Friday, December 11, 2015

NJ Weekend Historical Happenings - 12/12/15 - 12/13/15

New Jersey Weekend Historical Happenings
A Weekly Feature on www.thehistorygirl.com
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Friday, December 11 - Plainfield, Union County
Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony
Children Friendly

The Historical Society of Plainfield invites one and all to the Nineteenth 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.

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Friday, December 11 - 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 6:30 - 9:00 pm at the Hill Memorial Museum, 82 Main Street, Newton, NJ. Free admission and refreshments. For more information, call 973-383-6010 or visit www.sussexcountyhistory.org.

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Friday and Sunday, December 11 and 13 - Brick Township, Ocean County
Christmas Celebration at the Havens Homestead Museum
Children Friendly


The Brick Township Historical Society will hold its annual Christmas celebration at its Havens Homestead Museum, 521 Herbertsville Road, Brick, NJ on Friday from 3:00 - 7:00 pm and on Sunday from 1:00 - 4:00 pm. This year’s theme is Christmas in the Village,” and docents will give stories from years ago of the different sections of Brick Township. There will be several moving trains on display, and all three buildings on the property will be open. Homemade refreshments will be served. Guests are encouraged to take pictures with the Victorian Santa who will be dressed in royal blue, as Santas years ago often had different colored outfits, such as, green, violet or blue. Each family will receive a gift of one of the society’s Brick Oven cook books. The Lizzie Herbert Gift Shop will feature special seasonal items. Tickets can be purchased at the door. Donation is $5.00 for an adult and children under 12 are free. For more information, call 732-785-2500 or visit www.bricktwphistoricalsociety.com.

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Every Friday - Sunday through January 10, 2016 - 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 $10.00 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 12 - 13 - 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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Saturdays, December 12 and 19 - Farmingdale, Monmouth County
Christmas Lantern Tours - SOLD OUT
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 12 - Cape May, Cape May County
Homespun Holiday Weekends Historic Cold Spring Village
Children Friendly

Stop by Historic Cold Spring Village this holiday season for holiday merriment and shopping! 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 at the Dennisville Inn from 1:00 - 3:00 pm and enjoy a horse-drawn carriage ride throughout the festively decorated Village grounds for a small donation. Guests can also enjoy children's holiday crafts in the Welcome Center.

Holiday traditions continue each Saturday in December through the 19th. The Country Store will be open from 12:00 noon - 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.

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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Saturday, December 12 Cape May, Cape May County
42nd Annual Christmas Candlelight House Tour
Children Friendly

This self-guided walking tour, the main attraction of Cape May's festive holiday season, features homes, inns, hotels, and churches decorated for the holidays, plus caroling, strolling musicians and good old-fashioned cheer. Hospitality centers offer warm beverages and traditional treats. Includes admission to the Physick Estate and An Old-fashioned Christmas exhibit in the Carroll Gallery. Limited shuttle service. Tour is from 5:30 - 8:30 pm on Saturday. Adults $28, children $20 (ages 3-12). The Emlen Physick Estate is located at 1048 Washington Street, Cape May, NJ. Sponsored by the Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts & Humanities (MAC). For more information, call 609-884-5404 or 800-275-4278 or visit www.capemaymac.org.

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Saturday, December 12 - Keyport, Monmouth County
Candlelight House Tour of Keyport

The Keyport Historical Society invites you to come and enjoy a ride on an old-fashioned trolley through the historic town of Keyport at Christmas time and visit the homes of all types. The tours start at Burlew's Seafood and Steak Restaurant (59 West Front Street, Keyport, NJ) and runs from 4:00 - 9:00 pm.



Advance tickets are $18 and available at Toad Hollow Gifts (8 Main Street), Keyport Free Public Library (109 Broad Street) and Espresso Joe's (50 West Front Street). Tickets can be purchased on the day of the event for $20 starting at 2:00 pm at 59 West Front Street, Keyport, NJ. Brochures and maps will be available before tours start. For more information, call 732-739-6390 or visit www.keyporthistoricalsociety.com.

