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Free

The Inclusive History of the Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route in Westfield, NJ

March 26, 2024
3:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Reeve History & Cultural Resource Center, 314 Mountain Avenue
Westfield, NJ 07090 United States

Westfield, NJ – – On Tuesday, March 26, 2024 from 3pm -5pm at the Reeve History & Cultural Resource Center, home of the Westfield Historical Society located at 314 Mountain Ave, Westfield, NJ a free, public, hybrid presentation will be given called “The Inclusive History of the Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route National Historic Trail – Westfield.” The project is made possible by a FY 2024 Project Grant from the New Jersey Department of State, The New Jersey Historical Commission. 

From August 2023 – March 2024, the Westfield Historical Society, Westfield, NJ embarked on a journey to research Westfield’s full relationship to the Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route National Historic Trail during the time of the march to Yorktown, VA in August 1781.  The research focused on uncovering lesser known narratives about the people who inhabited Westfield at the time, structures which existed and the roads that were traversed by “Continental Army General Benjamin Lincoln’s Left Column with its the mass of an estimated 1800 troops, multiple wagons, Alexander Hamilton’s Battalion of Light Infantry, the New Jersey Regiments, the integrated Rhode Island Regiment, and some women and children” according to the research produced by Robert A. Selig, Ph.D.  

The presentation will be given by researchers, Robert A. Selig, Ph.D. Historical Consultant for National Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route Association,  Claire Garland, President, Sand Hill Indian Historical Association, Susannah Mary Chewning, Ph.D. Senior Professor of English at Union County College, Sean Dineen, D.Litt. Adjunct Professor of History at Kean University, and Kendall Robertson, B.A. and Fulbright Scholar, were led by Robert Forloney, a Cultural Institution Consultant and John’s Hopkins University Adjunct Faculty for Museums and Society. They will share their research of the Continental Army, Indigenous people, African Americans (enslaved and free), local militia and inhabitants of the West Fields during the August 29, 1781 troop march and help provide an inclusive illustration that also  informs us about the full context of participants and witnesses to this historic event. “This is the first time, for the Trail in New Jersey, such a research project has been done that ties so many elements together and gives a scholarly foundation to Westfield’s identity as a Trail Town,” according to Julie Diddell, Westfield Historical Society member, grant writer and project manager and Brain Remite, President, Westfield Historical Society. 

The research is meant to be used by the Westfield Historical Society and others to develop future educational programs, pamphlets and publications, American 250 commemorations, exhibits, memorials, markers, and signage in Westfield. 

Supporting the researchers were the following officials, organizations, and others, namely Westfield Mayor Shelley Brindle and the Town of Westfield; NJ State Senator, Jon Bramnick; the National Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route Association, and the Martin Luther King Jr. Association of Westfield, the West Fields Chapter Sons of the American Revolution, the Westfield Chapter Daughters of the American Revolution, Robert Wendel, Westfield Historical Society; Catherine Paretti, Vice Chair for the Washington Rochambeau Revolutionary Route New Jersey; and the Washington Rochambeau Revolutionary Route New Jersey. 

The Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route National Historic Trail, is a unit of the National Park Service. It is a 680-mile land and water corridor that begins in Newport, Rhode Island and passes through Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Washington, DC and Virginia. For more information on go to: www.nps.gov/waro  

If you plan on attending virtually, please use the link below to access the Zoom meeting.

https://us06web.zoom.us/j/4498169668?pwd=bVRmRThKMjZjK3VUanh2TlJoT0NKdz09&omn=81693368737#success

For more information, or to make a reservation to attend in person, please email WestfieldHistoricalSociety@gmail.com or call 908-654-1794.

Since 1968, the 501(c)(3) non-profit Westfield Historical Society has worked to preserve, interpret, and encourage interest in history, Westfield, and its residents through educational efforts and community outreach programs. 

For more information on the Westfield Historical Society and their events, visit http://westfieldhistoricalsociety.org, like on Facebook, and follow on Instagram. 

 

Brian Remite with Susannah Chewning at WHS archives with old town documents trunk. 11.2
Brian Remite (l.), Westfield Historical Society President, and Researcher, Dr. Susannah Chewning, conduct research in the Westfield Historical Society Archives for “The Inclusive History of the Washington-Rochambeau Revolutionary Route National Historic Trail – Westfield.” A free presentation on this research will take place at Westfield’s Reeve House on March 26th. Reservations are required.

 

Organizer:

Westfield Historical Society
westfieldhistoricalsociety@gmail.com
908-654-1794