The Vallum is one of the largest earthworks in the world, part of Hadrian’s Wall World Heritage site, and yet is seldom discussed, perhaps because while its interpretation may work on paper, it makes less sense on the ground.
It is an excellent example of how in archaeology, what we name something conditions the way we perceive it, and how our literary constructs can develop independently of the underlying physical evidence. The Vallum is one of the oldest concepts in the literature of Hadrian s Wall, originating with the Venerable Bede in the eighth century, and while this structure is not a vallum in any way shape or form, all subsequent literature would appear to have developed from this idea. In more recent times, it was apparent that the earthwork was not defensive, but it was nonetheless usually regarded as a boundary or barrier between the Wall and something else, with even the language used to describe the earthwork being shaped to accommodate this underlying assumption. However, to understand the Vallum you have to look at it with the perspective of a structural archaeologist, luckily, I see it every day, so I know with a reasonable degree of certainty that is a construction trench for an unfinished road, an argument I discussed in detail 5 years ago [here]; subsequently and more generally [here]. In terms of engineering the case is straight forward, but Archaeology is also a text based study, so its relevance to the Vallum as a literary construct, secure in its self-reverential and internally consistent space, is less certain. The Vallum was originally a continuous earthwork running to the south of Hadrian s Wall, from the bridgehead at Newcastle to the western terminus. It comprised a steep sided, flat bottomed trench, from which the spoil has been moved more than 30 feet and piled in neatly built heaps running parallel on either side. It was laid out in straight lengths connected by gentle corners, and where ever possible it maintained even or moderate gradients to the extent that it did not always follow the same defensive line as The Wall, particularly in the central section. The Vallum had a standard measured design, with the principle variations being the section at White Moss, where, in soft ground, there was only the trench, formed by two mounds, and also the intermittent presence of smaller mounds of spoil along south edge of the trench, known as marginal mounds. It was one of the earlier features of the frontier, but was built over during later phases of the construction. The Vallum as mysterious earthwork Along the whole line this mysterious earthwork keeps company with the Wall  The conventional view is that the Vallum formed Boundary between a military zone and something else; with perhaps some wriggle room as to what is to the south of the Vallum that requires such a boundary.This idea has been firmly embedded in the literature for long time and remains more or less unchanged to present times. The straight lengths in which the Vallum is laid out are consistent with distances of the uninterrupted view of a surveyor. Changes in direction tend to occur where a new viewpoint is required to obtain another long straight view. This is the system used to lay out roads. It has been argued that as the Vallum was surveyed as a road would be, it must have functioned as a road. This does not follow, and if we accept that a road would require metalling, and metalling on the berms is sporadic, and sometimes doubtful, we have to discount all of the suggested variations of a function related to lateral communication. Richmond s (1930) statement of the function of the Vallum remains valid: the Vallum takes its place as a prohibited zone delimiting the south side of the military area, an unmistakable belt in which an obstacle is provided by the great ditch. Neither commerce nor interference with the soldiery could take place across it unchecked. From my student copy of Collins Field Guide to Archaeology in Britain  The continuous nature of the structure, with crossing points, later removed to form the marginal mounds, is perhaps the best argument for it being a boundary, albeit one set out like a road. The layout could conceivably result from the use of a method of surveying normally reserved for roads, but this does not explain its form.
The Vallum corner at Down Hill on Google Earth In many accounts the idea of a boundary is enhanced by describing the earthwork using the term ditch and bank, which, if this was the case, would support the argument. However, the key point is that it is not a bank and ditch, as conventionally understood; a flat bottomed hole in the ground is a trench – at least to an engineer and an archaeologist. The reason it looks like a bank and ditch now is that steep sided trenches are not stable, which is why the Roman Army dug V profile ditches with banks to define a boundary or perimeter, not a trench, and certainly not by moving about 1.5 million cubic meters of spoil 30 feet or more. One important aspect that should not be overlooked, is that this form of structure is quite unique in archaeology, and as far as I can ascertain, nobody, anywhere, ever built a boundary like this before or since. The Vallum as engineering The resemblance of the Vallum’s layout to a road is apparent particularly in its straight lengths, moderate gradients and corners designed to accommodate the poor turning circle of wagons. The apparent priority to move the spoil keeping the margins of the trench free from obstruction is another aspect of the plan that is only explicable if the object is create a metalled road for carts and wagons with wide margins for ambulatory and equestrian users.
