Friday, December 5, 2014

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

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

The sights and sounds of the season will greet visitors when they come to Thomas Edison's home in Llewellyn Park during "Holidays at Glenmont." Glenmont will be decorated much as it was while the Edison family lived there. Greenery and red poinsettias will deck the mantles above the fireplaces. Staircases will be ringed with boughs and red ribbon bows and wreaths will hang in every window. In the den, the majestic ten foot tree will be set and the presents underneath will be waiting as if the Edison children Madeleine, Theodore, and Charles, will soon come running down the stairs from their rooms - after they've checked their stockings in the upstairs living room! Family china will be displayed on the dining room table and the scene will be completed with holiday cards that were received by the family.

The Edison home, Glenmont, is located on a fifteen-acre estate in Llewellyn Park, the country's first private residential community. Built in 1880, the twenty-nine room mansion contains the original furnishings and family items used by the Edisons. The estate grounds include gardens, a greenhouse, barn, and the poured concrete garage containing the family's automobiles. Thomas and Mina Edison are buried on the grounds of the estate.


Car passes and tour tickets must be purchased at the Laboratory Complex Visitor Center at 211 Main Street, West Orange, NJ. Admission is $7.00 and includes the Glenmont Estate and the Laboratory Complex. Children 15 and under are free. For more information, call 973-736-0550 x11 or visit www.nps.gov/edis.

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Friday - Saturday, December 5 - 6 - Union Township, Union County
Deck the Halls: Fifty Years of Christmas Decorations
Children Friendly

Liberty Hall Museum will be open for tours on Friday and Saturday! Opening on Friday will be the Christmas tour "Deck the Halls: Fifty Years of Christmas Decorations," when Liberty Hall will transform the first floor of the museum into a time machine where visitors will journey through five rooms to discover the decorative styles of bygone eras, the 1910’s through the 1950’s! Tours justify 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, December 6 - Rockaway, Morris County
16th Annual Historic Victorian Christmas
Children Friendly

On Saturday from 2:00 - 4:00 pm, the Historical Society of Rockaway Township presents the 16th Annual Historic Victorian Christmas at the Ford-Faesch Ironmaster's House. Events include an audience-participatory T'was the Night before Christmas reading with Mayor Dachisen, a recreation of the annual visit of Santa Claus to the miners' children, a tree lighting ceremony, caroling with the Morris Hills High School Madrigal Choir, self-guided tours, displays, a gift shop, and more! Refreshments will be available. The Ford-Faesch Ironmaster's House is located at 629 Mount Hope Road, Rockaway Township, NJ. For more information, e-mail rockawayhistory@verizon.net.

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Saturday, December 6 - Salem, Salem County
27th Annual Yuletide Open House Tour


On Saturday, tour homes in historic Salem as Main Street Salem hosts the 27th Annual Yuletide Open House Tour from 1:00 - 6:00 pm. Visit 14 historic homes, churches, and museums, featuring quilting demonstrations, exhibits, and characters from the past. Shop for antiques, local art and collectibles. Tickets are $15 each the day of the event for adults. For additional information, call 856-339-0400 or e-mail royalport@verizon.net. Make a day of it: The Salem Magic of Christmas Parade will be held at 11:00 am Saturday and the Town Tree Lighting will be held at 6:00 pm. For more information, visit www.salemcitynj.com or www.facebook.com/salemyuletidetour.

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Saturday, December 6 - Jersey City, Hudson County
Christmas Tree Lighting - POSTPONED
Children Friendly

Celebrate an Old Fashioned Christmas as The Historic Jersey City and Harsimus Cemetery kicks off the holiday spirit with their 5th annual Christmas Tree Lighting and Caroling on Friday justifying at 5:00 pm and lasting until 8:00 pm. The Yuletide Carolers of New Jersey and some special guests will be offering a wonderful performance of holiday tunes for young and old, and all are welcomed to join in the chorus. Chestnuts will be roasting on the antique fireplace, as hot cocoa and cider aromas fill the air. There will also be a special visit from Santa and Mrs. Claus!

Bundle up and bring the whole family to welcome in the holiday season and enjoy this annual event in Jersey City's treasure, The Historic Jersey City & Harsimus Memorial Park, located at 435 Newark Avenue, Jersey City. Free but donations welcomed. For more information, call 201-707-0738 or 973-204-9888 or visit www.jerseycitycemetery.org.

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Saturday, December 6 - Hopewell Township, Mercer County
Christmas on the Farm
Children Friendly

St. Nick, his elves and a jingling sleigh loaded with cookies, coal and holiday cheer will arrive at Howell Living History Farm highlighting an all-day program, "Christmas on the Farm."

St. Nick's sleigh will descend from the Farm's northern slopes at 12:00 noon. Its white-bearded navigator will check Christmas lists and give out treats (or coal, as the case may be).


The celebration begins when children can climb aboard a horse drawn work wagon for a ride to the woods to cut down a Christmas tree. All children will be given a chance to take a turn helping farmers cut the tree with a 2-man saw. Afterwards, all visitors can help decorate the tree with ear corn, pinecones and other natural ornaments. Helpers will be treated to hot apple cider and cookies.


Gift baskets, sleigh bells, wreaths and other items will be available for sale in the Visitor Center gift shop. Featured will be handmade gifts and ornaments crafted by the Pleasant Valley Stitchers. Howell Farm is also an official drop off site for Toys for Tots. Share the gift of giving by bringing an unwrapped toy to the farm.


Howell Living History 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. call 609-737-3299 or visit www.howellfarm.com.


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Saturday, December 6 - Cedar Grove, Essex County
Book Signing

On Saturday, meet author Philip Read from 2:00 - 4:00 pm as he signs copies of his book Memories of the Meadowbrook. Books will be available for $20.00, in addition to birdhouses and local honey. The Morgan House will also be open during their Holiday Open House from 2:00 - 4:00 pm on Saturday and Sunday as part of the Essex County Holiday House Tour. The Morgan House is located at 903 Pompton Ave (Route 23), Cedar Grove, NJ. For more information, visit www.cedargrovehistoricalsociety.org.

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Saturday, December 6 - Mount Laurel, Burlington County
Paulsdale Holiday Open House

Paulsdale is open to the public for a Holiday Open House from 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm. Paulsdale is the birthplace of Quaker suffragist Alice Paul. The home will be decorated in Quaker fashion by the Mount Laurel Garden Club and guests can peruse the gift shop,  enjoy free tours of the house, refreshments and more. Learn about Alice Paul's life and work and the site's present day use as a girl's leadership center. Admission is free.

Paulsdale is located at 128 Hooton Road, Mt. Laurel. For information about group tours or future tour dates, contact the Alice Paul Institute at 856-231-1885, e-mail info@alicepaul.org, or visit www.alicepaul.org.

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Saturday, December 6 - Griggstown, Somerset County
Book Signing

On Saturday, Jeanette K. Muser, Rocky Hill Historian, will be available to sign copies of her book, Rocky Hill, Kingston and Griggstown at the Griggstown Bridgetender's House/Byway Visitor Center in Griggstown from 12:00 noon - 4:00 pm. Her book, plus local DVDs and videos, note cards, and other small items will be on sale.

Jeanette presents a portrait of three small historical towns along the D&R Canal State Park, one of the most popular recreational areas in NJ. The importance of this 5-mile stretch (on the Millstone Valley National Scenic Byway) - from colonial period through the mid-20th century - is documented in this outstanding pictorial collection of carefully selected images. Signed books will be available for $20.00. "Millstone Valley National Scenic Byway" DVDs will be available for $15.00. Light refreshments will be available. The Griggstown Bridgetender's House/Byway Visitor Center is located at 2 Griggstown Causeway, Franklin Township, NJ. For more information, visit www.millstonevalley.org.