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Saturday, December 12 - 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 from 1:00 - 5:00.

The Rosenkrans Museum will be decorated in the old-fashioned style and refreshments will be served. 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. In addition, the Walpack Methodist Episcopal Church will be open and decorated for the holiday for the first time since it was closed and bought by the Federal Government in 1978 in preparation for the Tocks Island Dam project. The church was built in 1871 and was once the hub of religious and social activities in Walpack Township. The interior of the church was painted by an unknown artist in 1872 in the tromp-l'oeil or "fool the eye" style. The church is not heated so dress accordingly.

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, December 12 and 19 - Union Township, Union County
Gingerbread House Workshop - December 12 SOLD OUT
Children Friendly

Liberty Hall is hosting a gingerbread house workshop on Saturday. Two sessions will be held from 10:00 - 11:30 am or 12:00 noon - 1:30 pm. Children will get into the holiday spirit when they decorate their own gingerbread house with candy canes, gumdrops, and more at this popular, annual Liberty Hall event. A tour of Liberty Hall decorated for holidays will follow the workshop. Program Fee: $20.00 for each child and adult, all additional adults $5.00. Reservations are required. Call 908-527-0400. Liberty Hall is located at 1003 Morris Avenue, Union, NJ. For more information, call 908-27-0400 or visit www.kean.edu/libertyhall.

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Saturday, December 12 - Maywood, Bergen County
Historic Train Station Open House
Children Friendly


The Maywood Station Museum located at 269 Maywood Avenue, Maywood, NJ will be open on Saturday from 10:00 am - 12:00 noon to celebrate the holiday season. Santa will be arriving and there will be free raffles and goodie bags for each child!

A wide variety of artifacts, photographs, and exhibits featuring railroad and local history will be on display in the museum. Admission is free but free-will donations are welcome.

The Maywood Station Historical Committee preserved the 1872 New York, Susquehanna & Western (NYS&W) railroad station in Maywood and operates it as a museum with a mission to preserve the railroad and cultural heritage of Maywood through restoration and preservation, historical awareness, archiving and interpretation, museum open houses, meetings and special events. For more information visit www.maywoodstation.com.

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Saturday, December 12 - Roebling, Burlington County
Christmas In Roebling
Children Friendly

The Roebling Museum and the Roebling Garden Club are teaming together to host a magical event in the historic village of Roebling, NJ. The event will take place at the Mudeum and will include Christmas trees decorated by local organizations, businesses and churches. Santa's Workshop is sponsored by Hamilton Home Depot from 10:00 am - 3:00 pm. There will also be children's crafts and light refreshments. Santa will visit from 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm and goodie bags will be available for all children under 12.

There will also be hay rides through the historic village of Roebling - $8 for adults; $5 for children (tickets will be available at the event). All other activities are free and no registration is required. The Roebling Museum is located at 100 2nd Avenue, Roebling, NJ. For more information, call 609- 499-7200 or visit www.roeblingmuseum.org.

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Saturday, December 12 - Pennsville, Salem County
Annual Soldiers Christmas Event
Children Friendly


Stop by Fort Mott on Saturday for their Annual Soldiers Christmas from 5:00 pm - 10:00 pm. Enjoy guided tours of the fort and visits with Santa. Come and see how soldiers celebrated Christmas and the holiday season throughout history. It will be dark, so bring a flashlight! Admission is free.

Fort Mott is located at 454 Fort Mott Road, Pennsville, NJ 08070. For more information, call 856-935-3218 or visit www.9thdivision.com.

