org.

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Sunday, December 1 and Dec. 7, 8, 14, 15 - Flemington, Hunterdon County
Holiday Open House
Family Friendly

Holiday greenery, ribbons, hydrangeas, magnolia leaves and lots of clever decorating ideas will greet visitors at the 1845 Doric House at 114 Main Street in Flemington, NJ starting Sunday, December 1, the day of borough's holiday parade. The museum, open at no charge by the Hunterdon County Historical Society, also will welcome guests for tours on the following two weekends, December 7-8 and 14-15. Hours each day are 1:00 to 4:00 pm. Admission is free.

The imaginative holiday d├ęcor created by the Community Garden Club of Hunterdon based in Whitehouse and the Hunterdon Hills Garden Club of High Bridge adds much to the tour both inside and outside the house. Decorating committee Co-Chairs Debi DeLorenzo and Barbara Stawicki for the Whitehouse club and Chair Chris Endris of the High Bridge club, report they are working in tandem this year. Evergreens, gold bows, white paper angels, three-dimensional gold paper stars, hydrangeas, amaryllis and apple roses will wreath the elliptical staircase, adorn the tree and beautifully decorate the formal parlor and dining room. The table will be set for Christmas dinner. Visitors will find many clever ideas to copy for their homes. Docents in every room will tell the stories of the antique furnishings and what mid-1800s life in Flemington was like.

As an added treat, the newly renovated research library adjoining the museum will feature a tree and a display of holiday greeting cards from the Society’s Lorena Cole Vincent Collection, and other late 19th and early 20th century greeting cards from several Hunterdon County families.

Besides the holiday decorations, guests will see new appointments in the parlor, including an 1845 Argand-style whale oil chandelier created by Charles Tiffany of New Hope, an 1830 portrait of Anna Hope Foster of Clinton (hanging over a Chippendale-style desk made by her father in 1790), and new 19th-century-style lace panels at the windows. In the foyer, the Society has added a collection of nine walking sticks dating from 1722 to 1917.

The Doric House was built by Mahlon Fisher, a country carpenter of ability and taste, for his private residence. He also erected several other Flemington residences in the same style that are considered some of the best of their type in the U.S. but the Doric House is the only one remaining in non-commercial use. For more information, call 908-782-1091 or visit www.hunterdonhistory.org.

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Sunday, December 1 - Stillwater, Sussex County
Santa Comes to Stillwater
Children Friendly

Kids and adults alike are invited to visit Santa and Mrs. Claus when they arrive in Stillwater on Sunday. The much-loved pair will be at the museum of the Historical Society of Stillwater Township from 1:00 - 4:00 pm.

The afternoon includes visits with Santa, horse drawn carriage rides, live music, homemade  trifle, museum tours and a bake sale. The event and refreshments are free and open to the public.

The society's museum is located at 900 Main Street, Stillwater, NJ. For more information, call Betty English at 973-903-3941 or visit www.historicstillwater.org.

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Sunday, December 1, 7 - 8, and 14 - 15 - Whippany, Morris County
22nd Annual Santa Claus Special
Children Friendly

New Jersey's Original Santa Claus Special celebrates its 22nd continuous year of operation in 2013.  Celebrate the wonderful Christmastime spirit and joy with a ride on the Whippany Railway Museum's Santa Claus Special! Tickets for this annual Christmas tradition make great gifts for the kids and the entire family. The 10-mile, 45-minute round trip excursion from Whippany to Roseland and return allows passengers time to enjoy the festivities of the season and the merriment on the train. All of our past trips over the last 21 years have been complete sell-outs, and seeing the excited faces of the children as they climb aboard the Christmas holiday-decorated trains, ensures an afternoon for family fun. During each excursion, Santa makes his way through the train and visits with the children on-board. Santa's helpers follow along, giving the kids a special gift from Santa. Be sure to bring your camera and take pictures of the kids with Santa, so they can always remember their day on-board the train!

