Year 2019 | Volume 02 of 04
The Homestead
The Blairstown Museum's Quarterly Newsletter
During the roaring twenties, the proprietor of the Blairstown Inn was minor-league baseball umpire Jack Quigley. His very close friend was New York Yankee legend George Herman "Babe" Ruth. As a result of their friendship, the Bambino regularly stayed at the hotel while visiti ng Northwest, New Jersey. In Blairstown, he enjoyed hunting and fishing on the Paulinskill, as well as sizzling steaks and cold beers at the hotel's restaurant.

Julia Ruth Stevens, the last surviving daughter of baseball legend Babe Ruth, died Saturday, March 9, 2019 at an assisted living facility in Henderson, Nevada, after a short illness. "She lived a full life and tried to do her very best ... to perpetuate the legacy of the Babe in a positive way," her son Tom Stevens said.
Spring Brings Flowers, Hope And Opportunity
On Your Mark, Get Set, Ready, SPRING!

Dear Friend:

Spring is finally upon us, and with it comes sweet scented flowers, a renewed sense of hope, and incredible opportunities!

We are beginning our third year as a well established and wonderfully organized operation. Our support in the community has never been stronger, and ,as a result, we will work to collaborate with and support even more local organizations this year. There is a great African proverb that reads, "If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together." Thanks to our national key alliances, which vary from the American Alliance of Museums to the Smithsonian Institution, and our growing team of volunteers, which has now exceeded 50+ individuals, we have the man (and woman) power necessary to tackle these new objectives.

I am excited to share with you that the Blairstown Museum is now eligible for Federal funding. We have begun the long and arduous process of applying for grants and are excited to see the results they will yield. Our 2019 Membership Program is well underway, and we encourage you to become a Sustaining Member , if you have not already done so. In addition to receiving a collectible John Insley Blair Commemorative Medal, you will also receive membership in the Time Travelers program, which provides discounts at over 300 museums across America. Most of all, you will be an intricate part of preserving, exhibiting, and celebrating Blairstown's history.

Several of our members have opted, through their businesses and retirement investments, to obtain matched charitable funding, with the Blairstown Museum being the principal benefactor. While the Blairstown Museum cherishes and respects all of the non-profit organizations that exist on Main Street, and to date there are five, we continue to be the only one without a paid staff and without members who receive remuneration. This is, in large part, credit to our dedicated supporters. We simply could not do this without you.

Every nickle that is dropped in our donation box is applied directly to the acquisition, preservation, exhibition, promotion, and celebration of Blairstown's unique history and heritage. We are grateful for all of our donors, especially our matched contributors. It takes an enormous amount of donations to care for over 5,000 artifacts; organize or participate in over 100 annual exhibits, events, and programs; and support the preservation efforts of others in our community. You can assist us by encouraging your family, friends, and neighbors to support the only independent public museum in the Township of Blairstown. They can learn more about our organization at .

As implied in our previous newsletter, 2018 was a tremendously productive year for our organization. Unfortunately, we also lost two great Friday the 13th supporters and Museum contributors. We began 2018 by receiving the news that Peter Apostolou, owner of the Blairstown Diner, passed away unexpectedly on January 28th. This was a crushing blow to Friday the 13th fans, who came to know and love Peter since he became the diner's owner in 1997. Then in December 2018, we received a message from the family of Steve Dash. The Friday the 13th actor had long battled diabetes, which resulted in the amputation of his leg. Shortly thereafter, he died from complications of the surgery. While we found comfort in the words from his daughter, explaining how her father cherished his appearance at the Blairstown Museum in July 2018, we still could not help but feel a profound sense of loss by his passing.

Nearly one year from the date of Peter's death, the Blairstown Diner was sold. The new owner has pledged his full support of the Blairstown Museum and has agreed to collaborate with us on future Friday the 13th celebrations and offerings. Ari Lehman, the actor who played the first Jason Voorhees, as a teenager, in the original film, has been a devoted supporter of the Blairstown Museum since he first appeared at the Museum in April 2018. We are currently working with Ari on some amazing fan-based opportunities. Although no one will replace Peter and Steve, together we will work to honor their legacy and celebrate the franchise.

You may be wondering how are we accomplishing all of this work if we are closed for the winter season. Rest assured knowing that a "we're closed for the winter" sign on our door does not stifle our volunteer spirit. Various Museum Committees have continued to meet in order to preserve, catalog, and research artifacts. Others have regularly met to plan this year's exhibits, events, programs, and tours.