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Saturday, December 12 - Rahway, Union County
Holiday Candlelight Evenings

The Merchants and Drovers Tavern Museum Association will be hosting their annual Holiday Candlelight Evening Tours, Saturday 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 $15 at the door for adults, $12 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, December 12 - Camden, Camden County
Breakfast with Santa
Children Friendly

We would like to invite military families to enjoy Breakfast with Santa aboard the Battleship New Jersey on Saturday, Dec. 12, beginning at 9:00 am. We are offering a special price of just $10 per person for military families. Enjoy a hot breakfast, a tour of the Battleship, chances to win great prizes, and meet Santa Claus! To reserve your spot or to purchase tickets, call 866-877-6262 ext. 107. For more information, visit www.battleshipnewjersey.org.

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Saturday - Sunday, December 12 - 13 - Hampton, Hunterdon County
Holiday Open House

Please join the Union Forge Heritage Association in celebrating the Holiday Season at the 1760 Historic Joseph Turner House and history museum. Enjoy holiday cheer and the company of family and neighbors. Hours on Saturday are 3:00 - 8:00 pm and Sunday from 1:00 - 5:00 pm. Suggested Donation $10. The 1760 Joseph Turner House is located at 117 Van Syckles Road, Hampton NJ. For more information and to RSVP, e-mail ufhanj@hotmail.com or visit www.unionforgeheritage.org.

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Saturday - Sunday, December 12 - 13 - Whippany, Morris County
24th Annual Santa Claus Special - SOLD OUT
Children Friendly

New Jersey's Original Santa Claus Special celebrates its 24th continuous year of operation in 2015. 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 12 - 13 - Montague, Sussex County
Old Fashioned Holiday Tours
Children Friendly

M.A.R.C.H. will kick off its free 2015 Old Fashioned Holiday Tours this year at the Foster-Armstrong House on Saturday from 1:00 - 4:00 pm. Six specially decorated rooms will also be open on Saturday and Sunday, December 5-6, and Saturday and Sunday, December 12-13 from 1:00 - 4:00 pm. This year's theme is "101 Snowman and Winter Fun."

See a wonderful display of dolls, toys, marbles, running model trains and decorated trees. Enjoy the warmth of the 220 year old Dutch Colonial House. Shop in their store for handcrafted gifts. 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 12 - 13 - Hoboken, Hudson County
Frank Sinatra's 100th Birthday


On Saturday, the Hoboken Historical Museum will host a special free event on Frank Sinatra's 100th birthday, from 12:00 noon - 2:00 pm, with local officials, Sinatra fans, and a cake. At 1:00 pm, we will dedicate a new Hollywood Boulevard-style plaque in his honor in the walkway by the museum's entrance. This event is free and all are welcome.

The plaque dedication event includes a special postage stamp and cancellation postmark from the Hoboken Post Office (which was renamed in early 2000s in honor of Frank Sinatra), so people can send letters and postcards to friends and family with the 100th birthday postmark.

Then we will cap off the evening of December 12, from 7:00 - 11:00 pm when the Hoboken Museum, the Hoboken Cultural Affairs Department, and Stevens Institute of Technology join forces to host a special Sinatra Centennial Birthday Party in the Bissinger Room of the Howe Center on Castle Point, overlooking the Manhattan Skyline. Entertainment will be provided by The Swingadelic Big Band and six Sinatra tribute singers. Click here to learn more about the party.

On Sunday at 4:00 pm, the museum will host another Sinatra author talk and book signing: Acclaimed poet and critic David Lehman will discuss his latest book: Sinatra's Century: One Hundred Notes on the Man and His World, a series of short meditations on the man, his music and his larger-than-life story. The longtime editor of The Best American Poetry series, and the author of A Fine Romance: Jewish Songwriters, American Songs, Lehman devotes each of these short pieces to one facet of the Sinatra story-from the singer's origins on the streets of Hoboken, to his emergence as "The Voice" in the 1940s, to the wild ebb and flow of his career in the decades that followed. With a wordsmith's turn of phrase, and a lifelong affection for the singer and the man, Lehman offers a wide-ranging appreciation of Sinatra's incomparable life and career.

