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Saturday, November 10th
10:00 am to 4:00 pm

Last year in September, Susan Plaisted of Heart to Hearth Cookery was on hand as part of our "The General Settles In" program demonstrating the process of making and molding "creamed ice," one of Washington's favorite treats. This fall, on Saturday, November 10th, from 10 am to 4 pm. Susan will be back to demonstrate apple butter making from start to finish on the grounds of Rockingham. A large cauldron will be set up over an outdoor hearth to accommodate this process. Visitors can observe the ongoing preparation throughout the day and help with the stirring.

Rockingham originally included two large apple orchards on its 360-plus acreage. More than likely, the Berriens, Rockingham's owners, or a close neighbor would have had a large apple press to wring the juices from the fruit for cider and vinegar. Throughout New Jersey in the 18th-century there were a large number of apple trees, and cider (hard/alcoholic) was a prevalent drink of the time. Vinegar would have been used in recipes and food preservation, important in a time before refrigeration. Apples would also have been used for desserts and preserves and could be kept whole in cool, dry storage or cut into rings to dry for later use.

This event is free, though donations are always welcome. As part of the day, regular house tours will be offered, the museum store will be open and there will be apple-themed refreshments offered.

Sunday, December 9th
11:00 am to 4:00 pm

Have you heard of Madame Moose? Or Sweetlips? Or how about Nelson and Blueskin? What do Shire, Devon and Hog Island have to do with 18th-century farming? What animals did George Washington have a strong hand in introducing to America? Rockingham will be presenting its annual Candlelight Holiday Tours on Sunday, December 9th from 11 am to 4 pm. This year's theme revolves around the "beasts"-pets, working animals, wild-that were part of Washington's and his family's life. Learn about the funny names some of his many dogs had, what wild animals were important to Mount Vernon's (Washington's main farm) economy and what various creatures served as pets in the Washington household.

The Live Historians Club of Montgomery Township High School will be presenting the faunal information in period dress as visitors are touring from room to room of the historic house, which will be enhanced in the restrained 18th-century style of holiday decoration. Practitioners of Musik will be on hand providing lilting melodies, Rockingham Association members will have the Museum Store open and there will be refreshments available in the Dutch barn.

Please be advised, as always for Candlelight, that space is limited so advance tour RESERVATIONS ARE REQUIRED to guarantee admission and must be made by calling 609-683-7132 through Nov. 18 or 609-683-7136 after Nov. 18. There is a suggested donation of $5 per person or $10 per family. Tours will be offered at least every half-hour with 3:30 being the last tour. We hope you can join us!

This program is made possible by the MTHS Live Historians, the Rockingham Association, the Stony Brook Garden Club and the NJ Division of Parks & Forestry.


Rockingham offers a wide variety of programs throughout the year. Our largest annual events are the Holiday Candlelight Tour in early December and Children's Day in early May, both presented with the help of the volunteers from The Rockingham Association, the Montgomery High School Live Historians and the Stony Brook Garden Club.

Other programs focus on various aspects of Colonial life and may be more appropriate for adults only or may be of interest to children as well.

Recent events have included:

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Please check the website regularly for announcements of future events and programs.


History to Go!
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The Children's Museum at Rockingham sponsors an outreach history project: History to Go!. This program is an opportunity for your groups to prepare to come to Rockingham, or to have Rockingham come to them! This program enables groups to see and use some of the most popular items from our Children's Museum in the convenience of their own classroom, living room or civic center.

How did this program begin?

Rockingham, with the support of the New Jersey State Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution, realized that many people of all walks are interested in learning about American History. The most effective way of teaching is a "hands-on" approach where one can touch items, play games, and try on clothing from Colonial times. Rockingham wanted a program that would be available to all, regardless of their ability to come to our historic site.

Who can use this program?

Anyone who wants to learn! Classroom groups that are planning to come to Rockingham while studying the Revolutionary War may use History to Go! In preparation for their visit. Other schools who are unable to come to Rockingham may want to use this project to supplement textbook explanations of the Colonial period. Scout troops, church groups, community centers, clubs, families, or home school organizations and all interested parties are encouraged to contact the site office for further information.

What is included in the project?

The basic program consists of lesson plans, recipes, children's period-style clothing pieces, accessories, hats, personal items, games, books and craft projects all housed in three baskets. Extra quill pens with ink can be requested (must be ordered in advance) for an additional charge of $4.00 each.

What is the fee for?

There is a $35 fee for this program, to be paid at the time the baskets are picked up.

To Reserve the Program:

Call the Office (609) 683-7132 when the site is open to arrange a time to see the baskets and contents. We will help you to tailor the program to the needs of your group!

Or write:

Rockingham State Historic Site
P.O. Box 496
Kingston, NJ 08528

This program was made possible by a generous donation of the New Jersey State Society of the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution, the Children of the American Revolution, Somerset County Cultural and Heritage Commission, and Forbes Newspapers.