History will return to Main Street when we unlock our doors for our Spring Re-Opening on Friday, April 5, 2019. We encourage you to visit us and say hello. Our first community program will take place on Wednesday, May 1st when we celebrate our annual Helen Hall Day . On this special day, the Museum will partner with A & J Messina Greenhouses to once again gift 100 residents and businesses, throughout Blairstown's Historic District, with their own plant in Helen's memory.

We are also less than 150 days away from our favorite event. That's right, ladies and gentlemen. It's time to dust off your bonnets and bow ties - and get ready to party like it's 1899! On Sunday, August 11, 2019, the Blairstown Museum will host our Third Annual Historic Blairstown Day . We are currently accepting applications for crafters, artists, artisans, and direct sales representatives; as well as participants for our annual Antique & Classic Car Show. New to this year's event is an array of entertainment, live auction, and sponsorship opportunities. Visit our Historic Blairstown Day event page to learn more about this quintessential small-town America event - and mark your calendars. It is sure to be real lally-cooler!

It is shaping up to be another exiting year, and we remain ever grateful for our supporters and for our volunteers, several of whom travel from states away, to labor diligently in an effort to preserve, promote, and, celebrate our history. How lucky our forefathers and foremothers are to have you!

Great things are brought about and burdens are lightened through the efforts of many hands anxiously engaged in a good cause. – Elder M. Russell Ballard

In History,
Jeanette Iurato
President, Board of Trustees
The Blairstown Museum
Attention All Crystal Lake Campers
5/17 OR 5/18 6:30AM-9AM

Before heading to Camp Crystal Lake, enjoy a full, hearty breakfast while watching a movie screening of the 1980 American slasher film  FRIDAY THE 13TH  in the Blairstown Diner - an  OFFICIAL  movie location!

> Includes Exclusive Gifts <
> Signed Memorabilia <
5/17 OR 5/18 12:30PM-3PM

Before heading to Camp Crystal Lake, enjoy a full, hearty lunch while watching a movie screening of the 1980 American slasher film  FRIDAY THE 13TH  in the Blairstown Diner - an  OFFICIAL  movie location!

> Includes Exclusive Gifts <
> Signed Memorabilia <
Volunteer Spotlight
Meet Pamela Gumbman
Pamela, a 44-year old single-mom from Columbia, is a 7th Grade Language-Arts teacher and a ROCK STAR Volunteer at the Blairstown Museum. For the past year, Pamela has generously donated her time and talent to helping the museum operate and prosper. When we look at our volunteers, we see a diverse group of individuals with a common cause - furthering the Museum's mission, assisting with preservation projects, and celebrating the men and women who once walked our streets. They are history in motion.

This quarter, we are highlighting Pamela and sharing a recent interview we held.

P. I attended the October 13, 2017 Friday the 13th celebration. As an attendee, I had such a great time and met so many nice people, that it made me want to be part of future Blairstown Museum events.

P. Too many to count. Following my Friday the 13th experience, I connected with the Museum's Curator. In April 2018, she put a public call out seeking volunteers to fold shirts and I jumped at the opportunity to help. Since then, I've volunteered for both Friday the 13th Celebrations in 2018, Historic Blairstown Day, handed out candy during the Halloween Parade, and helped lay wreaths at the Blairstown (Gravel Hill) Cemetery with the Museum and Girl Scouts. My volunteerism includes everything from preparing the Museum's space for visitors to readying the gift shop and even running errands. Today, I serve on two Museum Committees.
P. I absolutely love learning about the town's history and enjoy working with the other volunteers. It's very rewarding.
P. When my daughter was younger, I was a Girl Scout Leader.
P. Instead of driving down Main Street and seeing old buildings, I now can envision what it once was. I know who lived here and what business was there, and I'm just in awe of our history.
P. Hands down, learning about Blair Academy and how at the time of their founding in 1848 they accepted all genders and races. We're talking thirteen years before the Civil War - equal education for all. It was progressive, and forward thinking, and I am so honored to know that happened right here in our little town.
P. Do it. I would tell them that whether they have one hour every month to give, or can serve on a Committee that there is nothing more rewarding than learning about your town and sharing that knowledge with the public. We have a good set of volunteers, and I think they'd all agree with me.
P. I have watched Friday the 13th explode, in a good way. A very good way. And we should all be proud that people from all over the world - literally, from all over the world - are traveling to our little town, to see our little museum. I mean, how great is that?!
P. My hope is that the Blairstown Museum gets even bigger. More exhibits, more events, maybe even a bigger venue. And with the help of volunteers, it may just get there in our lifetime.
Annual Helen Hall Day
April Showers, Bring May Flowers
April showers bring May flowers, and what do these May flowers bring? Happy thoughts and sunshine smiles and wishes for a wonderful Spring.

