Presidential Comments

There is little that is more important for an American citizen to know than the history and traditions of his country. Without such knowledge, he stands uncertain and defenseless before the world, knowing neither where he has come from nor where he is going. With such knowledge, he is no longer alone but draws a strength far greater than his own from the cumulative experience of the past and accumulative vision of the future.
Excerpt from John Kennedy's (1962) essay "On History"

I cannot but remember the place that New Jersey holds in our early history. In the early Revolutionary struggle, few of the States among the old Thirteen had more of the battlefields of the country within their limits than old New Jersey.… Away back in my childhood, the earliest days of my being able to read, I got hold of a small book…Weem’s "Life of Washington". I remember all the accounts there given on the battle fields and struggles for the liberties of the country, and none fixed themselves upon my imagination so deeply as the struggle here at Trenton, New Jersey. The crossing of the river, the contest with the Hessians, the great hardhips endured at that time, all fixed themselves on my memory more than any single revolutionary event; and you all know, for you all have been boys, how these early impressions last longer than any others. I recollect thinking then, boy even though I was, that there must have been something more than common that those men struggled for; that something even more than National Independence; that something that held out a great promise to all people of the world to all time to come.... Excerpt from Abraham Lincoln's speech to the NJ State Senate, February 21, 1861

Wallace House and Old Dutch Parsonage Association Membership Information

Please visit our new website, to learn more about our organization. Events and news about the sites will be posted there as well as on the blog. Thank you to all our local friends and supporters for your contributions and loyal support over the years!

Friday, October 24, 2014


Minutes of the 2013 Annual Membership Meeting of the Wallace House and Old Dutch Parsonage Association.

November 23, 2013; 4pm Site Office/Assembly Room

In attendance: Carol K, David H, Marge S.,Marguerite B, John F and 9 other members

Preservation Specialist/Curator: Jim Kurzenberger

Special Guest Speaker:  Ed Wroblewski, Ed. D.

Carol K called the meeting to order and introduced members of the Board.

Minutes. Marge S had previously emailed and mailed the minutes from the 2012 Annual Meeting to the group and asked that they be approved as sent, the Board having previously review them in February. Approved to file on voice vote.

Treasurer’s Report. Marguerite B briefly reported on income and expenses to date, as well as balances thru Oct 31, 2012 on our investment fund.  The fourth quarter reports will not be available until after Dec. 31.  The Association spent $3.358.47 this year.  This included operating funds for our organization and programs. We also provided support for the site in the amount of $2,400 in the past year.  The funds going directly to the Wallace House included purchase of the spit-jack clock reel for the kitchen fireplace and funds for woodwork in the Wallace House Kitchen Cabinet Reconstruction from our Preservation Fund.  Funds spent on programs included our contribution of refreshments to the Five Generals President's  DayTour sponsored by The Heritage Trail Association in February and today’s speaker. The 2013 opening balance of our Investment fund was $5,077.53.  The ending balance as of Oct 31, 2012 was $5,228.21. The fund has not realized any significant growth in the last year, and Marguerite proposed that the Board consider switching funds. She will report on some options at the next Board meeting.

Jane K was absent but sent a membership report. There were 40 paid members in 2013.  Donations last year above and beyond dues enabled us to contribute to the “Kitchen Cabinet Reconstruction”.

Jim K reported briefly on the status of the above project which is nearing completion. The roof repairs at ODP were completed early last year.  He announced an ambitious program of events next year, starting with a Twelfth Night event.  The kitchen cabinets are expected to be installed by this time.  The annual holiday event at the sites, this year “Three Days Before Christmas”, Sunday, Dec 23rd.

Carol K updated the group about the Board’s plan to design and seek funding for a website for our organization which will not only advertise our group but augment the limited information available about the history of the sites on the NJ Park Service website.  We were not able to apply for NJ Historical Commission Mini-grant as originally planned because the Commission canceled the December submission date, due to an excess of grants received to date and the limited funding pool. The Board will proceed to seek funding from other sources, or apply in the new fiscal year.

Carol asked Dr. Wroblewski to update the group on the plans for NJ’s 350 Anniversary year as Mr. Wroblewski is a member of the planning committee. He provided the sites with two posters about the Anniversary and announced the following: The kick-off event is being held New Year’s Eve at the Count Basie Theater and website is already operational.  The themes for the year are: Innovation, Diversity, Liberty.

The next meeting will be arranged before George Washington’s birthday via email. Dues/Donation Request letters will go out on or about Feb. 1.

 Meeting adjourned 4:40 for Dr. Wroblewski’s talk, “The Queen’s Ranger’s: Britain’s First American Regiment.

Marge Sullivan, Secretary of the Board

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Event details and correction on date

NB:  Please note the correction on the date for the Bake Oven Program

Two Upcoming Events at the The Wallace House and Old Dutch Parsonage Historic Site:  Sat. Oct 25 and Sat. Nov. 8

Saturday, Oct. 25
2 pm – 3 pm
"Celebrate New Jersey"
Lecture and visual presentation by author
and New Jersey historian Linda Barth
Save gas as you tour our wonderful state from the comfort of your chair at the the Wallace House meeting room. Experience the famous and not-so-famous people, places, and events of our great little state. Explore our diverse geography: mountains, highlands, rivers, lakes, and seashore. Visit the South, the North, the Central, and little-known places in between. See the many inventions made in New Jersey, including the Band-Aid®, the bar code, and Bubble Wrap®. See the largest clock and flag in the world. Follow George Washington as he criss-crossed our state. Join Linda Barth on this trip around the best state in the nation. Event to be held in:
The Wallace House Meeting Room
71 Somerset St.
 (Parking lot located across from Circle Floors)
Somerville, NJ 08876
Fee:  $10 per person
For information please contact the site. 
Phone:  908-725-1015      Email: 

Saturday, Nov. 8:  18th Century Bake Oven Demonstration at The Wallace House and Old Dutch Parsonage Historic Sites
On Saturday, Nov. 8, Michele Dansak will demonstrate the use of a wood-fired, 18th century bake oven at the Old Dutch Parsonage, from 2 pm to 3:30.  The demonstration will include the preparation of the food items that will then be baked in the oven. In addition, a special tour of The Wallace House and Old Dutch Parsonage will be available after the demonstration. The bake oven demonstration takes place outdoors; please dress appropriately for the weather conditions.
For those who wish to participate by assisting in the bake oven process, the price is $15 per person.  Those who choose to attend as observers will be charged a fee of $10. 
Advance reservations are required. 
To register and for information, please contact the site.  

Event Contact: 
Site Manager Jim Kurzenberger

Phone:  908-725-1015.   Email:
The Wallace House and Old Dutch Parsonage Historic Sites
71 Somerset St., Somerville, NJ 08876
(Parking lot located across from Circle Floors)
Somerville, NJ 08876 

Friday, October 17, 2014


The Wallace House and Old Dutch Parsonage Association will hold its Annual Meeting on Saturday, November  15, 2014, approximately 3pm.  The brief meeting will immediately follow a program on the colonial bake oven at 2 pm.

Members will receive additional information in the regular mail.  New members will also be welcome at this time.