In addition to the regular coaches that make up the train, make your day extra special by purchasing limited tickets for a nostalgic Christmas ride aboard the museum's elegant 1927-era Central Railroad of New Jersey (CNJ) Club Car, Jersey Coast. Specially decorated for the Christmas holidays in a pre-World War II style, the car has the warm look and feel of a private club with individual leather chairs, mahogany interior accented with stained glass, built-in tables and period ceiling fans. The Jersey Coast, recalls the 1930s when the CNJ operated its deluxe coach train, The Blue Comet, between Jersey City and Atlantic City, NJ. The striking, authentic exterior paint scheme of cream and blue reminds one of a comet streaking through space. It is the only car of its type operating in New Jersey.

So round up your family and friends and climb aboard for some great Christmastime fun and laughter! Ordering tickets is fast and easy! Trains depart at 1:00, 2:00, 3:00, and 4:00 pm each day, rain, sleet, or shine. The Whippany Railroad is located at 1 Railroad Plaza, at the Intersection of Route 10 West & Whippany Road in Whippany, NJ. Train fare: Adults: $14.00, Children (under 12): $9.00, Infants (1 year and under): Free.

To order tickets and for more information, visit www.whippanyrailwaymuseum.net or call 973-887-8177. The Whippany Railway Museum, a 501 (c) 3 non-profit Operating Heritage Railroad that is staffed by volunteers. Donations from the public help to keep the museum operational, but funds are still required to support this unique New Jersey treasure. Proceeds from the train rides further enhance the Museum's mission and its historic preservation efforts.

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Through Tuesday, January 5, 2014 - Princeton, Mercer County
Festival of Trees

Morven Museum and Garden's annual Festival of Trees has become a must-see Princeton holiday tradition. Enjoy the museum’s elegant galleries decorated for the holidays and adorned with trees artfully decorated by local businesses, garden clubs, and non-profit organizations.

This year’s Festival of Trees exhibitors include: Arts Council of Princeton, Stony Brook Garden Club of Princeton, Dogwood Garden Club, Princeton University Art Museum, Princeton Doll & Toy Museum, Vicki Trainer, Rutgers Master Gardeners of Mercer County, McCarter Theatre, Keris Tree Farm & Christmas Shop, Barbara L. Mulea, Landau of Princeton, Hulit’s Shoes, One Simple Wish, D & R Greenway Land Trust, Garden Club of Princeton, and West Elm by Gordon Goode.

No reservations necessary. Morven is open to the public on Wednesdays through Fridays from 11:00 am – 3:00 pm and Saturdays through Sundays from 12:00 noon – 4:00 pm.

Admission $6, $5 for Seniors, and special pricing for families during Festival of Trees, $15 per group. Friends of Morven, free. Please note that during the Festival of Trees in December and early January, no formal tours are given, but docents are available to answer any questions. No reservations necessary. Morven Museum and Garden is located at 55 Stockton Street, Princeton, NJ. For more information, call 609-924-8144 or visit www.morven.org.

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Sunday, December 1 - Tuesday, January 7, 2014 - Tuckerton, Ocean County
Festival of Trees
Children Friendly Site

Roll out the holly and sharing in some holiday cheer at Tuckerton Seaport's Festival of Trees. The Festival of Trees will feature dozens of trees, each one decorated for a local nonprofit organization with a unique theme. Open 10:00 am - 5:00 pm. General admission: adults $8, seniors $6, ages 5-12 $5, under five free and Seaport members free. The Tuckerton Seaport and Baymen's Museum is located at 120 West Main Street, Tuckerton, NJ. For more information, call 609-296-8868 or visit www.tuckertonseaport.org.

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Through January 1, 2014 - Cape May, Cape May County
Old-Fashioned Christmas Exhibit
Children Friendly

Through January 1, 2014, the Emlen Physick Estate will have an exhibit of holiday traditions through the years complete with a Dickens Village, a giant Christmas tree, model trains, toys, and much more! The exhibit is located in the Carriage House Gallery at the Emlen Physick Estate, 1048 Washington Street, Cape May, NJ. The Gallery is open daily (except Christmas); hours vary. Free admission. Sponsored by the Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts & Humanities (MAC). For more information or gallery hours, call 609-884-5404 or 800-275-4278 or visit www.capemaymac.org.