You can support this act of kindness by making a
one-time $10 donation towards the purchase of plants.
New Year, New Look
Houston, We Have Liftoff!
On Thursday, March 7, 2019 the Blairstown Museum launched its new website!

Learn about our preservation efforts, exhibitions, events, programs, and tours at .

We are very thankful for our donors who make our domain and hosting services possible, as well as for our volunteers who dedicate their time to creating and maintaining our beautiful new website. 💻

Local History Uncovered
Father of the Resort Industry
In the early days, Colonial law called for the provision of yaugh houses, which stated that any house in a remote area was required to take in travelers needing shelter. Weary travelers, along the Delaware Water Gap, would seek food, lodging and hospitality at the home of Nicholas DePui, Danial Brodhead, Isaac Van Campen and others who lived along and near Old Mine Road. Over time, yaugh houses, hunting houses, public houses, half-way houses, taverns and inns began to dot the landscape.

In 1753, Antoine Dutot was born in France and later became a plantation owner in Saint-Domingue, Haiti; at the time a French Colony. In 1793, during a slave uprising, he fled and headed for Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Upon his arrival, he traveled up the Delaware River to the Gap and purchased a large tract of land, which he named Dutotsburg. The city he hoped to build never materialized, and the area later became known as the borough of Delaware Water Gap. Antoine built over one dozen small dwellings and in 1822 commenced with the building of the Kittatinny House on the curve of the Delaware River, overlooking the Gap. Unfortunately, he ran out of money before he could complete the project. However, his dream was fulfilled through the labor of others. Click here to continue reading the inspiring story of Antoine Dutot, “Father of the Resort Industry” and the men who made the Kittatinny House, overlooking the Delaware Water Gap, a reality.
AmazonSmile Program
The Blairstown Museum is excited to announce that, as a public charity under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, we have been invited to participate in AmazonSmile.

This is great news for our organization, as it enables our supporters to enjoy the same wide selection of products, low prices, and convenient shopping features found on with the added benefit of having 0.5% of their purchases automatically donated to the Blairstown Museum, at no additional cost to them.

Visit  to automatically select the Blairstown Museum as your charity.
Historic Blairstown Day
SUNDAY, AUGUST 11, 2019 11 A.M. - 5 P.M.

Hosted by the Blairstown Museum, Historic Blairstown Day is a celebration of Blairstown’s heritage. Spend the day enjoying the ambiance of a bygone era with nostalgic music; antique, craft and food vendors; classic car show; a birthday celebration for town founder John Insley Blair and much more.
- Participant fee $20 per vehicle
- Participant fee early bird registration $17 per vehicle (before June 15, 2019)
- Participants receive one free Dash Plaque Magnet
- Car Show Best Overall Contest (Trophy 1st Place, Trophy 2nd Place, Trophy 3rd Place)
- Car Show Best In Show (Voted by Public. Wall Plaque Prize.)
- Artists, Artisans, Crafters, Direct Sales Representatives & Walking Vendors
- Vendor fee $40 per 10x10 space
- Vendor fee $30 per Walking Vendor
- Vendor fee is waived for non-profits that do not sell a product
- Vendors dress in appropriate mid-1800 to early 1900s inspired clothing 
- Vendor Best Dressed Contest ($75 1st Place, $50 2nd Place, $25 3rd Place)
Become A Sponsor
We Need Event Sponsors
Nothing quite exudes small town America more than a community event to honor its history and heritage – and we would be honored if your company or organization would be a part of this celebration.
This year, Historic Blairstown Day will feature both a Silent and an Ol' Fashioned LIVE Auction! We are grateful that an experienced, live Auctioneer has offered their services at no charge. This is really a blessing, as often they expect a percentage of the final sales. Now, we need your help. We are collecting donated items to be auctioned. These items can be new electronics, travel packages, sports tickets, signed memorabilia, gift baskets, custom artwork, culinary experiences, personal assistance or services, luggage sets, golf lessons, etc. Use your imagination and volunteer spirit to help us have an amazing auction. If you need help conceptualizing a donation, reach out to our HBD Committee. They would love to help you brainstorm and come up with some great ideas.
Preservation Partners
Unity In The Community
Across the country, local businesses and cultural institutions unite to create a dynamic, thriving community where residents can live, work, play, and learn in their own backyards. We believe that history and the arts are pillars of a vibrant community. Therefore, we strive to offer both residents and visitors unparalleled access to these cultural treasures. The support of our Preservation Partners is paramount to our efforts.

We strongly encourage you to support our Preservation Partners , as they have been very generous in their support of our organization.

Blairstown Museum
26 Main Street - PO Box 109 - Blairstown NJ 07825
Tel: 908-362-1371 Web: