Sparta NJ Historical Society

Sparta NJ Historical Society Sparta Historical Society is dedicated to discovering and preserving the history of Sparta, New Jersey. We Meet the 2nd Thursday of January, March, May, September, November at The Sparta Presbyterian Church at 7: 30 pm. Join us for unique speakers and fellowship. PRESERVE THE VAN KIRK HOMESTEAD!!!
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Sparta Historical Society is dedicated to discovering and preserving the history of Sparta, New Jersey. We Meet the 2nd Thursday of January, March, May, September, November at The Sparta Ambulance building at 7: 30 pm. Join us for unique speakers and fellowship. PRESERVE THE VAN KIRK HOMESTEAD!!!

Please buy me one.
04/18/2019

Please buy me one.

~Car Ads & Concepts~

Hackensack Plank Road - Wikipedia
04/18/2019
Hackensack Plank Road - Wikipedia

Hackensack Plank Road - Wikipedia

The Hackensack Plank Road, also known as Bergen Turnpike, was a major artery which connected the cities of Hoboken and Hackensack, New Jersey. Like its cousin routes, the Newark Plank Road and Paterson Plank Road, it travelled over Bergen Hill and across the Hackensack Meadows from the Hudson River....

Freedomland U.S.A. - The World's Largest Entertainment Center
04/17/2019

Freedomland U.S.A. - The World's Largest Entertainment Center

"Freedomland U.S.A.: The Definitive History" is a new book that documents the entire story from conception to bankruptcy of one of the most innovative and beloved theme parks in America. Published by Theme Park Press, the world's leading independent publisher of books about the Disney company and its history, its films and animation, and its theme parks, the 300+-page tale includes first-time interviews with park employees and never before published photographs.

Freedomland U.S.A. was celebrated as the “Disneyland of the East.” While it survived only five seasons (1960-1964) in The Bronx, to this day the park generates fond memories among baby boomers who enjoyed its American history-themed attractions.

Freedomland U.S.A. was conceived and built by C.V. Wood and his Marco Engineering Company. Known to many as Woody, he was Disneyland’s first employee and he brought Walt Disney’s imagination to life by leading the team that built that park. He then created Marco Engineering to build theme parks and other venues across the country. Six Flags Over Texas in Arlington and the community of Lake Havasu, Arizona, continue to prosper. The northeast Bronx marshland that featured Freedomland U.S.A. eventually became the Co-op City housing development and a shopping center.

The book was written by historian and journalist Michael R. Virgintino, author of magazine and online articles about the park, and the administrator of Freedomland's memories on social media (Facebook, Instagram and Twitter). It is available on Amazon -- http://amzn.com/1683901770

"Freedomland U.S.A.: The Definitive History" features stories about the building of the park and background about the various attractions from the recreation of the Chicago Fire to a trip on a bull boat in America’s untamed wilderness on the Northwest Fur Trapper attraction. Dark rides included the Earthquake of San Francisco, a Buccaneer attraction and the Tornado recreation in the New Orleans section of the park, and a Mine Caverns ride deep into the earth in the Old Southwest. The dark rides and several other attractions were created by Arrow Development, which designed attractions for Disneyland and many other parks.

Another popular Freedomland attraction allowed guests to witness the early stages of audio-automatronics as they rode on a correspondents’ wagon through the battle lines of rival Civil War armies. Guests also enjoyed Wild West shoot-outs at Fort Cavalry and staged robberies on vintage steam trains. Young children especially enjoyed a ride aboard Danny the Dragon, the fire-breathing mythical monster with a heart of gold.

The book is filled with documentation about the more than 150 celebrities of the day who appeared at the park. They included entertainers (Paul Anka, Louis Armstrong, The Four Seasons, Benny Goodman, The Lennon Sisters, The Three Stooges), New York’s radio disc jockeys (Herb Oscar Anderson, Scott Muni, Murray the K, Jack Sterling), hosts of local television shows for kids and teens (Officer Joe Bolton, Clay Cole, Sonny Fox, Claude Kirchner, Chuck McCann, Captain Jack McCarthy) and many other celebrities from movies, music, radio, stage and television.