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Sundays Through November 30, 2013 - Lakehurst, Ocean County
Pittis - Doctor - Mayor - Postmaster
Last Day of Exhibit

The Borough of Lakehurst Historical Society announces a special exhibit about an important resident - "PITTIS - Doctor - Mayor - Postmaster". Dr. Pittis was the local physician for Lakehurst and Manchester from the turn of the 19th century until World War II.  He  would make house calls all the way to Whiting in his horse-drawn buggy. Later in life, he became a physician at the Jersey City Medical Center. Dr. Harold Pittis was the son of Thomas Kearn Pittis and Susan  null Henrietta Collins.  Harold was the fourth of ten children; eight brothers and one sister, all from Plainfield, New Jersey.

Dr.  Harold received his MD in 1901 from McGill University, Montreal, Canada, where he met his wife Ruth. He and Ruth were married on January 8, 1900 at St. Mark's Church in Malone, New York. In the 1910 census, Dr. Pittis was living on Union Avenue, Lakehurst, with his wife and son Harold, who had received his MD from McGill University in 1937.

Dr. Harold Pittis was not only the town physician, but also Lakehurst's first postmaster, beginning in November 1918. He was reappointed twice and served until August 16, 1929. He financed the construction of the first post office. 

The museum is open Wednesdays and Sundays from 12:00 noon - 3:00 pm. The Lakehurst Historical Society Museum is located at 300 Center Street, Lakehurst, NJ. For more information, call 732-657-8864 or click here.

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Through June 30, 2014 - Piscataway, Middlesex County
Got Work? Exhibit

View the exhibit "Got Work? New Deal/WPA in New Jersey" at the 1741 Cornelius Low House Museum in Piscataway. The museum is open Tuesday - Friday, 8:30 - 4:00 pm and Sunday afternoons from 1:00 - 4:00 pm. The exhibit will run through June 30, 2014.

The Cornelius Low House, built in 1741, was the home to its namesake and is only one of two remaining buildings from historic Raritan Landing. This high-style Georgian mansion is listed on the National Register and operated by the Middlesex County Cultural and Heritage Commission. Admission to the museum is FREE. The museum is located at 1225 River Road, Piscataway, NJ . For more information, visit http://www.co.middlesex.nj.us/culturalheritage.

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Through February 2014 - Madison, Morris County
Ghosts, Ghouls, & Gravestones Exhibit
Children Friendly Site

The Museum of Early Trades and Crafts presents "Ghosts, Ghouls, & Gravestones: The Trades of Burial," which will examine the progression of the burial trade. Passing away from this world was once a family affair, but over time, the process spread through the social and economic ties of the community. By 1900, a robust funeral industry had developed that saw to a family's every need. The exhibit will also explore the strict protocols that dictated mourning and the artistry in gravestones.

Regular Museum admission is $5.00 for adults, $3.00 for seniors, students & children (ages 6 and older), and free for members and children under 6. Family maximum admission $13.00. The Museum is open Tuesday - Saturday 10:00 am - 4:00 pm and Sunday 12:00 noon - 5:00 pm. The Museum of Early Trades & Crafts is located at 9 Main Street in Madison, NJ just two blocks from the Madison train station. For information, please call 973-377-2982 x10 or visit www.metc.org.

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Through February 14, 2014 - Woodbury, Gloucester County
The Civil War: Echoes of New Jersey’s Finest 

As the 150th anniversary of the Civil War is being observed across America, the Gloucester County Historical Society Museum is featuring an exhibit of artifacts that tell unique stories about local soldiers during this traumatic time in our nation’s history.  Along with military equipment, there are also photographs, Civil War letters, the first Congressional Medal of Honor awarded to a NJ soldier, a thirty-three foot long flag that flew over Fort McHenry during the Civil War, personal items that belonged to local union soldiers, and much more.

