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Monday, August 8, 2016

SEPTEMBER NOW AVAILABLE: WASHINGTON XING TOUR, TALKS AND MORE!

SEPTEMBER KICKS OFF FOR THE 300TH WITH A BANG!  WHAT BETTER WAY TO LEARN THE HISTORY OF HUNTERDON DURING THE AMERICAN REVOLUTIONARY WAR THAN TO ACTUALLY WALK IN THE STEPS OF GENERAL WASHINGTON HIMSELF! On SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 10TH, join parks expert Peter Osborne for a walk thru history as we tour both sides of the Delaware River in the two Washington Crossing State Parks.  Peter Osborne is the author of a two volume history of both sides of the river, "Where Washington Once Led: A History of New Jersey's Washington Crossing State Park," and "No Spot in this Far Land is More Immortalized:  A History of Pennsylvania's Washington Crossing State Park." We start, as did our favorite General, in Bucks County, Pennsylvania and end in what was Hunterdon (now Mercer) County, New Jersey.  But we're going by foot, not boat; in gorgeous September, not in snowy December; and having a lovely 3 course luncheon -- certainly not in the style of Washington's army!  Here are the details:

If the weather is lovely (as we hope it will be) we recommend you park on the Jersey side along the Delaware River in the park's parking lot and cross the bridge by foot (if you've never driven across this bridge, it's a little hairy to say the least!).  If you wish to limit your walking (or you go to far and start to cross the bridge), park in the Visitor's Center parking lot in Pennsylvania's side.  

We will meet at the Pennsylavania Washington Crossing State Park Visitor Center at 10 am for a full guided tour of the buildings where Washington walked including the McConkey House where Washington slept the night before the famous crossing.

At 11:30, we'll head over to the famous Washington Crossing Inn for a catered 3 course lunch and a talk by Peter Osborne about the history of the two state parks.  After salad, you'll have your choice of 3 entrees (selection must be made at time of reservation):  Salmon Oreganatta (a filet of slamon with oregano seasoned bread crumbs and lemon wine sauce), Stuffed Pork Loin (oven roasted stuffed loin of pork with spinach, roasted peppers and fontina cheese with a port wine mushroom demi-glace), or a vegetarian option (Chef's special yumminess).  Dessert and coffee or tea follows.  A cash bar will be open throughout to make your Saturday festive!

At 1:30, for those of you who have Washington's spirit and his men's drive, we'll continue our tour, walk across the bridge to see what Washington saw (sort of), and then drive our cars (feel free to march on -- it's about a 20 minute walk) and meet at the NJ Visitor Center (drive thru the light, across Route 29, straight up the hill and make a left into the Park and past the main gate.  Second left takes you to the Visitor Center).  We'll take a 5 minute walk to the Johnson Ferry House and spend some time looking at the house, artifacts and kitchen garden.  From there, we'll head back to the Visitors Center, sit thru their excellent 30 minute movie and look at the 500+ artifacts in the collections -- really good stuff!  
LIMITED TO 40 -- BOOK AND PAY EARLY!  WWW.HUNTERDON300TH.ORG OR CALL US AT (908) 788-2030 TO ORDER TICKETS.

$30 PER PERSON -- includes lunch, gratuity and entrance fees to all buildings and exhibits on both sides of the river -- MUST BE RECEIVED WITHIN THREE BUSINESS DAYS OF YOUR RESERVATION.  Checks payable and mailed to The Hunterdon 300TH, 3 Chorister Place, Flemington, NJ 08822.  Please mark event in your check's memo line AND your lunch entree choice.  This is a value that can't be beat!

 ON TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 13TH, CHARLES "CHIP" RIDDLE WILL TELL THE STORY ABOUT THE POTTERSTOWN SKIRMISH.  Chip taught high school Social Studies for 38 years and took a special interest in Hunterdon County during the American Revolution.  The Potterstown Skirmish took place in September of 1777 -- beginning in the area of what is today Route 22 in Readington Township around where the Spinning Wheel Diner stands.  Three groups of Tories were trying to reach Staten Island and join the New Jersey Volunteers.  They were discovered and chased to Piscataway where they were captured, put on trial and thirty-five were sentenced to hang.  FREE.  RESERVATIONS RECOMMENDED. Hunterdon County Library Main Branch.  7 pm Refreshments follow.

