Saturday, August 25, 2007

The Mansion at Smithville (Easthampton) Burlington County NJ

Historic Smithville Mansion sits amid a 250-acre park in Easthampton, Burlington County, New Jersey. If you get a chance to tour the inside of this home, the docents "tell of the rise and fall of H.B. Smith, inventor and entrepreneur, his extraordinary accomplishments clouded by personal controversy."

In 1975, the mansion and surrounding site were acquired by the Burlington County Board of Chosen Freeholders to develop as the first Burlington County park. The squarish house, covered by a log tip roof was refurbished to its 1865 appearance. The mansion complex remains the centerpiece of the park, and houses the Offices of the Cultural and Heritage Commission.

The tourist web site for Burlington County further states: "In H.B. Smith's old schoolhouse Smithville History Exhibit, 20 photo/narrative panels depict major aspects of the mill village and its colorful founder. Tourists visit Smith's "casino" annex, including card room, billiard room and bowling alley, then passes the site of Smith's zoo, through the grape arbors and rose garden courtyards. See the restoration work done to the exterior of the Mansion complex and gardener's cottage."

The mansion is located on Smithville Road in Eastampton, 3/4 mile off of Route 38, 2 miles east of Mount Holly. The house is open from early May through late October, Wednesday and Sunday 1, 2, & 3 PM.

ADMISSION: Adults $5.00 Seniors $4.00 Student $3.00Adults groups of 10 or more: $4.00 each with reservation Grade school groups (10 or more): $2.00 each with reservation

A Tea & Tour is held at Noon, the last Wednesday of the month By reservation only: $12.00/person (609) 261-0472

-More Smithville History-


Saturday, August 18, 2007

Whitesbog Village, Browns Mills (Pemberton), NJ

Whitesbog is a cranberry company town of the turn of the 20th century. Cared for by the Whitesbog Preservation Trust, this village is what is left of the largest cranberry farm in New Jersey that thrived in the early 1900s.

Whitesbog is located in Browns Mills, in Pemberton, Burlington County, New Jersey.

The original founder of the farm, J.J. White was considered a leader in the cranberry industry. His daughter Elizabeth White worked with the USDA to produce a cultivated blueberry. It is very fitting then that the blueberry is also New Jersey's official state fruit.

Whitesbog Village has four-season educational programs, for people of all ages. The General Store (pictured here) is at the center of the Village. Tours, both guide-led and self-guided are available.

Whitesbog is seeking volunteers to help with a variety of programs and projects. Please contact them at (609) 893-4646 or by email to

Specific dates and times of events can be find on the Whitesbog Preservation Trust web site.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Emlen Physick Estate - Cape May, New Jersey

Emlen Physick was a physician (in name only, as he did not practice medicine) who lived in an 18-room estate mansion in Cape May, New Jersey with his mother and unmarried aunt.

The Physick House made news when it was built in 1879 because it was not like any other house in Cape May. Built in "Stick Style," it was in great contrast to the Gothic, Italianate, and Mansard styles of homes then in vogue. The architect is believed to have been Frank Furness.

The inside of the home is appropriately furnished, and you will find the guided tour quite fascinating (the cost is only $8). Right next door on the same property is Twining's Tearoom.

Address: 1048 Washington St., Cape May, NJ, USA
Telephone: 609/884-5404 or 800/275-4278

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

1987 Gloucester County NJ Women Who Made A Difference

In 1987 the Gloucester County Shade Tree Commission, in conjunction with the Commission on Women, planted trees at the Red Bank Battlefield Park, in National Park New Jersey. The plaque honors women who have made a difference in Gloucester County.

They are: Helen Brown, Hazel Dale, Lydia Davis, Rose Downer, Kay A. Ferrell, Ph.D., Dolores M. Harris, Ed.D., Ella Harris, Edith Huston, Grace Holdcraft, Lorraine Kiefer, Plin Matthews, Margaret Mendoza, Jeannette McConnell, Mary McGinnis, Eleanora Munshower, Alberta Perry, Mary E. Robbins, Mary Sorbello, Erma Toughill, and Barbara Wallace.

Too bad the plaque does not mention WHY they were being recognized. If anyone knows any of these women and would like to post their accomplishments, please feel free to do so.