Gloucester County Historical Society Museum is open Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 1:00 - 4:00 pm and the last Sunday of the month from 2:00 - 5:00 pm. Adult admission $5; children 6-18 years $1; children under 6 free. The museum is located at 58 North Broad Street, Woodbury, NJ. For more information, call 856-848-8531 or visit www.rootsweb.com/~njgchs.

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Through Sunday, February 23, 2014 - Trenton, Mercer County
Historic Maps of the Garden State Exhibit
Children Friendly Activities

Often overlooked as a decorative art form, maps are ideal artifacts for exploring New Jersey history. Stories of New Jersey’s social, economic, military, environmental and political history – as well as the state’s role in the history of American transportation – can be told through the visual splendor of the Garden State’s historic maps.

Opening on September 7 and running through February 23, 2014, “Where in the World is New Jersey? Historical Maps of the Garden State” is comprised of nearly 100 maps depicting the colony and state of New Jersey from 1635 through 1950 on display at the New Jersey State Museum.

This unprecedented exhibition provides the visitor with an introductory survey of historical maps depicting the colony and state of New Jersey from 1635 until 1950. The nearly 100 maps on display – most of which are original hand-colored copperplate engravings or chromolithographs – come from the collections of four public institutions – the New Jersey State Museum, State Archives, State Library, and Special Collections and University Archives at Rutgers University, New Brunswick. They were selected for their rarity, their ability to convey aspects of New Jersey history, and their artistic merit – underscoring the dual role of maps as both works of art and utilitarian tools essential to the human experience. 

The New Jersey State Museum, located at 205 West State Street in Trenton, NJ is open Tuesday through Sunday from 9:00 am - 4:45 pm. The Museum is closed Mondays and all state holidays. The NJ State Museum has a “suggested” admission fee. For more information, visit www.statemuseum.nj.gov or call the recorded information line at 609-292-6464. On weekends, free parking is available in lots adjacent to and behind the Museum. Please visit www.trentonparking.com for a number of options for parking in downtown Trenton during the week.

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Through December 14, 2013 - Harrison Township, Gloucester County
Under the Sea: Our Prehistoric Past
Children Friendly

The Harrison Township Historical Society's fall exhibition, Under the Sea: Our Prehistoric Past is on display through Saturday, December 14, 2013.

This new installation, which features rare fossil specimens on loan from the New Jersey State Museum, the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, and private collections, explores how fossil discoveries at 19th century marl mining operations around Mullica Hill attracted the interest of such notable early paleontologists as Yale's Othniel Marsh and Philadelphia's Charles Lyell, Timothy Conrad and William Gabb. As guest curator, Shirley S. Albright, retired Assistant Curator of Natural History, New Jersey State Museum has written, the historic significance of the classic Mullica Hill fossil locality cannot be underestimated. The exhibits show the diversity of  prehistoric faunal life inhabiting the ancient ocean that covered Harrison Township, as well as Pleistocene fossils transported southward by melting glaciers.

The exhibition also discusses the area's geology and native stone deposits with photos of buildings constructed of limonite, or Jersey sandstone, that survive in the area from the 18th and 19th centuries.

With over sixty specimens, an introductory video, and activities for children in the gallery and to take home, Under the Sea offers insights into the area's ancient past for the entire family, and admission is free.

The Harrison Township Historical Society's Old Town Hall Museum is located at 62-64 South Main Street, Mullica Hill, NJ. The Museum is open Saturdays and Sundays, 1:00 - 4:00 pm, through December 14, 2013.  For more information, call 856-478- 4949 or visit www.harrisonhistorical.com.

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Through June 2014 - Morristown, Morris County
"Controversies: The More Things Change..." Exhibit


Currently on display at Macculloch Hall Historical Museum is an exhibition about topics that helped shape our world. "Controversies: The More Things Change..." opens new territory for the Museum, presenting challenging subject matter that may not be suitable for casual dinner conversation. This new exhibit explores topics that helped shape our world through local history events which had national significance: medical experimentation, immigration, and the right to die.

"Controversies: The More Things Change..." inspires people to consider, even reconsider, the ways in which they think about these important, frequently debated issues. The exhibit explores local history events which had national significance: the 1833 Antoine LeBlanc murder trial and public execution; the immigration issues of the late nineteenth century as depicted by political cartoonist Thomas Nast, a Morristown resident, and the 1976 Karen Ann Quinlan "right to die" case.

