Thursday, March 28, 2019

NJ Weekend Historical Happenings: 3/30/19 - 3/31/19

 New Jersey Weekend Historical Happenings
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Saturday, March 30 - Madison, Morris County
Textiles and Technology Demonstrations and Lecture

On Saturday from 1:00 - 4:00 pm, the Museum of Early Trades & Crafts (METC) will offer loom demonstrations with handweaver Sally Orgren. This is part of our ongoing programming in connection with our current exhibit, Narrative Threads: New Jersey Quilts and Textiles. We will explore the concept of computers and how they relate to textiles. Our presenter, Sally Orgren, who is also editor of Shuttle Spindle & Dyepot magazine will provide several multi-shaft looms and share how textiles and technology have gone hand-in-hand for centuries. See how number sequences become intricate patterns in cloth. Sit down at a loom, throw a shuttle, and make cloth! The presentation "Textiles & Technology" at 2:00 pm will cover the history of loom technology, weaving basics, and contemporary applications in performance textiles, architecture, and pharmaceuticals.

Cost: Included with museum admission; free for METC Members. The Museum of Early Trades & Crafts is located at 9 Main Street, Madison, NJ. Register online. For more information, call 973-377-2982 ext. 13 or visit

Saturday, March 30 - Princeton, Mercer County
Princeton University Eating Clubs Tour

Join author Clifford Zink on a walking tour of Princeton University’s majestic eating clubs. Learn about the architecture, origins, and development of the sixteen Classical and Gothic-style clubhouses, which date from 1895 to 1928. Participants will also have the unique opportunity to tour the inside of three clubs: Charter Club, Cannon Club, and Tower Club.

Copies of Zink’s 2017 book, The Princeton Eating Clubs, will be available for sale at a discounted price at the tour. 

Admission: $20 per person. The tour begins at Colonial Club, 40 Prospect Avenue, Princeton, NJ. Tour begins at 10:00 am and ends at 12:30 pm. Space is limited. For more information and to reserve tickets, call 609-921-6748 or visit

Saturday, March 30 - Hopewell Township, Mercer County
Children Friendly Event

Lambs, newly hatched chicks, and baby pigs are among the dozens of new faces you will find at Howell Living History Farm these days, as well as a few colonies of bees.

Visitors to the 130-acre working farm will be able to meet these animals up close during the farm’s annual Lambing Day. Throughout the day, farmers will be present to introduce visitors to babies born this spring, as well as to other animals. Visitors to the main barn will be able to meet the farm’s workhorses and oxen. Animal visiting hours are 11:00 am - 3:00 pm.

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

Saturday, March 30 - Trenton, Mercer County
If These Stones Could Talk: Reading and Book Signing

The Trent House Association welcomes Elaine Buck and Beverly Mills, authors of the recently released If These Stones Could Talk: African American Presence in the Hopewell Valley, Sourland Mountain and Surrounding Region in New Jersey for a presentation and reading, followed by discussion and book signing. The program will be from 1:00 - 3:00 pm on Saturday at the Trent House Museum in Trenton.

If These Stones Could Talk brings fresh light to a forgotten corner of American history that begins in a small cemetery in central New Jersey. Authors of If These Stones Could Talk Elaine Buck and Beverly Mills started their journey through the past as two middle aged African American women with busy but quiet lives. Lifelong friends, they were both board members of the Stoutsburg Cemetery Association, a cemetery that is nestled in New Jersey’s Sourland Mountain region. The Stoutsburg Cemetery was purchased by three Black men in the early 19th century as a location to bury Blacks with honor and dignity in the early 19th century. When Buck and Mills got an unexpected call for help, what began as a search through the woods for gravestone markers soon had them rummaging through land deeds and making relentless calls to state officials, archeologists and reporters.

Elaine Buck is a founder of the Stoutsburg Sourland African American Museum and Trustee of the Stoutsburg Cemetery Association, a historic cemetery for people of African descent located in the Sourland Mountains in Hopewell, New Jersey. Beverly Mills, also a founder of the Stoutsburg Sourland African American Museum and Trustee of the Stoutsburg Cemetery Association, co-authored with Elaine If These Stones Could Talk, based on over a decade of research on the contribution of the African American population who lived in the Sourland Mountain and surrounding region.

Tickets are $10 for Trent House Association Members and $15 for general admission, with 50% of the proceeds donated to the Stoutsburg Sourland African American Museum. Refreshments will be served. Tickets ca be purchased at the door. Ample free parking. The Trent House Museum is located at 15 Market Street in Trenton, NJ adjacent to the Hughes Justice Complex. For more information, call 609-989-0087 or visit

Saturday, March 30 - Westfield, Union County
"The War in the Westfield Area - Retreating Redcoats Ravage the Countryside"

At the Westfield Public Library, on Saturday at 2:00 pm, Robert A. Mayers will present "The War in the Westfield Area - Retreating Redcoats Ravage the Countryside” based on his new book, Revolutionary New Jersey: Forgotten Towns and Crossroads of the American Revolution.

Mayers thrives on discovering facts about the American Revolution not found in works of earlier writers. The descendant of Patriot soldier, Corporal John Allison, the American Revolution is personal to him.

Visits to Revolutionary War sites, combined with research into original documents and oral accounts, help Mayers bring history alive. His audiences comment that they regret having tuned out history when they were in school. Mayers' presentations are for everyone--not just hardcore history buffs.

Mayers is an active member of ten historical societies and a frequent contributor to their publications. His service as a combat officer in both the Navy and the Marine Corps provides him with a deeper perspective into battles depicted in his work. Mayers is a graduate of Rutgers University and served as an adjunct professor at Seton Hall University

Mayers published books include The War Man, the biography of a soldier, who fought all eight years of the Revolutionary War, The Forgotten Revolution, and Searching for Private Yankee Doodle – Washington’s SoldiersFor more information, visit

Admission to the presentation is free. The Westfield Public Library is located at 550 E. Broad Street, Westfield NJ.

Saturday - Sunday, March 30 - 31 - Lower Township, Cape May County
Climb the Cape May Lighthouse
Children Friendly

On Saturday, the Cape May Lighthouse, Oil House and Museum Shop reopens for the season. The lighthouse is an 1859 structure with 199 steps to the watch gallery for a panoramic view of the Jersey Cape and Atlantic Ocean. For those who choose not to climb, the Oil House contains a fully-accessible Visitors' Orientation Center and a Museum Shop stocked with maritime accessories and lighthouse memorabilia. Open 12:00 noon - 3:00 pm on Saturday. Cape May Point State Park is located in Lower Township, NJ. Admission to the Visitors' Orientation Center and the ground floor of the lighthouse is free. Tower admission is $8 for adults, $5 for children (ages 3-12). Sponsored by the Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts & Humanities (MAC). For more information, call 609-884-5404 or 800-275-4278 or visit

Saturday - Sunday, March 30 - 31 - Cape May, Cape May County
Emlen Physick Estate Tour
Family Friendly Tour

Take a guided tour of Cape May's Emlen Physick Estate, the magnificent Stick Style mansion attributed to renowned Victorian architect Frank Furness. A tour of the 15 beautifully restored rooms gives you a glimpse into the lifestyle of this Victorian-era Cape May family. Physick Estate Tours take approximately 45 minutes and end with a visit to the 1876 Carriage House where you can see the current exhibit in the Carroll Gallery. Tours will start at 11:15 am on Saturday and 12:30 pm on Sunday. Admission is $12 for adults, $8 for children (ages 3-12). Tickets can be purchased at the Emlen Physick Estate, 1048 Washington Street, Cape May, NJ. Sponsored by the Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts & Humanities (MAC). For more information and to reserve tickets, call 609-884-5404 or 800-275-4278 or visit

Saturday - Sunday, March 30 - 31 - Cape May, Cape May County
Physick Estate Scavenger Hunt
Family Friendly

Have an adventure the whole family will enjoy at the 1879 Emlen Physick Estate! Use our map to explore the grounds and find the answers to questions about the Physick family and life in Victorian times on this educational scavenger hunt. Turn in your answer sheet at the Carriage House Museum Shop and receive a prize!

$5 includes map and clues. Maps and clues available at the Hill House office or the Carriage House Visitors Center at the Emlen Physick Estate. The Emlem 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 and to reserve tickets, call 609-884-5404 or 800-275-4278 or visit

Saturday - Sunday, March 30 - 31 - Cape May, Cape May County
Cape May Historic District Trolley Tour

Enjoy a 45 minute guided tour with entertaining and enlightening stories about the nation's oldest seaside resort and how it survived. Accessible trolley available with advance notification. Tour begins at the Washington Street Mall Information Booth. Tours begin and end at the Washington Street Mall Information Booth.

