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Newsletter Archives: Spring 2012

Newsletter Archives: Spring 2012

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Published by Morris County NJ
New Historic Site Markers Installed in Madison and Rockaway Township
Heritage Commission Awards History Grants
Changes at the Commission
Picatinny Arsenal Commemorates Historic Districts
The War of 1812 and George Macculloch’s Canal
Quips and Quotes from Morris County’s Past
IN MEMORIAM - Scott Shepherd and Sandra Fulda
New Historic Site Markers Installed in Madison and Rockaway Township
Heritage Commission Awards History Grants
Changes at the Commission
Picatinny Arsenal Commemorates Historic Districts
The War of 1812 and George Macculloch’s Canal
Quips and Quotes from Morris County’s Past
IN MEMORIAM - Scott Shepherd and Sandra Fulda

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Published by: Morris County NJ on Apr 27, 2012
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VOL. 34, NO. 1 Spring 2012
(see
 Historic Site Markers
on page 5)
N
ew historic site markers forthe Museum of Early Trades& Crafts in Madison and theHibernia Methodist Episcopal Churchin Rockaway Township have recentlybeen installed. The markers were de-
veloped and nanced by the Morris
County Heritage Commission, whichhas been instrumental in placing morethen 140 historical markers through-out the county since 1975.The Museum of Early Trades &
New Historic Site Markers Installed inMadison and Rockaway Township
Crafts (METC) was built as the JamesLibrary in 1900, a gift to the people ofMadison from philanthropist D. Willis
 Photo by Dan Beards
Heritage CommissionAwards History Grants
T
he Morris County Heritage Com-mission has awarded a total of$20,044 in re-grant funding toseven organizations in the county forGeneral Operating Support (GOS) andhistory projects through its history re-grant program.General Operating Support fundingfor the re-grant program was awardedto the Heritage Commission from theNew Jersey Historical Commission.The Heritage Commission re-grants the
funds to non-prot organizations based
in Morris County with collections orprogramming relating to the history ofthe county or the state.The Boonton Historical Society andMuseum received an award of $2,830for General Operating Support to coverinsurance costs. The Chatham Histori-cal Society was awarded funding in theamount of $3,142 to purchase an archi-val-quality storage cabinet, MaccullochHall was the recipient of a $2,485 grantfor the purchase of a museum-qualityvacuum cleaner and Preserve Grey-stone was awarded $1,650 to purchasea laptop and projector to present publicprogramming.The Rockaway Borough Histori-cal Committee was awarded $2,322in project grant funding to assist withcosts associated with an interpretivemarker and a historic building plaque.The Washington Township HistoricalSociety was awarded $2,615 toward thepurchase of conservation-quality blindsto protect the museum collection fromdamaging UV rays, and the Washing-ton Township Historic PreservationCommission was awarded $5,000 fora historic district planning consultantto develop restoration and renovation
(see
 History Grants
on page 2)
 
2
 
Commissioners’ Corner
W
e are so used to our historic sites being isolated local, countyor national park facilities that we often forget that the sweepof history isn’t packaged so neatly. The story of what really
happened crosses the articial administrative borders, and even geo
-political boundaries, that we see today.A case in point is the evolution of electrical telecommunications,which was brought to practicality in Morristown at the SpeedwellIron Works in 1837 by Alfred Vail and Samuel F. B. Morse. Thereare many world-changing implications from the work that tookplace at this invention facility, now a Morris County historic park:the birth of the telecommunications industry’s first incarnation
in the telegraph, the dots and dashes which were our rst digital
electronics, and the management of the data which was the birthof information technology. Over the next generation, an industrywas born and New Jersey grew to prominence as a high-tech center
with proximity to the nancial capital and end-users in New York.
In that next generation, a midwestern boy, not even born yetwhen Vail and Morse transmitted their first messages, grew upfascinated by the hacker culture of his era. His exceptional graspof the technology and inventive streak for envisioning improve-ments to electromechanical technologies drew the young man eastto the high-tech Silicon Valley of its day. First in Newark, then inMenlo Park, and by 1887 in West Orange, telegrapher/technolo-gist Thomas Alva Edison started with the technologies originallydeveloped at Speedwell and enhanced the “Invention Factory” con-cept to create many foundation technologies of our modern world.The West Orange facility in Essex County where Edison workedfor almost the last half-century of his life is now the Thomas Edi-son National Historic Park, a federal site located in our neighbor-ing county. But the sweep of technological history, and for thatmatter the revolution in communications that started at Speed-well, cannot be told only by looking at the isolated chapters thateach site preserves. This interconnected continuing story crossescounty lines and administrative government organizations.Recognizing this, the Heritage Commission has embarked on amission to cross-connect our technology-based historic site at Speed-well with the next generation embodied in the Edison story. We havebeen a catalyst to bring together the Morris County Parks and UnitedStates National Park Service stewards of these historically connectedplaces, to share technology tourism and to help archivists, research-ers, and visitors alike to see the common DNA which eventuallybuilt our contemporary culture. As the lesser known site, Speedwell
stands to benet from enhanced tourism sparked by the Edison site.But the Edison site will benet too from a greater understanding
that its own history really began in Morristown a generation earlier.
Larry Fast, chairman Morris County Heritage Commission
Changes at theCommission
M
iriam Morris of Flandershas been appointed to theMorris County HeritageCommission by the Board of Chosen
Freeholders for a ve-year term. Mrs.
Morris has been a Morris County resi-dent for over thirty years. An architectby training, Mrs. Morris has a suc-cessful track record of grant writingand grant and project management.She has been actively involved withthe Roxbury Historic Trust since 2002and is a leader on the King Store andHouse restoration project.
Mrs. Morris lls the seat recently
vacated by Dave Bogert, who hadserved on the Heritage Commissionsince April of 2007. During his tenureMr. Bogert was active on the Commis-sion’s archives, grants/re-grants, ex-hibits/programs, and historic markercommittees. The Heritage Commis-sion thanks Mr. Bogert for his yearsof service and welcomes Mrs. Morristo her new position.
v
 Miriam Morris is the newest member of the Heritage Commission
(from
 History Grants
on page 1)
guidelines for the downtown historicarea.More information about the re-grantprogram or any of the other programssponsored by the Morris County Heri-tage Commission may be obtained bycalling the Commissionat 973.829.8117, visiting our websiteat
,or via email at
.
v
 