HERE'S A BIG TREAT:  

TOUR AND LECTURE, SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 17 AT 10 AM: JUNE 24, 1776: THE LOYALISTS WHO ATTACKED CAPTAIN JONES" & VOUGHT TOUR:  As Hunterdon County celebrates the 240th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, many people do not recognize what Patriots risked to take up arms against a tyrannical Parliament and King. Much of New Jersey, including Hunterdon County, was divided over the War for Independence. Patriots were a distinct minority of the population, outnumbered by those who remained neutral or were loyal British Americans. Before Independence was even declared, on June 24, 1776, Loyalists from Allen & Turner’s iron works and local farmers attacked Patriot militia captain Thomas Jones at his tavern (in Clinton Township). In November 1776, after British and Hessian troops captured New York, they chased Washington’s defeated men across the new state from Fort Lee to Trenton. Captain Jones helped assemble boats used by Washington’s troops to escape across the Delaware. Many of the men who had attacked Jones with clubs in June now joined the New Jersey Volunteers. These were the Loyalist troops with green coats who served alongside British red coats in major battles at Monmouth and Staten Island and in forage raids into New Jersey.
Who were those Hunterdon men who eft their homes to join the Sixth Battalion and what was their fate during and after the war? The Sixth Battalion, New Jersey Volunteers fought under Captain Joseph Lee from the Union Iron Works and Lieutenant John Vought, a prominent local farmer. John Vought’s father built their family house, which stands on Grayrock Road, with its rare ‘wattle and daub’ decorative plaster ceilings and full attic which may have housed the Vought family’s two slaves. This precious artifact from the American Revolution is currently being restored.
In a presentation developed especially for Hunterdon County’s celebration of the Declaration of Independence, noted military historian and author Todd Braisted explores the fate of those Hunterdon County Loyalists who attacked Captain Jones that night in 1776. After Todd’s talk you will have a rare opportunity to tour the Vought House, a Revolutionary War Loyalist homestead (not-yet open to the public). Reimagine history through the lives of individuals, their consequential choices and experiences. Explore the fabric of mid-18thCentury life in this unusual stone home. Come see our unique serpentine ceiling and the progress of restoration! 
This ticketed event is free but requires registration.  Donations gratefully accepted before, during or after the tour to support the restoration of the Vought House.
Talk & Tour Parking:
Clinton Township Middle School
34 Grayrock Rd, Clinton, NJ 08809
Refreshments Follow

TWO CONSECUTIVE SUNDAYS, SEPTEMBER 18TH AND SEPTEMBER 25TH, HUNTERDON HERITAGE DAYS - MUSEUM OPEN HOUSE TOURS
Details to be anounced.  Many Hunterdon Museums will be participating 
1-5pm

TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 20TH AT 7 PM, HISTORY MAPPING: "WASHINGTON SLEPT HERE" with Marilyn Cummings.  The telling of 18th-century history using amazing 21st-century technology.  A nutshell chronology of the events of the American Revolution as told from the perspective of the common and not-so-common people directly involved… and highlighting some of the captivating places George Washington actually slept!  With a decidedly non-military slant, this tracing of people, places, and events during the War will appeal to a wide audience, both men and women as well as older students.
Main Branch County Library  7pm FREE; reservations recommended.  Refreshments following.


ON SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 24th – THE MOUNT AMWELL PROJECT PRESENTS THE ANNUAL CEMETERY CEMENER, "REST IN PEACE?  NOT IN NEW JERSEY!  PRESERVING AND PROTECTINGAMERICAN HEROES' GRAVES -- A REVOLUTIONARY IDEA!"  Did you know that there is not statewide law that preserves and protects graves in New Jersey?!  Our great heroes from the American Revolution, the Civil War, and even of our most recent battles rest uneasy as there is nothing that prevents a developer or land owner from removing or destroying the final resting places of our ancestors or even ourselves in the future.

Registration opens at 9:15 am the Main Branch of the Hunterdon County Library, Route 12, Flemington, NJ for a provocative two part seminar in which the protection of graves is explored.  The day's sessions begin at 9:30 am and end at 4:30 pm.  After a keynote address by Lance Ashworth, President of the Fishkill Supply Depot preservation project, the morning session is full of informative talks about the lack of legal protections for graveyards or graves.  Real case histories of lost or threatened Revolutionary War graves in Hunterdon County will be discussed.

At 1 pm, after a lunch break, we will explore what constitutes important criteria to legally protect graves and work in both small teams to hone ideas into legislative recommendations to get our historical graves finally protected and our war heroes resting in peace.

A $10 fee covers both morning and afternoon sessions, snacks and lunch.  You are invited to come for either session or stay for both.  Legislators, their aides, elected official and planning board members are strongly encouraged to attend.

To register, please go to the Mount Amwell Project website at www.mtamwell.org.

DON'T FORGET -- THE HUNTERDON 300TH WILL BE AT THE COUNTY'S DEER PATH CONCERT SERIES FOR THE NEXT TWO WEEKS (WEATHER PERMITTING) WITH SOME OF OUR NEW, UNIQUE MERCHANDISE AND WE'LL BE IN THE COMMUNITY TENT AT THE HUNTERDON AGRICULTURAL AND 4H FAIR FROM AUGUST 24TH THRU AUGUST 28TH!  OUR GREAT, SAGE GREEN T-SHIRT WITH THE MAP OF HUNTERDON COUNTY IN 1776 IS A HUGE HIT -- BUY YOURS NOW WHILE WE STILL HAVE A LARGE SELECTION OF SIZES!





