Historic Sites
Learn through history by visiting interesting historic sites around the state of New Jersey. Historic sites let you put a real face on the history that you've read about, making it more exciting for you and your children.
Historic Sites in New Jersey
Edison National Historic Site
For more than forty years, the laboratory created by Thomas Alva Edison in West Orange, New Jersey, had enormous impact on the lives of millions of people worldwide. Out of the West Orange laboratories came the motion picture camera, vastly improved phonographs, sound recordings, silent and sound movies and the nickel-iron alkaline electric storage battery. Edison National Historic Site provides a unique opportunity to interpret and experience important aspects of America's industrial, social and economic past, and to learn from the legacy of the world's best known inventor.
Lower Delaware National Wild & Scenic River
The lower Delaware River region contains immense resource diversity, combining an area of high population density with a wealth of natural, cultural, and historical resources and recreational opportunities. The river valley houses cliffs rising 400 feet above the rivers that provide for magnificent scenery and habitat unique to the region. The south-facing, desert-like slopes are home to the prickly pear cactus, while the north-facing slopes display flora and fauna usually only found in arctic-apline climates. The river itself provides habitat for American shad, striped bass, and river herring and is an important component of the Atlantic Flyway, one of four major waterfowl routes in North America. From a historic veiwpoint, the river is one of the most significant corridors in the nation, containing buildings used during Washington's famous crossing, historic navigation channels, Native American and colonial archeological sites, and 19th century mills.
Ellis Island National Monument
Ellis Island was incorporated as part of the Statue of Liberty National Monument on May 11, 1965. Between 1892 and 1954, approximately 12 million steerage and third class steamship passengers who entered the United States through the port of New York were legally and medically inspected at Ellis Island. Reopened on September 10, 1990 after a massive restoration, the Main Building on Ellis Island is now a museum dedicated to the history of immigration and the important role this island claimed during the mass migration of humanity in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
Morristown National Historical Park
During two critical winters of the Revolutionary War, 1777 and 1779–80, the countryside in and around Morristown, New Jersey, sheltered the main encampments of the American Continental Army and served as the headquarters of its commander-in-chief, General George Washington. The National Park Service at Morristown National Historical Park preserves sites in the Morristown area occupied by the Continental Army and interprets the history and subsequent commemoration of these encampments and the extraordinary fortitude of the officers and enlisted men under Washington’s leadership. General Washington twice chose Morristown due to its strategic location, including proximity to New York City, defensible terrain, important communication routes, access to critical resources, and a supportive community. The park encompasses ground occupied by the army during the vast 1779-80 encampment, and the site of the fortification from the 1777 encampment. The Ford Mansion, where Washington made his headquarters, is an important feature of the park and recalls civilian contributions to the winning of independence. The national park consists of four non-contiguous units: Washington’s Headquarters with the Ford Mansion and Headquarters Museum, the Fort Nonsense Unit, the Jockey Hollow Unit, and the New Jersey Brigade Area. The Jockey Hollow Unit includes the Wick house (headquarters of General Arthur St. Clair), five reconstructed soldier huts, and approximately 27 miles of walking trails.
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