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Saturday, December 6 - Cape May, Cape May County
Wassail Day at Historic Cold Spring Village
Children Friendly

Historic Cold Spring Village opens its Homespun Holidays season with Wassail Day on Saturday from 11:00 am - 3:00 pm. The Village paths come alive with the sounds and smells of wintertime at this free event. Select buildings will also be open where guests can enjoy hot beverages and treats served by historical interpreters in period clothing. Visitors can meet Father Christmas in the Country Store from 12:00 noon - 2:00 pm and enjoy a horse-drawn carriage ride throughout the festively decorated Village grounds for a small donation. Guests can also enjoy live holiday music in the Welcome Center. The Cold Spring Grange Restaurant will serve lunch from 11:00 am - 3:00 pm.

Holiday traditions continue each Saturday in December through the 20th. The Country Store will be open from 11:00 am - 3:00 pm and stocked with unique holiday gift ideas including traditionally-processed wool, artisan crafts for the home, books, hand-knit caps, wooden toys and old fashioned candy. Also on Saturdays, visitors can enjoy carriage rides throughout the Village from 12:00 noon - 2:00 pm, see a model railway exhibit from 11:00 am - 3:00 pm in the Welcome Center, and meet Father Christmas at the Country Store from 12:00 noon - 2:00 pm. The Country Store will also be open Sundays from 11:00 am - 3:00 pm.

Historic Cold Spring Village is located on Route 9, three miles north of Victorian Cape May and a mile and a half west of the southern end of the Garden State Parkway. For more information, call 609-898-2300, ext. 10 or visit the Village www.hcsv.org.

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Saturdays, December 6, 13, and 20 - Farmingdale, Monmouth County
Christmas Lantern Tours - CANCELLED for December 6
Children Friendly

Get in the spirit of the season with a Christmas-inspired Lantern Tour through Allaire’s Historic Village on Saturday between 5:00 and 8:00 pm. Experience traditional 19th century activities, such as baking gingerbread and musical performances. Join villagers singing Christmas carols by the fire. Each tour is 90 minutes long, leaving every 15 minutes. Admission is $12.50 per person. The Historic Village at Allaire is located in Allaire State Park at 4263 Atlantic Avenue, Farmingdale, NJ. Tickets are available at the gate or can be purchased through their web site. For more information, call 732-919-3500 or visit www.allairevillage.org.

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Saturday, December 6 - Trenton, Mercer County
Holiday Open House and Greens Sale

On Saturday from 12:30 - 5:00 pm, tour the magnificent 1719 Trent House Museum, decorated for the holidays by the talented members of the Garden Club of Trenton. The Trent House Museum Shop features special items and seasonal gifts. Complimentary refreshments.

Beautifully designed table arrangements and decorated wreaths will be for sale, created by the Garden Club of Trenton. Plus cut Christmas trees, undecorated wreaths, and loose fresh greens (holly, ivy, yew, boxwood, juniper, winterberry, pine and magnolia). Event proceeds will benefit the curatorial work and educational programming of the non-profit Trent House Association.

The 1719 William Trent House is the oldest building in our state capital. A Georgian-style manor house restored to its former glory and carefully furnished as it would have been in the early 18th century, it is located at 15 Market Street, Trenton, NJ adjacent to the Hughes Justice Complex. Ample free parking. For more information, call 609-989-0087 or visit www.williamtrenthouse.org.

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Saturday, December 6 and 13 - Rahway, Union County
Holiday Candlelight Evenings

The Merchants and Drovers Tavern Museum Association will be hosting their annual Holiday Candlelight Evening Tours, Saturday, December 6 and 13, from 6:00 - 9:00 pm in the museum building located at 1632 St. Georges Avenue, Rahway, NJ at the corner of Westfield Avenue.

This year, as always, the old tavern building, housing the museum, will be decorated for the holidays as it might have been circa 1800. All the rooms will be aglow in candlelight, and live period music will entertain the evening’s guests with Christmas carols and 19th century holiday melodies. This program is open to the public and all ages are welcome.


This year’s celebration will once again feature the holiday music of nationally renowned musician and singer, Linda Russell. She entertains audiences with ancient carols, interwoven with Yuletide poems, folklore and even recipes. 


Tickets are $12 at the door for adults, $10 for members and seniors, $5 for students, and children under 5 are free. All tickets can be purchased at the door. The price includes hearty appetizers, beer, wine, cider and soft drinks. All proceeds from both evenings will benefit the continued restoration and interpretation of this 18th century landmark. For more information, call 732-381-0441 or visit www.merchantsanddrovers.org.


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Saturday - Sunday, December 6 - 7 - Bedminster, Somerset County
12th Annual Colonial Christmas - LAST WEEKEND
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 twelfth annual Colonial Christmas show house and tour for two consecutive weekends.

The fundraiser features: house tours, more than 20 vendors and 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. This year, a rare, authentic Revolutionary War drum, from a private New Jersey collector, is on loan to the Jacobus Vanderveer House and Museum during Colonial Christmas.

Schedule of Events
Saturday, December 6     
10:00 am - 4:00 pm
• House Tours
• Holiday Shopping
• Colonial Re-enactors
11:00 am - 1:00 pm
• The Enslows perform Colonial American Christmas Music
1:00 - 3:00 pm
• Santa Visit
3:00 - 4:00 pm
• Bernards High School Madrigals Performance

Sunday, December 7

10:00 am - 4:00 pm
• House Tours
• Holiday Shopping
• Colonial Re-enactors
1:00 - 3:00 pm
• Santa Visit
3:00 - 4:00 pm
• Ridge High School Choir Performance
4:00 pm
• Raffle Drawing


Admission is $10 (children 12 and under, free). Advance tickets may be purchased online: http://bit.ly/ZcKxQBThe house is open from 10:00 am - 4:00 pm on Saturday and Sunday. The Jacobus Vanderveer House is located at 3055 River Road (in Bedminster’s River Road Park), Bedminster, NJ. 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, December 6 - 7 and 13 - Walpack, Sussex County
Walpack Christmas
Children Friendly

Join the Walpack Historical Society for a "Walpack Christmas" at the Rosenkrans Museum, Main Street, Walpack Center, NJ within the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area. The celebration and open house will take place on Saturday and Sunday, December 6 and 7 and Saturday, December 13 from 1:00 - 5:00.

The museum, a circa 1850 one and a half story frame building with eyebrow windows, was once the typical style of  home in the Delaware River Valley. It will be decorated for the holidays in the old-fashioned way. Refreshments will be served and live music will be performed. The event is free and the public is invited. All ages are welcome. For more information, call 973-948-4903 or visit www.walpackhistory.org.

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Saturday - Sunday, December 6 - 7 - Hardwick, Warren County
Victorian Christmas at Millbrook Village
Children Friendly

Visit Millbrook Village in the Delaware Gap National Recreation Area and step back into another era where the toys and games did not need batteries. The buildings will be decorated with old time decorations and volunteers and park staff in period clothing will demonstrate how the season was celebrated in years past on Saturday from 11:00 am - 4:00 pm. Children can make a decoration or play with some of the wonderful old time toys and games that will be in the parlor. Music, singing and some country style entertainment will be enjoyed in the church in the mid afternoon. Join in and celebrate the season. Light seasonal refreshments will be served.

On Sunday beginning at 5:00 pm, participate in an old-fashioned Christmas service and carol singing in the Millbrook Church, followed by a fellowship get together in the VanCampen Farmhouse. Enjoy the friendship and warmth of the season in an old time atmosphere where Peace and Good Will prevail. Light seasonal refreshments will be served. Millbrook Village is located in Hardwick Township, NJ at the intersection of Old Mine Road and Millbrook Road, County Route 602N. For more information, visit their Facebook page.

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Saturday - Sunday, December 6 - 7 - Wantage, Sussex County
Lusscroft Christmas
Children Friendly

On Saturday and Sunday, Lusscroft Farm (part of High Point State Park) will be holding a Christmas celebration! The Turner Mansion and the Manager's Home will be festively decorated and filled with vendors, crafters, a bake sale, gift shop, and the annual photography contest display. Photos with Santa will be held from 1:00 - 4:00 pm on Saturday and 1:00 - 3:00 pm on Sunday. Photo fee: $5.00 per photo (their camera or yours). All proceeds go toward restoration efforts. Admission fee for the day: $5.00 per adult and children under 18 free. Lusscroft Farm is located at 50 Neilson Road and 4-H Trail, Wantage, NJ. For more information, call Denise at 973-714-3696, e-mail lusscroftfarm@gmail.com or visit www.lusscroftfarm.com.

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Saturday - Sunday, December 6 - 7, 13 - 14 - South Bound Brook, Somerset County
Home for the Holidays at the Abraham Staats House
Children Friendly

The Abraham Staats House will be decked out in festive finery and hosting a number of musical programs for the two weekends of Holiday at the Abraham Staats House! Built circa 1740, the house was home to the Staats family for nearly two centuries and is now under the care of the Borough of South Bound Brook.

On December 6 - 7 and 13 - 14, from 12:00 noon - 4:00 pm, the public is invited for a holiday visit of this special historic home, festively and individually decorated by South Bound Brook community organizations in celebration of the holiday season.

Stroll through the many rooms, learn about the history of the home, and get in the holiday spirit as you enjoy the seasonal displays and exhibits, and music of the 18th century on the dulcimer, guitar, and fiddle and offered throughout the house by Tom Harabin, president of the Friends of Abraham Staats House organization, which is hosting the event.

Enjoy music of the season as well during the Holiday at the Abraham Staats House weekends. On Saturday, December 6, the Franklin Township High School Madrigal Singers, directed by Tim Walton, will perform at 2:30 pm. On Sunday, December 7 at 1:00 pm, Joseph Markey will perform "Notes From the Past".On Saturday, December 13, members of the South Bound Brook Robert Morris School Gold Band, directed by Mr. Frank Parente, will perform at 1:30 pm. The following day, on Sunday, December 14, enjoy the sounds of the Somerville High School Jazz ensemble under the direction of Mr. Matt Krempasky. The group will perform at 2:00 pm. (Please note: the sound of these musical programs will carry throughout the house; however, those who desire seating should come prior to performance justify time: seating is limited and on a first-come, first-serve  basis.)

Admission and parking is free and donations are accepted. The Abraham Staats House is located at 17 Von Steuben Lane, South Bound Brook. For more information, call 732-560-0645 or visit www.staatshouse.org.

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Saturday - Sunday, December 6 - 7 - Tuckerton, Ocean County
12th Annual Christkindlmarkt
Children Friendly

Enjoy two spectacular days of a holiday market and fair under a huge heated tent at the Tuckerton Seaport from 10:00 am - 5:00 pm on Saturday and Sunday. There will be horse-drawn cart rides, children's rides, family craft activities, rolling chair sleigh rides on the boardwalk, Gluhwein ~ hot mulled wine, fabulous food, refreshments, and entertainment. This year’s event will feature three New Jersey Wineries: Valenzano, Tomasello, and DiMatteo. Sampling and sales of these select local wines will be available. Admission: $3.00 per person. The Tuckerton Seaport & Baymen's Museum is located at 120 West Main Street in Tuckerton. On-site $5 VIP parking is available. Off-site parking is free, with a shuttle bus between the Seaport and Tip Seaman County Park. For more information, call 609-296-8868 or visit www.tuckertonseaport.org.

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Saturday - Sunday, December 6 - 7 - Ocean Township, Monmouth County
Holiday Open House
Children Friendly

What better way to launch this year's holiday season than a visit to the Eden Woolley House the first weekend of December? For two days from 11:00 am - 4:00 pm, Saturday and Sunday, the Museum is transformed for the holidays. One gallery is bedecked with model trains and miniature houses. Another is turned into a charming Museum Shop and Bakery, packed full of home-made treats and locally crafted items - from hand-knit hats and toys, to hand-quilted throws and table runners, to hand-sewn doll outfits. It's the perfect time and place to shop local for one-of-a-kind, work-of-art holiday gifts. The porch is covered with wreaths and sprays freshly made and on sale by the Ocean Township Garden Club.

The Holiday Weekend is also the premiere of the Museum's mini-exhibit on the Oakhurst School. It operated as an elementary school for 78 years - the first 57 offering kindergarten through eighth grade. In the course of its almost eight decades, students marveled at the addition of electricity (1905) and indoor plumbing (1912). They saw gym classes introduced (1919), endured split sessions (1950), and witnessed the justify of the space age (with the first U.S. sighting of the Russian Sputnik from our own Deal Test Site, 1957). The school changed as the township and the country changed. The exhibit is a walk down memory lane for those with personal connections to the school and an engaging insight into Americana for everyone.

There is something for everyone. Children will have fun finding the hidden treasures in "History Hunt." Children and adults alike can enjoy the model train encircling Steinbach's Department Store, Christmas 1955. Those who have bought their raffle tickets will learn at 3:00 pm on Sunday this year's winner of the Museum's hand-made quilt.

Suggested donation is $3.00. Children are admitted free. The Eden Woolley House is located at 703 Deal Road, Ocean Township, NJ. For more information, call 732-531-2136 or visit www.oceanmuseum.org.

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Saturday - Sunday, December 6 - 7 - Morristown, Morris County
Winter on the Home Front: A Civil War Christmas
Children Friendly

Learn what life was like on the home front and in a Union Army encampment during the Civil War at Historic Speedwell on Saturday from 12:00 noon - 5:00 pm and Sunday from 12:00 noon - 4:00 pm. At the encampment, visit with soldiers near their authentically reproduced huts, where they will prepare their holiday meal over a campfire. Enjoy a Civil War Era Officer’s Ball complete with period music, costumes and dance. Tour the Vail Home decorated to the mid-19th century, as family members prepare to send care packages to loved ones on the front. Make a craft to take home and enjoy hot-mulled cider and holiday cookies next to a roaring fire. Admission: $7 for adults, $6 for seniors, $5 for children 4-16, and children under 4 are freeAdditional parking for this event will be located at the Alfred Vail Elementary School, located less than 1/8 of a mile north of Historic Speedwell on Speedwell Avenue. A FREE shuttle bus will bring visitors to and from the site. For more information, call 973-285-6538 or visit www.speedwell.org.

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Saturday - Sunday, December 6 - 7 and 13 - 14 - Flemington, Hunterdon County
Holiday Open House

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 justifying Saturday, December 6, the day of borough's holiday parade (which justifys at 5:00 pm). The museum, open at no charge by the Hunterdon County Historical Society, also will welcome guests for tours on Sunday, December 7 and the weekend of December 13-14. Hours each day are 1:00 to 4:00 pm. Admission is free.

The imaginative holiday décor 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. 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 high-style Greek Revival house is aglow with new interior paint. There is also a new exhibition space opened on the second floor with an exciting display of special-occasion clothing and textiles from the Society’s collection, selected by Textile Curators Judy Grow and Lynn Burtis.

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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Saturday - Sunday, December 6 - 7 - Montague, Sussex County
Old Fashioned Holiday Tours
Children Friendly

Are you ready to see the toy you always wished for when you were a child and also a holiday-decorated historic house? This is the year for you to visit the Foster-Armstrong House, maintained by Montague's historical society, M.A.R.C.H. Five beautifully decorated rooms await you on Saturday and Sunday from 1:00 - 4:00 pm and Saturday and Sunday, December 13-14 from 1:00 - 4:00 pm.

"Children's Toys" is the theme for the 2014 Old Fashion Holiday Weekends. Marbles, marble games, and dolls from the 19th century will be on display. A running model train layout with antique model trains to look at will be an added special treat for everyone. Other dolls and toys from the 1950s - the present will also be on exhibit. Antique Christmas tree ornaments, handmade ornaments, and toy ornaments will decorate the six holiday trees. If you look closely, you will probably find the toy you always wished for as a child!


Scattered throughout the rooms will also be a bell scavenger hunt. Some of the bells you can search for will include a train bell, school bells, crystal bells, a hotel bell, cow bells, and horse sleigh bells. Singers from "Harmony in Motion" will be caroling on Sunday, December 14th for 2 hours as an extra holiday addition this season. Our gift store with handmade items and books on local history will also be open for your shopping pleasure. 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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Saturday - Sunday, December 6 - 7 - Jefferson Township, Morris County
Christmas in the Village
Children Friendly

The Jefferson Township Museum, also known as the George Chamberlain House, will reopen for the "Christmas in the Village" celebration. Opening hours for the Museum Christmas Weekend are 10:00 am - 4:00 pm on Saturday and 12:00 noon - 4:00 pm on Sunday. "Victorian Christmas in the Valley" is the theme of this year's decorations. The Christmas celebration is the only time the antique harmonium in the parlor is played. The museum is decorated by members of the Museum Garden Club and the Jefferson Township Historical Society. Docents dressed in period costumes will be on hand, and hot mulled cider will be served outside by the pot-bellied stove on the banks of the brook. Mrs. Santa Claus will be making an appearance. Admission to the museum is free. The Jefferson Township Museum is located at 315 Dover-Milton Road, Jefferson, NJ. Be sure to visit Miss Elizabeth's Shoppe located in the original kitchen of the museum, where small antiques, collectibles, handmade and handcrafted items will be offered for sale for your holiday shopping. For more information, call 973-697-0258 or visit www.jthistoricalsociety.org.

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Saturday - Sunday, December 6 - 7 and 13 - 14 - Whippany, Morris County
23rd Annual Santa Claus Special - SOLD OUT
Children Friendly

New Jersey's Original Santa Claus Special celebrates its 23rd continuous year of operation in 2014. 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 22 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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Saturday - Sunday, December 6 - 7 - Tewksbury, Hunterdon County
11th Annual Christmas Antique Show

The Tewksbury Historical Society's 11th annual Christmas Antique Show will be held at the Old Turnpike School, 173 Old Turnpike Road (Route 517) Califon, NJ. The show will run Saturday from 10:00 am - 5:00 pm and Sunday from 11:00 am - 4:00 pm. Admission is $8.00 per person. Over 55 quality antique and collectibles dealers from New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, and Pennsylvania return every year. Be sure to visit the society's tables to find the new Tewksbury afghan, as well as local books, prints, postcards and more for sale for your holiday shopping. For more information, visit www.tewksburyhistory.net, e-mail tewksburyhistory@earthlink.net, or call the Tewksbury Historical Society Headquarters at 908-832-6734.

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Saturday - Sunday, December 6 - 7 - Essex County
Essex County Historic Holiday Tours
Children Friendly

The Essex County 2014 Historic Holiday House Tour enables the public is invited to take a self-guided tour of the homes and grounds decorated for the holidays. The sixth annual tour includes fifteen sites this year around Essex County! The sites will all be decorated for the holidays and open to the public on Saturday and Sunday. The tour includes perennial favorites, such as the Crane Homestead at West Caldwell, the Grover Cleveland Birthplace at Caldwell, Kip’s Castle in Verona, the Walther House at the Essex County Presby Memorial Iris Gardens at Montclair, the Canfield-Morgan House and Museum at Cedar Grove, the Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart in Newark, Greenwood Gardens in Short Hills, and the Salvatorian Fathers Catholic Church in Verona.

The public can visit each site at their own pace. The houses will be exquisitely decorated for the holidays and be open for public viewing. Each site will offer something unique, including musical entertainment, refreshments or educational programs. There may be an admission fee at some locations. For more information, call 973-239-2485 or visit www.essexcountynj.org.

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Sunday, December 7 - Franklin Township, Somerset County
Sinterklaas and Open House
Children Friendly

On Sunday, the Meadows Foundation will hold its annual Sinterklaas event at the Hageman House and Barn, 209 South Middlebush Road, Franklin Township, NJ. This wonderful afternoon will begin at 1:00 pm with coloring, crafts, and Sinterklaas songs. Klomen dancing begins at 1:15 and Sinterklaas himself will arrive at 2:00 pm. There will be a harpsichord recital and demonstration at 3:00 pm. Throughout the day there will be Dutch baked goods available for purchase.

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Sunday, December 7 - Washington's Crossing, Pennsylvania
Washington's Crossing Reenactment Rehearsal

You are invited to the 62nd annual reenactment dress rehearsal of Washington's Crossing on Sunday from 11:00 am - 3:00 pm. The crossing to New Jersey will occur at 1:00 pm! The Christmas Crossing, which General Washington and his brave troops performed, will occur on Christmas Day at 1:00 pm. Cost to attend the dress rehearsal is $8 for adults, $4 for children age 5 – 11, and free for children under age 5. Proceeds support future crossings.

During the dress rehearsal, the troops cross the river in uniform just as they do on Christmas Day, plus additional activities and demonstrations take place throughout the historic village. Washington Crossing Historic Park commemorates the site of General George Washington’s famous Delaware River crossing on Christmas Day 1776. The 500 acre park also includes the Thompson-Neely House, an 18th century farmhouse used as a hospital to care for sick and wounded Continental soldiers, and Bowman’s Hill Tower, which offers panoramic views of the surrounding countryside. Recreational areas of the Park are available for picnicking, hiking and wildlife-watching.

Washington Crossing Historic Park is located at the intersection of Routes 32 and 532 over the bridge in Pennsylvania. This program is sponsored by the non-profit Friends of Washington Crossing Park in partnership with the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission. 
For more information, call 215-493-4076 or visit www.washingtoncrossingpark.org.

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Sunday, December 7 - Sparta, Sussex County
Victorian Holiday and Site Opening
Children Friendly

You are invited to the Sparta Historical Society's Victorian Holiday and the celebration of the opening of the "new"' Van Kirk Homestead, circa 1790 on Sunday from 12:00 noon - 3:00 pm. The Victorian Parlor is decked out for the season, and we will greet Santa as he rides in on his Santacycle with lights and music playing! There will be a special workshop for the kids and other galleries will be open to the public for the first time. Special galleries feature a 1920-1930s miniature farm, a community quilt made in 1899, and remembrances of Sadie's ice cream parlor. Stop by and enjoy the Holidays with us and hear about our exciting plans for the future of the homestead. The Van Kirk Homestead Museum and History Education Center is located at 336 Main Street, Sparta, NJ (RT 517, use the Sparta Middle School Entrance). For more information, call 973-729-0644 or e-mail SpartaHistoricalSocNJ@gmail.com.

