HCHSMarfy This Month

Goodspeed Histories: November 2022

** November 30, 2022
It has taken me over a month to complete this article, but finally my history of the Pittstown Inn is finished.

Pittstown Tavern, part three (https://goodspeedhistories.com/pittstown-inn-part-3/)
As you might expect, with the additional time to work on this article, I ended up with something longer than usual. I was determined to finish the Pittstown saga with this article, but frankly, I could have extended it into another one.

Another reason for the delay was my preoccupation with the tavern license petitions that are available on Family Search. I found them fascinating and set about abstracting all the petitions from 1800 through 1866.

To my surprise, I found that Alexandria Township was far busier than the other Hunterdon townships. But one must keep in mind that Frenchtown, Milford and Pittstown were all located in Alexandria, places with a lot of activity in the years before the Civil War, places that were favorite stopping-over spots for travelers, by road,  ferry and river boat, and later by canal and by train.

Another curiosity was the way people signed their names, quite often with a variety of spellings. One gets the feeling that names were spelled by how they sounded rather than as tradition had taught them. Also, considering that these men were most likely in the taverns when they signed, the signatures were generally pretty readable. Perhaps the tavernkeepers got people to sign before they started drinking.

** From the Hunterdon County Historical Society:
Not too long ago, Dave Harding posted on Facebook some recent developments in the Historical Society, one of them being the success of the Archival Volunteer crew in processing some photograph collections. He called special attention to the Frances Barberie Collection (No 240) which features photographs from Flemington and surrounding are for the years 1904 through 1915. There are also some photos from Somerville, Lambertville and Clinton.

Dave Harding mentioned also that it is thought that some of the photographer might be Asher Stryker of Flemington, which given how much the Stryker family is featured in today’s post, caught my eye. He also mentioned that the collection was donated to the HCHS by Frances Barberie, daughter of Thomas Torrent.

I certainly need to get in to the Society one of these days to examine this interesting collection. But until then, we can view the photographs online by clicking on “Online Catalog” on the HCHS website, and using the keyword Barberie in the search box. The link to the collection inventory is HERE.

Something tells me that I will not be focusing on my next article until after the holidays, but I will enjoy having some time to consider the possibilities.

Best wishes to all for this festive time of year,
Marfy Goodspeed