Admission to "Frank Sinatra: The Man, the Voice, and the Fans," a multimedia exhibition on the star's formative years in Hoboken, career highlights, and memorabilia shared by fans, with a companion program of singers, films and author talks is $4. The museum also has a wonderful photography exhibit in our Upper Gallery: "The Word is Lost: Photography by Joseph Corrado," which includes photographs of Hoboken's Italian Festival and the procession of the Madonna dei Martiri, a centuries-old tradition brought over from the old country. On view through December 23, 2015. The Hoboken Historical Museum is located at 1301 Hudson Street, Hoboken, NJ. For more information, call 201-656-2240 or visit www.hobokenmuseum.org.

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Sunday, December 13 - Princeton, Mercer County
Historic Princeton Walking Tour
Children Friendly

Enjoy a 1.9 mile, two-hour walk around downtown Princeton and the University campus as you learn about historic sites in the area, including Bainbridge House, Nassau Hall, the University Chapel, and Palmer Square. The early history of Princeton, the founding of the University, and the American Revolution are just some of the stories from Princeton’s history that you will learn on your tour.

Admission: $7 per adult; $4 children ages 6 to 12; free for children age 5 and under. Tours start outside the Bainbridge House, 158 Nassau Street, Princeton, NJ. Tour begins at 2:00 pm and ends at 4:00 pm. Space is limited. For more information, call 609-921-6748 or visit www.princetonhistory.org.

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Sunday, December 13 - Farmingdale, Monmouth County
Christmas at Allaire
Children Friendly


Join the members of the Howell Iron Works Co as they celebrate the holiday season. Each historic home will be decorated according to a different Christmas traditions. As visitors explore the village they will learn how our holiday traditions developed. There will be story telling in the Enameling Building, Horse and Wagon rides, silhouette cutting demonstrations, music programs in the Historic Chapel, hearth cooking demonstrations, craft demonstrations and much more. St. Nicholas will be wandering the village giving out candy canes to the good boys and girls. This is a wonderful family friendly activity! The event runs from 11:00 am - 4:00 pm. Admission: $7.00 for adults, $5.00 for children under the age of 12. Horse and Wagon rides are an additional fee of $7 adults, $5 children under 12 years old. 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 13 - Westampton/Burlington, Burlington County
Three House Tour

Three lovely homes, each of a distinctive architectural style, will be decorated for the Holiday Season. Learn about each house's amazing history, while enjoying cookies and hot beverages. Dulcimer player Rich Carty will be on hand at Peachfield to entertain visitors.  

The houses on the tour are:
* Colonial Revival Peachfield, 180 Burs Road, Westampton, NJ 08060
* Federalist West Hill Manor, 1114 Oxmead Road, Burlington, NJ 08016
* Italianate Green Hill Farm, 1605 Oxmead Road, Burlington, NJ 08016

Begin at any house and tour all three houses for $15.00. Cash only, no photographs please. For more information, call 609-267-6996 or visit www.colonialdamesnj.org.

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Sunday, December 13 - Franklin Township, Somerset County
Candlelight Christmas Tours

It is time again to set out and light the candles for Rockingham Historic Site's Annual Candlelight Christmas Tours. The program is being offered on Sunday from 11:00 am - 4:00 pm. The tours, for which advanced reservations are required, include information on 18th-century Christmas traditions and revolve around a special theme rather than the regular house tour As visitors pass from room to room with tidbits of 18th-century holiday practices dancing in their heads, they will also hear pieces of our state's story, half-century by half-century along with Rockingham's story during the same period.

Come, enjoy, laugh and learn as you wend your way through Rockingham with the lilt of an English flute following you, courtesy of John Burkhalter of Practitioners of Musick, and docents of the Montgomery High School Live Historians Club leading and enlightening you. Then, partake of holiday goodies and warm drink in the Children's Museum and visit our Museum Store to shop for items such as period toys, our own Rockingham honey, books, quills and tricorn hats.

Advance tour reservations are REQUIRED for admission with a suggested donation of $8 per person and must be made by calling 609-683-7136. Tours will be offered at least every half-hour with the last tour beginning at 3:30 pm.

