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Local Organizations Receive Re-Grant funding
leven Morris County nonprofit organizations were awarded grants through the Heritage Commission’s 2009 re-grant program. Funding for the re-grant program is made possible from a General Operating Support (GOS) grant award from the New Jersey Historical Commission. The Heritage Commission has received support for the re-grant program from the New Jersey Historical Commission since 2001. Between August and October 2008, the Heritage Commission received more than 40 requests for re-grant application packets. As with previous grant rounds, requests for financial support far exceeded available funding. Re-grants were awarded for General Operating Support and a variety of projects which included publications, document and photographic preservation and conservation, exhibit materials, and ADA plans. Funding was awarded to the following organizations: Historical Society of Boonton Township, GOS/insurance, $1,825; Dover Area Historical Society, GOS/ utilities, $3,650.00; Kinnelon Borough Historical Society, photo collection conservation/preservation, $1,500; Macculloch Hall Historical Museum, membership brochure printing, $1,454; Morris County Historical Society, conservation/ex(see Re-Grant funding on page 5)
The 1881 King Homestead is undergoing restoration and is operated as a Museum by the Roxbury Historic Trust. An ADA plan is currently under development with funding from the MCHC re-grant program.
An interpretive marker will be placed this year on the grounds of the 1865 Washington Valley Schoolhouse
ooking around the room at several recent history conferences and meetings, I was struck that most of the people attending were over thirty-five. Gray hair was more common than other shades. I know that conferences draw higher levels of administration than other events, but where are the young people? Like America itself, I am concerned that many history organizations are aging out.
Who Will Carry On? Mentoring for the Future
May is National Historic Preservation Month
his Place Matters is the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s theme for Preservation Month 2009. Preservation Month was designed to raise awareness about protecting, preserving and enhancing private homes, neighborhoods, communities, and historic sites – the places that really matter to us. It provides an opportunity to celebrate the diverse and unique heritage of our country’s cities and towns and enables all of us to become involved in the growing preservation movement. For more information, visit www.preservationnation.org/take-action/preservation-month/. The New Jersey Historic Trust was created by law in 1967 to preserve New Jersey’s historic resources across the state and serves as a voice for preservation at the state level. The mission of the Trust is to advance historic preservation in New Jersey for the benefit of future generations through education, stewardship and financial investment programs that save our heritage and strengthen our communities. It acts as a catalyst for preservation and community revitalization activities; as a full partner in state policy development; and as a technical and financial resource for the stewardship of historic properties. For more information, please visit www.njht.org. SHPO is the acronym for New Jersey’s State Historic Preservation Office, a division of the Department of Environmental Protection. The office assists individuals and groups to establish local historic districts, nominates sites for the State and National Registers of Historic Places, and maintains a list of qualified professionals for historic preservation projects. The office is open to researchers Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday between 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. To schedule an appointment, call (609) 292-0062. (see Preservation Month on page 4)
Some of my colleagues “retired” several years ago at the top of their field to pursue consulting careers. Driven by a desire for independence and the possibility of increased income, their choice to freelance has had an unexpected side effect: the museums in which they trained no longer benefit from their leadership on a full-time basis. In recent months, museum boards have “retired” upper management staff in an effort to reduce operating expenses. The result is that many top-flight museum directors are no longer leading museums at a time when their talent and experience is urgently needed. In his keynote address to the Mid-Atlantic Regional Meeting of the Association for Living History, Farm and Agricultural Museums last week in Morristown, Dr. David Cowell stressed that mentorship is critically important to keeping our history and skills alive. This is especially true in small, all-volunteer museums. Pair your seasoned volunteers with new ones, whether they’re students, at-home parents, or recently retired people. There’s someone in your historical society who remembers when the barn was torn down, and there are others who know the stories that make our sites come to life. Mentorship may bring new perspectives to a stale interpretation. How would a ten-year-old tell your site’s story? Who has the skills to teach us to plant, raise a garden, and save its seeds; to neatly patch a child’s torn pants; to rehandle a spade or patch a hose; to “stretch” a roast; to make a dollar go further? People who work in, and love history, do. The economic downturn, recession, or whatever you call it, may be an opportunity for us. It is a chance to prove our worth. We have the skills already — and if we don’t, someone in our organization, family, or circle of acquaintance probably does. Failing that, we know how to research and analyze information and distill it for use. Find a mentor, or become one. Pass it on. Carrie Fellows Administrator
Be Our Guest!
Save the Date!