Most archaeologists are familiar with trenches, they are only ever temporary structures, but they are essential for foundations, which, for reasons that should be obvious, require a level, even and stable base to spread the load. The basic engineering of building a road that works in this type of ground involves filling a uniform trench or cutting with layers of progressively finer compacted material to create a roadbed, and capping it with a durable surface, such as interlocking cut stones in the case of the Romans. This approach is not possible where soft or waterlogged ground has to be crossed, so here a floating structure made of wood known as a corded road has to be created. The profiles recorded in the 1890 s contain much of the important information required to support this argument and understand this structure.
The section at limestone corner shows the desired profile cut into the hard bedrock at the crest of the hill, while a few yards away the Roman Army left the Wall Ditch unfinished; this is engineering, if it is not done this way, the combination of the crest of the hill and the transition in the underlying ground could have been problematic. Similarly, the reversed profile at White Moss is only intelligible if the intention was to build a corded road between the two banks; there was probably no need for additional lanes, as all traffic would have had to use the road. If we accept that the marginal mounds result from the removal of crossings [across the trench], then this was not an engineering decision, although as far as possible it does preserve the integrity of the lanes, it can be only seen in the context of a Dislocation , a gap in the construction program presumably caused by warfare. Dislocations are key idea in the understanding the confusing structural sequence and changes of plan apparent in the archaeology of Hadrian s Wall; they also explain why a road project requiring as much material as the Wall itself should be abandoned. Understanding the argument. I have detailed sixteen general features of the archaeological evidence, and scored the two theories in terms of how well they explain it. The theory scored 1 if it provides a reasonable explanation, and 0.5 for a less obvious connection; if the theory provides no account for a specific feature it scores 0. Runs from the Newcastle bridgehead Does not follow defensive line Laid out in straight lengths Consistent measured design plan Marginal mound as removed crossings Profile at White Moss marsh Abandoned following dislocation Unfinished/labour shortage Even if we argue that there is no reason that a boundary should not have gentle corners, moderate gradients, vertical sides and a flat bottom, allocating an extra couple of marks, this explanation still only offers 43%.
Conclusions; Soil in Garbage out
In terms of the assessment above, the conventional explanation, that the Vallum was constructed as a boundary, is evidently erroneous; if this was an exam, it would have failed, as it cannot account for evidence, and is clearly the wrong answer, irrespective of whether a better answer was available. However, for a variety of reasons and interests, mostly academic, the existence of the Vallum as a textural construct is not wholly dependent on evidence, being more akin to the product of a literary tradition.
By far the most significant development in Wall Scholarship is the idea of Dislocations, periods of disruption, probably caused by continuing warfare along the Northern frontier, which resulted in significant changes in the speed, specification and quality of the work. Old ideas about Decisions , prompting the various changes, can now be seen as a response to unfavourable circumstances, rather than as a result of imperial whim or some administrative ineptitude.
Previously, our own imperial history has created a cultural bias that tends to perceive the Roman Empire in terms of success and superiority, which has often made it difficult to understand their archaeology in terms of failure. The Vallum is one aspect of the Wall literature that has not kept up with recent ideas about events.
Archaeologists find soil / dirt and not text, but the process that converts the former into the latter, the very essence of archaeology, is not always understood in the teaching and study of the subject. It is also apparent that peer review encourages faith based thinking, a suspension of disbelief, where ideas are accepted on the basis of the perceived status of individuals or publications, rather than on an understanding of the argument’s veracity.
Sources and further reading.
 The basic archaeology of The Vallum and other aspects of the Wall has been recently reviewed in: Wilmott, T., [ed]. 2009. Hadrian’s Wall: Archaeological Research by English Heritage 1976-2000.
