Union County initiative triples the number of stamp locations in New Jersey overnight.
Union County, NJ – National Parks lovers may go over the moon with the news that Union County’s historic sites are about to unveil nearly 30 unique Passport To Your National Parks cancellation stamps at Four Centuries in a Weekend.
Across the country, people will bring their Passport books to national parks, monuments and other areas overseen by the National Park Service.
Union County is one of 14 New Jersey counties that comprise the NPS’ Crossroads of the Revolution National Heritage area, which recognizes the role New Jersey played in the American Revolution.
Because the Union County area was one of the earliest regions to be settled, there are numerous sites of significance from the Revolutionary War era. These sites will now have their own unique stamp recognizing their inclusion in the National Heritage Area.
“It is a great feeling to be able to help our local historical societies promote their sites,” said Union County Freeholder Bette Jane Kowalski, who attended a recent Four Centuries meeting and helped distribute the new stamps.
“We know that there are people who travel to sites, in part, to add another stamp to their Passport book,” Kowalski said, noting that there have already been inquiries from Pennsylvania and Washington, D.C., as word has started to leak out about the new stamps.
“The Passport stamps, along with our new History Trading Card series, will encourage visitors to see more sites and gain a deeper appreciation of just how rich our history really is,” she said.
Several sites will have two stamps because of their location. For example, the Miller-Cory House in Westfield is a historic site in its own right and is also along the Washington-Rochambeau National Historic Trail, which recognizes the contribution of the French in winning the Revolutionary War.
Several battles in Union County were also memorialized with the stamps.
The new stamps will be released on October 21 and 22 when Union County celebrates Four Centuries in a Weekend. For more information on the event, and exact addresses for the various sites, go to: ucnj.org/4C.
The new stamp program was coordinated by the Union County Office of Cultural and Heritage Affairs and funded by the County.
The new stamps will be available at these sites:
- In Berkeley Heights, the Deserted Village of Feltville/Glenside Park and the Littell-Lord Farmstead.
- In Clark, at the Dr. William Robinson Plantation-Museum.
- In Elizabeth, at Boxwood Hall, First Presbyterian Church of Elizabeth, Snyder Academy.
- Nathaniel Bonnell Homestead & Belcher-Ogden Mansion, and St. John’s Parsonage.
- In Hillside, at Woodruff House-Eaton Store Museum.
- In Mountainside, at the Deacon Andrew Hetfield House.
- In New Providence, at the Salt Box Museum.
- In Plainfield, at the Drake House Museum and Plainfield Meeting House.
- In Rahway, at Merchants & Drovers Tavern. There will also be a stamp recognizing the King’s Highway.
- In Roselle, at the Abraham Clark Memorial House.
- In Scotch Plains, at Elizabeth and Gershom Frazee House and Osborn Cannonball House. And at Ashbrook Reservation, to mark the Battle of the Short Hills.
- In Springfield, at the Cannon Ball House. There will also be a stamp for the Battle of Springfield.
- In Summit, at the Carter House.
- In Union, at Liberty Hall, Connecticut Farms Church and Caldwell Parsonage, where there will also be a stamp commemorating the Battle of Connecticut Farms
- In Westfield, at the Miller-Cory House Museum, which will also have a stamp recognizing the Washington-Rochambeau National Historic Trail.
While the Union County Office of Cultural & Heritage Affairs will continue to offer free Union County Across the Centuries passports at all Union County historic sites, those interested in purchasing a national passport can go to: eparks.com/store/category/30/278/Passport.
Launched by Eastern National in 1986, the Passport To Your National Parks program consists of a guidebook highlighting national parks and provides space for dated ink “cancellation” stamps that enable visitors to commemorate their visit. More information on the program is available at: easternnational.org/what-we-do/passport.
To learn more about the Office of Cultural & Heritage Affairs visit ucnj.org/parks-recreation/cultural-heritage-affairs.
Photo Caption: A FIRST IN THE STATE…Union County Freeholder Bette Jane Kowalski presents Al Shipley, from the Merchants & Drovers Tavern, with a “Passport To Your National Parks” cancellation stamp for the Rahway site. Union County, which is part of the National Parks’ Crossroads of the American Revolution National Heritage Area, is the first county in New Jersey to roll out these stamps for all its historic sites. Similar stamps can be found at national parks and heritage sites across the United States.
Other recipients who gathered to receive their stamps from Freeholder Kowalski are: Ogden/Belcher (Elizabeth); Woodruff House/Eaton Store Museum (Hillside); Salt Box Museum (New Providence); Caldwell Parsonage (Union); Liberty Hall (Union); Merchants & Drovers Tavern (Rahway); William Robinson Plantation (Clark); Deacon Hetfield House (Mountainside).
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