Join colleagues at the 2009 Historic Preservation Conference on June 4th he New Jersey Historic Preservation Conference, “Regeneration for a New Generation,” will be held June 4, 2009 at Rowan University in Glassboro, New Jersey. The conference has been designed to address the needs and issues facing historic preservationists, planning and zoning officials, elected officials, historians, museum and other nonprofit staff and board members, and heritage tourism providers. The economic and social climates during the first decade of the 21st century are requiring historic preservation advocates to modify strategies, tools and methods to keep history and historic sites relevant to our children, our communities and our public planning policies. In a fast-paced world
n Sunday May 17 from noon to 5:00 p.m. the Morris County Alliance for Tourism (MCAT) is sponsoring an open house at Morris County museums and historic sites. This event is based on the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s nationwide “Open Doors” program. This year, nine historic sites will participate in the third annual Be Our Guest event. the Morris County Historical Society. The society has an extensive period costume collection and visitors will be able to view Out of the Closet: An Art Collection Revealed in the exhibit room.
u Acorn Hall, built in 1853, is now a historic house museum and home to
u Craftsman Farms is the former home of noted turn-of-the-century de-
signer Gustav Stickley, a major proponent of the “Arts and Crafts” home building and furnishing style. The log house, built in 1911, is one of the most significant examples of the American Arts and Crafts movement. The property is owned by the Township of Parsippany and has been designated a National Historic Landmark. and working farm to preserve the traditions, techniques, and tools used during the early twentieth century. She donated part of the property to the Morris County Park Commission in the early 1970s and the remainder at her death in 1979.
u Fosterfields Living Historical Farm - Caroline Foster wanted her home
u The Frelinghuysen Arboretum was once
home to the George Griswold Frelinghuysen family. The early 1890s mansion is a fine example of Colonial Revival architecture and was used as a summer home. The Arboretum is nationally recognized as a center for horticultural education, hosting tours, exhibits, and special events.
(see Save the Date on page 5)
Attention!!! Updates Needed
ver the summer months, the Heritage Commission staff will be updating information provided on our website. We need your help to ensure the information is accurate. Please take a few minutes to review your organization’s listing(s): Go to morrisheritage.org; click on Directory of Historic Morris County. Listings will be updated under MAJOR MUSEUMS; HISTORICAL ASSOCIATIONS & LOCAL MUSEUMS; and ARCHIVAL COLLECTIONS. Updates to your listings may include change of address, phone numbers, hours of operation, adding a website or email address, archival collection descriptions, etc. If you have changes or corrections, please email them to us at Heritage@co.morris.nj.us with MCHC Website Updates in the subject line. Thank you! v
u Historic Speedwell demonstrates
life during the early Industrial Revolution and the dawn of a new communications era. The Factory is a National Historic Landmark where the telegraph was perfected and first publicly demonstrated. The Vail house boasts period furnishings and portraits from 1844 to 1864. Visitors will enjoy the grounds, interactive exhibits, and tours. between 1810 and 1819.The Georgian-style mansion features period room settings and the Thomas Nast Collection. It was built by and named after George Macculloch, farmer, entrepreneur and “Father of the Morris Canal.”
u Macculloch Hall Historical Museum was built
u The Morris Museum, once known as Twin Oaks, was owned by the
Peter H. B. Frelinghuysen family. The museum features art, science and educational programs. Among the exhibits is the Murtogh D. Guinness collection, one of the world’s most significant collections of mechanical musical instruments and automata.
u The Schuyler-Hamilton House, built in 1760, is home to the Morristown
chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution. Exhibits focus on experiences and personal stories during the Revolutionary War. It was here that Colonel Alexander Hamilton, General George Washington’s aide, is said to have courted house guest Betsy Schuyler.
(see Be Our Guest on page 5)
(from Preservation Month on page 2) For more information on the services offered by SHPO, visit www.state.nj.us/ dep/hpo. Preservation New Jersey was founded in 1978. Unlike SHPO or the NJ Historic Trust, it is a private, member-supported organization and serves as a clearing house for information and technical assistance to individuals, municipalities, historic preservation commissions, organizations, and nonprofit agencies. It conducts tours, workshops, lectures and conferences to educate the public about historic sites and preservation issues. It also advocates for sound public policy at the local, state and federal levels on behalf of the preservation community. For more information on Preservation New Jersey’s services, please visit www.preservationnj.org. In Morris County, help with historic preservation issues may be found at the Morris County Trust for Historic Preservation (Trust). The Trust encourages the preservation of historic buildings and sites by providing information on architectural heritage and its legal protection. It advises people on crucial issues related to preservation at the local, state, and national levels. The reference library is available to researchers by appointment by calling (973) 267-4717 or by email email@example.com. The Morris County Board of Chosen Freeholders created the Morris
The Passaic River Coalition bought the historic Willow Hall estate in Morristown using state and county grants in 2009. The property will be available to the public as open space and a historic resource.
