Want to Spread The History?

Support the New Jersey History Trails App here!

Where to?

Somerset County, Morris County... even Cape May County!

No Place is too Small...

What may seem minute and insignificant is what makes history!

Redcoats!

Not only do I like to write about history - I love covering events too!

Spread the History!

Help bring awareness to the historic sites in your area.

From historic figures to historic places...

I want to teach America just how significant New Jersey is!

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Will You Continue to #SpreadTheHistory?

Will You Continue to #SpreadTheHistory?
A Review of 2014

Another year has come and gone - it seems like it was just last week when 2013 was coming to a close! Over the course of the past year, we have explored a number of sites throughout New Jersey and beyond. In July, I went to Virginia, visiting sites such as Jamestown, Yorktown, Colonial Williamsburg, and Washington's Mount Vernon. In August, a family trip took me to the Catskills of upstate New York and in October I went as far south as North Carolina, stopping at Petersburg National Battlefield and Richmond along the way. With that in mind, here is a recap of six of the most popular articles of 2013. Throughout 2014, remember that our historic sites are in need of visitors all year round. Therefore, I encourage you to go out and support your local historical society's events and open houses. 

To see a listing of all the sites that have been featured since 2012, click here.
To see a listing of all guest articles, click here.


1. Greystone Psychiatric Hospital
Greystone Psychiatric Hospital in Parsippany, New Jersey has been constantly battered by the elements, time, and neglect for quite a few years now. Despite valid proposals to save and readapt this behemoth building for modern uses, it will unfortunately soon face the wrecking ball, like most of the surrounding structures associated with it already have. The pleas for help have gone unanswered and this building's very last patient, itself, will face a sad ending unless a last-minute injunction or moratorium comes into play. Will the fall of Greystone become our New York's Pennsylvania Station?

Sunday, December 28, 2014

New Jersey Civil War Flag Exhibition Unveiling - December 30, 2014

New Jersey Civil War Flag Exhibition Unveiling
December 30, 2014

Representatives of the New Jersey State Museum and the New Jersey Civil War Heritage Association will participate in the unveiling of five historic New Jersey Civil War flags at 12:00 noon on Tuesday, December 30th, 2014. The unveiling will take place at the State Museum Flag Gallery, located on the first floor at 225 West State Street (the building housing the NJ State Archives at the corner of West State and Calhoun Streets) in Trenton.

Friday, December 26, 2014

Weekend Historical Happenings: 12/27/14 - 12/28/14

NJ WEEKEND HISTORICAL HAPPENINGS
Know about a historical event happening in your area? 
Send me an e-mail to let us know!
Be the first to find out about these events on Facebook!


Every Friday - Sunday through January 4, 2015 - West Orange, Essex County
Holidays at Glenmont
Children Friendly

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Weekend Estate Sales: 12/26/14 - 12/28/14

WEEKEND ESTATE SALES
Click on each link for more information on the estate sale!
Find something neat at an estate sale? Let us know!
Hosting an estate sale? Send me an e-mail to be featured in our weekly post!
Be the first to know about these sales on Facebook!


Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The Skirmish at Petticoat Bridge: December 23, 1776

The Skirmish at Petticoat Bridge: December 23, 1776
Written by Rev. Dr. Norm Goos and Earl Cain

What you are about to learn in this story, I hope, will change the way you think about that most famous battle on Christmas night, 1776, forever. The British spy, Barzella Haines reported to the Hessian commander at Bordentown, Col. Carl Von Donop, Barzella said: "They were not above 800 (at Mount Holly), near one half boys, and all of them Militia, a very few from Pennsylvania excepted…He knew many of them who came from Gloucester, Egg Harbor, Penn’s Neck and Cohansey. They were commanded by Col. Griffin."  

Friday, December 19, 2014

Weekend Historical Happenings: 12/20/14 - 12/21/14

NJ WEEKEND HISTORICAL HAPPENINGS
Know about a historical event happening in your area? 
Send me an e-mail to let us know!
Be the first to find out about these events on Facebook!


Every Friday - Sunday through January 4, 2015 - West Orange, Essex County
Holidays at Glenmont
Children Friendly

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Weekend Estate Sales: 12/19/14 - 12/21/14

WEEKEND ESTATE SALES
Click on each link for more information on the estate sale!
Find something neat at an estate sale? Let us know!
Hosting an estate sale? Send me an e-mail to be featured in our weekly post!
Be the first to know about these sales on Facebook!