The museum is making a major departure in exhibit presentations with "Controversies."  Where most exhibits typically provide detailed information about the objects on view, "Controversies" offers limited information about the objects, essentially forcing personal thought, and inspiring discussion, about the areas represented.  Each object and concept in the exhibit represents a part of New Jersey's history - specifically Morris County's history. The ideas expressed through the historical objects in the exhibit, however, are not confined to New Jersey boundaries- the significant concerns raised by the important and controversial issues showcased in this exhibit continue to be debated throughout the United States and the world.

"We wanted to give our visitors a chance to participate in an exhibit in a new way - to have a reaction without being guided by the institution's interpretation of what the objects represent, which labels typically provide," said Executive Director Carrie Fellows. Instead, curator's books of supplementary information will be available within the exhibit, should the visitor want to learn more, drawn from primary sources like news articles, contemporary commentary, and images. Visitors are encouraged to leave comments about the themes presented.

The exhibition was inspired when Fellows and Ryan C. Hyman, the Museum's curator, heard Burt Logan, Executive Director of the Ohio Historical Society speak at a conference about the organization's groundbreaking "Controversy: Pieces You Don't Normally See" exhibit, and its sequel, "Controversy 2: Pieces We Don't Normally Talk About". During his talk, Mr. Logan strongly encouraged other museums to adapt the concept and develop similar exhibits. Inspired by the presentation, Hyman and Fellows began discussing how they might create an exhibit using themes from the Morris area's rich history.

"Controversies: The More Things Change..." will be on view during Museum touring hours through June 2014. Please note the subject matter may not be suitable for all audiences. Visitor discretion advised. Recommended for visitors 12 years of age and older.

Macculloch Hall Historical Museum preserves the history of the Macculloch-Miller families, the Morris area community, and the legacy of its founder W. Parsons Todd through its historic site, collections, exhibits, and educational and cultural programs. The Museum is open for house and exhibit tours on Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays from 1:00 - 4:00 pm. The last tour leaves at 3:00 pm. Adults $8; Seniors & Students $6; Children 6 - 12 $4. Members and children under 5 are free.  For more information, call 973-538-2404 ext. 10 or visit www.maccullochhall.org. Macculloch Hall Historical Museum is located at 45 Macculloch Avenue, Morristown, NJ.

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Some event listings courtesy of the League of Historical Societies of New Jersey

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Weekend Estate Sales: 11/29/13 - 12/1/13

WEEKEND ESTATE SALES
Click on each link for more information on the estate sale!
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Vintage Cameras, Hats, & Art Deco Furniture
North Arlington, NJ 07031

Antique Dolls & Furniture
Montville, NJ 07045



Weekend Estate Sales are sponsored by www.estatesales.org

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Reviving Newark's Woodland Cemetery

Reviving Newark's Woodland Cemetery
Written by NJ Historian

Neglected. Abandoned. Forgotten. For over eighty thousand "residents" of Newark, New Jersey's Woodland Cemetery, time has taken its toll on their final resting place. Once a glorious and inviting garden cemetery, Woodland has been heavily vandalized over the past forty years and past boards of directors have done little to prevent and rectify the actions of disrespectful individuals. This year, a renewed interest by family members of those interred have sparked a small, yet hopeful step forward in the revitalization of this thirty-six acre property. The task is daunting, but enthusiasm in reviving this Victorian treasure is gaining momentum. Cemeteries like this across the United States are in need of a new lease on life and volunteers have stepped up to the challenge. We honor and respect those who came before us, and for every stone that is righted, new opportunities for interpretation and education abound.