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Sunday, December 7 - Upper Freehold, Monmouth County
Stockings Hung with Care
Children Friendly

Leave the holiday hustle and bustle behind at stop by Historic Walnford on Sunday from 1:00 - 4:00 pm. Relax and enjoy some family time when you drop-in to learn a little bit about Christmas traditions of long ago as you decorate and stitch a paper stocking to hold some old fashioned holiday treats. Admission and parking are free.

While there, visit the large, elegant Walnford home built in 1774, the 19th century gristmill and the farm buildings set in a beautiful landscape. Walnford is located at 62 Walnford Road, Upper Freehold, NJ. For more information, call 609-259-6275 or visit www.monmouthcountyparks.com.

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Sunday, December 7 - Montclair, Essex County
History of the Upper Montclair Business District Slide Show

On Sunday, attend the History of the Upper Montclair Business District (circa 1880-1930s) Slide Show from 3:00 - 5:00 pm at the Bellevue Avenue Branch Library, 185 Bellevue Avenue, Montclair, NJ. Watch the transformation of Upper Montclair from a sparsely populated settlement in the 1880s to an architecturally ambitious suburban community in the 1930s.The program, which focuses on the Upper Montclair Historic Business District, is an expanded (and sit-down!) version of the walking tour presented by Lisanne Renner, historian of Friends of Anderson Park, and Helen Fallon, a trustee of the Montclair Historical Society. There will be lots of vintage photos and maps, then-and-now pairings of photos, and some personal stories. There is no fee to attend the slideshow.

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Sunday, December 7 - South River, Middlesex County
Open House

Stop by the South River Historical & Preservation Society on Sunday from 1:30 - 3:30 pm and view exhibits on all aspects of Borough history including: schools; churches and houses of worship; local businesses and organizations; daily life; events and celebrations; and more. While you are there, see the cemetery located behind the building, ask questions, drop off donations, or exchange hometown stories with the docents. The museum is located at 64-66 Main Street, South River. http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~njsrhps/museum.html

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Sunday, December 7 - Westampton, Burlington County
Holiday Tea at Peachfield
Children Friendly

Peachfield will again be decorated for the holidays and the New Jersey Colonial Dames will serve their tea specialties of  the season at our annual holiday tea. Come and join us as we gather around the hearth with a warming fire and sample our favorite repasts.  

Advance admission: $18 per adult, $9 per child under 15 years, $20 at the door. Reservations paid in advance are strongly recommended. Peachfield is located at 180 Burrs Road, Westampton, NJ.  For more information, call 609-267-6996 or visit www.colonialdamesnj.org.

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Sunday, December 7 - Washington Township, Burlington County
“Winter at Batsto Village”
Children Friendly

Visit Batsto Village on Sunday for music, tours, and more! The Hammonton High School Select Choir, under the direction of Marrissa Carrafiello, will present a musical celebration of the season. Adding to the festive atmosphere of the day, carolers from the Aurora Choir of St. Nick's Church (Egg Harbor City) will stroll through the village from 1:45 - 4:00 pm.

From 1:45 - 3:30 pm, tour the Victorian style Batsto Mansion, dressed in the splendor of the Winter season. Tours available for $3.00. Tickets can be purchased at the Visitor Center. 


Visitors can also bring their holiday cards, stamped and addressed, and have them hand cancelled by a volunteer postmaster at the Batsto Post OfficeMembers of the Merchantville Stamp Club will be on hand to assist with this effort. Due to the age and historical significance of the Batsto Post Office (1852), a zip code is not required to be part of the hand postmark cancellation. While at the Post Office, tour the Batsto Post Office Exhibit Room and enjoy some tasty refreshments! At the Batsto Blacksmith Shop, Toby Kroll, owner of Three Cedars Forge Blacksmithing, will demonstrate some of the techniques and tools of his trade.

Batsto Village is located in Wharton State Forest in Burlington County, approximately seven miles east of Hammonton on Route 542 and 15 miles west of Exit 50 of the Garden State Parkway. For more information, call 609-561-0024 or visit www.batstovillage.org.

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Sunday, December 7 - Cranbury, Middlesex County
Victorian Christmas Tea and Open House
Children Friendly

Stop by the Cranbury Museum on Sunday from 1:00 - 4:00 pm for their Victorian Christmas Tea and Open House. This event is an annual tradition of the museum and wonderful justify to the holiday season.

Come and enjoy the society's secret blend of spiced tea, served in vintage tea cups, along with an array of home baked cookies. For our younger visitors, a charming children's table of punch and cookies will be set. Carols performed on the museum's pump organ are among the highlights of the day. Tours of the museum's holiday-inspired rooms will also be available. The Cranbury Museum is located at 4 Park Place East, Cranbury, NJ. For more information, visit www.cranburyhistory.org.

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Sunday, December 7 - Morristown, Morris County
Christmas Program and Tours
Children Friendly

On Sunday, kick off the holiday season at Macculloch Hall Historical Museum (MHHM). Guided tours of the seasonally decorated period rooms will be offered throughout the afternoon beginning at 1:15 pm with the last tour at 3:45 pm. Galleries including the new Christmas exhibit will be open throughout the afternoon. The Christmas gift shop will open for the season, families can enjoy Christmas craft activities and at 4:30 pm visitors can attend a concert of live holiday music.

The Museum’s period rooms will be decorated for the holidays in traditional style by the Garden Club of Morristown with fresh holly and boxwood, greenery, and other live decorations. In the drawing room visitors will find a special Christmas tree decorated with historically inspired ornaments. 2014 marks the 24th year Morristown’s Assumption School fourth grade students have handcrafted these ornaments and this year’s theme includes small felt stockings inspired by the Museum’s Christmas exhibit. “Another Stocking To Fill: Antique Christmas Toys and Decorations” will premiere on Sunday with curator-led gallery tours of the exhibit throughout the afternoon. The exhibit features toys and ornaments from a century ago. This is the seventh year this special exhibit have been created through generous object loans from Joe and Sharon Happle of “Sign of the Tymes Antiques” Lafayette NJ, and objects from local collector Barbara Silverstein’s collection.

Visitors can enjoy illustrator Thomas Nast’s original Santa and Christmas images throughout the Museum’s galleries and period rooms. The Museum has the largest collection of Nast originals in the nation. While Thomas Nast was primarily a political cartoonist, he was perhaps proudest of his now-iconic image of Santa. Portrayed as a jolly old elf riding high above the rooftops in his reindeer-drawn sleigh and filling each Christmas stocking “hung by the chimney with care,” Santa Claus was inspired by the famous poem “A Visit from Saint Nicholas”, or “Twas The Night Before Christmas”, written by Clement Clarke Moore in 1822.

From 1:00 - 4:30 pm, children who visit the Museum can transform the ordinary into the extraordinary and create their own Christmas stockings reusing and repurposing craft materials for a one of a kind, environmentally friendly stocking to take home. They can also write a letter to Santa, the tradition of which came from Thomas Nast’s imagination. Nast placed Santa’s home and workshop in the North Pole, and he developed the idea of sending letters to Santa through the U.S. Postal Service. The Museum’s 2014 Thomas Nast ornament, a beautiful burgundy red, is entitled “Christmas Post” and depicts a child posting a letter on a snow-filled street. Children can visit the museum to write and post their letter in a replica of the mailbox during touring hours in December. The engraving was originally published in Harper’s Weekly on January 4, 1879. This ornament, and frame able print, will be on sale in the gift shop along with other unique gifts, stocking stuffers and Thomas Nast items, including ornaments from past years, in the museum's holiday shop.