[Most of the general information about the Vallum, used in this article, is drawn from the summaries of P72 75 & 131 136 cover, along with that from individual excavation reports] at  Conybeare, Edward, 1903 Early Britain–Roman Britain [https://books.google.com/books?isbn=146553377X]
Wood, Eric S., 1973, Collins Field Guide To Archaeology In Britain, Book Club Associates, (first published 1967)  Wilmott, T. 2007. The Vallum.  Hill, P. R.. 2006. The construction of Hadrian’s Wall. Tempus. [Vallum logistics p 126-7] Profiles after: Hodgson, E. 1897. “Notes on the Excavations on the line of the Roman Wall in Cumberland in 1894 and 1895,” Trans Cumberland Westmorland Antiq Archaeol Soc, o ser, 14, 390-407. Plate I.  Breeze, D.J. 2003. “Warfare in Britain and the Building of Hadrian’s Wall,” in Archaeologia Aeliana 32, 13 16 This article uses illustrations based on images from Google Earth: http://www.google.com/earth/index.html
New Jersey Weekend Historical Happenings Monmouth County Historical Association’s newest exhibition Of the Best Materials and Good Workmanship: 19th Century New Jersey Chairmaking at the Museum at 70 Court Street will remain open through July 9, 2016. ———————————– Some event listings courtesy of the League of Historical Societies of New Jersey
Saturday, February 27 – Roebling, Burlington County
Celebrate National Engineering Week & Introduce A Girl To Engineering Day!
The Roebling Museum, located in the historic Village of Roebling, NJ, is proud to announce another of its family-friendly programs. On Saturday, we will again celebrate STEAM-science, technology, engineering, arts/architecture and math at the Roebling Museum!
This time, in addition to the chance to test simple machines and build bridges and mini-catapults, the museum will offer two new, high-tech engineering experiences. The K’Nex Transportation Lab will provide visitors the opportunity to try their hand at building their own motorized modes of transportation. Build one vehicle, test it out, take it apart and build again. This fun and challenging experience will encourage participants to experiment with design, construction, and scientific testing.
The Bridge Builder Virtual Lab will provide the chance for children to work in small groups to play an engaging bridge construction game. Increasing levels will provide the chance to work with a variety of virtual materials and to test the strength and capabilities of each bridge their group constructs.
Kids Create: Now will run from 10:00 am – 4:00 pm. Admission is $5 dollars. Children 5 and under are free. Pre-registration is encouraged but not required. Bring your family to this exciting program, and experience the Roebling legacy while enjoying the wonders of modern technology, too!
The Roebling Museum is located at 100 Second Avenue, Roebling, NJ. For more information, call 609-499-7200 or visit www.roeblingmuseum.org.
Saturday, February 27 – Mount Holly, Burlington County History of Timbuctoo ———————————– Saturday, February 27 – Morristown, Morris County
Dining with Washington
Children Friendly Site
What was Washington’s favorite breakfast? What food did Martha Washington enjoy? Discover the dining habits of George Washington, his family, and his associates as well as eating customs and preservation methods from the 18th century. Join a park ranger in the Washington’s Headquarters Museum auditorium for this presentation at 1:15 and 2:15 pm.
The Ford Mansion and Washington’s Headquarters Museum is located at 30 Washington Place, Morristown, NJ. Cost: $7 per person 16 and older. For more information, call 973-539-2016 ext. 210 or visit www.nps.gov/morr.
———————————– Saturday, February 27 – Hopewell Township, Mercer County
Sugaring time arrives in late winter at Howell Farm and operations are in full swing. Visitors are invited to join the work and fun with sap collection, firewood cutting, syrup making, butter making, flour milling and pancake eating.
The trees are tapped beginning in early February. School groups, visitors and farm staff collect and boil down sap for several weeks. The sugar maple tree stores starch in their trunks and roots before the winter; the starch is then converted to sugar that rises in the sap in the spring. Freezing nights and thawing days make for heavy sap flow. The trees are tapped by boring holes into their trunks and collecting the exuded sap beginning in early February. The sap is then processed by heating to evaporate much of the water, leaving the concentrated syrup.