In 1854, the New Jersey Legislature granted an act of incorporation to the West Newark Cemetery Company. By August of 1855, the company had selected about fifty acres of land in which to establish the cemetery. The land, which had been largely woodland consisting of chestnut, oak, cedar, and elm, may have served another purpose prior to becoming a cemetery. According to A History of the City of Newark, New Jersey: Embracing practically two and a half centuries 1666-1913, the author references "the old Shooting Park, which had to give way to the city of the dead (Woodland Cemetery)." Although no maps have been found to date which validate the author's claim, there is evidence of another shooting park (shooting gallery) established in the 1860s by the Krueger family of Newark, off of South Orange Avenue.

Despite the cemetery being established in 1855, development of the grounds did not occur until a few years had passed. History of Essex and Hudson Counties, New Jersey, Volume 1, published in 1884, claimed that "a number of years elapsed before extensive improvements were made." Woodland Cemetery is a rural cemetery, meaning that its layout was unlike earlier church graveyards. Rural cemeteries were often built on the outskirts of a town, surrounded by a stone wall, and featured natural rolling hills, curved pathways, landscaping, and trees. Woodland Cemetery was no exception, as later maps show curved paths and landscaping. Additionally, between 1870 and 1880, a two-story Gothic Revival brownstone gatehouse was built at the cemetery entrance. The gatehouse featured a three-story wood frame bell tower and curved brownstone arch over its entrance gates. Remnants of blue-stone sidewalks and curbing can be found near the gatehouse.

A map of Woodland Cemetery, circa 1890s.
By 1872, the cemetery was noted for its beauty. According to the “Handbook and Guide for the City of Newark, New Jersey” published by Newark Daily Advertiser Print in 1872:
“Woodland Cemetery occupies a very beautiful situation off Springfield Avenue…Passing the gateway, through a pleasant grove, and advancing under the shadow of ‘innumerable leaves,’ we find this rural grave yard overlooking the wide valley that stretches from the more southern portion of the city…The Cemetery has many handsome monuments, perhaps, individually noticeable, for extreme and costly elegance…Gothic and turreted spires, tapering shafts surmounted by urns, and broken columns handsomely draped, are the predominating features…When the walks and paths have undergone contemplated improvements, there will be few pleasanter Cemeteries anywhere than Woodland.”
A majority of the cemetery's earliest burials were of German descent. Many of the earliest grave markers bear German inscriptions, giving a clue as to the ethnic makeup of the local neighborhood. During the site's formative years, it was nicknamed the "German Cemetery."

An early grave marker bearing German inscriptions.
Over five hundred war veterans are buried in Woodland, from the War of 1812 through the Vietnam War, including over three hundred fifty veterans of the Civil War.

Notable burials include:
  • Ike Abrams Quebec, (1918-1963), a jazz performer;
  • John A. Otto (1900-1966), the youngest U.S. participant on the U.S. Cycling Team at the 1920 Summer Olympics at Antwerp, Belgium;
  • William Krueger (1809-1869) and William Krueger Jr. (1844-1869), father and brother of Gottfried Krueger, founder of Krueger Brewery in Newark;
  • Carrie Granville (d. 1893), a renowned actress of the New York City stage; and
  • Peter P. O'Fake (1820-1884). the first Black American to conduct the Newark Theater Orchestra in 1848. 
Since the 1960s, due to a number of socio-economic and political factors, the cemetery has not been well-maintained and fell victim to severe bouts of vandalism. Thousands of headstones have been toppled, sections of fencing stolen, the grounds used as a dump and haven for the homeless. In the 1980s, the caretaker vacated from the gatehouse and the building was abandoned. Since then, the main staircase and floors have caved in, the roof has failed in multiple areas, and a tree has grow up through the building from the basement.

First floor of the Woodland Cemetery gatehouse in Newark, New Jersey.
Vandalism is a constant problem at cemeteries across the United States. However, there are numerous ways to curb vandalism and damage to cemeteries. If you are a member of a group caring for a cemetery, develop a relationship with your local law enforcement agency and ask them to put your cemetery on its patrol routes. Even though no one lives at the cemetery, there are often neighbors adjacent to the property. If so, ask them to watch for suspicious activity in the area and to report to the police immediately. Remember, vandals are often attracted to a property that appears neglected. If the grounds are maintained, your chances of vandalism decrease. Fences and lighting also deter criminal activity. However, a high, solid fence will act as an invitation to vandals and should be avoided.

