Discover Revolutionary New Jersey! 

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February 2020

Explore Black History Month at the Crossroads!

New Jerseyans from all walks of life faced difficult choices during the American Revolution, and people of African descent were no different. Where they decided to place their loyalties, however, often depended on situations that were complex and nuanced.

The stories of Revolutionary Neighbors like Colonel Tye, Oliver Cromwell and Jacob Francis show just a few of the factors that affected their choices. Some enslaved African Americans served the Continental Army or local militias as substitutes for their owners, in exchange for freedom after the war. Freed black men fought according to their conscience, either in support of the young United States or Great Britain. Others ran away to join the army of their choice.

Several Crossroads Heritage Partners are focusing on the African American experience this month with programs like these:
Tory Jack Day at South Bound Brook's Abraham Staats House honors the enslaved man who is said to have spied for Staats and the Patriot cause during the Revolution. On February 9, visit the house for this year's program, featuring historian and musician Joe Becton, presenting blues songs and stories about his favorite composers. More information
Visit Monmouth Battlefield State Park Visitor Center on February 9 for a special program on Black and Native American Troops at the Battle of Monmouth. More information.
Get an up-close perspective on four centuries of African American soldiers on February 29 and March 1 as the Old Barracks in Trenton hosts America, We Served! Reenactors and living historians will share the integral roles African Americans have played in the military from our nation's earliest days. More information

Visit our website for more Black History events throughout the month!
Celebrate Washington's Birthday at sites across New Jersey

General George Washington spent more time in New Jersey than anywhere else during the American Revolution, so it's not surprising that heritage sites across the state are marking his birthday with events this month. Whether you're looking for a party or more scholarly pursuits, you'll find a way to mark our first president's anniversary in a special way. 
The Washington Association of NJ honors Washington at its 146th Annual Meeting on February 17 in Morristown. Pulitzer prize-winning historian Edward Larson will share insights from his new book, Washington & Franklin: the Founding Partnership. More information

Combine birthday cake and scholarship on February 21 as the Princeton Battlefield Society hosts a George Washington Educational Forum at Mercer County College. Bestselling author David O. Stewart presents on Washington's political prowess, gained through pre-Revolutionary service in the Virginia legislature, a county judgeship and leadership of the Continental Army. Reservations are required for this evening program.   More information .

Washington stayed at the Dey Mansion three times in 1780, and the stately home welcomes you to a birthday celebration on February 22. Make your reservations today to return the next day for the George Washington Symposium to learn more about his life through a series of presentations. 

Rockingham invites you to celebrate with a Toast to General Washington's 288th on February 22. Fiddler James Kurtzenberger will provide accompaniment if you'd like to dance a few steps, try the scavenger hunt and learn more about the site's connection to our first president. More information
Monmouth Battlefield State Park welcomes you to trace Washington's path through the June 1778 battle during a special program on February 23. More information.  
Historic New Bridge Landing celebrates the 288th anniversary of Washington's birth on February 23 with performances by the Tricorne Dancers and Anne & Ridley Enslow. Stop by the Jersey Dutch outkitchen for a cooking demonstration, see a bed where Washington slept, and more. More information.   
Visit our  website for more Washington-themed events throughout February!
Sharing Untold Stories Conference Highlights Inclusive Interpretation 

Crossroads Heritage Partners were among the 60 site managers, volunteers and historians who participated in Sharing Untold Stories, our winter 2020 Professional Development Conference on January 24 at Morven Museum & Garden in Princeton. 

The workshop was designed to help site stewards research and build a deeper understanding of the people who worked and lived at their sites, with the goal of providing a more inclusive depiction of the historic site.
Speakers included Aleia M. Brown, Ph.D., assistant director of the University of Maryland's African American History, Culture and Digital Humanities Initiative; Elizabeth Allan, deputy director and curator at Morven; Jane Eliasof, executive director of the Montclair History Center; and R. Isabela Morales, Ph.D., editor and project manager of the Princeton & Slavery Project. Read more about their presentations on our website.
Crossroads thanks our site hosts, Morven Museum & Garden, as well as the NJ Historical Commission staff for planning support. This event was proudly sponsored by Investors Foundation and also received financial support from the National Park Service. 
250th Update Available online

View and hear a recording of the January 8 planning update session for Revolution NJ, the state's commemoration of the 250th anniversary of the United States, available on YouTube. Topics covered during the session included the latest on the NJ Revolutionary-era site survey as well as progress on the comprehensive, statewide survey of social studies curricula.
Watch your emailbox for details on the upcoming presentation of site survey findings, to be announced at Crossroads annual meeting on March 18 in Trenton, as well as the next quarterly 250th meeting, to be held on April 21.
Keep up with Crossroads All Month Long

There's lots to discover about Revolutionary New Jersey throughout February! Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for interesting facts, events and more throughout the winter.   
Board of Trustees
Thomas H. Kean, Honorary Chair ● Ira Jersey, Chair ● Steve Ayscue ● Amy Cradic ● Laura Crowley 
Dale Florio  ●  Seth Hahn  ● John Hardiman ●  Joshua Henne ● Jeff Kaszerman ● Sally Lane 
● Victoria Magliacane ● Rocky Peterson  ● Milly Silva  ● Laura Szwak

Crossroads Staff
Janice Selinger, Executive Director ●  Sue Kaufmann, Communications Director 
Amy Osterhout, Program Manager ● Roseann Butterfield, Office Administrator

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