The KHSNJ Blog

The official Kingston Historical Society Web Log or BLOG.

Your episode premieres on Wednesday!

Here is some information that you might be able to put on the website about this upcoming show. I was interviewed last fall in regards to the "Conference On Horseback" that took place in the Kingston Presbyterian Church Cemetery on January 3, 1777 between General George Washington and his generals. The episode will finally air this Wednesday, September 30 at 8:00 p.m.. some folks may want to see it and tune in to hear a little of Kingston's history.

Hi George-
Lee Brodie writing from "Drive By History.
This coming Wednesday September 30th - the episode we taped together will finally premiere!
George, would it be possible to do some kind of an email blast - either the day before or the morning of September 30th - to your constituents - to invite them to watch the show.
It's fine to Tweet, or post to the organization's website or Facebook page or whatever! We'd appreciate anything.
Here's some suggested copy to make it easier as well as a link to our website - of course you're welcome to makes change -- as much as you'd like.
Tune in to NJTV on Wednesday September 30th at 8pm to see Kingston profiled on the new show "Drive By History," which celebrates the local histories of communities all around the state.
Website: DriveByHistory.TV
If you love history, don't miss this show. Anchored by Ken Magos and Cindy Perman every episode is an adventure into the past - including the one that celebrates our town!
Where to see it!
Cablevision Optimum - Channel 8
Comcast - channel 23; High Def 261 and 800
Time Warner in NJ - channel 23; High Def 1223
Verizon Fios - channel 23; High Def 523
Also, please feel free to pass us along to anyone and everyone that you think might be interested in the show.
Warm regards,
Lee Brodie
I would like to make two small corrections.
  1. My talk on Peter Shann was co-hosted by the Board of Deacons, not the Elders.
  2. The Moor/Potts Library/Desk was bought at an estate sale by "Jimmie's" father Wilbur Potts. She became the owner in 1980 after her Mother passed away (her Father had passed away in 1960).

Catching Up

Saturday, September 26, 2015
FPNL's goal to remove brush, vines, invasive saplings, and blown roofing material from alongside the large warehouse complex in the Mapleton Preserve was a smashing success. They are to be commended for their efforts.

This week I intend to charge into LTH Facility maintenance issues. Agenda :

  1. Recheck locks and window locking mechanisms.
  2. Install fire/smoke alarms
  3. Install fire extinguishers, we have two.
  4. Measure for plywood panel for first window for Kane restoration.
        a. home cut and paint white
  5. Scrape and vacuum damaged plaster North wall right of fireplace. Preparation for restoration.

Just beginning to re-code the website to current standards, i.e., update back end of server to current specifications. In other words, people riding home on a train can read this website on a telephone. Facebook and Twitter accounts activated.

Historical information sign missing (probably stolen)

For your information in the past few days the interpretive sign for the Millstone River Bridge on OLD Route 27 (see my attached notes) was removed. The sign was still there earlier in the week. I suspect it was stolen, but it is possible that NJ DOT removed it with the intention to relocate it. (Its location was just before Heathcote Brook rather than the Millstone River; furthermore interpretive signs are not usually mounted, or even permitted to be mounted, together with traffic control signs.) I filed a NJDOT form (attached.)

I am also attaching my notes on the sign.

The sign is which is in the Millstone Valley Scenic Byway Corridor and in the King’s Highway (Upper Road-Lincoln Highway) National Register Historic District as well as adjacent to the D&R Canal State Park.


The original wooden bridge at
this location was destroyed
by Washington’s troops on
January 3, 1777 following the
Battle of Princeton to prevent
pursuit by Lord Cornwallis


The following, from The Princeton Battlefield Society, may be of interest to members of KHS, MVPC and others.

You are invited:
The Revolution at Princeton; September 26, 2015 – 10:00am - 8:30pm: Artillery Demonstrations; Encampment Life Demonstrations; Music for Kids; 5pm - Fife & Drum Show; 6pm - Shakespeare’s Cymbeline by a new professional Shakespeare co. - at the Princeton Battlefield State Park, 500 Mercer Street, Princeton, NJ 08540. Come out to the Battlefield to find out why in 1777 the Battle of Princeton was such a crucial turning point in the American Revolution. See the 43rd’s Royal Artillery give demonstrations - learn why artillery was so important in this battle; see interactive model of the battle and learn about Washington’s strategy; help make ice cream the way it was made in colonial times – enjoy an ice cream tasting; lots of music all day - the fife and drum and the fiddle and guitar - learn about the instruments; see military encampment demonstrations of cooking, learn about colonial medicine and dentistry, musket drilling for kids – learn how a musket works (musket replicas can be borrowed or purchased); meet General Washington; talk with an author; see Iain Haight-Ashton’s collection of caricatures from the period; visit the Old Penster and see his beautiful pens available for sale made from the fallen Mercer Oak; take a tour of the Battlefield and the 1772 Thomas Clarke House - witness to the Battle; learn how the Clarke House is being restored; see a wonderful photograph display; and lots more. If you are attending Shakespeare’s Cymbeline (alternatively a tragedy and a romance) please bring a lawn chair, flashlight, and a VERY warm jacket. Free. Rain or shine. Plenty of parking. For more information, including an events schedule for the day, please visit or e-mail to Kip at
Attached is a flier.

