Saturday, April 23, 2011

Greenwich walk about

I got together with another of my boat building buddies, this time William Duffield.  William lives in an old town in Cumberland County New Jersey called Greenwich. Cumberland Country is largely rural and is located in southern New Jersey along the Delaware Bay.  In the colonial period this part of New Jersey was first settled by the Swedes.  Next came the Dutch and later the English. The basic plan of the town was laid down by John Fenwick who died before the town was settled.  However his plan was followed and the first acreage was sold in 1684.  By 1690 a small port community had developed along the Cohansey River.  Many of the surviving buildings date to 1700s.

The town provides a sign for the pronunciationally challenged.  It's "green-witch" and NOT "grin-itch".  The townspeople changed the pronunciation after the Revolutionary War because "grin-itch" sounded too British.

Looking east along the main drag, Ye Greate Street.  Yep, that's what it's called; I don't make this stuff up, kids.


Wm's house, built in 1727.

This Swedish-built granary is across the street from William's house.  It was built in 1650 and is the oldest building in the state of New Jersey.  More can be found here: http://www.co.cumberland.nj.us/content/171/217/839.aspx

The Gibbon house is home to the Cumberland County Historical Society.  Note the Flemish bond brick work.

More info about the Gibbon house.  The old granary is in the background.
An earlier Richard Wood lived in William's house.  This Richard Wood also built and operated a general store.

Here is Wood's store.  Interestingly, Richard Wood's descendants are also merchants.  They founded the Wawa chain of convenience stores.
Another of the Wood family's houses.  This one is next to the store.

Across Ye Greate Street is the stone tavern.


At the other end of town is this building which houses the Post Office on the left and Tom & Mabel's County Store on the right.  Both serve as gathering places for the village.

There's that witch again.  Shouldn't she be green?

Like the colonists in Boston, New York and Annapolis, Greenwich also had its gang of "Indians" who burned a cargo of tea in protest of taxes.  This is a monument to the Greenwich Tea Party.  More about the Greenwich Tea party can be read here:  http://www.co.cumberland.nj.us/content/163/233/403/default.aspx  and here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Philip_Vickers_Fithian

Finally, here is the Quaker Meeting House, built in 1771.
There are many other interesting buildings and several museums in Greenwich.  We'll explore those on future visits.  In the meantime you can read more about Greenwich here: http://www.historicgreenwichnj.org/

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