Adults $12 and children (ages 3-12) $8. Tours on Saturday at 10:30 am and Sunday at 11:45 am. Sponsored by the Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts & Humanities (MAC). For more information and to reserve tickets, call 609-884-5404 or 800-275-4278 or visit

Saturday - Sunday, March 30 - 31 - Lower Township, Cape May County
World War II Tower Lookout Museum and Memorial Open
Family Friendly

Fire Control Tower No. 23 on Sunset Boulevard is New Jersey's last freestanding World War II tower, part of the immense Harbor Defense of the Delaware system known as Fort Miles. After an award-winning restoration in 2009, visitors can climb to the 6th floor spotting gallery while learning about the homeland defense efforts during World War II. The ground floor of the tower, the All Veterans Memorial, and boardwalk interpretive panels are fully accessible. Open Saturday and Sunday from 11:00 am - 3:00 pm. Admission is $6 for adults, $3 for children (ages 3-12) (one child free with paying adult). The World War II Lookout Tower is located on Sunset Boulevard in Lower Township, near Cape May Point. Sponsored by the Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts & Humanities (MAC). For more information, call 609-884-5404 or 800-275-4278 or visit

Sunday, March 31 - North Plainfield, Somerset County
Ere the Shadows Fade: New Jersey’s Civil War Era Photographers

On Sunday at 2:00 pm, Friends of Vermeule Mansion and the Fleetwood Camera Museum will host a lecture by Gary D. Saretzky entitled ‘Ere the Shadows Fade: New Jersey’s Civil War Era Photographers. In a slide lecture, Mr. Saretzky will discuss New Jersey photographers who were active during the Civil War era such as George E. Cook of Newark and Theodore Gubelman of Jersey City.

Mr. Saretzky is a compelling speaker who lectures extensively throughout the state. He has been the archivist for Monmouth County since 1994, and has taught history of photography at Mercer Community College from 1977 to 2012. He has also served as a consultant on archives and photographic conservation to more than 50 repositories.

The Vermeule Mansion is located at 614 Greenbrook Road, North Plainfield, NJ. This lecture is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.

Sunday, March 31 - Princeton, Mercer County
Historic Princeton Walking Tour
Children Friendly Tour

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 begin in front of the Bainbridge House, 158 Nassau Street, Princeton, NJ. Tour begins at 2:00 pm and ends at 4:00 pm. Walk up ticket sales are cash only; guides cannot provide change. Space is limited. For more information and to reserve tickets, call 609-921-6748 or visit

Sunday, March 31 - Sandy Hook, Monmouth County
Holly Forest Walk

Some of the oldest American Holly trees in the country can be found among Sandy Hook’s nearly 300 acres of holly forest. We will hike through the restricted 64-acre maritime forest area and get to see an undisturbed holly forest with some of its oldest, rarest, and largest trees. Waterproof footwear is recommended. Please call 732-872-5970 to make reservations. This event is FREE and begins at 4:00 pm and lasts approximately two hours. Meet at Spermaceti Cove, between Lots D & E. For more information, visit

Sunday, March 31 - Westfield, Union County
Maple Sugar Sunday
Children Friendly Event

The production of syrup and sugar from the sap of the maple tree was known in America long before the first European colonists arrived. The Native Americans taught the settlers how to collect the sap, and sugar making became one of the most important seasonal tasks of farm life.

The museum’s presenter will talk about the technique of maple sugaring, explaining how the maple sap rises and flows, how it is collected using wooden buckets and handmade spiles, and how sugar and syrup are made from the sap (please note that no tree will actually be tapped). Two presentations are scheduled, one at 2:30 pm and one at 3:30 pm, each lasting about one-half hour.

The museum will be open from 2:00 to 4:00 pm and includes tours of the fully restored circa 1740 farmhouse museum and authentic open-hearth cooking demonstrations. Members of the cooking committee will use early American recipes, colonial era cooking tools and seasonal foods. Admission is $4 for ages 13 and older, $3 for ages 3-12, and free age 2 and younger. The Miller-Cory House Museum is located at 614 Mountain Avenue, Westfield, NJ. For more informationcall 908-232-1776, e-mail, or visit

Sunday, March 31 -  Chatham, Morris County
You Would Have Known Them: Township Residents of the Past

On Saturday, the Chatham Township Historical Society welcomes Pat Wells as she presents "You Would Have Known Them: Township Residents of the Past." There will also be a new gallery exhibit opening. The program will take place at 2:00 pm at the Chatham Township Municipal Building, 58 Meyersville Road, Chatham, NJ.