Watering can

Thanks to Ceil's donation, I planted three mums today and watered them in. Inasmuch as I do not have keys for the LTH, whoever opens the LTH on the weekend should give the mums as much water as they can transport from the kitchen sink where I left a watering can (word?) that just fits under the kitchen faucet . The faucet is slow running so plan some time to fill the container. If the LTH repairs start this week, the mums should be watered every other day until they are established. In planting the mums, I dug up some spring-flowering bulbs and they are in the other sink drying preparatory to re-planting them in late October.

1772 Foundation grant applications now available!

1772 Foundation Grant Applications Now Available! Deadline: December 16, 2015
In 2016, the 1772 Foundation, in cooperation with the New Jersey Historic Trust, is offering Capital Preservation Grants, up to $15,000, available to nonprofit organizations for repair and restoration projects. The grants require a one-to-one match from the grant recipient.
*Please note* the schedule for 2016 applications is different than in past years. The deadline has been moved up to December 16, 2015, in order to increase the amount of time grantees will have during construction season.
Eligible applicants must have a 501(c)3 IRS designation. Schools and religious congregations are not eligible to apply. Learn more here:

Clean-up of Locktender's House

We will be at the Locktender’s House on Monday, September 21 at 10:30 a.m. to continue to clean and log in the artifacts that K.H.S. has. Anyone who is available is more than welcome to attend.

Lenape in the Delaware Valley

The following, received from the Middlesex County Office of Cultural & Heritage may be of interest to members of KHS, MVPC, HPCs and others.

Lenape in the Delaware Valley

Historian Jean Soderlund will present a lecture on the history of interactions between Lenape Indians and early English, Dutch, and Swedish settlements in the Delaware Valley. She will show that the hallmarks of Delaware Valley society - commitment to personal freedom, religious liberty, and peaceful resolution of conflict - began with the Lenapes.
Office of Cultural and Heritage
When: Saturday, September 26, 2015 2 p.m.
Where: The Lodge at Thompson Park
1701 Perrineville Road, Jamesburg/Monroe, NJ
Funded by Middlesex County Board of Chosen Freeholders New Jersey Historical Commission, a Division of the Department of State.

An Evening of 18th Century Music with the Delaware River Consort

Please join us for an enchanting evening of 18th and early 19th century music by lantern light in the Church of the Three Mile Run! The Delaware River Consort will perform songs familiar to the average American of that time period. This will include songs common for church services as well as domestic gatherings. The group will provide historical background on the selections they perform. The evening will feature a special performance of a hymn from the New-Brunswick Collection of Sacred Music, first published in 1817, and partially written by well-known sculptor John Frazee (1790-1852).

The Delaware River Consort has been performing as an a capella quartet since 1983. They are: Maureen Kyle, soprano; Lisa Carmalt, alto; Larry Parker, tenor; and Jacques Lebel, bass. The group performs both sacred and secular music of the fifteenth through twentieth centuries, and specializes in European Renaissance and Early American music.
Office of Cultural and Heritage
When: Wednesday, September 30, 2015 7:30 - 8:30 p.m.
Where: East Jersey Old Town Village at the Indian Queen Tavern
1050 River Road, Piscataway, NJ
Funded by Middlesex County Board of Chosen Freeholders New Jersey Historical Commission, a Division of the Department of State

Archaeology Open House at the Piscatawaytown Settlement

All are welcome to attend a unique public archaeology event at one of the earliest English settlement sites in Middlesex County. Settled in the late 1600s by New Englanders, this historic site once consisted of a town hall, militia training ground, stockade, jail, church, burial ground, and houses.

Visitors will be able to participate in field work, under the supervision of professional archaeologists, in the quest to uncover remains of the original village in two predetermined dig locations. In addition to the chance to aid the archaeologists, this program will include guided tours of historic St. James Episcopal Church and the Piscatawaytown Burial Ground. Members of the Metuchen-Edison Historical Society will be hosting a display featuring earlier research completed at this settlement site.
Office of Cultural and Heritage
When: Saturday and Sunday, September 26-27, 2015 1-4 p.m.
Where: St. James Episcopal Church
2316 Woodbridge Avenue Edison, NJ
Funded by Middlesex County Board of Chosen Freeholders New Jersey Historical Commission, a Division of the Department of State Archaeological Society of NJ. Metuchen-Edison Historical Society.

BULL SHEET Xtra - Program - "There Used To Be a Railroad"

Members of KHS and others may be interested in the following, received from (KHS’s 2014 annual meeting speaker) John Kilbride:

Event: There Used To Be a Railroad
Thursday September 17, 2015 7:00 PM.
Amateur railroad historian, Mike McCann, uses aerial imagery to take viewers on flight across the Garden State of the 1920s, ’30s and ’40s and its once extensive network of railroads from the first—the Camden and Amboy, to the last mainline built in New Jersey—the Delaware, Lackawanna & Western’s ‘Delaware Cutoff.’ Refreshments will be served. Registration suggested.
Location: Lawrence Branch of the Mercer County Library.

U.S. Marines in Kingston

The three former U.S. Marines who are walking from the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia to the Liberty Tower in New York City will be in Kingston this Friday, September 4. I discussed this with those who were in attendance at last nights meeting of the K.H.S.. I have been in touch with one of the gentleman today, and he expects that they will arrive in Kingston around 5 pm with their service dogs. They will be staying Friday night at the firehouse. I encourage anyone who is available to greet them on Main Street as they arrive, or come to the firehouse to welcome them to our town, and thank them for their service.
There was an article in today Times of Trenton for those who wish additional information on the walk.