Rockingham is located at 84 Laurel Avenue, Franklin Township, NJ between Route 518 in Rocky Hill and Route 27 in Kingston. For more information, call 609-683-7132 or visit www.rockingham.net.

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Sunday, December 13 - Piscataway, Middlesex County
Seasonal Traditions at East Jersey Old Town Village
Children Friendly

The Middlesex County Office of Culture and Heritage invites you to experience it all as it hosts its “Seasonal Traditions” holiday program at East Jersey Old Town Village in Piscataway. ​These special events, all free of charge, will be held at the Village from 1:00 - 6:00 pm on Sunday.

Scheduled activities include:  
Children’s Craft Session: 2:00 - 3:00 pm
Children between the ages of 5 and 9 are invited to make two special winter-themed crafts. First, create a delicious-looking design with our paper gingerbread house. Then, make a snowman friend, who will help you count down to Christmas. Move the snowman’s carrot nose each day in December to mark the date. All children must be accompanied by an adult.

Horse and Carriage Rides:  3:00 - 6:00 pm
In this year’s new event, guests are invited take a ride back to the 19th century, and enjoy the views of Johnson Park from a horse-drawn carriage. The carriage will depart every 15 minutes. Call ahead to register for a time slot. 

Music by Mary Roth: 3:00 - 4:00 pm
Singer-songwriter Mary Roth will perform songs related to Hanukah and other aspects of Jewish culture. Roth is an accomplished musician who will incorporate the dulcimer and the bouzouki in her performance. Roth will sing in Hebrew, Yiddish, and English. 

Songs of Christmas by Spiced Punch: 5:00 - 6:00 pm
The vocal quartet Spiced Punch will perform traditional Christmas carols, while costumed in reproduction 19th-century garb. The group features David Emerson, Stacy Roth, Marianne Tucker and Tom Tucker, performing on strings, recorders, tin whistles and concertinas. 

Refreshments will be served from 4:00 - 5:00 pm. Registration is required for each activity. Please call 732.745.3030, ext. 310. Guests may choose to register for any combination of the day’s programs. The Village will open at 1:00 pm and a guided tour will be given at 1:30 pm.

East Jersey Old Town Village is located at 1050 River Road, Piscataway, NJ inside Johnson Park. This program is offered free of charge, but registration is required. To register online, send an e-mail to culturalandheritage@co.middlesex.nj.us.

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Sunday, December 13 - Montclair, Essex County
Holiday House Tours
Children Friendly


Tours at the Montclair Historical Society, 108 Orange Road and the Charles Shultz House-Evergreens, 30 North Mountain Avenue, Montclair, NJ between 1:00 pm and 4:00 pm on Sunday. See the houses bedecked in their holiday finery. These special tours incorporate the holiday traditions as well as the stories of the houses and the people who lived there. Begin at the Nathaniel Crane house where the less "foppery" reigned; then see the Crane House and Historic YWCA decorated by the Garden Club of Montclair spanning decorations from 1796 to 1965; stop in the exterior kitchen where food historian Carolina Capehart demonstrates 1800s hearth cooking on a real fire. Then move forward in history to the Charles Shultz House, featuring Molly Shultz's own collection of Christmas decorations and antique toys. 

This weekend, bring your kids for tours and activities designed for the family. Tours will talk about our different holiday traditions, story time, and ornament making! Family tours at 1:00, 2:00, and 3:00 pm. Free-will donation. For more information, call 973-744-1796 or visit www.montclairhistorical.org.

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Sunday, December 13 - Holmdel, Monmouth County
Blacksmith Demonstration
Children Friendly

On Sunday, visit Historic Longstreet Farm in Holmdel to take a step back in time to watch blacksmiths perform their craft. They will be shaping iron into everyday products. Blacksmiths were as common as an auto mechanic in towns and on farms of the 1890s. This free event runs from 1:00 - 3:00 pm. Historic Longstreet Farm is located at 44 Longstreet Road, Holmdel, NJ. For more information, call 732-946-3758 or visit www.monmouthcountyparks.com.