If a local cemetery has been vandalized or damaged where you live, here are some tips to help you assess the damage:

Record the damage
◆ Map all features that have been damaged. Using a cemetery map, mark the stones, tombs, markers, fences, walls, paths, and vegetation that have been damaged. If no map is available, a hand-drawn sketch identifying the location of each feature will serve this purpose.
◆ Record the present condition of each affected feature. Sketch the location of the affected stone and describe the damage. Be precise! Take photographs in addition to the written record. A good record will include information about the location, the damage, the materials, the condition, and the size of the site and its components. It will also note previous repairs, record inscriptions, identify motifs and design elements of the various features, and indicate where fragments are stored.

Damaged headstones at Woodland Cemetery, Newark, NJ.
Begin the Cleanup Process
◆ Use care. Historic markers are fragile. If there are broken markers, do not step on the fragments. If trees and limbs have fallen on markers, carefully cut limbs away in small sections, carrying them away as you work. Do not let the limbs fall on the stones beneath them.
◆ Photograph the broken markers both before and after the removal of trees and limbs.
◆ Carefully remove pieces of the broken stones, only after double-checking your documentation. Once you have moved a stone, it will be impossible to remember which direction it faced, its precise location, or the details of its construction.
◆ Do not discard fragments. Fragments that seem insignificant can be vital to later restoration efforts.
◆ Store fragments in boxes, in a dry, indoor, undisturbed location. Record on the box information about the
fragment; where it came from, when it was damaged, why it was removed, and the inscription, if possible. Never write on the fragments themselves!

The new volunteer Board of Managers at Woodland Cemetery and the associated Friends Group have been assessing the damage to the property and are slowly beginning to clean up the site. Reaching out to the local schools, it has enabled children and young adults the opportunity to spend time performing community service while learning about cemetery care and maintenance. In addition, these students learn about those buried at the cemetery and may even recognize famous local names! By partnering with the community, it allows them to become stakeholders in the cemetery property and demonstrates to vandals that the property is cared for and that their damage will not be tolerated.

Woodland Cemetery is still a long way from becoming the beautiful park that it once was, but thanks to volunteers and interested members of the community, the grounds will be receiving the attention they deserve and the effects of over forty years of neglect will disappear.



Additional photos of my trip to Woodland Cemetery on Pinterest

For More Information

Monday, November 25, 2013

Organization of the Week: Friends of Woodland Cemetery

Every Monday, I highlight a non-profit related to history or the arts, a historical society, preservation group or friends group whose main objective is to promote the historical and artistic history of New Jersey.

This week, I am featuring the Friends of Woodland Cemetery. Since early 2013, the revived Friends of Woodland Cemetery have been working to revitalize the grounds of this historic Newark, New Jersey cemetery and to help coordinate volunteer efforts. The Friends work with local schools, community groups, and interested persons to organize a number of clean-up days throughout the year. After more than thirty years of vandalism and neglect at the site, the Friends are working to apply for grants to rehabilitate and reopen the historic Gothic revival gatehouse and for other projects, which include installing fencing, uprighting thousands of grave markers, and general grounds cleanup.

The Friends of Woodland Cemetery relies on countless volunteers to continue its mission. For more information on programs, special events, and clean-up days hosted by the  Friends of Woodland Cemetery or to volunteer, please call 973-824-7295 or visit www.woodlandcemeterynnj.org.

If you are a member of a non-profit organization or know of one that you would like to see featured on this site, please let us know in the comments or send an e-mail to kelly@thehistorygirl.com.


Sunday, November 24, 2013

Antique Items of the Week: 11/24/13 - 11/30/13

eBay Items of the Week!
Click on each link for the eBay page!
More items always going up.
Stay updated about new items on Facebook.

RAILROAD MEMORABILIA SALE!!
Items for sale on eBay.