"Freedomland U.S.A.: The Definitive History" provides the personal stories of park employees through interviews with character actors who portrayed gunslinger Billy the Kid and cowgirl star Annie Oakley, hospitality hosts, restaurant staff and parking attendants, and those who operated some of the attractions, including the popular Great Lakes sternwheelers. A section of the book includes memories from baby boomers who, as kids, were in awe of the park’s fun and excitement.

The book also puts to rest an urban legend – the closing of Freedomland U.S.A. had nothing to do with the arrival of the 1964-1965 New York World’s Fair.

The History Girl
04/17/2019
The History Girl

The History Girl

In today's guest blog Author Michael R. Virgintino talks about his inspiration for writing “Freedomland U.S.A.: The Definitive History” and gives us a small sample from the book: https://thehistorygirl.page.link/QC5J

If you haven't, enter to win a copy of “Freedomland U.S.A.: The Definitive History.” Freedomland was an American history theme park located in the Bronx and was open for five seasons from 1960 - 1964. If you have memories of visiting, you can join Freedomland U.S.A. - The World's Largest Entertainment Center. To enter to win a copy of the book, click here: https://thehistorygirl.page.link/bnaH
#bookgiveaway #SpreadTheHistory

The History Girl
04/17/2019

The History Girl

#DidYouKnow? According to the 2013 New Jersey Revised Statutes Title 36 - LEGAL HOLIDAYS, Section 36:2-3, today is New Jersey Day! "The Governor of the State of New Jersey is requested to issue annually an appropriate proclamation designating April 17 as New Jersey Day and calling upon all citizens and residents of this State to commemorate and observe said day as the anniversary of the beginning of unified government in New Jersey by directing, and participating in, programs recalling our heritage and its meaning to New Jersey today and in the future." How will you celebrate?

Vintage History
04/17/2019

Vintage History

Did you know outhouses in the past often had more than one storey: Believe it or not, high-rise outhouses actually existed. Back in the old days, they had two-storey hotels in towns so they would build two-storey outhouses. On the upper floor, you’d go back in a little bit further than the outhouse below. Waste from above would fall down a shaft behind the first-floor loo’s wall, allowing for a seamless flow of sewage. This is a 1941 photograph of a two-story outhouse.

The History Girl
04/17/2019

The History Girl

Today in #NJhistory: #OTD, April 16, 1780, the British burn Garret Hopper's houses and mills in the Ho-Ho-Kus, #NewJersey area during the #RevolutionaryWar. #SpreadTheHistory #RevWar

History Images
04/16/2019

History Images

Graves of a Catholic woman and her Protestant husband, who were not allowed to be buried together. Het Oude Kerkhof, Roermond, the Netherlands, 1888.

Blairstown, NJ Historic Preservation Committee
04/16/2019

Blairstown, NJ Historic Preservation Committee

CHRIS FUSSELL - TONIGHT 4/16
Former Navy SEAL and President at McChrystal Group
Speaker at Society of Skeptics
Tuesday, 4/16 at 7:00 PM
Blair Academy
Chiang Center for Innovation and Collaboration
FREE - all are welcome to attend.

As a President at McChrystal Group and former Navy SEAL, Chris Fussell ’92 knows a thing or two about leadership and teamwork. The bestselling author and organizational-change expert will share his wisdom with Blair students and faculty at the Society of Skeptics on April 16 at 7 p.m. in the Chiang Center for Innovation and Collaboration.

Given that his audience will be predominantly students who have grown up with digital communication, Mr. Fussell will discuss core areas of risk in the information age, challenges that undermine technological infrastructure, and how to navigate change in business—and in life—in productive and fulfilling ways. He also hopes to impress upon students the importance of what Blair is teaching them about strong character, values and effective leadership.

“The question of how we lead and communicate on behalf of great organizations in the 21st century is the biggest one facing our generation,” said Mr. Fussell, who spent 15 years as a Navy SEAL and as part of the Naval Special Warfare Development Group before serving as an aide-de-camp to then-Lieutenant General Stanley McChrystal at the time he oversaw the Joint Special Operations Command in Iraq. In 2012, Mr. Fussell left the service to join McChrystal Group, founded by his former commanding officer, where he has served as Chief Growth Officer focused on transforming organizations into cohesive and adaptable “teams of teams” and applying lessons learned in the military to constructs of civilian organizational change.

