Friday, July 8, 2011

JULY 4th 2011

July 4th in Washington DC at the World War II Memorial' A spectacular design.

Each State has a column like the one below, to remember all the men and women who contributed.

At the Vietnam War Memorial, the crowd stops to watch the Ranger take a tracing. I am always amazed at how the crowd quiets down when at the Vietnam site.

The Washington Monument with the Capitol dome in the background. The reflecting pool is drained for repair.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Fall in VERNON

The leaves are gone now, but the flashes of brilliance as they were leaving were stellar.

The Sun helped the beauty of these trees as they changed over.

The Rt. 23 reservoir was gourgeous this morning!

A tree lined road in the heart of town. Why would anyone want to leave town?

A tree in full change...stunning!

Saturday, November 13, 2010


In Lambertville New Jersey stands the Richard Holcomb house. It is a private residence, not open to the public. The house and land around it still allow you to see the rush of soldiers around it. In your mind's eye, Washington, his generals, and adjutants met here to plan the movement of the Army. Both in 1777 and again in 1778, Washington used this house as his headquarters.

On 7/29-30 1777, General Washington watched the movements of General Howe in New York City. Everyone expected Howe to march North along the Hudson River to meet British General Burgoyne who was marching South. That was, except Washington, who was unsure of Howe's intention. Howe was using the British Navy to move his troops. Washington felt that Howe's real intention was Philadelphia. Washington had his army cross the Delaware at Coryell's ferry and position itself to mirror Howe's movement. When the British Fleet was spotted off Delaware, Washington moved his army South. The Battles of Brandywine and Germantown were ahead for the Continentals. Burgoyne would march to his Saratoga.

On June 21-22 1778, Washington returned to Holcomb's House. He had left Valley Forge and was again watching the British Army march. This time, the British Troops had left Philadelphia and were crossing New Jersey on foot to return to New York City. Washington had moved his entire army across the Delaware. He was looking for a fight. His army was freshly trained by General Baron von Stueben and Washington knew they could hold their own with the British Army. He was looking for a location, maybe Hopewell or Allentown, or maybe...Monmoth.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010


The Thomas Clarke House in Princeton New Jersey is starting to have problems. The house, built in 1772, is a white clapboard farm house. The structure is central to the Battle of Princeton fought on January 3rd 1777 between Crown forces and the Continental Army under the command of General George Washington.

The house also became hospital after the battle taking in both British and American wounded. American General Hugh Mercer died here nine days after the battle from being shot and bayoneted.

After two hundred years, the wooden house shows signs of rot.
The rot is especially evident around the windows.

Near the foundation, the rot is also evident.

The shutters, doors, threshold and steps also need work.

Lots of work!

Boards are popping.

Close ups show how much scrapping and painting is needed, but wood replacement is not always so easy to see.

The front steps are not safe!

More wood rot that is clear to see.

The second floor shutters need replacement.

Please help with donations, so that matching grants can be attained.

Please help the Princeton Batlefield Society with donations to help save the Clarke House:


On December 5th 1783, General Washington and his staff with Baron von Stueben was entertained for lunch by the people of New Brunswick at the Drake Tavern. It was his headquarters for a time, a short time. He had left his officers at his famous farewell in NYC the day before and was making his way to Annapolis to return his commission to the Congress.

The tavern is now restored and preserved as the Indian Head Tavern. It is part of East Jersey Olde Towne at Piscataway.

Sunday, August 8, 2010


Beautiful Pennsylvannia roads lead you to St. Juliana's Church at Rock Lake.
The Roark family reunion has been going on for decades and I have been going for the last twenty. I have rarely been in the company of such gracious fun loving people.
The hall for the reunion. Needs a little work, but it still does the job. Burgers, hot dogs, and chicken are the fare with pizza at night.

The ice house below is now for storage.

The Rock Lake Cemetary has generations of Roarks and descendants.

The inside of St. Juliana's. The original structure burned down. This one was rebuilt in 1866.

The man below is T.J. Roark. He had four daugthers who married and gave him many grandchildren. The Ryan's, McGranahan's, Gill's, Taylor's, Page's, and McCormick's, plus Blue's, Clevenberg's and Tamkin's come together with ever growing numbers to celebrate their grandfather.

The Roark Rocket gives hay rides to all.

The cemetary shows the family members who served their country. The grass is cut and flowers trimmed.
St. Juliana's below is a lovely old church. Mass is out and now the party begins.

Some are not invited to the party!

Little Niagara Falls nearby. It is left over from an old lumber business.

A welcome addition to any celebration. What a surprise.

The reunion is every year and a wonderful chance to get caught up. Place names come alive with all the history and family stories. Grampa's corners, Flat Rock, Rock Lake, Lake Cuomo,, and the Sticker House don't always show up on the map, but they live through the collective memories of all who attend and that is the best kind of history.

Sunday, July 25, 2010


John Basilone was a Marine Gunnery Sgt. in WWII. He won the Congressional Medal of Honor for his heroism on Guadalcanal and the Navy Cross on Iwo Jima. He died in combat on Iwo.

Sgt. Basilone is remembered with this statue in his home town. He has parades, streets, movies, and books to recall his memory.

Sgt. Basilone is part of the Marine legacy. From the Halls to the Shores, Bella Woods, Guadalcanal, Tarawa, Iwo Jima, Korea, Nam, Iraq and Afghanistan, the Marine legacy continues! That legacy started on January 3rd 1777 in Princeton New Jersey. That is the first land battle the Marines fought in under the command of General George Washington.
You help a little by e-mailing the men below. Help a little more by writing them a letter or alot by joining the Princeton Battlefield Society.
So in a nutshell, a portion of the Princeton Battlefield is in danger of being bulldozed. The battlefield, once a mile and a half long is down to 120 acres. 22 of those acres are owned by the Institute of Advances Studies. The Institute wants to build 14 houses on eight acres of this land for their professors.It is a fine institution, but with this construction, it is making a mistake and trampling on our heritage. It is working quietly behind the scenes to accomplish this. This is ill advised!
What I am asking is that you e-mail or write or both the Chairman of the Board and the Director of the Institute your displeasure at the proposed construction. Further, that you contact other people to do the same. You see, both men are mathematicians by trade and numbers count!Please write!

The National Trust for Historic Preservation just wrote an article on the battlefield, check it out.
The website is The article will come up as one of the scrolling images in the center of the page.
"Don't Build on the Battlefield, Preserve Princeton Battlefield""Save George Washington"
Joe Carney
Charles Simonyi
Chairman of the Board
Institute of Advanced Studies
2821 Northup Way, Suite 250Bellevue, WA 98004----------------------------------------------
Peter Goddard
Institute of Advanced Studies
Einstein Drive Princeton NJ, 08540

There are also other Trustees to e-mail, please do!
Peter Kane
M. Gehret
W. Sewell