Tag Archives: Fort Point NHS

September 2017 Stamps – Crossroads of the Revolution and More!

Campers at Rob Hill in Golden Gate National Recreation Area can get a new Passport Stamp and may want to take a walk to check out the Golden Gate Bridge or the Fort Point National Historic Site. Photo from 2015.

The new stamps for September 2017 (yes, 2017 – but we’re happy to be back) are highlighted by a plethora of stamps for the Crossroads of the American Revolution National Heritage Area, and a few more:

Golden Gate National Recreation Area | Rob Hill

Salem Maritime National Historic Site |

      • America’s First
      • Hawkes House
      • St. Joseph Hall

Yellowstone National Park | Bechler Ranger Station

Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail | Smallwood State Park, MD

Trail of Tears National Historic Trail |

      • Old Jefferson, TN
      • Webber Falls Museum, OK

Hudson River Valley National Heritage Area |

      • Copake Iron Works
      •  Sleepy Hollow Cemetery
      • Woodstock Playhouse

Crossroads of the American Revolution National Heritage Area |

      • Abraham Clark Memorial House
      • Battle of Connecticut Farms
      • Battle of Springfield
      • Battle of the Short Hills
      • Belcher-Ogden Mansion
      • Boxwood Hall
      • Caldwell Parsonage
      • Cannonball House
      • Carter House
      • Deacon Andrew Hetfield House
      • Drake House
      • Dr William Robinson Plantation
      • Elizabeth and Gershom Frazee House
      • First Presbyterian Church of Elizabeth
      • King’s Highway
      • Liberty Hall
      • Littell-Lord Farmstead
      • Merchants & Drovers Tavern
      • Miller-Cory House
      • Osborn Cannonball House
      • Plainfield Meeting House
      • Salt Box Museum
      • Snyder Academy
      • St. John’s Parsonage
      • The Deserted Village
      • Washington-Rochambeau NHT
      • Woodruff House – Eaton Store Museum
The Battle of Short Hills is one of many stamps this month for the Crossroads of the Revolution National Heritage Area. Photo credit: Brian Bailey, 2017

Working in reverse order this month, the most notable addition to the Passport Program are the 27 stamps for the Crossroads of the Revolution National Heritage Area.  Although this Heritage Area includes sites associated with the Revolutionary War across 14 counties in central New Jersey, all 27 of this month’s additions are located in Union County New Jersey, which is part of the greater New York City metropolitan area.   Many of the historic sites in Union County have limited hours, some as little as one weekend a month, and others are even open only by appointment only.  However, Union County hosts a “Four Centuries in a Weekend” event each year during the third weekend in October, when all of these sites will be open.   So make your plans for this coming October accordingly!

If you aren’t up for visiting all 27 sites in Union County, a few of these sites are more strongly connected to the primary Revolutionary War mission of this National Heritage Area.

The Battle of the Short Hills was fought on June 26, 1777 over a stretch of 12 miles.  The stamp can be found at the Ash Brook Reservation County Park, along with the stamp for the Washington-Rochambeau NHT.  The Ash Brook Reservation is a nature preserve protecting in part some authentic New Jersey swamp.   The Elizabeth and Gershom Frazee House in Scotch Plains briefly saw the arrival of British troops during the battle.  Also in Plainfield are the Osborn Cannonball House, which was struck by a British cannonball, and the Drake House, which was once used as Washington’s Headquarters during the battle.  The nearby Plainfield Meetinghouse was built in 1788 by the Quakers and is still an active Quaker community to this day.

The Battle of Connecticut Farms was a three-hour engagement fought on June 7, 1780 in the town of Union, NJ.   The stamp for this battle can be found at the Caldwell Parsonage in Union.  The current Caldwell Parsonage was rebuilt in 1782 after the original was burned by the British following the Battle of Connecticut Farms.   The historic home features a painting of the battle, as well as both stamps.