Sunday, March 31 -  Piscataway, Middlesex County
Mid-Century New Jersey Exhibit Opening

Through Sunday, March 31 - East Amwell, Hunterdon County
Mary Ackerman Buckwalter Exhibit: 1918-2017
Family Friendly

Born in Paterson New Jersey, Mary spent the bulk of her adult life in Hunterdon County, raising a family while pursuing her artistic endeavors. She was educated at NYU (Washington Square Studios) and studied under area artists including, Sigmund Kozlo and Leo Russell. She spent nearly 50 years honing her craft here in Hunterdon mainly painting still life and landscapes. Taking a cue from both the New Hope School and PA Impressionists, her work reflects an influence from Pre-war European Impressionism but with an American aspect.

Mary exhibited throughout NJ and Eastern PA and was a member of the Hunterdon Art Center of Clinton. Her work has found permanent homes in the Hunterdon Medical Center, Hunterdon hospice, the County Seat in Flemington, and also The Three Bridges Public Library.

The East Amwell Historical Society and the Sourland Conservancy will present the Mary Ackerman Buckwalter Exhibit at the East Amwell Museum 1053 Old York Road, Ringoes, NJ. The opening reception will be held on March 15 at 7:00 pm. Admission to the East Amwell Museum and exhibit will be free and open to the public on weekends from 1:00 - 4:00 pm. The exhibit will be on display from March 9 through March 31, 2019. For more information, visit and

Through Sunday, April 14 - Cape May, Cape May County
Collecting History: Personal Collections of Cape May's African American Community
Family Friendly

Collecting is a lifelong passion for many individuals who hunt, preserve, and curate items of importance and interest. It's not just the object that holds curiosity, but the story it has to tell. Never before seen personal collections of dolls, stamps, postcards, hats, books, art, and pocket watches will be exhibited along with John Nash's collection. Mr. Nash was a beloved community historian whose dedication to collecting Cape May's African American history formed the basis for Center for Community Arts' Nash African American History Archives.

This exhibit will be held at the Carroll Gallery on the grounds of the Emlen Physick Estate. Admission to the exhibit is free. Visit for exhibit hours. The Emlem 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

Through June 2019 - Ocean Township, Monmouth County
"Wet as the Atlantic Ocean: Prohibition in New Jersey”

The 18th Amendment—the measure that made the manufacture, sale, or transport of alcoholic beverages a federal offense for the 13 years, 10 months, 19 days, and 17 hours of Prohibition—was repealed in 1933. It is the only Constitution Amendment ever to be undone. And its doing and undoing were the results of a tug-of-war between the “Wets” and the “Drys” that played out across the country.

A new exhibit opening to the public Sunday, in the Richmond Gallery of the Eden Woolley House reveals where New Jersey stood in that tug-of-war. “Wet as the Atlantic Ocean: Prohibition in NJ” brings the debates, glamour, and violence of the Roaring Twenties home.

How did it happen?
The prohibition debate had been argued across the country for nearly a century before the 18th Amendment outlawed alcohol nationwide. Maine passed the first state prohibition law in 1846 and by the Civil War, several other states had followed suit.

So what happened in the first decades of the next century to elevate debate into a campaign for a Constitutional Amendment—that took the fight national?

• Drunkenness was a real problem. The proliferation of saloons fueled a drinking culture, and between 1900 and 1913, beer and alcohol consumption soared. Women and families suffered.
• Women had been campaigning for abstinence since the early 1800s, By the turn of the century they were finding their voice, stridently advocating for the vote-— and increasingly for prohibition. Organizations like the Women’s Christian Temperance Union were gaining ground.
• Many Americans felt threatened by the influx of immigrants whose cultural norms around alcohol threatened prevailing white, Anglo-Saxon, Protestant values.
• On the global scene, the unthinkable carnage of the First World War and the alarming success of the Russian Revolution fueled a nostalgic longing for control and order.

Under these conditions, pro-prohibition sentiment grew. By 1919 more than half the country lived in dry states, counties, or towns. If the 18th Amendment were to be passed, it needed to happen before the 1920 census, the results of which would give greater power to the anti-prohibition cities.

The last state to Ratify
Ours was the last state to ratify the 18th amendment and it did so in 1922, two years after the measure was in effect. (Rhode Island and Connecticut never ratified.) We fought Prohibition in court. New Jersey joined Rhode Island in a losing challenge before the Supreme Court (1920). And we were back in 1931, when the Supreme Court overruled a New Jersey federal judge’s decision invalidating the 18th Amendment.

New Jersey’s Resistance
It’s no surprise, then, that Prohibition enforcement in New Jersey was lax. Local fishermen and boaters shuttled bootlegged liquor to shore from rum-running ships lined up just outside the legal limit. Speakeasies thrived with little risk of raid. The state underfunded enforcement. Corruption was rampant. Local police turned a blind eye. Even the teetotaling and incorruptible Ira Reeves, the man put in charge of federal enforcement in New Jersey, resigned after eight months and took up the anti-Prohibition cause!