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Sunday, December 13 - Knowlton, Warren County
Christmas in the Country
Children Friendly



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Through Wednesday, December 30, 2015 - 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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Saturdays and Sundays through January 3, 2016 - 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 museum decorators include: Arts Council of Princeton, Contemporary Garden Club of Princeton, Dogwood Garden Club of Princeton, Garden Club of Princeton, Jim Davidge, Keris Tree Farm & Christmas Shop, Labyrinth Books, McCarter Theatre Center, Pinelands Preservation Alliance, Princeton Public Library, Princeton Symphony Orchestra, Stony Brook Garden Club, Vicki Trainer, and the West Trenton Garden Club.

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 $10, $8 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 December 17, 2015 - Trenton, Mercer County
John A. Roebling's Sons Company

At Ellarslie, the City Museum of Trenton, the second floor exhibit features art, artifacts and memorabilia from the world-renowned John A. Roebling's Sons Company, makers of steel and wire rope, most famous for the wire cable used in the suspension bridge over the East River between Manhattan and Brooklyn - the iconic Brooklyn Bridge.

The John A. Roebling's Sons Company, the largest employer in Trenton and a world leader in the construction of suspension bridges had its beginnings when John Roebling started making wire rope in 1841 in Saxonburg, Pennsylvania, and moved his factory to Trenton in 1848. His sons built the steel and wire mill and town of Roebling, NJ, in 1905. In 1953, the family sold the Trenton and Roebling plants to the Colorado Fuel and Iron Company (CF&I). CF&I closed the Trenton plants in 1973 and the Roebling, NJ, plant in 1974.

As the largest employer in Trenton for many decades, John A. Roebling's Sons Company had a major impact on the city and its workers and citizens. It had an international reputation for wire and wire rope making and bridge building, and its wire was used in hundreds if not thousands of industrial, commercial and consumer products.

The business was owned by four generations of the Roebling family over 112 years, a remarkable and rare achievement. John A. Roebling was the world's foremost builder of suspension bridges in the 19th century and his bridges spanned major rivers when people said it couldn't be done. His son Washington A. Roebling completed the most famous Roebling bridge, the Brooklyn Bridge, in 1883, and today it is an iconic national landmark.

The Roebling Company built suspension bridge cables for many bridges over the next 80+ years, from Canada to South America, including the George Washington Bridge connecting New York and New Jersey and the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco.

The Roebling Company manufactured wire rope for many other uses - elevators, cable cars, tramways, airplanes, shipping, mining, construction and ski lifts - and it made wire for  electrical lines, telegraphs and telephones, wire cloth and screens, and pre-stressed concrete.

The exhibit includes five large paintings from the Roebling Company's exhibit at the 1939 New York World's Fair depicting the Brooklyn and George Washington Bridges and interior factory scenes. These paintings are part of the museum's collection but are rarely exhibited.

The exhibit includes a bronze plaque from the 1933 Chicago World's Fair that commemorates the Skyride, an innovative and popular ride at the fair that the Roebling Company helped engineer and for which it supplied the wire ropes. Also on display from the museum's collection but rarely seen are three boards showing dozens of types of electrical wire made by the Roebling Company. Artifacts in the display will include sections of wire rope, tools, artwork depicting Roebling bridges, and wooden forms used to make parts for the company's machinery, as well as advertisements, photos, books and company catalogs

The exhibit was curated by Richard Willinger, Chair of the Museum Society's Collections Management Committee. Items are being loaned to the exhibit by the Roebling Museum in Roebling, NJ, and several individuals.

Talks and a tour of remaining buildings of the Roebling complex in Trenton will be conducted by Clifford W. Zink, the foremost expert on the Roebling family and company who authored the book The Roebling Legacy. Ellarslie is located in Cadwalader Park in Trenton, NJ. Visit www.ellarslie.org for dates and times.