“I hope Blair students understand and appreciate the School’s focus on character-based leadership, and the fact that it hasn’t changed since my time as a student,” he continued. “These universal concepts were essential to my success in the military and now in the business world. Such core fundamentals are critical in today’s world, especially in the decentralized, information-age battlefield on which these kids are growing up.”

After graduating from Blair, Mr. Fussell attended the University of Richmond and served as a Naval officer from 1997 to 2012. Upon leaving the Naval Special Warfare Development Group to join McChrystal Group, Mr. Fussell also became a Senior Fellow for National Security at New America, a think-tank focused on next-generation challenges for the United States. During his time in the military, he earned his master’s degree in irregular warfare from the Naval Postgraduate School. Today, he heads McChrystal Group’s Leadership Institute, serves as a member of the Council of Foreign Relations and sits on the Navy SEAL Foundation’s Board of Directors. He is the author of Team of Teams: New Rules of Engagement for a Complex World and One Mission: How Leaders Build a Team of Teams.

04/16/2019
Vintage History

Vintage History

800 years of Norte Dame history. This video was recorded in 1963.

New Jersey Historic Preservation Office
04/16/2019

New Jersey Historic Preservation Office

The early hours of April 15th have been tragic times in history. Also, today, President Abraham Lincoln succumbed to his assassin’s bullet & died 9 hours after being shot while attending a play at Ford’s Theater in Washington, DC the night before. The time was 7:20am.

Word spread quickly across the nation, stunning people who were still celebrating the Union victory of the Civil War which had just ended. It was a particularly difficult blow to the freed slaves who now faced an uncertain world without their most authoritative advocate.

Lincoln’s funeral was held April 19th, prior to a 2-week journey by funeral train to carry his body back to his hometown of Springfield, IL. He was buried there on May 4th. Lincoln was 56 years old.

Image is in public domain.
#njshpo #abrahamlincoln

The History Girl
04/16/2019

The History Girl

The Great Swamp National Wildlife Refuge is located within the townships of Chatham, Harding, and Long Hill in Morris County, #NewJersey. The Great Swamp is the remnant of the bottom of the Glacial Lake Passaic that about 15,000 to 11,000 years ago stretched approximately 30 by 10 miles. The lake was formed by the melting waters of the retreating Wisconsin Glacier at the end of the last Ice Age.

Established November 3, 1960, it is one of more than 560 refuges in the National Wildlife Refuge System. The refuge was established after a year-long legal battle that pitted local residents against Port Authority of New York and New Jersey officials wishing to turn the Great Swamp into a major regional airport to supplement Newark Airport's ability to accommodate large jet aircraft. The Jersey Jetport Site Association was formed in opposition to the airport and was later joined by the North American Wildlife Foundation. Together, these groups raised awareness and purchased property amounting to 2,600 acres. This land was donated to the federal government to be protected in perpetuity.

The refuge was declared a National Natural Landmark in May 1966. The eastern half of the refuge was designated as wilderness by Congress in 1968, making it the first wilderness area within the U.S. Department of the Interior. Since its establishment, the Great Swamp Refuge has grown to 7,800 acres and preserves over 3,600 acres of wilderness. It serves as a migration-resting and feeding area or permanent habitat for more than 244 species of birds. #SpreadTheHistory #njhistory

The History Girl
04/16/2019

The History Girl

Today in #NJhistory: The tale of two shipwrecks - #OTD, April 15, 1854, off the coast of Brigantine Beach, #NewJersey, the ship Powhatan ran aground on the shoals during a fierce storm. The vessel broke in two and all on board died. Forty bodies washed ashore and were buried at Rum Point. Additional bodies were later found and placed in a mass grave at the old Quaker cemetery in Smithville.

Also on April 15, 1854, during the same storm, the schooner Manhattan struck the shoals about half a mile south of the Powhatan. Nine perished in this shipwreck. George Griffiths was the only listed survivor. #SpreadTheHistory

04/15/2019
NJ.com

NJ.com

Here's what remains of the North End Pavilion in Ocean Grove after Saturday's devastating fire. The oceanfront building is a total loss, fire officials said. http://nj-ne.ws/WlDVsfH

04/15/2019
Vintage Las Vegas

Vintage Las Vegas

Las Vegas Strip, March 1975.