County Historic Preservation Trust Fund to help support the preservation of the county’s exceptional abundance of historic resources. The Fund was created after voters approved a referendum in 2002 authorizing the Freeholders to allow historic preservation funding under the Open Space Trust Fund, as permitted under state legislation. The Fund considers grant applications for the acquisition, stabilization, rehabilitation, restoration or preservation of historic resources by municipalities, qualified nonprofits and the County. All funded projects must
Contact the Morris County Heritage Commission
PO Box 900, Morristown, NJ 07963-0900 Phone: (973) 829-8117 Fax: (973) 631-5137 Email: Heritage@co.morris.nj.us
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comply with the Secretary of Interior’s Standards for Rehabilitation. Applications for plans and reports associated with the implementation of a historic preservation project are also eligible. Historic resources must be listed, or certified as eligible for listing on the New Jersey and National Registers of Historic Places in order to be eligible for the program. For more information about funding through this program, please visit the Fund’s website www.morrispreservation.org or contact Ray Chang, Trust Fund program coordinator at (973) 829-8120 or Historic_Pres@morrispreservation.org. The Morris County Heritage Commission, The Morris County Historical Society, The Morris County Trust for Historic Preservation and The Morris County Tourism Bureau compile an annual list of the Ten Most Endangered Historic Sites in Morris County. The list draws attention to the value of our county’s historic assets and encourages public and private involvement in their maintenance, preservation and long-term survival. Local citizens and groups are encouraged to suggest sites to be considered for 2010 to any of the above named organizations. v
Sign up for a Walking Tour!
(from Re-Grant Funding on page 1)
ristown’s Historic District will be conducted by David Breslauer who will discuss the lives of the people who lived in and developed the area as a suburban neighborhood. The Macculloch and Miller families, Thomas Nast and other famous and infamous residents will be highlighted. Morristown’s Jewel: the Green, led by Carol Barkin, will explore the use of the Green as a town center during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and discuss the recent renovations and sculpture. Past tour topics have included Victorian architecture, historic gardens, downtown Madison, Drew University, Mead Hall and the Gibbons Horse Barn. Over the last few years, 300 to 350 people have taken the tours annually. Guided tours of Morristown graveyards will be available this fall. Imagine exploring St. Peter’s Church cemetery and the Presbyterian Church burial ground by lantern light! For more information or to make a reservation for the tours described, please contact the Morris County Tourism Bureau at (973) 631-5151. Reservations are required. Leslie Bensley, Executive Director of the Morris County Tourism For additional informaBureau and Docent Peg Shultz of the Morris County Heritage tion, please visit www. Commission prepare to lead guests through Morristown’s morristourism.org. v he Morris County Tourism Bureau (formerly Morris County Visitors Center) will again offer its summer series of walks and talks about the history of Morris County. This year marks the eighth season the Tours @ 10 series has been offered. Tours are held on Saturdays during May, June, July and August and leave from 6 Court Street. The tours are led by knowledgeable docents (some wearing period attire) and cover a variety of topics. This year the series will include tours of Historic Morristown and Mendham; Morristown’s historic churches; and the Morris County Courthouse, featuring courtroom #1, the scene of the 1833 trial of Antoine LeBlanc. Two new tours are being offered this year. The Secrets and Lore of Morhistoric cemeteries during the annual lantern tours.
The Dover Area Historical Society received GOS Funding to assist with utility and insurance costs.
Image courtesy Dover Area Historical Society.
hibit manne quins, $1,015; Morris School District/Washington Valley Schoolhouse, interpretive signage, $1,295; United Presbyterian Church (Flanders), document conservation, $1,490; Museum of Early Trades & Crafts, textile conservation, $2,808; Roxbury Historic Trust, ADA architectural plan, $2,750; Roxbury Public Library, photo collection preservation, $1,121; Washington Township Historical Society, archival storage and inventory, $1,900. v (from Be Our Guest on page 3)
u Washington’s Headquarters
(from Save the Date on page 3) of development and redevelopment, preservationists are indeed challenged to redefine what is “historic” and to save landmarks of the recent past before they vanish. Maintaining and growing support for historic preservation in this dynamic climate means changing with the times — and the times call for taking fresh looks at the ways we communicate our message, craft policy, sustain organizational boards, create strategic plans, and identify 20th century landmarks that are ripe for restoration, rehabilitation and investment. The 2009 New Jersey Historic Preservation Conference will explore these issues, look at new models and celebrate the reasons why historic preservation is more relevant today than ever before. v
at the Ford Mansion was built between 1772-1774 for Jacob Ford Jr. and is part of the Morristown National Historical Park. George Washington used Morristown as a defensive position near Britishoccupied New York City for two winters; his men camped in Jockey Hollow.