Wednesday, August 3, 2016

300th NEWS: WHAT'S UP THIS SUMMER? PRESERVING AND PROTECTING HUNTERDON'S HERITAGE

WE ARE BUSY WORKING ON UPDATING OUR FALL AND WINTER CALENDAR OF FABULOUS EVENTS, TOURS AND TALKS ABOUT HUNTERDON'S ROLE DURING THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION.  GET READY TO SCORE TOUR TICKETS FOR OUR FABULOUS DAY LONG TREK AND LUNCHEON AT THE WASHINGTON CROSSING INN ON SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 10TH, BUS TOURS TO WHISK YOU AROUND BOTH SOUTH AND NORTH COUNTY TO VIEW REVOLUTIONARY WAR GRAVES (NOVEMBER 5TH AND 12TH), amazing lectures on both the Potterstown and Geary's Ridge Skirmishes, a hard cider festival with grave yard tours, a British High Tea and more (now there's a combo -- maybe a fiddler as the moonrises!?), the annual Cemetery Cemenar and so much more!  Ticketing for September is going to be out any day and YOU'LL be the first to know!

Meanwhile, if you are looking for any of our fabulous merchandise including our new t-shirt or our beautiful American Flags of the Revolution blank note cards, you can find us at the Hunterdon Agricultural and 4H Fair this month located in the Community Tent.  We are also going to be taking pre-sale orders for our new, 24 month (YES, that's TWO years!) calendar of artist Dan Campanelli's renderings of Hunterdon 18th century tavern signs (companion lecture on November 1st).  100% of the proceeds of all of our sales go to underwrite the Hunterdon 300th's programs and lectures.  

HERITAGE AND HISTORICAL HAPPENINGS AROUND THE COUNTY IN AUGUST

DONATIONS BEING SOUGHT AND SAVE THE DATE!  1759 Vought House Second Annual Country Auction Coming October 1st Donations Needed for Fundraiser:  The 1759 Vought House is planning its second annual benefit auction on its grounds—and is hoping YOU will want to participate.  Last year’s auction was a super success, and a repeat on Saturday, October 1st, is planned.  Please check your garage and attic for items you no longer need, but that could be someone else’s treasure on the big day. And plan to come and bid on new items for yourself!

Friends and neighbors of this future Clinton Township Loyalist homestead museum have begun donating quality items from their homes, attics or garages for the “Confiscation” Auction. 

The event is inspired by a real “Confiscation” auction in 1778, when victorious American Patriots confiscated the goods and property of the defeated Vought family, who had remained loyal to the British king during the Revolution.  So anything that could be in a rapidly-abandoned fully-working home (the unhappy Voughts fled and resettled in Nova Scotia) is fair game for this auction.  This includes china, toys, hooked rugs, costume jewelry, lighting, tools, and decorative objects.  This is a wonderful opportunity to clean house—or to find treasures at the October auction!

The October 1st auction will start at 9:30 a.m. (previews) and 10:30 a.m. (auction) at the 1759 Vought House, 34 Grayrock Road, Annandale (next to the Clinton Township Middle School).  If you have auction-ready items you would like to drop off or have picked up, please contact Kerry at 908-447-2006.

All proceeds benefit the 1759 Vought House.  Check their website: www.1759VoughtHouse.org

FREE CONCERTS AT DEER PATH PARK - THURSDAY IN AUGUST UNTIL THE FAIR!  ALL START AT 7 PM.  AUGUST 4:  THE EAGLES TRIBUTE BAND; AUGUST 11TH:  BILLY JOEL TRIBUTE; AUGUST 18TH:  THE AMISH OUTLAWS (WE'VE GOT TO GO JUST CUZ THE NAME IS SO COOL!).... LOOK FOR THE 300TH THERE -- WE MAY SHOW UP HAWKING OUR MERCHANDISE AND UPDATED CALENDAR OF EVENTS!

FREE WALKING TOUR OF HISTORIC MAIN STREET, FLEMINGTON, 10:30 AM -- BEGINNING AT THE HISTORIC COURTHOUSE:  There is a proposal before the Flemington Redevelopment Committee and Borough Council to demolish the Union Hotel and three other 19th century major structures that will change the streetscape in Flemington forever.  Flemington's Main and side streets contain one of the highest percentages of original 19th century architecture in the state of NJ.... come and learn about the importance of this architecture from historical experts.  Like the Joni Mitchell song says "They paved paradise and put up a parking lot with a pink hotel, a boutique and a swinging hot spot; don't it always seem to go that you don't know what you've got till it's gone? They paved paradise and put up a parking lot."  Come and learn what you got before it's gone.....

HUNTERDON COUNTY AGRICULTURAL AND 4-H FAIR -- FROM WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 24TH THRU SUNDAY AUGUST 28TH:  South County Park.  Rides, food, attractions, vendors, entertainment, livestock, tractor pulls, and the Hunterdon 300th in the Community Tent!  What else could you want for the end of the summer?!?