Discover South Jersey’s Top Indoor Museums & Historical Sites
Brrr, it’s cold out there! Let’s warm up and explore some indoor museums and historical sites. South Jersey is rich in history, making it a great place to discover the past while staying cozy indoors.
Roebling Museum tells the story of the origins and growth of Roebling, NJ, a company town built by John A. Roebling’s Sons Company. Some of the most important technological achievements of the industrial age such as big bridges, telegraphs and telephones, electrification, deep mines, big ships, elevators and airplanes as well as everyday objects were built in Roebling. Here, ideas and diverse cultures were exchanged through work and the interactions of these communities changed the cultural and industrial landscape of New Jersey.
The Army Reserve Mobilization Museum was established in 2007. Its mission is to collect, preserve, interpret, and exhibit the history of U.S. Army Reserve mobilization from 1776 to the present. Using period artifacts, along with accurate reproductions of uniforms, equipment, photographs, and documents, the chronologically arranged exhibits depict the mobilization, training, embarkation and demobilization that occurs whenSoldiers are called to defend the nation. Fort Dix serves as an example of these activities during the 20th and 21st centuries.
This building was the office of the Vincentown-Tabernacle Telephone Company from 1911 until the company was bought out by New Jersey Bell in 1930. Prior to this, the building served as a millinery shop, a tinsmith’s shop, and a plumber’s shop. The township acquired the property in 1975 and leased it to the Southampton Historical Society, who beautifully restored it and now operates it as a telephone museum. The building retains its original clapboard siding, 2/2 windows, shop window, and doors. Museum exhibits include early telephone equipment and relate the early history of the telephone in rural Southampton. For information and hours, contact the Southampton Historical Society.
Step back in time at the Barclay Farmstead, a historical oasis in the heart of bustling Cherry Hill, New Jersey. Built in 1816 by a Quaker farmer, Joseph Thorn, the farmhouse and surrounding 32-acre property offers visitors an opportunity to observe and participate in the agrarian lifestyle that once dominated the South Jersey landscape. Now listed on the National & New Jersey Registers of Historic Places, the Barclay Farmstead is owned and operated by Cherry Hill Township.
Revisit history at the Peter Mott House, a station along the Underground Railroad, in the historically African-American town of Lawnside, N.J. The Peter Mott House is the oldest known house in Lawnside. Built circa 1845, the house was residence to Peter Mott, an African-American preacher who was the first Sunday school superintendent at Mount Pisgah African Methodist Episcopal Church in Lawnside, and his wife, Eliza.
Indian King Tavern Museum’s more than 270 year-old historic building is New Jersey’s first state-owned historic site (1903). It’s where New Jersey completed the transition from colony to State passing laws revising election procedures, creating township governments, and setting up state courts. At the Indian King, the assembly passed measures imposing martial law, strengthening the militia, regulating a war economy, and providing emergency support to the Continental Army after its defeat at Brandywine. We know that more might be done with this marvelous space, if we had the resources available. Our mission is to obtain those resources so that more people can benefit from this amazing historical relic.
The Camden Shipyard and Maritime Museum, located at 1912 Broadway in Camden, NJ 08104, is a new, family oriented, interactive, cultural and educational facility that is being developed in a beautiful, historic (1881) church that was built using ballast stones brought from around the world in the holds of sailing ships. Situated in the historic district of Waterfront South in Camden, New Jersey, the aim of the Museum is to present a variety of programs and exhibitions related to local and regional maritime history and host a variety of recreational boating programs for children and their families. The Museum’s programs will have a thematic orientation to the people, places, enterprises, and events associated with the maritime history of the New Jersey side of the Delaware River estuary.
Step back in time to the humble dwelling of the “Good Gray Poet,” Walt Whitman. Constructed in 1848, this modest wooden-framed structure built in Greek-revival style was the only home ever owned by Walt Whitman. Here is where Whitman grew to international fame as the author of Leaves of Grass, hosted visitors from around the world and completed his last comprehensive volume of poetry before his death in 1892. Today, as a New Jersey State Historic Site and a National Historic Landmark, the restored Whitman House welcomes visitors from around the world who come to experience the last worldly surroundings of America’s great “Poet of Democracy.”
Local school children and residents are welcome to join the Rowan community in reaching for the stars in the University’s planetarium. Here visitors can enjoy a wide variety of shows and special events designed to educate and entertain, advance viewers’ understanding of the universe, and provide up-to-date astronomical information. Come join us as we explore the cosmos! The Planetarium is managed by the Department of Physics & Astronomy at Rowan University. For directions to Science Hall and the Edelman Planetarium, visit www.rowan.edu/map
In 1842, The Whitney Family established Whitney Brothers Glassworks. This was part of South Jersey’s strong history and deep roots when it came to glassmaking. The company became the largest and most successful of the South Jersey glass houses. In 1847, upon returning home from his tour of Europe, Thomas Whitney built a mansion in Glassboro on a 100-acre lot and inscribed his name and the year 1849 on a stone set on the mansion’s tower. He also developed his grounds as a landscaped park. The property stayed in the Whitney family until the early 1900s.
Friends of the Hancock House, Inc will present the Civil War Weekend at the Hancock House in Hancocks Bridge, Salem County, NJ. We are also honoring the young Quakeress, Cornelia Hancock, who left home in 1863 to go to the battlefield at Gettysburg. The “South After Gettysburg” book which is a compilation of her letters describing the carnage at Gettysburg is being used in museums for displays for the 150th anniversary in July.