Sap gathering will take place at 12:00 noon and 2:00 pm. Tree tapping demonstrations will be held at 11:00 am, 1:00 pm, and 3:00 pm. The sugarhouse will be open from 11:00 am – 3:00 pm. Pancakes will be available from 12:00 noon – 3:00 pm.
Howell Living Farm represents typical farm life between 1890 and 1910. The farm is operated by the Mercer County Parks Commission. It is located at 70 Wooden’s Lane, Lambertville, NJ. For more information. call 609-737-3299 or visit www.howellfarm.org.
Saturday – Sunday, February 27 – 28 – Trenton, Mercer County
America, We Served!: Three Centuries of African American Soldiers
Celebrate Black History Month at the Old Barracks Museum in Trenton on Saturday and Sunday from 10:00 am – 5:00 pm. Experience the living history of America’s Black Warriors by the veterans themselves and dedicated reenactors! View displays of photos, literature, and artifacts from wars past while talking to the storytellers of America’s black men and women at war!
Don’t miss this wonderful educational experience for the entire family! While visiting the last remaining free-standing French and Indian War military barracks in North America in the capitol city of Trenton, you will meet with African American soldiers from almost every American War.
The Revolutionary War will be represented by the predominately African American Rhode Island Regiment. The Civil War will be represented by The 6th Regiment United States Colored Troops. World War II will be represented by The 5th Platoon. Other authentically kitted out reenactors will represent the War of 1812, the Buffalo Soldiers of the American West, and the Harlem Hellfighters of World War I fame.
Admission: $4 adults; $2 seniors/students; Free children 6 and under and active duty military; $8 family rate. The Old Barracks Museum is located at 101 Barrack Street, Trenton, NJ. Parking is available in the small lot next to the museum, in the Capitol Complex, and in Trenton City Parking lots – the closest is located at 120 East Front Street. For more information call 609-396-1776 or visit www.barracks.org.
Sunday, February 28 – Morristown, Morris County
African Americans in the American Revolution
Children Friendly Site
During the Revolutionary War African- Americans acted as soldiers, servants, and spies. Meet one of Washington’s aides during a Ford Mansion tour and learn about the role of African-Americans in the various armies of the Revolution. This special tour of the Ford Mansion is at 1:00, 2:00, and 3:00 pm. Tickets can be picked up at the Washington’s Headquarters Museum as part of the $7 admission fee.
The Ford Mansion and Washington’s Headquarters Museum is located at 30 Washington Place, Morristown, NJ. Cost: $7 per person 16 and older. For more information, call 973-539-2016 ext. 210 or visit www.nps.gov/morr.
———————————– Sunday, February 28 – Princeton, Mercer County Virtual Historic Princeton Walking Tour
Take a slide show tour of downtown Princeton and the University campus, presented by one of HSP’s walking tour guides. Participants can enjoy refreshments while learning about the early history of Princeton, the founding of the University, and the American Revolution. Included with $4 museum admission to the Updike Farmstead. Regular walking tours resume March 6.
Updike Farmstead is located at 354 Quaker Road, Princeton, NJ. The virtual tour begins at 2:00 pm and ends at 3:00 pm. For more information, call 609-921-6748 or visit www.princetonhistory.org.
———————————– Sunday, February 28 – Montclair, Essex County
Historic House Tour: Crane House/YWCA and Sunday Spotlight
Step back through over 200 years of American history at Montclair’s historic properties at 108 Orange Road. Visit the reinterpreted Crane House to reflect the YWCA period from 1920 – 1965, check out the farm, and meet the chickens. The site is open from 1:00 – 4:00 pm. Admission is $6 for adults, $5 for seniors and students with valid ID, and $4 for children; under 2 free.
For more information, call 973-744-1796, e-mail ———————————–
Sunday, February 28 – Union Township, Union County
Open House at the Caldwell Parsonage
On Sunday from 2:00 – 5:00 pm, the Caldwell Parsonage in Union Township, NJ will be open for guided tours. While there, learn about Eulace Peacock, UHS Class of 1933, the U.S. track and field competitor dreaded by Jesse Owens.