The Battle of Springfield occurred two weeks later on June 23, 1780, and is known primarily as the last Revolutionary War battle fought in the northern colonies before the fateful Battle of Yorktown in September and October 1781.  This stamp can be found at the Cannon Ball House in Springfield.  This historic home features a cannonball still lodged in its walls from the Battle of Springfield, as well as both stamps.

Boxwood Hall is another one of the many new Passport locations in Union County, New Jersey. Photo credit: Brian Bailey, 2017

The Boxwood Hall State Historic Site preserves the the former house of Elias Boudinot in Elizabeth, NJ.  Boudinot served as a President of the Continental Congress.  Nearby is the First Presbyterian Church of Elizabeth, which was burned by the British in 1780 and was rebuilt in 1790, and the St. John’s Parsonage in Elizabeth, whose earliest portions date back to the 18th Century.   The Abraham Clark Memorial House in Roselle is a 1941 replica of the house of one of New Jersey’s signers of the Declaration of Independence.  Unfortunately, the original burned in 1900.   The Liberty Hall Museum at Kean University in Union preserves the home of William Livingston.  Livingston was New Jersey’s first Governor and a signer of the Constitution. The Carter House in Summit and the Miller-Cory House in Westfield each date back to the 1740’s.  The Miller-Cory House in particular now operates as a living history museum, with frequent special events.

By contrast, the Dr. William Robinson Plantation in Clark and the Belcher-Ogden Mansion in Elizabeth both date all the way back to New Jersey’s earliest colonial times in the 17th Century.

A number of other sites preserve the post-Revolutionary War history of Union County.  The Deserted Village Visitor Center is in the Watchung Reservation County Park.  The Deserted Village is a former company town created by New York businessman David Felt in 1845, and thus was known as “Feltville” in its hey day.  Also dating to the 19th Century are the Littell-Lord Farmstead in Berkeley Heights, the Merchants and Drovers Tavern Museum in Rahway, and the Salt Box Museum in New Providence.  The Salt Box Museum is so-named because the unusual way in which two historic houses were joined together in the mid-19th century left a visual impression that resembled a salt box. The Merchants and Drovers Tavern also includes the stamp for King’s Highway.  The King’s Highway was a colonial-era road connecting Boston, Massachusetts to Charleston, South Carolina. It was built over a period of more than 80 years on the orders of Britain’s Charles II beginning in 1650.   Astute Passport observers may note that there is also a Crossroads of the Revolution NHA stamp for “Maidenhead Road/King’s Highway, NJ” located at the David Brearley House in Lawrenceville, near Trenton.  That stamp was discussed by Parkasaurus in June 2016.

Some of the locations have origins hundreds of years ago as well as 20th Century significance.  The Woodruff House-Eaton Store of Hillside, which includes an 18th-Century House, a circa-1900 neighborhood store, and a museum devoted to former New York Yankees baseball player Phil Rizzuto.  The Deacon Andrew Hetfield House in Mountainside was built in 1760, and was expanded in the 19th Century, and later became the home of MacKinlay Kantor.  Kantor is the author of the Civil War novel Andersonville, about the Confederate Prisoner of War Camp preserved in Georgia as Andersonville National Historic Site.

Smallwood State Park in Maryland is the latest Passport addition to the Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail. Photo Credit: Cohee from Wikimedia Commons

The new stamp for Smallwood State Park on the Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail joins an existing stamp for the Captain John Chesapeake National Historic Trail at this location, which was released along with quite a few others in September 2015 | Parkasaurus.  The site preserves the summer estate of Revolutionary War General and former Maryland Governor William Smallwood.

The Golden Gate National Recreation Area includes a number of parklands in and around the city of San Francisco, California.  Among the many properties included is the former military installation known as “The Presidio.”  Rob Hill is the name of the group campground maintained by the Presidio Trust, one of the non-profit partners of the Golden Gate NRA, on the grounds of the The Presidio, right in the heart of the city of San Francisco.