Free transportation will be available to participating sites. To further the spirit of community, Be Our Guest visitors are invited to donate a nonperishable food item to benefit the Interfaith Food Pantry. Items may be brought to any participating site. For a list of the Food Pantry’s most urgent needs visit www.mcifp.org. v
C A L E N D A R
Date May 9 Organization
Morris County Historical Society Lake Hopatcong Historical Museum Washington Twp Historical Society
Whippany Railway Museum Boonton Historical Society Jewish Historical Society MetroWest Boonton Historical Society
E V E N T S
Time and Place For More Information Contact
(973) 267-3465 acornhall.org
Acorn Hall 68 Morris Ave 2:30 p.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Program: Victorian Times at Lake Hopatcong Historic School Bell Dedication
The Arlington 6:00 p.m. WTHS Museum 6 Fairview Ave., Long Valley 2 p.m. – 4 p.m.
1 Railroad Plaza Rt. 10W & Whippany Rd 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. Boonton Senior Center 7 p.m. Waldor Memorial Library 901 Route 10 Whippany 1:30 p.m. Columbia Inn 29 Rt. 202, Montville 6:30 p.m.
(973) 398-2616 hopatcong.org/museum (908) 876-9696 firstname.lastname@example.org
May 17 May 17 June 21 July 12, 19 May 20
Caboose Train Rides Program: Stories from the Boonton Police Department Presenter: Chief Steven Stross Program: American Jewry and WWII Presenter: Linda Forgosh Program: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle Presenter: Neill Hartley American Historical Theatre
(973) 887-8177 whippanyrailwaymuseum.net (973)402-8840 Boontonhistory@yahoo.com (973) 929–2994 jhsmw.org (973)402-8840 Boontonhistory@yahoo.com
(973) 267-3465 acornhall.org (973) 540-0311 stickleymuseum.org (908) 647-6456 longhillhistory.org 973-377-2982 x12. metc.org/calendar.htm
Morris County Historical Society Stickley Museum at Craftsman Farms Long Hill Township Historical Society Museum of Early Trades & Crafts Boonton Historical Society Stickley Museum at Craftsman Farms Morris County Historical Society & Fosterfields Living Historical Farm Lake Hopatcong Historical Museum Boonton Historical Society Museum of Early Trades & Crafts
Second Annual Yard Sale Program: The Intimate Garden Presenter: Brian Coleman Program: Tour Basking Ridge Presbyterian Cemetery Presenter: George Fricke Family Fun Day
Walking Tour: Boonton Historic District Guide: Harold Johnson
Acorn Hall 68 Morris Ave 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. 2352 Rt. 10 West Morris Plains 4 p.m. Long Hill Township First Aid Squad Building 7:30 p.m. Rt. 124 at Green Village Road, Madison 1 p.m. – 3 p.m.
Boonton Post Office 501 Main Street 10 a.m.
(973) 540-0311 stickleymuseum.org (973) 267-3465 acornhall.org (973) 326-7645 morrisparks.net (973) 398-2616 hopatcong.org/museum
June 27 June 27 & 28 July 9
Summer Family Day
2352 Rt. 10 West Morris Plains Noon - 4 p.m. Acorn Hall & Fosterfields Living Historical Farm The Jefferson House 6 p.m.
Canalside Park Overlook 10 a.m.
Sixth Annual Victorian Weekend Program: Cottages of Lake Hopatcong Walking Tour: Historic Main Street Guide: Lloyd Charlton Family Fun Day Ice Cream Social
973-377-2982 x12. metc.org/calendar.htm
Rt. 124 at Green Village Road, Madison 1 p.m. – 3 p.m.
Quips and Quotes from Morris County’s Past
By Peg Shultz
n the spring of 1942, the United States was fully involved in World War II, and Morris County men and women were heading off to distant fronts. Americans at home contributed to the war effort through scrap drives. Food and gasoline rationing and transportation shortages hampered the usual movement of fresh vegetables from faraway commercial gardens to consumers. With spring in the air, Americans answered the USDA’s call to raise food locally. Meetings were held throughout Morris County to help individuals and communities actively participate in the national Victory Garden program.
year, and with spring drawing near, getting the soil ready and sowing the seeds will soon be undertaken. How to participate in the Victory Garden Program will be explained at a meeting which will be held in the Alfred Vail School, 8 p.m. tomorrow night. Expert gardeners, who are members of the Northern NJ Branch of the National Association of Gardeners and Morris County Gardeners and Florists’ Society, will answer questions.