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

A Red Barn and Red Wine in Pittstown, New Jersey

A Red Barn and Red Wine in Pittstown, New Jersey
Written by NJ Historian

Farming is a deep-rooted tradition in New Jersey. Known today as "The Garden State," New Jersey has over 715,000 acres of farmland. We can take pride in the fact that we rank fifth in blueberry production, third in cranberry, spinach, and bell peppers, and fourth in peach production. Farmland preservation has been a top priority for local and state officials for a number of years now. Protecting our agricultural and rural culture is not an easy task. Suburban sprawl and increased development has put many acres of farmland in jeopardy due to the monetary prospects reaped from this prime real estate. Farmland Preservation programs enacted by the State of New Jersey have helped save these farms from future development while providing farmers a chance to continue farming and allowing fresh produce to fill local farmers markets and grocery stores. But it's more than just about the land; it's about the rich, long-standing agricultural tradition - the farmhouses, barns, silos, outbuildings - and what they represent to a people when you think of "rural New Jersey."

The restored 1811 barn at Mount Salem Vineyards.

Monday, December 15, 2014

A Closer Look at our Community: The Fine Art of Mark Oberndorf - Opens December 17, 2014

A Closer Look at our Community: The Fine Art of Mark Oberndorf
Exhibit Opens December 17, 2014

A new exhibit entitled A Closer Look at our Community: The Fine Art of Mark Oberndorf opens Wednesday December 17, 2014 in Lambert Castle (home of the Passaic County Historical Society) at 3 Valley Road, Paterson, NJ. The exhibit will remain open until Sunday March 29, 2015. This exhibit focuses on the sights of our local community, as shown in the paintings of Bergen County resident and artist Mark Oberndorf.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Weekend Historical Happenings: 12/13/14 - 12/14/14

NJ WEEKEND HISTORICAL HAPPENINGS
Know about a historical event happening in your area? 
Send me an e-mail to let us know!
Be the first to find out about these events on Facebook!


Friday, December 12 - Plainfield, Union County
Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony
Children Friendly

The Historical Society of Plainfield invites one and all to the Eighteenth Annual Tree Lighting Ceremony on Friday at the Drake House Museum beginning at 6:30 pm. This is a festive evening of Christmas caroling, gift giving, and refreshments. This year's Gingerbread House will once again be generously awarded to one lucky winning family. 

Children are encouraged to participate, as Santa will make a surprise visit, with a gift for every child. In addition to the large Christmas tree in the ballroom, there will be three decorated theme trees in the period rooms of the museum. This program is free to the public. Due to space limitations and safety concerns we are unable to provide space for baby strollers or carriages.


The Drake House Museum is located at 602 West Front Street, Plainfield, NJ.For more information, call 908-755-5831 or visit www.drakehouseplainfieldnj.org.

-----------------------------------
Friday, December 12 - Newton, Sussex County
Sussex County Historical Society Annual Holiday Open House

On Friday evening, visit the Hill Memorial Museum and view the oldest building continuously operating as a museum in the State of New Jersey, beautifully decorated for the holidays. The Hill Memorial Building was constructed for the Sussex County Historical Society in 1916 and dedicated June 8, 1917. The open house will take place from 7:00 - 9:00 pm at the Hill Memorial Museum, 82 Main Street, Newton, NJ. Free admission & refreshments. For more information, call 973-383-6010 or visit www.sussexcountyhistory.org.

-----------------------------------
Every Friday - Sunday through January 4, 2015 - West Orange, Essex County
Holidays at Glenmont
Children Friendly

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Weekend Estate Sales: 12/12/14 - 12/14/14

WEEKEND ESTATE SALES
Click on each link for more information on the estate sale!
Find something neat at an estate sale? Let us know!
Hosting an estate sale? Send me an e-mail to be featured in our weekly post!
Be the first to know about these sales on Facebook!

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Along the Raritan River: South Amboy to New Brunswick

Along the Raritan River: South Amboy to New Brunswick
Written by Jason J. Slesinski

In 1650, Cornelius van Tienhoven, a Hollander traveling through the American colonies, described the region inhabited by the Raritong Indians as “the pleasantest and handsomest country that man can behold… furnishing the Indians with an abundance of maize, beans, pumpkins, and other fruits.” Trade flourished here as well, as “through the valley pass large numbers of all sorts of tribes, on the way north or east.” Worn over the centuries, the “Old Indian Path” crossed the Raritan at its furthest point of sloop navigation and grew into one of the nation’s busiest arteries, connecting New York City and Philadelphia via New Brunswick, which grew around this vital river crossing.

A ferry was first established here in 1681 by an Englishman named John Inian, where the Raritan’s freshwater turned tidal. Bridges followed, firmly establishing the route of the New Jersey Turnpike, Route 1, the Lincoln Highway, and Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor. George Washington crossed the Raritan River here with his army many times during the American Revolution, both in victory and defeat. At the other end of the Lower Raritan, a place the Lenape called Ompoye, colonial Scottish investors envisioned a second London, a fortified deep-water port city that would outshine New York City. They called it the City of Perth.


