New Jersey History
H. P. Lovecraft’s Summer in the City
Share some summertime fun with author H. P. Lovecraft as he makes the most of New York City’s public treasures — its parks, beaches, and libraries.
Greetings from Asbury Park
A review of Gentrification Down the Shore — a new book exploring a changing Asbury Park, New Jersey, an epicenter of creative and LBGTQ communities on the Jersey Shore.
Stepping Into the Past
Most summer weekends, I like to explore neighborhoods and sites throughout the New York metro area. Although states are easing COVID-19 restrictions, I don’t foresee my explorations resuming this summer. The laissez-faire attitude toward mask-wearing by much of the public does not leave me with a sense of safety, let alone adventure.
Washington Irving in a Neighborhood Cafe
On May 19, 2019, I presented my talk, “Washington Irving: A Knickerbocker in New Jersey,” on behalf of the Jersey City Landmarks Conservancy at my favorite neighborhood cafe, Froth on Franklin.
A Snapshot of Jersey City Culture
Let’s face it: transplants to New York love to scoff at New Jersey. (Interestingly enough, I’ve noticed that native New Yorkers lack this prejudice.) Contrary to this popular stereotype, culture exists in the Garden State.
Revolutionary Heritage: Elizabeth, New Jersey
When looking to imbibe our nation’s colonial and revolutionary heritage, most people might travel to Philadelphia, Boston, or Williamsburg, Virginia. Few people–very, very few people–would consider an afternoon journey to Elizabeth, New Jersey, an industrial city on the Newark Bay just outside of New York City.
Valiant Ambition: Rethinking the American Revolution
During my early adulthood, I lived in Philadelphia and spent a majority of my leisure time visiting historic sites, cemeteries, and museums. I loved learning about colonial and early America. I loved living in a place where I could see, hear, and even touch history. Although I no longer call Philadelphia home, I still enjoy…
Manufactures Village: Art & Work
Manufactures Village, the original home of Seabury & Johnson (later Johnson & Johnson) sits in East Orange, New Jersey. Built in the late 1880s, the complex overflows with fascinating detail and industrial character. Currently, Manufactures Village houses an array of small businesses, light industry, and art studios. Perfume Professor and I were invited to partake…
Thoughts on Asbury Park: a Few Days at the Jersey Shore
Wanting to avoid the expense, inconvenience, and utter unpleasantness of flying, my wife and I have planned our weekend trips and vacations around train travel over the past several years. A proponent of the contemporary cult of travel (and any airline executive) would blanch at this practice. The whole wide world awaits you. Why limit…
A City’s Lost Dreams: Review of How Newark Became Newark
On January 1, 1966, President Lyndon B. Johnson wished a happy 300th anniversary to Newark, New Jersey, observing that Newark’s history paralleled that of the United States itself. Church bells rung, and celebrations occurred throughout the city. The Newark Museum launched a year of exhibits exploring the city’s historical and cultural heritage. A year and…