At 4:30 pm, the “Harmonium Outreach Chorus” will perform Christmas and global music for all ages including some audience sing-alongs. From familiar carols to wassails and rounds, African and Yiddish songs there will be something for everyone! Tickets for the performance are $8 adults, $4 kids (6 –12 yrs.). For visitors who purchased an afternoon museum ticket, members, seniors or students, concert tickets are a special price of $5.

The Museum is open for guided tours of the decorated period rooms and visits to exhibits beginning December 10th through December 21st on Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday afternoons, 1:00 - 4:00 pm and the last tour leaves at 3:00 pm. The museum is closed Wednesday, December 24 through Thursday, January 1. Tours of the museum resume on Sunday, January 4, 2015. The Museum will have the Drawing Room Christmas tree, Thomas Nast images and Christmas exhibit on display during touring hours beginning Sunday, January 4 through January 29. 

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. Adults $8; Seniors & Students $6; Children 6 - 12 $4. Members and children under 5 are free. Macculloch Hall Historical Museum is located at 45 Macculloch Avenue, Morristown, NJ. For more information, call 973-538-2404 ext. 10 or visit www.maccullochhall.org.

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Sunday, December 7 - Kingston, Middlesex County
Open House and Tree Lighting
Children Friendly

On Sunday afternoon from 3:30 - 5:30 pm, you are invited to the Kingston Historical Society's Holiday Open House and Tree Lighting at the Locktender's House in Kingston (Route 27, on the D&R Canal) featuring holiday refreshments and music provided by the Kingston Women's Chorus. Free and all are welcome! For more information, visit www.khsnj.org.

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Sunday, December 7 and 14 - Farmingdale, Monmouth County
Christmas at Allaire
Children Friendly

This re-created 19th century village comes to life during the holidays. "Christmas at Allaire," depicts old-world holiday traditions and customs in the historic buildings. Carolers will wander the streets, period vocal and instrumental music will be performed at historic Allaire Chapel, and there will be mummer plays, hearth cooking, and apple drying and stringing. The event runs from 12:00 noon - 4:00 pm. Admission: $7.00 for adults, $4.00 for children. The Historic Village at Allaire is located in Allaire State Park at 4263 Atlantic Avenue, Farmingdale, NJ. Tickets are available at the gate or can be purchased through their web site. For more information, call 732-919-3500 or visit www.allairevillage.org.

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Sunday, December 7 - Oakland, Bergen County
Annual Dutch Christmas Celebration

Join the Oakland Historical Society for the annual Dutch Christmas Celebration at the Van Allen House in Oakland! A visit from Sinter Klaas and his companion Black Peteawait those who visit between 1:00 and 4:00 pm on Sunday. Help trim the Christmas Tree, sing holiday songs and bake holiday cookies. Please consider bringing a non-perishable food item to donate to the Oakland Woman's Club Christmas baskets for families in need. The Van Allen House is located at 3 Franklin Avenue, Oakland, NJ. For more information, visit www.oaklandhistoricalsociety.org.

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Sunday, December 7 - Maplewood, Essex County
Gingerbread Houses, ‘Jolly Old St. Nick’ and Holiday Shopping
Children Friendly

All ages will enjoy exploring this captivating display of inventive entries to the 2014 Durand-Hedden Gingerbread House Competition. Don’t forget to bring a camera to catch a photo of your children with our real live “Victorian Santa.” Shop the Country Store to find inexpensive and unique gifts for family, friends and teachers, while benefitting the Durand-Hedden House. The historic-themed selection includes: early American children’s games and toys, facsimile documents, quill pens and ink, historic cookbooks, cookie molds, tin lanterns, hand-blown blue birds, reproductive decorative items and ceramics, movie posters from the 1990s, and more. The hard-to-find original Doors of Maplewood poster and Smile, the history of Olympic Park, will also be available. No need to go to the mall!  

Visitors will also be able to peruse the exhibit, "The Maplewood Theater: Its Forgotten Saga", which explores the ever-changing 87-year history of the Maplewood Theater, spanning silent films, vaudeville, talkies, a famed era of live theater, neighborhood cinema, and the current sixplex. The Durand-Hedden House is dedicated to telling the history of the development of Maplewood and the surrounding area in new and engaging ways. It is located in Grasmere Park at 523 Ridgewood Road in Maplewood, NJ. For more information, call 973-763-7712 or visit www.durandhedden.org.

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Sunday, December 7 - Matawan, Monmouth County
Christmas Musicale

The Matawan Historical Society will hold its annual Christmas Musicale on Sunday from 1:00 - 4:00 pm at the Burrowes Mansion located at 94 Main Street in Matawan. Enjoy beautiful music, plentiful punch, and scrumptious cookies throughout the afternoon. For more information, call 732-492-6069 or visit www.burrowesmansion.org.

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Sunday, December 7 - River Edge, Bergen County
Sinter Klaas Day
Children Friendly

Enjoy Jersey Dutch holiday treats, refreshments, and a visit with Sinter Klaas in the restored tavern in Campbell-Christie House, 1201 Main Street, River Edge, NJ, on Sunday from 1:00 - 4:00 pm. See open-hearth cooking in authentic Jersey Dutch Out Kitchen and tour historic homes. For that special holiday gift, browse  their unique historical gift shop. At 1:30 pm, historian, author, and BCHS Past President Kevin Wright will give an illustrated talk "A Light in Winter; Holiday Traditions" in the Steuben House. Refreshments available for purchase including warm cider and our tavern patrons' favorite donuts. Live Christmas trees are available for purchase by Northern Border Christmas Trees and Wreaths. Event parking in parking lot across street. For more information, call 201-343-9492 or visit www.bergencountyhistory.org.

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Sundays, December 7, 14, and 21 - Pennsville, Salem County
Annual Christmas Open House
Children Friendly

The Pennsville Township Historical Society will hold its Annual Christmas Open House on Sundays, December 7, 14, and 21 from 1:00 - 5:00 p.m., at the Church Landing Farm House Museum in Pennsville. The 1850 Farm House, the outbuildings , and property have been decorated for Christmas and there will be special displays and entertainment.

A Victorian Christmas tree, a tree adorned with 1940s era decorations, and a tree bedecked with traditional Swedish Christmas ornaments will be on display in the Farm House. Don't miss the exquisitely painted and decorated ostrich, goose, and quail eggs that have been handcrafted by Pauline Gant Webb. Stop by the parlor to hear Nancy Brubek play Christmas Carols on our recently restored antique organ and interact with our junior historians as they perform vignettes from Louisa May Alcott's novel, Little Women.

Visit the Townsend Annex to see a display of “Christy" Dickens Carolers, a 1920 Lionel train set, Victorian Christmas postcards, and our collection of handcrafted miniature carriages. While there, talk with Annette Devitt and Marcia Walton who will be demonstrating loom weaving on an authentic, handmade 1910 Finnish loom. Docents will be on hand to answer questions.

Visitors are welcome to linger in the relaxing atmosphere of a Victorian era Christmas and enjoy refreshments which include traditional Swedish Christmas Glogg (Wassail) and Swedish Pepparkakor (spice cookies). The Church Landing Farm Museum is located at 86 Church Landing Road, Pennsville, NJ. Admission is Free. Donations are always welcome and gratefully accepted. For more information call Don at 856-381-2510 or Donna at 856-678-6435.

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Saturdays and Sundays through January 4, 2015 - 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, Barbara L. Mulea, Contemporary Garden Club, D & R Greenway Land Trust, Dogwood Garden Club of Princeton, Farmhouse Store, Garden Club of Princeton, Keris Tree Farm & Christmas Shop, LMG Design, McCarter Theatre Center, Stony Brook Garden Club, and Vicki Trainer.