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Through December 31, 2015 - Ridgewood, Bergen County
"Hemlines" Exhibit

The Ridgewood Historical Society and the Schoolhouse Museum are pleased to announce their new exhibit, Hemlines, open through December 2015. This exhibit features women's hats, shoes, handbags, jewelry, furs, wedding attire, and fabulous dresses from 1900 to 1969. Hemlines will run through the end of July. The Schoolhouse Museum is open Thursdays and Saturdays from 1:00 - 3:00 pm and Sundays from 2:00 - 4:0 pm. Hemlines is a "must see" exhibit for anyone interested in fashion! The Schoolhouse Museum is located at 650 East Glen Avenue, Ridgewood, NJ. For more information, call 201-447-3242 or visit www.ridgewoodhistoricalsociety.org.

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Through December 31, 2015 - Morristown, Morris County
Morristown: 1865-2015: Identity, Tradition and Enterprise

Morristown once comprised territory stretching from Mendham to Chatham until 1865 when, amidst the chaos of the Civil War, mysterious forces acted to separate it from Morris Township.

The Morristown & Morris Township Library invites you to explore an exhibit that details the lives of those who came to Morristown seeking wealth, redemption, conflict, or a new beginning. Utilizing rare and previously unseen archival materials, visitors will witness the development of the Green as the center of commerce, public affairs, and leisure, and how nearby houses of worship focused residents' spiritual and social lives.

Long a center of commerce and trade, early settlers struggled with the limitations of dirt roads until residents developed interstate canals, rail and trolley lines, and sophisticated highway systems. Changes in criminal behavior and law enforcement will be explored, as well as efforts to educate productive upstanding citizens through forward-thinking private and public schools.

In addition to the generations of innovators and immigrants who built Morristown's many businesses and infrastructure, we will take a look at those who celebrated cultural and religious events, grieved over shared disaster and commemorated war dead, and fought to make Morristown a place where everyone could gather in peace.

The exhibit will be on display through December 31 and is sponsored by a grant from the New Jersey Historical Commission and by funding from the Friends of the Library. The Morristown and Morris Township Library is located at 1 Miller Road, Morristown, NJ. For more information, call the Library’s North Jersey History & Genealogy Center at 973-538-3473 or visit www.jfpl.org/NJHistoryHome.cfm.

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Through December 31, 2015 - Ocean Township, Monmouth County
Ocean Township High School at 50

Early in September 1965, the doors of Ocean Township High School (OTHS) opened for the first time. It was a momentous day - the culmination of an impassioned campaign and a turning point for both Ocean Township and Asbury Park, the district that up to then had educated most of the township's teens.

Fifty years later, almost to the day, a mini-exhibit opened at the Eden Woolley House commemorating the milestone. "OTHS at 50," uses photographs, press clippings, and artifacts to demonstrate how the school's history mirrors five decades of social and political change.

The campaign for a high school:
Ocean Township's commitment to education is long standing. Between 1784 and 1960, it built at least nine schools. None was a high school.

Graduating eighth graders had a choice:
Asbury Park or Long Branch. Most chose Asbury. By 1962 Ocean students at Asbury High outnumbered city students 713 to 558. Ocean was booming and more than 1,000 high school-age students were projected by 1966. Asbury High, on split session since 1959, was already overcrowded. Something had to be done.

Asbury asked Ocean to sign a 20-year contract with the city as a condition for its undertaking a building expansion. Ocean refused. There was talk of regionalization, at first rejected and later revisited by the city. But it was too late. A full-blown campaign for an Ocean Township high school, spearheaded by the PTAs, was underway. On June 12, 1962, by a nearly 3-to-1 margin, the voters of Ocean approved a $2,969,000 bond to built their own school.

OTHS changes with the times:
Ocean High opened in 1965 without a senior class. Ocean seniors had returned to Asbury to graduate with their class. The next year, OTHS held its first graduation and published its first yearbook, The Sandpiper.