Owens said of Peacock in 1935, Eulace is a great runner, and a very good jumper. [He] has been right behind me for quite a while. It looks as though he s more than caught up now…. I don t know whether I can defeat him again. He never did.
Peacock s New York Times 1992 obituary reads that the senior track star set a state scholastic long jump record (24 4.25 😉 that remained unbroken for 44 years until Renaldo Nehemiah of Scotch Plains, jumped 24 11.
The museum, once the residence of Rev. James and Mrs. Hannah Caldwell, is listed on both the National and State Registers of Historic Places. Admission is free but donations are greatly appreciated. The Caldwell Parsonage is located at 909 Caldwell Avenue, Union Township, NJ. For more information, call Barbara at 908-687-0048 or visit www.uniontwphistoricalsociety.webs.com.
Sunday, February 28 through August 28, 2016 – Boonton, Morris County
Boonton and the Electronics Industry Exhibit Opening
Our new changing exhibit features the numerous electronics companies that existed in Boonton during the infancy of electronics. Aircraft instrumentation, electronic testing instruments, and radios will be on display. Learn more about Boonton’s significant contributions to the electronics industry by visiting us at the historic Dr. John Taylor House in Boonton NJ. The site is open on Sunday from 12:00 noon – 4:00 pm. The museum is located at 210 Main Street, Boonton NJ. For more information, call 973-402-8840.
Sunday, February 28 – Toms River, Ocean County
Rosie the Riveter Comes to Ocean County Historical Society
Be entertained and educated by actress Elizabeth Michaels as she portrays the iconic “Rosie the Riveter” on Sunday at 2:00 pm at the Ocean County Historical Society.
Rosie the Riveter has been a popular American cultural icon for many years. A song of the same name was written by Redd Evans and John Jacob Loeb and was recorded by Kay Kyser’s band. J. Howard Miller’s “We Can Do it” poster (mistaken for Rosie) is still popular, as is Norman Rockwell’s Saturday Evening Post cover featuring the strong, capable woman. In times of war, women are called upon to take on tasks traditionally considered men’s work and have shown themselves more than equal to the challenge. Even more difficult might have been returning to traditionally female roles once the men return home. Rosie has symbolized rising to both types of challenges.
Elizabeth Michaels’ Rosie the Riveter shows the characteristic strength and grace under pressure for which this American archetype is famous. This self-taught actress has created a successful career and family by identifying her talents and finding ways to make her contribution.
Admission is free. Refreshments will be served. The Ocean County Historical Society is located at 26 Hadley Avenue, Toms River, NJ. To reserve your seat, call 732-341-1880.
———————————– Through March 4, 2016 – Toms River, Ocean County All Aboard, Ocean County! Don’t miss the newest exhibition at the Ocean County Historical Society, 26 Hadley Avenue, Toms River, NJ. “All Aboard! A Brief History of Ocean County Railroads and Stations” will be on display through March 4, 2016, 10:00 am – 3:30 pm, Tuesday through Friday and the first Saturday of each month, 1:00 – 4:00 pm.
Learn about the golden years from the 1880s to the 1920s, when six railroads were established and thrived, dotting Ocean County towns with stations, turntables, wyes, and roundhouses. View replicas of trains of the Central RR of NJ, Pennsylvania RR, The Blue Comet, the Tuckerton RR, and the Doodle Bug Car on the New Egypt line. Authentic artifacts and historic photographs of stations that were centers for community activities, as well as transportation of passengers and freight, make this exhibit a must-see! For more information, visit www.oceancountyhistory.org.
Through April 1, 2016 – Cape May Court House, Cape May County
Taboo: Exposing Hidden History
Deep inside most museums is a hidden cache of artifacts deemed too controversial for display. Due to their controversial nature, many of these items are seldom seen by the public. Many of these acquisitions remind us of issues from our past that some would like to forget.
Like most places in our nation Cape May County’s past also holds untold stories. As stewards of our local history, we feel it is our obligation to present these pages of history to the public.