35mm stock footage, Kino Library # CHX1259. Frank Sinatra at Caesars Palace. kinolibrary.com

The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York
04/15/2019

The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

“Notre-Dame Cathedral is the very soul of Paris but so much more—it is a touchstone for all that is the best about the world, and a monument to the highest aspirations of artistic achievement that transcends religion and time. It has survived so much—from the French Revolution to Nazi occupation—to watch its devastation is excruciating.” – Barbara Drake Boehm, Paul and Jill Ruddock Senior Curator for The Met Cloisters

The Met and the collective cultural community are watching in shock and horror at the fire engulfing Notre-Dame Cathedral. We are sending all of our support and strength to the people of Paris—and stand ready to provide any and all resources we can.

Image: Édouard Baldus (French, born Prussia, 1813–1889). Notre-Dame (façade), 1860s. Albumen silver print from glass negative. The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Is this true?
04/15/2019
Town & Country

Is this true?

Local firefighters and police have confirmed that the 850-year-old cathedral is currently in flames.

New Jersey Historic Preservation Office
04/15/2019

New Jersey Historic Preservation Office

At 2:20am this morning in 1912, the RMS Titanic sank into the Atlantic’s icy waters, 1000 miles due east of Boston. Only 2.5 hours had passed since the mighty ship’s starboard had scraped alongside an iceberg ripping through 6 of its 16 bulkheads. Only 37 seconds passed between the sighting of the iceberg & hitting it.

Nearly 1500 people perished; only 705 passengers were saved.

46 of the passengers were bound for New Jersey, or would settle here. From first class icon, Washington Roebling II whose Trenton family had built the Brooklyn Bridge, to third class passengers traveling to begin a new life in the US, their fates were intertwined. Charles Roebling, Washington’s father, had the west wall of Trinity Episcopal Church in Trenton, NJ rebuilt as a memorial to his son, whose body was never found.

In a cruel twist of fate, those rescued hours later by the RMS Carpathia had to endure a violent storm the following night onboard that ship. One survivor wrote waves “covered the boat.” “We thought the boat would go over or surely sink. We were all more scared than the night before” aboard the Titanic.

The shock of the Titanic disaster blanketed the world with sadness, much like subsequent events including the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Kennedy’s assassination & the terrorist attacks of September 11th. It remains one of the greatest tragedies in human history & naval disasters.

Ship photo courtesy of Hulton Archive
All other photos courtesy of "The Truth About the Titanic," 1913
#njshpo #OTD #titanic

04/15/2019
Charles Phoenix

Charles Phoenix

Charles Phoenix J O Y R I D E: Hey Joyriders ...feast your sences on this ... the all-new for 1957 Eldorado Biarittz by Cadillac ... Behold the Glory ... THIS is AMERICANA ... I KNOWWW !!! ...

THANK YOU FOR SHARING this vid - that helps me to expand my JOYRIDE video series ...

BTW -check out my live show schedule and books (Link below in comments) - tix now avail to upcoming shows in Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Catalina Island, and Long Beach

ALSO -dont miss out on my - INSTAGRAM - for more classic & kitschy American life and style !!!

The History Girl
04/15/2019

The History Girl

Today in (kind of) #NJhistory: #OTD, April 14, 1894, the first Kinetoscope parlor, owned by the Holland Brothers, opened in New York City at 1155 Broadway, on the corner of 27th Street - the first commercial motion picture house. They had ten machines, set up in parallel rows of five, and a customer could view the films in each for a total of 25 cents. Kinetoscope parlors soon opened all across the United States. The #NewJersey connection you ask? They were made by the Edison Manufacturing Company in West Orange. #SpreadTheHistory

The History Girl
04/15/2019

The History Girl

This week, enter to win a copy of “Freedomland U.S.A.: The Definitive History” by Michael R. Virgintino. Freedomland was an American history theme park located in the Bronx and was open for five seasons from 1960 - 1964. If you have memories of visiting, you can join Freedomland U.S.A. - The World's Largest Entertainment Center. To enter to win a copy of the book, click here: https://thehistorygirl.page.link/bnaH
#bookgiveaway #SpreadTheHistory

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336 Main St
Sparta, NJ
07871

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Sparta Historical Society is dedicated to discovering and preserving the history of Sparta, New Jersey. We Meet the 2nd Thursday of January, March, May, September, November at The Sparta Ambulance building at 7: 30 pm. Join us for unique speakers and fellowship. PRESERVE THE VAN KIRK HOMESTEAD!!!

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