J. L. BELL is a Massachusetts writer who specializes in (among other things) the start of the American Revolution in and around Boston. He is particularly interested in the experiences of children in 1765-75. He has published scholarly papers and popular articles for both children and adults. He was consultant for an episode of History Detectives, and contributed to a display at Minute Man National Historic Park.

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Thursday, May 03, 2007

Wish I Could Be There in Princeton, New Jersey

For those not already committed to events on Sunday morning, 6 May, there will be a free walking tour of Princeton, New Jersey, battlefield led by Brandeis professor David Hackett Fischer. His book Washington’s Crossing, about the 1776-77 campaign in New Jersey, won the Pulitzer Prize for history a couple of years back.

This tour is sponsored by the Princeton Battlefield Society, which asks people to register at the site at 9:30 A.M. for the tour that begins at 10:00. The Clarke House museum and its collection of firearms will be open as well. Donations are welcome.

Princeton Battlefield State Park is a mile and a half south of downtown Princeton. I have relatives in that area, so I walked around the site a couple of summers ago without a guide, trying to piece together events through plaques and signs, some created by an enterprising Eagle Scout. The image above represents the “Mercer Oak,” said to be the tree under which Gen. Hugh Mercer lay after being bayoneted during this battle. That tree died seven years ago, so you get to see a stump and a sapling planted to replace it.

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