Sunday, December 7, 2014

Friday, December 5, 2014

Weekend Historical Happenings: 12/6/14 - 12/7/14

NJ WEEKEND HISTORICAL HAPPENINGS
Know about a historical event happening in your area? 
Send me an e-mail to let us know!
Be the first to find out about these events on Facebook!


Every Friday - Sunday through January 4, 2015 - West Orange, Essex County
Holidays at Glenmont
Children Friendly

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Weekend Estate Sales: 12/5/14 - 12/7/14

WEEKEND ESTATE SALES
Click on each link for more information on the estate sale!
Find something neat at an estate sale? Let us know!
Hosting an estate sale? Send me an e-mail to be featured in our weekly post!
Be the first to know about these sales on Facebook!

Two Chances to Watch George Washington’s Annual Delaware River Crossing

Two Chances to Watch George Washington’s Annual Delaware River Crossing
December 7 and 25, 2014

Each December, thousands gather on the banks of the Delaware River to watch the reenactment of George Washington’s daring Christmas Day 1776 river crossing. During the event, several hundred reenactors in Continental military dress listen to an inspiring speech by Washington and then row across the river in replica Durham boats.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

What's Old Will Be New Again: The Asbury Mill

What's Old Will Be New Again: The Asbury Mill
Written by NJ Historian

New Jersey is home to many unique grist mills. Some are constructed of stone, some timber, and others a combination. Grist mills in New Jersey generally fall into a few categories: working, abandoned, and repurposed. The ones that are still working operate as intended in a controlled museum setting, such as at Walnford in Monmouth County or the Red Mill in Hunterdon County. Abandoned mills can be found in Bloomsbury in Warren County and Hamburg in Sussex County. The last category includes mills that have been repurposed into homes, offices, event space, and shops, such as with the Old Mill in Allentown and Prallsville Mills in Stockton. In the Village of Asbury in Warren County is the Asbury Mill, a former grist mill turned graphite mill. This unique structure, built circa 1865 and essentially abandoned in the 1970s is currently being preserved and transformed into a twenty-first century structure by the Musconetcong Watershed Association that will honor its past while providing the space for today's needs. As this project progresses over the next few years, it will become a leading example of smart growth, preservation, and environmentalism.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Winter at Batsto Village - December 7, 2014

Winter at Batsto Village
December 7, 2014

The Batsto Citizens Committee, Inc’s. (BCCI) annual holiday celebration; “Winter at Batsto Village,” will take place on Sunday December 7, 2014 at the historic site.

The Hammonton High School Select Choir; under the direction of Marrissa Carrafiello, will present a musical celebration of the season “Winter In The Pines” in the Wharton State Forest Visitors Center beginning at 1:00 pm. Admission is $5 per person and seating begins at 12:30 pm with the performance beginning promptly at 1:00 pm. For additional information, please call 609-561-0024 or e-mail: info@batstovillage.org.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Organization of the Week: The Musconetcong Watershed Association

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 Musconetcong Watershed Association. The Association was founded in 1992 by local residents who were concerned about preserving the Musconectong watershed's unique natural and cultural resources, and how those resources are managed by state and local governing bodies. The region served encompasses the Musconetcong River watershed, a drainage area of 157.6 square miles in northwest New Jersey which includes portions of Morris, Hunterdon, Warren, and Sussex counties. The Musconetcong River runs 42 miles from Lake Hopatcong to the Delaware River.

In 1999, the Musconetcong Watershed Association took title to the former Asbury Mill, a nineteenth century building across from the street from the mill, and a third building in the river in Asbury, New Jersey, as a donation from the Riddle family, owners of Asbury Carbons. In 2009, the Musconetcong Watershed Association opened the River Resource Center, which is now the Association's headquarters. This building, built at the beginning of the nineteenth century and later modified, was designed and renovated to meet U.S. Green Building Council LEED Platinum standards. Currently the Association is in the process of restoring and readapting the Asbury Mill to functional use. Over the past few years they have received several grants, which are partially funding the restoration. Once completed, the first floor will be a classroom with a portion of the area dedicated as exhibit space for early mill and agricultural technology. The upper floors will be converted to office space. The organization also hosts river cleanups, advocates for smart planning, the removal of dams along the river, and educates children and adults about the environment through outreach in schools and programs held at their headquarters.

The Musconetcong Watershed Association relies on memberships, fundraising, and countless volunteers to continue its mission. For more information on programs, special events, and cleanups, hosted by the Musconetcong Watershed Association or to become a member or volunteer, please call 908-537-7060 or visit www.musconetcong.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.