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Page 6 • The Readington News • February 2010
Looking Back. . . George Washington Slept Here
By Stephanie B. Stevens all of which were located close to the
Historian, County of Hunterdon “Great Road” that ran from New Bruns-
If you will drive down the Old High- wick to Easton, PA, the area showed
way in White House then turn onto such good promise of commercial de-
Mill Road and proceed down to New velopment that, in 1769, William Pat-
Bromley Road you will come upon a erson set up his first law practice in this
blue historical sign which states that area. Paterson went on to become gov-
General George Washington stayed ernor of New Jersey, signer of the Con-
with Colonel John Melhelm on this stitution, and New Jersey’s (nominated
very property! by Washington) first United States Su-
Yes, the Father of our Country, while preme Court Justice. Little New Brom- c1960 Emmons Farmhouse, formerly
making his way from Morristown to ley was indeed a lively place! the property of Col. John Melhelm.
Philadelphia, in July of 1777, stopped The “Great Road” was located near General George Washington stayed
over with his friend and colleague, to the mills, then in 1806 moved south here during July 1777. The farmhouse
Colonel John Melhelm at Melhelm’s to become the first New Jersey Turn-
was destroyed by fire in the late 1960s
New Bromley home. pike, known today as the Old Highway
or early 1970s.
Holly Trail Largess—Stanton Holly Trail members recently pre-
There are very few completely au- in White House. Route 22 has sup-
sented checks of $13,000 each to the Hunterdon Medical Center and Stanton
thenticated buildings in which Wash- planted the Turnpike Road as the main visit, Melhelm’s beautiful country
Reformed Church. The proceeds were from the 48th edition of the venerable
ington stayed - this was one. On road to Easton. house was located on the main road.
house tour held Dec. 5, 2009. Shown from left are Meredith Betz, executive
Aug. 15, 1777, in a letter in his own Colonel John Melhelm was an im- The current day Oldwick Road (Route
vice president, Hunterdon Medical Center Foundation; 2009 tour co-chairs
handwriting, Washinington mentioned portant figure in colonial history. A 523) between Route 22 to the intersec-
“when I was at Colonel Melhelm’s” . . . member of the Colonial Assembly, tion of New Bromley Road did not ex-
Tracy Gordon and Alice Miller and Stanton Reformed Church pastors, Phil
Where is New Bromley? It was a and the committee which deposed the ist, rather one traveled from Mill Road
and Becky Pratt.
small group of dwellings and farms last Colonial Governor of New Jersey, (note the sign for the mills) north along
—Submitted by JoAnne Farley
clustered around a mill owned by An- William Franklin, he served as a Judge New Bromley Road to the intersection
drew Leake. Leake owned mills near of the Hunterdon Courts and was the of Route 523 then on to Oldwick. Land
Pluckemin which he called “Bromley.” commanding officer (Colonel) of the on both sides of Mill Road and New
REMAX Classic Group
Upon building mills on the Rockaway fourth Hunterdon Militia during the Bromley Road today is owned by the
near White House he dubbed them Revolutionary War. After the War Durling family. Durlings also were the
and the area “New Bromley.” Here in Melhelm served as a Freeholder from owners of the historic Melhelm house
Michelle Ventura, Cathy Guberer, White House along Mill Road Leake Readington. when vandals broke in and burned it to
Janice Moore, Jen Ribaudo.
owned 250 acres, the mills, and a store, During the time of Washington’s the ground. What a tragedy! To think
Visit us at
that what should have been a national historic landmark fell to the hands of
or give us a call at pranksters. So much of our important
colonial history has been destroyed for
no reason.
Marking the site today is the blue
Newly renovated center hall colonial on almost 2 acres of
beautifully landscaped property. Newer windows through-
historic sign placed by the Hunterdon
out, finished basement with rec room, media room, office
County Cultural and Heritage Com-
and partial kitchen. Features an in-law/au paire suite w/
private entrance. Large 20x20 deck excellent for enter-
mission. How sad that all we have to
taining. Beautiful above ground outdoor pool with wrap
remind us of this piece of our early co-
around deck. MUST SEE!! Call us at 908-393-8140.
lonial history is a sign.
Knights List
Recent Donations
The Knights of Columbus Council
6930 of Our Lady of Lourdes Church in
Whitehouse Station announces the fol-
lowing contributions that were made to
local concerns during the 4th quarter of
2009: $200 to the Shannon Daly Memo-
rial Fund (for local area residents who
are facing financial difficulties due to
a child facing serious illness); $75 to
the Whitehouse Rescue Squad; $100 to
Bishop Bootkowski’s charitable fund;
$125 to the Diocese of Metuchen for
seminarian programs; $500 to the Ju-
venile Diabetes Research Foundation;
$600 to Great Expectations (supporting
homeless pregnant women in creating
a safe place where they can complete a
healthy pregnancy); $300 to the Salva-
tion Army; $300 to the Flemington Food
Pantry; $300 to the Wheelchair Founda-
tion; $1,545 for funding of the Rite to
Life bus trip to Washington, DC; $200
for food for the Shepherd’s Meal; $150
to the Diocese of Metuchen Rite to Life.
The Knights’ next fundraising event
is the Valentines Dinner Dance Feb. 13.
The Knights meet on the first and third
Wednesday of each month. If you are in-
terested in joining contact Grand Knight
Chris Virgo at
or 732-877-9044.
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