Today’s Intern, Tomorrow’s Teacher
Washington Crossing native Brynn Smith, a sophomore history education major at Ithaca College in New York, has spent the summer immersed in history at Washington Crossing Historic Park. She’s there for a summer-long internship sponsored by the Kiwanis Club of Washington Crossing-Yardley. “I’ve known my whole life that I wanted to teach, but I wasn’t sure what subject until late in high school,” Brynn says. “Since I love to read, English seemed the obvious choice, but I like storytelling, and that’s a big part of history.” Since May, Brynn has been filling in wherever she’s needed around the park. The Read More
See Washington Crossing the Delaware…As It Probably Looked
“Perhaps the most accurate depiction ever of George Washington crossing the Delaware.” That’s how historians describe Washington’s Crossing at McKonkey’s Ferry, a 2011 painting by renowned historical artist Mort Künstler (above). Soon, visitors to Washington Crossing Historic Park can view Künstler’s original painting in the Visitor Center. The piece, currently on display at Mount Vernon, will be hung at the park sometime in August and stay until July 2020. The painting was commissioned by U.S. Rep. Thomas Suozzi (D-NY, 3rd District), a Revolutionary War buff who wanted a depiction that corrected known errors in the iconic Emanuel Leutze painting. “What Mort Read More
How Did the Colonists Speak?
Have you ever imagined how the earliest Americans sounded when they spoke aloud? You might imagine that George Washington and King George III had British accents, like Patrick Stewart or Colin Firth. After all, the colonies were under British control at the start of the Revolutionary War. In fact, chances are good that George Washington and the king sounded more like modern-day Americans than Brits. Defining American and British Accents America and Great Britain each have dozens of regional accents. What you might think of as an “American accent” is actually called the General American accent. It’s spoken all over Read More
Friends Welcome New Park Manager
The Friends of Washington Crossing Park are pleased to welcome Jennifer Park as the new Department of Conservation and Natural Resources (DCNR) manager for Washington Crossing Historic Park. In this position, Jennifer will oversee park operations and staff. “I am proud to have the opportunity to continue fostering community partnerships with the Friends of Washington Crossing Park at DCNR’s newest state park,” Jennifer says. A self-proclaimed “state parks kid,” Jennifer began her career in 2006 as an intern with the nonprofit Moraine Preservation Fund at Moraine State Park in Butler County. She joined the Bureau of State Parks in 2008 Read More
Planting New Opportunities for Historical Education
If you’ve visited the Historic Village in the last two months, you’ve probably noticed the fencing and new beds around the Hibbs House. It’s the makings of Washington Crossing Historic Park’s third—and, when it’s done, most robust—historically accurate garden. “The Hibbs House garden will offer lots of new educational opportunities centered on the role of kitchen gardens during the late 18th century,” says Jennifer Martin, Executive Director of the Friends of Washington Crossing Park. “We’re envisioning lectures, scout programs, hands-on history classes, and field trips. It’s also going to enhance the experience for visitors who would prefer to tour the Read More
In the Bookstore: The Road to Assunpink Creek
Reviewed by Tom Maddock, Historical Interpreter at Washington Crossing Historic Park David Price has put together a wonderful account of the Second Battle of Trenton in his new book, The Road to Assunpink Creek. It presents the details of a battle that doesn’t get as much press as the others. David lays out the details in an engaging and understandable way. He has organized those details in an easy-flowing style and makes the story come alive with his wonderful writing. He makes it easy to understand and appreciate the heroics of the Battle of Assunpink Creek. David has drawn details from Read More
Local Student Chronicles the Crossing for National History Day
When tenth grader Emma Dumitru visited Washington Crossing Historic Park last summer with her family, it was one of many local sites they visited. The Dumitru family, of Springfield, NJ, also took day trips to Valley Forge National Park, the New York Historical Society, Morristown, NJ, where Washington’s Continental Army camped twice for the winter, and other places. But something about Washington Crossing Historic Park stuck with Emma, a student in George Washington University Online High School. So much so that she made the crossing the subject of her National History Day entry for 2019. “I’ve always been interested in Read More
Meet the Next Volunteer of the Year!
Eight years ago, Anita Fleck-Cooke, who serves as an artillery commander during Washington Crossing Historic Park’s reenactments, invited several other reenactors back to her home for dinner after the Christmas crossing. Last year, the site shifted to the Mahlon K. Taylor House in the park’s Historic Village. That building better accommodated the 38 people who attended. “We call it the ‘Island of Misfit Toys Christmas Dinner,’ since so many of us are away from our families for Christmas dinner,” Anita says. The event underscores the close-knit relationships among the people who animate the park today. It’s also one example of Read More