1930

Circa 1930s

Erie Railroad Company Safety Rules, Time, and Memorandum Book
1917

Erie Railroad Company Time and Memorandum Book
1916

Erie Railroad Company Hand Book of Special Instructions
New York Region, 1922

Direct Sale Items
If you have any questions, need additional photos, or are interested in any of the items below, please send an e-mail to kelly@thehistorygirl.com. Payment via PayPal and all items will be shipped via regular U.S. mail.




Erie Railroad Timetables
1939 through 1951 - 37 total
$3.50 each
Total lot - $100.00

(1) Erie RR - NY, Middletown, Port Jervis, and Branches - September 24, 1939
(2) Erie RR - Main Line, Newark Branch, Bergen County R.R. - April 28, 1940
(3) Erie RR - NY, Middletown, Port Jervis, and Branches - April 28, 1940
(6) Erie RR - NY, Middletown, Port Jervis, and Branches - June 21, 1940
(4) Erie RR - NY, Middletown, Port Jervis, and Branches - September 29, 1940
(1) Erie RR - Main Line, Newark Branch, Bergen County R.R. - September 29, 1940
(1) Erie RR - NY, Middletown, Port Jervis, and Branches - June 20, 1941
(2) Erie RR - NY, Middletown, Port Jervis, and Branches - September 28, 1941
(1) Erie RR - NY, Middletown, Port Jervis, and Branches - July 5, 1942
(1) Erie RR - NY, Middletown, Port Jervis, and Branches - August 23, 1942
(2) Erie RR - NY, Port Jervis, Binghamton, Elmira-Buffalo - December 6, 1942
(1) Erie RR - NY, Port Jervis, Binghamton, Elmira-Buffalo - September 24, 1944
(1) Erie RR - NY, Port Jervis, Binghamton, Elmira-Buffalo - October 12, 1944
(2) Erie RR - NY, Port Jervis, Binghamton, Elmira-Buffalo - October 8, 1945
(1) Erie RR - NY, Port Jervis, Binghamton, Elmira-Buffalo - April 28, 1946
(2) Erie RR - NY, Port Jervis, Binghamton, Elmira-Buffalo - September 29, 1946
(1) Erie RR - NY, Port Jervis, Binghamton, Elmira-Buffalo - June 27, 1947
(2) Erie RR - NY, Port Jervis, Binghamton, Elmira-Buffalo - September 28, 1947
(1) Erie RR - NY, Port Jervis, Binghamton, Elmira-Buffalo - June 13, 1948
(1) Erie RR - NY, Port Jervis, Binghamton, Elmira-Buffalo - October 20, 1948
(1) Erie RR - NY, Port Jervis, Binghamton, Elmira - September 30, 1951


Erie Railroad Time Table
August 17, 1947
$10.00
Shipping: $1.25



Erie Railroad Time Table
June 24, 1944
$10.00
Shipping: $1.25



Erie Railroad Company
Time Return and Delay Report of Engine and Train Employees
1920s
More than twenty sheets in a "pad" style
More than one available - just ask!
$10.00
Shipping: $3.25



Atlantic Coast Line Time Tables
The Standard Railroad of the South
January 1922
There is a tear in the one page (see third photo).
Pages are not stapled but show no evidence of a staple ever existing.
$10.00
Shipping: $1.25


Lot of Ten Railroad Train Tickets
Two tickets from Sunday, Jan. 3 / One from Friday, Jul. 26 (no year) - Philadelphia Transit Co.
Three from Cumberland Division (all January, no year) - Philadelphia Transit Co.
One from NY State Railways, dated August 25, 1934
One from Erie Railroad Co., NY to Port Jervis, November 27, 1938
One from Erie Railroad Co., NY to Port Jervis, November 25, 1952
One from Erie Railroad Co., NY to Port Jervis, January 15, 1953
 $25.00
Shipping: $1.00


 Erie Railroad Company
New York Division and New Jersey and New York Railroad
Superintendent's Office
Jersey City, June 10, 1906
 Numbers and Locations of Automatic Signals
Includes 10 unused "Telegraph Report of Automatic Block Signals"
 $25.00
Shipping: $1.80



25 Vintage Model Railroader & Model Railroad Craftsman Magazines
1963 & 1964
Pick-up only!
$20.00