Salem Maritime National Historic Site was actually the first National Park Service area to be dedicated a National Historic Site, back in March 1938.   One of its new stamps this month commemorates this landmark status.   The Park itself includes approximately 10 historic buildings, and the other two new stamps complement the five new stamps issued in July 2016.

Yellowstone National Park already has 14 Passport Cancellations.   However, the new cancellation for the Bechler Ranger Station in the lightly-visited southwest corner of the Park adds a new twist the Passport itinerary for Yellowstone.   There are no roads connecting the southwest corner of the Park to the Grand Loop Road that connects almost all the other destinations in the park.  Reaching the Bechler Ranger Station will take a nearly two hour drive outside the park from Yellowstone’s West Entrance in Montana, and a more than three hour drive from Yellowstone’s South Entrance at the border with the John D. Rockefeller, Jr. Memorial Parkway and Grand Teton National Park.

The “Old Jefferson Site” is a section of the Trail of Tears National Historic Trail that was only identified by researchers in recent years.  The site is located in the East Fork Recreation Area, near Murfreesboro, TN, and is managed by the US Army Corps of Engineers.  The town of Webbers Falls, Oklahoma is named after a Cherokee Chief, Walter Webber, who established a trading post near the falls of the Arkansas River here in 1818, a dozen years before President Andrew Jackson would sign the Indian Removal Act in 1830, which officially began the “Trail of Tears.”  The Webbers Falls Museum is the historical society museum for the town.

The Hudson River Valley National Heritage Area adds three new stamps this month.  The Copake Iron Works are located very close to the New York-Massachusetts border, about halfway between Poughkeepsie and Albany.  The Sleepy Hollow Cemetery is located just north of the Tappan-Zee bridge on the east side of the Hudson River.  The town was made famous by author Washington Irving, who is buried there.  The Woodstock Playhouse is a an outdoor arts venue in the foothills of the Catskill Mountains.   The famous Woodstock Music Festival of 1969 was actually held some 40 miles away for logistical reasons, but the Woodstock Playhouse has a history of its own going back to the 1930’s.

The remains of the blast furnace at Copake Iron Works, a new Cancellation location for the Hudson River Valley National Heritage Area this month. Photo credit: IlyaSukhanov, from Wikimedia Commons
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Summer Stamps from the Golden Gate NRA to Badlands National Park

A stamp for the Golden Gate Bridge highlights the new additions this month.   Photo from  2009.
A stamp for the Golden Gate Bridge highlights the new additions this month. Photo from 2009.

 

Due to some extensive travels, I never made a post on the new June stamps, so here in one big post are all the new stamps from Eastern National for June and July – a grand total of 18 over the two months!

June Stamps:

Alibates Flint Quarries National Monument | 50th Anniversary 1965-2015

Dinosaur National Monument | 100th Anniversary 1915-2015

Oregon Caves National Monument & Preserve | Cave Junction, OR

Golden Gate National Recreation Area:

  • Golden Gate Bridge
  • Land’s End
  • Fort Point
  • Presidio
  • Nike MIssile Site
  • Point Bonita Lighthouse
  • Muir Woods
  • Juan Bautista de Anza NHT

Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail | Falmouth, VA

Trail of Tears National Historic Trail | Cherokee Removal MEM Park, TN

Mississippi Delta National Heritage Area

  • Highway 61 Blues Museum
  • Birthplace of the Frog

July Stamps

Badlands National Park | White River VC

North Country National Scenic Trail | Lowell, MI

Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail |

  • Fort Monroe, VA
  • Wrightsville, PA

The “year of the anniversary stamps” continued through June with two new additions.  Alibates Flint Quarries National Monument preserves a place where the first Americans dug for flint 13,000 years ago in North Texas.  The history of Dinosaur National Monument is of course much older than that, and I previously wrote about its 100th anniversary here.