Daily Record, March 6, 1942
Budget Gardens There’s a new “back to the farm” movement sweeping the country in which every householder can share, even if his “farm” is no more than a rug-sized back yard plot of ground. Start planning that war garden now, and gather your harvest next summer in fresh vegetables for your table and lower food costs for your budget. Cities, too, can join this war garden effort by providing individual plots in vacant lots for apartment dwellers who have to access to back yards… A successful garden requires gardening experience, fertile, welldrained soil, sunshine, adequate water supply, garden tools, and proper kind of seed…You can aid America’s war campaign materially by a little back bending and elbow grease. Buy Defense Stamps with the money you save.
Daily Record, March 28, 1942
Design Victory Garden for Beauty and Utility A victory garden may easily be made a beautiful feature of the home grounds. Many large private estates offer object lessons for the owners of smaller grounds in the way they make vegetable gardens attractive. Such gardens are usually surrounded by well marked boundaries of plants or fencing; and they are divided by paths which make an interesting pattern, and give access to the garden area. Paths may be bordered with flowers or with some of the perennial vegetables such as chives and rhubarb. Lattices to surround the garden are easily made, the lumber of the right size being on sale by many dealers, or it can be cut to any desired measurement. Lattice painted green and supporting climbing beans or other vines offer one of the finest garden boundaries. Rustic fences from branches cut from forest trees which have been felled furnish another attractive feature. The rustic trellis for grapes and
Daily Record, March 11, 1942
Victory Garden Meeting to be Held Tomorrow There will be Victory Gardens in many suburban and rural communities throughout the whole country this
on smaller scale for tall peas, pole beans and cucumbers is also extensively used. Trellises for peas are easily and neatly made at small expense so that they become an attractive feature of the garden and much more pleasing to the eye than brush or chicken wire so often used. Wire is too often put up so that it presents various bulges and curves instead of being tightly stretched… In many school gardens where the idea of beauty in the vegetable garden is inculcated, a sundial or bird bath is used as a central feature of the vegetable garden. This is an excellent device to add ornamental qualities, and a small bed of flowers about it will make it a feature that redeems the entire vegetable garden from a commonplace appearance… v
Giles Wright: In Memoriam by David Mitros and Peg Shultz
he Morris County Heritage Commission mourns the passing of historian Giles R. Wright II, long-time director of the New Jersey Historical Commission’s African American History Program, who died on February 5, 2009 at age 73. Among Wright’s published works is Afro-Americans in New Jersey: A Short History. The Heritage Commission is grateful to have benefited from his expertise on a number of projects, including Slave Records of Morris County New Jersey, 1756-1841, edited by David Mitros, former Morris County Archivist. Known for his rigorous scholarship and strict requirements for historical proof, Wright became controversial for debunking certain Underground Railroad myths. He questioned the veracity of the book Hidden in Plain View, an account that claimed black quiltmakers had incorporated escape route directions into their quilt designs to help escaped slaves fleeing north. The book received national attention but despite its popularity, Wright challenged the story and the authors’ lack of supporting evidence for their claim. Historians now accept Wright’s view. Although Wright questioned other unsubstantiated Underground Railroad stories, he was more interested in publishing information on sites authenticated by evidence in the historical record. He wrote the 2002 Historical Commission pamphlet, Steal Away, Steal Away: A Guide to the Underground Railroad in New Jersey. Wright will be missed by all those who knew him and respected the integrity of his work. Although he is no longer with us, he will remain a strong and guiding presence at the Heritage Commission and throughout New Jersey’s historical community. Editor’s note: Giles R. Wright II received posthumously the prestigious Maureen Ogden Award for Lifetime Achievement at the March 23, 2009 History Issues Convention in Trenton. v
Publication of the Morris County Board of Chosen Freeholders
Gene F. Feyl, Director William J. Chegwidden, Deputy Director Douglas R. Cabana John J. Murphy James W. Murray Margaret Nordstrom Jack Schrier
Morris County Heritage Commission PO Box 900 Morristown, NJ 07963-0900 Phone: (973) 829-8117 Fax: (973) 631-5137 www.morrisheritage.org
Morris County Heritage Commission
Larry Fast, Chairman Henry Kafel, Vice Chairman Karen Ann Kurlander, Secretary Tracy Kinsel, Treasurer Dave Bogert Epsey Farrell Kathy Fisher Virginia Vogt James Woodruff Carrie Fellows, Administrator Peg Shultz, History Program Coordinator
For a Large Print Edition Call (973) 829-8117