Under the direction of guest curator, Gwen Brownell Raring, the Cape May County Museum has put together an exhibit highlighting controversial artifacts from local collections, both public and private. Many of these items have never been presented for the public’s view.
We invite you to attend this thought-provoking exhibit. Admission to the exhibit is free to museum members and $5 per person for non-members. The Museum of Cape May County Gallery is located at 504 Route 9 North, Cape May Court House, NJ. For more information, call 609-465-3535, e-mail ———————————– Through June 10, 2016 – Woodbury, Gloucester County Gloucester Abbey: Downton Style Fashions Exhibit Gloucester Abbey: Downton Style Fashions is currently on display at the exhibit at the Gloucester County Historical Society Museum in Woodbury, New Jersey. The exhibit will conclude on January 6, 2016. This remarkable exhibit features ladies fashions from the society’s collection from the time period covered by the popular PBS Masterpiece Theater series Downton Abbey. Over 100 vintage dresses/ensembles from the museum s collection dating from 1910 through the 1930s are showcased, including period wedding gowns. Also on display are ladies accessories, including hats, shoes, purses, jewelry, and lingerie. Don t miss this fantastic exhibit! The Gloucester County Historical Society Museum hours are Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 1:00 – 4:00 pm, and the last Sunday of the month from 2:00 – 5:00 p.m. Private tours may be booked for days/times other than our regular public hours. Adult admission $5; children 6-18 years $1; children under 6 free. The Gloucester County Historical Society Museum is located at 58 N. Broad Street, Woodbury, NJ 08096. For more information, call 856-848-8531 or visit www.rootsweb.com/~njgchs.
———————————– Through June 26, 2016 – Piscataway, Middlesex County The Icons of American Culture: History of New Jersey Diners Exhibit When was the last time you ate at a diner? If you are like millions of New Jerseyans, the answer is not too long ago. Dubbed the land of diners, New Jersey has forged a unique relationship with these casual eateries. Stainless steel, neon, and menus that go on for days are part of the Garden State landscape. Come explore their rich history with us! This seven-room exhibit tells the story of some of the of the Garden State s most iconic eateries. This exhibit runs from April 12, 2015 – June 26, 2016 and is free of charge. The exhibit is open Tuesday Friday from 1:00 4:00 pm and Sundays from 1:00 4:00 pm. Closed Mondays, Saturdays, and Holidays. The Cornelius Low House Museum is located at 1225 River Road, Piscataway, NJ. For more information, call 732-745-4177 or visit www.co.middlesex.nj.us.
Through July 9, 2016 – Freehold, Monmouth County
19th Century New Jersey Chairmaking Exhibit
This exhibition explores the diversity of products made by chairmakers in New Jersey from the late 18th century through 1900 and explores four different galleries: the craft of chairmaking, Windsor chairs, common chairs, and factory made chairs. It draws from chairmakers from throughout the Garden State, including a large collection of chairmaking tools, equipment, benches, patterns and stencils collected by William H. MacDonald of Trenton. MacDonald, who had one time worked in Freehold, donated the collection to the Association in the mid and late 20th century. The exhibition represents the first time the entire collection of tools, equipment and patterns have ever been displayed together.
Hammond explained that the name for the exhibition is taken from the language commonly used by New Jersey manufacturers in their newspaper advertisements promoting themselves against craftsmen from New York and Philadelphia.
Many of the items in the exhibition come from throughout the Garden State, from Bergen to Cumberland and Salem counties, and span the era from 1780 to 1900. Some of the items on display are on loan from several different historical societies as well as the Rutgers archives special collection and are representative of both local and regional chairmakers.
Of particular interest is one section devoted to the Ware family of Cumberland County, a family that represents a unique chapter in the history of American furniture production. Nineteen members of the family spanning four generations made traditional slat back, rush-seated chairs in the Delaware Valley tradition from the late 18th century to about 1940.
The gallery portraying factory made chairs includes perforated furniture made by Gardener and Company in 1872, a business in Glen Gardner, folding chairs popular on ocean liners dating back as far as 1868 and made by the Collignon Brothers in Closter, in Bergen County, using wood from the sawmill across the Hackensack River from the plant, and the Cooper Chair factory of Bergen, noted for its delicate chairmaking styles.