The new stamp for Oregon Caves National Monument & Preserve reflects its new name and expanded boundaries.   In December 2014, Congress expanded the boundaries to include some of the unspoiled scenery and pristine waterways surrounding the Oregon Caves as a “Preserve.”  Somewhat confusingly, however, Congress did not make this yet another national park that “counts twice,” unlike most of the other “& Preserve” parks in the National Park System.

The Golden Gate National Recreation Area includes numerous parklands and historic sites within the city of San Francisco and its immediate suburbs.   Indeed, this park has Passport stamps scattered across 21 different locations, and all 8 of this month’s locations previously had stamps.  The Golden Gate Bridge Pavillion received its first stamp for the Golden Gate Bridge’s 75th Anniversary in 2012, and so now appears to have a permanent stamp of its own.  Additionally, Fort Point National Historic Site, located below the Golden Gate Bridge, and Muir Woods National Monument, located in nearby Mill Valley, are actually separate units of the National Park System.  They previously had stamps for Golden Gate NRA that read “San Francisco, CA” on the bottom, but now have place-specific stamps of their own for their dual status under the management of Golden Gate NRA.

American painter Gari Melchers' estate, Belmont, is the latest addition to Passport Program for the Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail.
American painter Gari Melchers’ estate, Belmont, is the latest addition to Passport Program for the Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail.

 

The Potomac Heritage National Scenic Trail is one of three national scenic trails that count as national parks.   This new stamp is located at the home and studios of American impressionist painter Gari Melchers, located on the campus of Mary Washington University, outside of Fredericksburg, Virginia.

The Trail of Tears National Historic Trail previously had a stamp at the Cherokee Removal Memorial Park in Meigs County, Tennessee.  This park was essentially a concentration camp where the Cherokee were rounded up rounded up 1838 before crossing the Tennessee River and being deported on the Trail of Tears to present-day Oklahoma.

In November 2014, the Mississippi Delta National Heritage Area received its first 18 Passport Stamps, located at the County Visitor Centers for each of the counties in the designated national heritage area.  These two stamps are its first for actual destination locations.   The Highway 61 Blues Museum is located in Leland, Mississippi, as is the Jim Henson birthplace.  Jim Henson, of course, is the famed created of Kermit the Frog and the rest of the muppets.

Badlands National Park includes spectacular scenery and awe-inspiring rock formations.  Photo from 1998.
Badlands National Park includes spectacular scenery and awe-inspiring rock formations. Photo from 1998.

Badlands National Park preserves spectacular scenary in South Dakota.  The White River Visitor Center services the less-visited Stronghold Unit in the southern portion of the national park, and is located with the Oglala Sioux Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.  Previously, this visitor center had a non-standard stamp courtesy of the Oglala Sioux Parks and Recreation Authority, which operates the visitor center, but this is the location’s first official stamp.

The North Country National Scenic Trail does not count as its own national park, but will run an impressive 4,600 miles (once completed) across the northern United States from Lake Champlain on the New York-Vermont border to Lake Sakakawea in central North Dakota.   Lowell, Michigan is the site of the headquarters offices of the North Country Trail Assocation, which is helping to make this route a reality.

Finally, the Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trali is the National Park Service’s main program on the Chesapeake Bay.  Officially, it’s a set of water routes that commemorate the explorations of  the Bay and its tributaries by John Smith between 1607 and 1609.  Fort Monroe National Monument is now its own unit of the National Park System near the mouth of Chesapeake Bay.  Meanwhile, Wrightsville, PA is at the far northern end of John Smith’s explorations, on the banks of the Susquehanna River near present-day York, Pennsyvlania.

With these new additions there are now 1,915 active Passport cancelations out there, or 1,827 if you exclude the various anniversary and special program stamps.

A parting shot from Fort Point National Historic Site, located underneath the Golden Gate Bridge.  Photo from 2011.
A parting shot from Fort Point National Historic Site, located underneath the Golden Gate Bridge. Photo from 2011.

 

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