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. 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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Through Wednesday, 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 December 29, 2014 - Woodbury, Gloucester County
Be Prepared:  Scouts of Yesteryear
Children Friendly

Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts have been a tradition in America for over a century. The Gloucester County Historical Society Museum is presenting a remarkable exhibit with scouting artifacts from over the decades. Numerous uniforms, merit badges, equipment, manuals, and accessories from the 1930s on are on display.

The Gloucester County Historical Society Museum hours are Monday, Wednesday, and Fridays 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 Gloucester County Historical Society 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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Sundays through January 25, 2015 - Trenton, Mercer County
Form, Function and Fine: Two Hundred Years of American Ceramics

From teacups to chamber sets, New Jersey to California, the Cranbury Historical and Preservation Society presents a new exhibit, providing a sample of American ceramics from the 19th and 20th century. Redware, yellowware, spongeware, and salt glazed crocks will be displayed along with early Lenox and Trenton pottery. Roseville, Stangl, Pfaltzgraff and Homer Laughlin pieces are some of the other American ceramics featured. The exhibit will continue through January 25, 2015. Come to the table and join us on a Sunday afternoon from 1:00 - 4:00 pm to view this exhibit! The Cranbury Museum is located at 4 Park Place East, Cranbury, NJ. For more information, call 609-409-1289 or visit www.cranburyhistory.org.

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Saturdays through December 31, 2014 - Freehold, Monmouth County
Farm: Agriculture in Monmouth County 1600 - 2013

Monmouth County Historical Association's newest exhibition, "Farm: Agriculture in Monmouth County 1600-2013," is open to the public at the museum in Freehold and will be on display through December 31, 2014. The history of agriculture and farming in Monmouth County has long roots deep in the past, as does New Jersey itself, from earliest days of pre-European settlement, when Lenape Indians harvested corn, squash, and beans to the modern reintroduction  of organic agricultural practices.

Monmouth County Historical Association's exhibition, "Farm: Agriculture in Monmouth County 1660 - 2013," explores and celebrates Monmouth County's vibrant agricultural past, present, and future. The exhibit examines the means by which Monmouth men and women worked with their surroundings to feed themselves, their families, the community, and the rest of America as well. Through artifacts, diaries, letters, maps, paintings, prints, and photographs, Farm will bring Monmouth's rich agricultural history alive. Visitors will appreciate the innovation and diversity of Monmouth farmers, horticulturalists, gardeners, and livestock breeders who overcame challenges and secured the county's reputation as a source of high-quality produce and livestock for more than two hundred years.

The Monmouth County Historical Association's museum is located at 70 Court Street, Freehold NJ. Regular admission to the museum is $5 and $2.50 for students and seniors. Admission is free for members. Museum hours are Tuesday - Saturday, 10:00 am - 4:00 pm. For more information, call 732-462-1466 or visit www.monmouthhistory.org.

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Through February 13, 2015 - Madison, Morris County
The American Revolution in New Jersey
Children Friendly

New Jersey spent much of the American Revolution as a theater of war. A new exhibit at the Museum of Early Trades and Crafts, "The American Revolution in New Jersey: Where the Battlefront Meets the Homefront," explores the rarely told story of New Jersey's farmers, women, and tradesmen and their actions during the war. Topics discussed include the local civil wars that erupted between revolutionaries and loyalists, the multiple roles that women took on as their men went off to war, and how civilian life was affected by the regular presence of troops. The exhibit will be open until February 13, 2015.

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 from 10:00 am - 4:00 pm and Sunday from 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 more information, please call 973-377-2982 x10 or visit www.metc.org.

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Through March 1, 2015 - Trenton, Mercer County
Ties That Bind: The Aprons of Trenton

The Trenton City Museum transports you to a time when apron strings tied the lives of the people of Trenton. "Ties that Bind: The Aprons of Trenton" runs from November 1, 2014 through March 1, 2014. The exhibit features aprons associated with church picnics, classroom art projects, the industrial workers who kept the city in business, and the homemakers who made holiday meals and memories for generations. The Trenton City Museum, Ellarslie, is located in Cadwalader Park, Trenton, NJ. For more information, call 609-989-3632 or visit www.ellarslie.org.

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Through March 1, 2015 - Trenton, Mercer County
Trenton Central High School: A Remembrance

On October 14, 2014, the Trenton Public Schools Board of Education voted to demolish Trenton Central High School. The New Jersey Schools Development Authority will fund the construction of a new $130 million high school for Trenton.

The Trenton Museum Society celebrates the soon-to-be-demolished building in an exhibit at the Trenton City Museum at Ellarslie through Sunday, March 1, 2015. The former high school building, opened in 1932, was an iconic structure that inspired and nurtured thousands of Trenton students over the past 82 years.

Designed by architect Ernest K. Sibley, construction of the school began in 1929 with the first classes occupying the building in January 1932.  It was built as a larger version of Trenton High School West, formerly Junior No. 3, out of red brick and composition stone trim in the colonial revival style, inspired by the historic background of the city. 

Many of the features that contributed to the unique beauty of the school were made in Trenton. The porcelain shades in the light fixtures in the auditorium were made by Lenox in Trenton. The brown faience tile lining the hallways was made by the Mueller Mosaic Tile Company of Trenton. Even the sanitary ware, such as sinks and toilets, were made by the Trenton-based Maddock pottery company.

The exhibit shows iconic artifacts from the school - a Maddock toilet, pedestal sink and water fountain, an original student desk that seats two students, one of the caged clocks from the gymnasium, wooden chairs used by students and teachers, and hallway light fixtures. The school board is loaning two large portraits of the first two principals of the school - William A. Wetzel and Paul R. Spencer, and a large aerial picture of the school.

Early yearbooks from the 1930s and 1940s show the school façade and interior. Artifacts used in the school are on display, such as scientific instruments, silverware, china, kitchen utensils, and a display cabinet with partial skeleton used in science classes.

The two cornerstones of the building from 1929 and 1956 were opened at Trenton High School's Homecoming football game on October 25. No one knew what was inside. The contents of the cornerstones will be lent to the museum and displayed in the exhibit.

In the lobby were four spectacular murals created and installed in the high school in 1941 by an artist who worked for the WPA Federal Arts Project, Monty Lewis, entitled Youth Carrying the Heritage of Arts from the Past into the Future. The Trenton School Board has pledged to save these priceless pieces of art. Photographs of them are included in the exhibit.

The Trenton Museum Society invites graduates, teachers and administrators from the school, historic preservationists, and those interested in Trenton's history to attend the exhibit. The Trenton City Museum, Ellarslie, is located in Cadwalader Park, Trenton, NJ. For more information, call 609-989-3632 or visit www.ellarslie.org.

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Through March 29, 2015 - Princeton, Mercer County
Hail Specimen of Female Art! New Jersey Schoolgirl Needlework, 1726-1860

This landmark exhibition will be the first to focus on the important contribution of New Jersey in the creation of schoolgirl needlework in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. With over 150 works on view, this exhibition will undertake the first survey of schoolgirl needlework completed in the state or by New Jersey girls prior to 1860. This exhibition and accompanying catalogue will create a lasting record of the best known examples. As part of the museum’s mission to showcase the cultural heritage of the Garden State, the curators will bring new light to the needlework done in New Jersey during this important period of American history.

Organized geographically, the exhibition will feature works from every region of the state. Although many elaborate and important examples of New Jersey needlework will be featured in the exhibition, the curators have also included more modest examples that highlight other aspects of the educational environment, social class and familial situation experienced by young girls in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. In some cases, the exhibit will reunite, for the first time, needlework created by the same girl; sisters; cousins; schoolmates and other close relations.