3
Picatinny Arsenal Commemorates Historic Districts
By Jason Huggan, Cultural Resource Manager at Picatinny Arsenal
O
n February 16, 2012, U.S. ArmyGarrison Picatinny Arsenal in-vited the New Jersey State His-
toric Preservation Ofce and the Morris
County Heritage Commission for atour and unveiling of its new signage to
ofcially commemorate ve (5) historic
districts that are recognized as eligiblefor the National Register of Historic
Places. These ve historic districts in
-clude the Administration and ResearchDistrict, 600 Ordnance Testing Area,Naval Air Rocket Test Stands, Devel-opment and Engineering Districts, andthe former Army Rocket Test Area Dis-trict. The signs were developed as partof Picatinny’s Real Property MasterPlan and Facility Reduction ProgramProgrammatic Agreement completedunder Section 106 consultation of theNational Historic Preservation Act. Thesigns were designed by Lake Shore In-dustries, while the text was developedwith the help of the Heritage Commis-
sion, State Historic Preservation Ofce
and former employees of Reaction Mo-tors, Inc.A tour of the work recently com-pleted at the Walton Burial Groundlocated on the garrison property nearthe Mount Hope Gate was also in-cluded in the visit. Work crews took
 Pictured are Jason Huggan, Cultural Resource manager; Peg Shultz, Morris County Heri-tage Commission; CSM Koroll; LTC Koehler, Garrison Commander; Chris Urbiola, chief, Master Plans and Programs Division DPW; Dr. Patrick Owens, ARDEC and arsenal
historian. Photo courtesy of Picatinny Public Affairs Ofce.
advantage of this year’s warm winterto establish a new frontier-style fencearound the mid-eighteenth-centuryWalton Burial Ground. The new fencewas designed by Picatinny CulturalResource Manager Jason Huggan andbase operations contractor ChugachIndustries, Inc. Because there are nosurviving views of how the burialground looked in the eighteenth andnineteenth centuries, Picatinny’s plan-ners used the type of fencing typicalfor that period.Picatinny purchased the groundssurrounding the cemetery in 1918.While developing the nearby Nitro-glycerine Research Area in 1944, work-ers uncovered the burial grounds. Theearliest known burial at the cemeteryis of John Walton Sr. in 1787. Accord-ing to historical research, the land wasused as a cemetery as late as 1884. Theone intact headstone with a name re-cords the death of 16-year-old SusanWalton in 1815. Others believed to beburied here are Revolutionary Warveterans Peter Doland, Jonathan Wig-gins, and John Burwell. This most re-cent cleanup effort was the latest in aseries, which also included a previouscleanup for the bicentennial of theRevolution in 1976 and another byvolunteers in 1993. Picatinny allows
 Pictured are Chugach Industries, Inc. employees Robert Vazzana, Eric Jakubowski, Matt Beatty, and Mike Devore. Photo by Todd Mozes.
(see
 Picatinny
on page 4)

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