This exhibit runs through June 2019. The Township of Ocean Historical Museum offers exhibits on the history of coastal Monmouth County and a full calendar of events. The Museum also houses a library and archive of local history. It is open, free of charge, 1:00 - 4:00 pm, Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursday, 7:00 - 9:00 pm Thursday evenings, and 1:00 - 4:00 pm the first and second Sundays of each month. The Township of Ocean Historical Museum is located at 703 Deal Road, Ocean, NJ. For more information, visit

Through June 2019 - Morristown, Morris County
Iconic Culture: From Little Black Dress to Bell Bottoms

Morris County Historical Society’s upcoming exhibit, Iconic Culture: From Little Black Dress to Bell Bottoms, promises to be a one-stop spot for a stroll down memory lane.

From the timeless designs of Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel to the trend-setting bell bottoms of Sonny and Cher, MCHS explores more than 50 years of cultural history through a retrospective featuring nearly 100 pieces from its historic textile collection. Iconic Culture will examine how changes in clothing styles mirrored the social climate of their time and the seminal moments and people who defined their decade – with a focus on New Jersey history.

In addition to the fashions, Iconic Culture will highlight cultural milestones in local, state, and national history that coincided with the Roaring 20s, Great Depression, World War II, Civil Rights Movement, and Vietnam Era.

This multimedia exhibit features music, television shows, and radio broadcasts. Visitors will also have an opportunity to share personal recollections about significant events, such as the assassination of President Kennedy.

The exhibit is available through Sunday, June 16, 2019. Morris County Historical Society is located at Acorn Hall, 68 Morris Avenue, Morristown, NJ and is open Wednesdays and Thursdays, 11:000 am - 4:00 pm and Sundays, 1:00 - 4:00 pm. Admission, which includes the exhibits and landscaped grounds, is $6 for adults, $5 for seniors, $3 for students, and is free for children under 12 and MCHS members. For more information, call 973-267-3465 or visit

Through November 11, 2019 - Woodbury, Gloucester County
War to End Wars: Centennial of WWI & Veterans’ Day

War to End Wars: Centennial of WWI & Veterans’ Day, our new exhibit at the Gloucester County Historical Society Museum, honors the centennial of World War I and its veterans.  Come view uniforms worn by local, youthful doughboys as well as original liberty bond and enlistment posters carefully preserved by our librarians for over one hundred years! The exhibit also honors veterans of all wars since World War I as Americans now celebrate the day the war ended as Veterans’ Day. The exhibit is now open and will run through Veterans’ Day. The exhibit will be open on Mondays, Wednesdays, & Fridays from 1:00 - 4:00 pm. The museum is also open on the last Sunday of each month September through April from 2:00 - 5:00 pm as well as Saturdays April 6 and May 4 from 10:00 am - 3:00 pm. Please visit for further details. The Gloucester County Historical Society Museum is located at 58 N. Broad Street, Woodbury, NJ. For more information, call 856-848-8531 or visit

Through December 2019 - Ridgewood, Bergen County
Here Comes The Bride - Chronicling Two Hundred Years of Wedding Customs & Traditions

Something old. Something new. Something borrowed. Something blue. Tossing the bouquet. Bride and Groom cake toppers. Putting a sixpence in your shoe. Where did these traditions originate? Why do we still honor them today? Please join us as we walk down the aisle and trace the history of Ridgewood’s wedding traditions.

The Schoolhouse Museum celebrates the opening of its current featured exhibit “Here Comes The Bride - Chronicling Two Hundred Years of Wedding Customs & Traditions.” This new exhibit features items dating from 1789-1989, showcasing many beautiful wedding gowns from the museum's collection - some of which have never been on exhibit before.

While at the museum, see the curio cabinet exhibit “50 Small Things with Big Histories.” The exhibits are open until December 2019 and are free to the public with donations suggested at the door. Museum hours are Thursdays and Saturdays from 1:00 - 3:00 pm and Sundays from 2:00 - 4:00 pm.

The Schoolhouse Museum is a historic one-room schoolhouse in Ridgewood, New Jersey, originally built in 1872, that has been turned into a gallery space which now houses the Ridgewood Historical Society. Entirely volunteer-run, the non-profit Historical Society presents annual exhibits, events and workshops in a community that values education, family and local and national history. The museum is located at 650 E Glen Avenue, Ridgewood, NJ.

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


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