The exhibition will feature loans from across the country including needlework completed in every New Jersey County (accounting for the numerous re-organizations of New Jersey counties in the nineteenth century). In presenting examples from every part of the state, the exhibition will distill the educational environment that existed in New Jersey from Cape May to Sussex. The exhibition will also compile an accurate picture of girls academies and the instructresses who taught at them.

The exhibition will occupy 1,709 square feet in five galleries within the second floor of the Morven mansion. This exhibition also coincides with the 350th anniversary of New Jersey and extensive state-wide celebration and programming.

The title of the exhibition is borrowed from a needlework stitched by Trenton-born Anne Rickey (1783-1846) “Hail Specimen of Female Art” was stitched onto her sampler in 1798. Anne Rickey was the daughter of Quaker merchant, John Rickey (1751-1829) and his wife Amey Olden (1757-1849).


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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Through May 1, 2015 - Toms River, Ocean County
Fishing in the Good Old Days

The Ocean County Historical Society, invites you to view their new exhibit entitled, "Hook, Line and Sinker: History of Fishing in Ocean County up to 1950", which features the collections of members Richard Updike and Ferd Klebold. The exhibit takes visitors back to the days of pound fishing, frost fishing, clamming, eeling, and whaling with photos and artifacts used in the fishing industry along the Jersey Coast. A hand-forged clam rake, the white oak eel pot that used horseshoe crabs for bait, a whale vertebra found in the surf in Ocean County, early reels, and photos galore of fishermen and their catches are just some of the treasures you will find in this exhibit. Winter or summer, Ocean County fishermen braved the elements to harvest nature's bounty from the Atlantic Ocean, Barnegat Bay, and numerous rivers. Visit OCHS Tuesday through Friday, 10:00 am - 3:30 pm and the first Saturday of each month from 1:00 - 4:00 pm. The Ocean County Historical Society is located at 26 Hadley Avenue, Toms River, NJ. For more information, visit www.oceancountyhistory.org or call 732-341-1880.

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1st and 2nd Sundays through June 2015 - Ocean Township, Monmouth County
The History of Houses and the Things That Make Them Home

Since prehistoric times, where we live has been about much more than shelter (think of those cave paintings). A new exhibit explores just how our human instinct to nest has played out in the structures we inhabit and the stuff we put in them. "The History of Houses and the Things that Make Them Home" is on display in the Richmond Gallery of the Eden Woolley House / Township of Ocean Historical Museum.

The exhibit examines the influences on the design and content of the American home - from the traditions early settlers brought with them, to the availability of materials, to the transforming power of technology. It takes guests on a virtual house tour, revealing room by room how things have changed and how those changes have shaped our lives.

What is home? It's where the heart is and there's no place like it. Beyond shelter, our homes express our tastes, values, and social status. Our neighborhoods abound with homes that illustrate the point, and the new exhibit asks us to see our familiar surroundings in a new light. It reveals the lineage of familiar house styles--colonial, neoclassical, Victorian, and modern, for example. It explains that the colonists of the new world built houses in the style of the old. That the founding fathers, all men of the Enlightenment, adapted the designs of Greeks and Romans whose rationality they admired. That the clutter and ornamentation of the Victorians expressed their fascination with goods made possible by the Industrial Revolution and made available by the railroads. And that twentieth century architects rejected Victorian fussiness in favor of designs that challenged old assumptions and took advantage of new technologies and building techniques.

House design is just the beginning. The exhibit takes us inside, room by room. For all but the rich, our earliest homes were one-room dwellings. The very concept of a single-purpose room (living, dining, bathing, etc.) is relatively new. And even in early multiple-room houses, people moved from room to room more in pursuit of sunlight and warmth than specific activity. In effect, all rooms were "living rooms."

Revolutionary new technologies - indoor plumbing, central heating, and electric light, in particular - made room specialization practical. The bathroom, bedchamber, dining room, library, and parlor emerged as distinct spaces in ways that both reflect and influence life style.

Take the living room (aka parlor, drawing room, sitting room, and salon). It has come full circle. As parlor, it was a room often reserved to receive visitors. In time, it became the place where the family "withdrew" to gather around the piano - later the radio and then television. Today, the "great room" has assumed that role and in many homes, the living room is again a more formal space reserved for entertaining guests.

The exhibit makes that case that every house has a story, every room has a history. "The History of Houses and the Things that Make Them Home" will be up through June 2015. The Township of Ocean Historical Museum is open to the public on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays (1:00 - 4:00 pm), Thursday evenings (7:00 - 9:00 pm) and the first and second Sundays of each month (1:00 - 4:00 pm). The Township of Ocean Historical Museum is located at 703 Deal Road, Ocean, NJ. For more information, please call 732-531-2136 or visit www.oceanmuseum.org.

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Through July 2015 - Morristown, Morris County
The Civil War through the Eyes of Thomas Nast

Before radio, TV, or the Internet, there was political cartoonist Thomas Nast. Nast illustrated battles, Union and Confederate troop movements, and their activities throughout the Civil War. He also captured the poignancy of those back home, who worried about their family members in combat. Nast covered both the home and battle fronts; his work was the main source of information about the war for many people. His illustrations in publications like "Harper's Weekly" brought the information about what was happening into the homes of the American public, the way mass media does today. Like all media agents, he not only depicted what was happening by reporting on the events taking place, but also created propaganda by trying to stir emotions and support for the Union side. Mounted to commemorate the final year of the Civil War Sesquicentennial (2011-2015), this second floor exhibit will include a number of these stirring images. "The Civil War through the Eyes of Thomas Nast" opens September 7, 2014­ and will be on exhibit through 2015.

Thomas Nast (1840-1902) is one of the most recognized names in the world of political cartoons.  Often called the father of American political cartooning, Nast's images remain popular today.  His well-known depictions of the Democratic donkey and Republican elephant, conceived more than 100 years ago, continue to represent both parties.  Uncle Sam and Columbia, two of his favorite figures to draw, are still recognized as symbols for the United States of America.  His spirit lives on through his iconic representations of Santa Claus. The classic images which Nast popularized of the jolly old elf still appear on a variety of surfaces each year during the holiday season, and Nast's Civil War images of battlefront and home front were powerful tools for bringing the war into people's homes.

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. Macculloch Hall Historical Museum, 45 Macculloch Avenue, Morristown, NJ. For more information, call 973-538-2404 ext. 10 or visit www.maccullochhall.org.

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Through August 2015 - Lyndhurst, Bergen County
Lyndhurst Business: Building a Community

From a ship's horn manufactured by Leslie Company to photos of steel and heat-treating plant Benedict-Miller, Inc., the Lyndhurst Historical Society is showcasing just a sampling of the many businesses that contributed to the community and beyond in its latest exhibit, "Lyndhurst Business: Building a Community," which runs from now until August 2015.

"It's New Jersey's 350th birthday and, in addition to celebrating the state as a whole, we wanted to give a nod to our local community," said Doris Bergquist, who, along with members Dale Jankowski and Doris Ludwig, curated the exhibit. "There have been and continue to be many highly regarded businesses in Lyndhurst. The Leslie Company, for example, was once in Lyndhurst and built one of the horns used on the Queen Mary."

The exhibit is free and open to the public, though a small donation to the society would be appreciated. The Little Red Schoolhouse Museum, located at 400 RIverside Avenue, Lyndhurst, NJ is open on the second and fourth Sundays of every month from 2:00 - 4:00 pm. For more information, call 201-804-2513 or visit www.lyndhursthistoricalsociety.org.

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

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