A look through almost a half century of yearbooks reveals more than changing hair styles and hemlines. Here's a sample:
* In the 1960s, Industrial Arts were just for boys, Home Economics, just for girls (who also have a "Homemaking Club").
* Title IX (prohibiting discrimination in federally funded programs) shaped the 1970s: for the first time girls had golf, tennis, and soccer teams; girls fixed cars, boys baked cakes.
* The technology revolution is evident. Keypunch machines of the 1970s give way to desktops in the late 1980s and electronics redefine the classroom in the new millennium.

Proof of the pudding:
In recent years, OTHS has made its share of "best high school" lists. Its own list of notable alums is impressive: Academy Award, Emmy, and Pulitzer Prize winners; distinguished educators, journalists, authors, and scientists; a fashion designer, a network news anchor, innovative entrepreneurs, and more.

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 January 6, 2016 - Woodbury, Gloucester County
Gloucester Abbey: Downton Style Fashions Exhibit

Gloucester Abbey: Downton Style Fashions is currently on display at the exhibit at the Gloucester County Historical Society Museum in Woodbury, New Jersey. The exhibit will conclude on January 6, 2016. This remarkable exhibit features ladies’ fashions from the society's collection from the time period covered by the popular PBS Masterpiece Theater series Downton Abbey. Over 100 vintage dresses/ensembles from the museum’s collection dating from 1910 through the 1930s are showcased, including period wedding gowns. Also on display are ladies accessories, including hats, shoes, purses, jewelry, and lingerie. Don’t miss this fantastic exhibit!

The Gloucester County Historical Society Museum hours are Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 1:00 - 4:00 pm, and the last Sunday of the month from 2:00 - 5:00 p.m. Private tours may be booked for days/times other than our regular public hours. Adult admission $5; children 6-18 years $1; children under 6 free. The Gloucester County Historical Society Museum is located at 58 N. Broad Street, Woodbury, NJ 08096. For more information, call 856-848-8531 or visit www.rootsweb.com/~njgchs.

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Through March 4, 2016 - Toms River, Ocean County
All Aboard, Ocean County!

Don't miss the newest exhibition at the Ocean County Historical Society, 26 Hadley Avenue, Toms River, NJ. "All Aboard! A Brief History of Ocean County Railroads and Stations" will be on display through March 4, 2016, 10:00 am - 3:30 pm, Tuesday through Friday and the first Saturday of each month, 1:00 - 4:00 pm.

Learn about the golden years from the 1880s to the 1920s, when six railroads were established and thrived, dotting Ocean County towns with stations, turntables, wyes, and roundhouses. View replicas of trains of the Central RR of NJ, Pennsylvania RR, The Blue Comet, the Tuckerton RR, and the Doodle Bug Car on the New Egypt line. Authentic artifacts and historic photographs of stations that were centers for community activities, as well as transportation of passengers and freight, make this exhibit a must-see! For more information, visit www.oceancountyhistory.org.

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Through June 26, 2016 - Piscataway, Middlesex County
The Icons of American Culture: History of New Jersey Diners Exhibit
Children Friendly

When was the last time you ate at a diner? If you are like millions of New Jerseyans, the answer is not too long ago. Dubbed “the land of diners,” New Jersey has forged a unique relationship with these casual eateries. Stainless steel, neon, and menus that go on for days are part of the Garden State landscape. Come explore their rich history with us! This seven-room exhibit tells the story of some of the of the Garden State’s most iconic eateries. This exhibit runs from April 12, 2015 - June 26, 2016 and is free of charge.

The exhibit is open Tuesday – Friday from 1:00 – 4:00 pm and Sundays from 1:00 – 4:00 pm. Closed Mondays, Saturdays, and Holidays. The Cornelius Low House Museum is located at 1225 River Road, Piscataway, NJ. For more information, call 732-745-4177 or visit www.co.middlesex.nj.us.

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

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