The Gallery devoted to Windsor chairs includes the earliest known marked Windsor chair, one made by Ezekiah Hughes in Salem County in the 1780s. The exhibition at the Museum displays one of the largest collections of Windsor chairs ever shown.
Monmouth County Historical Association is a private non-profit organization that has been working to preserve history and provide educational opportunities since its founding in 1898. The Historical Association s Museum and Library is located at 70 Court Street in Freehold, NJ. Museum hours are: Tuesdays – Saturdays 10:00 am – 4:00 pm. The Library is open Wednesdays through Saturdays. For more information about the Association, call 732-462-1466 or visit www.monmouthhistory.org.
Through December 31, 2016 – Far Hills, Somerset County
More Than a Game Exhibit at the USGA Museum
Visitors to the USGA Museum in Far Hills will be surprised to learn that there is much to discover about the game of golf. Originally installed in February of 2014, the exhibit “More Than a Game” focuses on how the creation of African-American golf clubs positively impacted the community, despite the pervasive prejudice and racism of the Jim Crow era. They founded institutions that celebrated the game, and their culture, setting a new standard for what a free and open society could be.
Local schools and youth groups are invited to arrange a field trip to the museum to learn about diversity in golf through the exhibit’s centerpiece which is the story of William “Bill” Powell and the Clearview Golf Club. Founded in 1946 in East Canton, Ohio, Clearview is the only public golf course in the United States designed, built, owned, and operated by an African American. Celebrating their 70th anniversary this year, its existence is a testimonial to the vision, determination and integrity of Powell, who overcame numerous obstacles in the pursuit of his dream. Lesson plans are available upon request for teachers and group leaders prior to or following their onsite experience.
Powell’s Clearview Golf Club was not the only African-American golf institution founded in this era. The exhibit also honors other clubs that made significant contributions to minority golf including Shady Rest Country Club in Scotch Plains, NJ, home course of John Shippen, the first American and the first African American to play in a U.S. Open Championship in 1896. Also featured are significant trophies from the United Golfers Association and many other various artifacts that celebrate the men and women who made sacrifices in an effort to realize their dream of equality on the greens.
The USGA is one of the world’s foremost authorities on research, development and support of sustainable golf course management practices. It serves as a primary steward for the game’s history and invests in the development of the game through the delivery of its services and its ongoing “For the Good of the Game” grants program. Additionally, the USGA’s Course Rating and Handicap systems are used on six continents in more than 50 countries.
For more information about the museum, this exhibit and field trip opportunities, please contact Kim Gianetti at 908-326-1948 or by email at 
Monmouth County Historical Association’s newest exhibition Of the Best Materials and Good Workmanship: 19th Century New Jersey Chairmaking at the Museum at 70 Court Street will remain open through July 9, 2016.
———————————– Some event listings courtesy of the League of Historical Societies of New Jersey
Sources: North from Edmonton, The Northern Alberta Railways, Keith Hansen, MA; Peace River Remembers; Oxford Dictionary) PRMA2008.056.004 – view of the warehouse district from the river
In the early years of Peace River, there was an area of town on the east side of the river referred to as the Warehouse District in which many businesses and industry resided close to the Peace River convenient to river transportation.
In the original plan of April 7, 1921, corrected April 30, 1952, as seen in Keith Hansen s North From Edmonton, The Northern Alberta Railways, there are at least 13 businesses south of the railway bridge. Among them: Palace Transfer, Midland and Pacific Grain Corp. Ltd.(2), Dominion Fruit Ltd., Alberta Pool Elevators, Canadian Propane, J. H. Ashdowne Hardware Co. Ltd., BA Oil Co. Ltd., Consolidated Fruit Ltd., Hudson s Bay Co., Ogilvie Flour Mill Co. Ltd., Horne and Pitfield, and Marshall Wells Warehouse.
Let s look into the history of Palace Transfer. In October of 1928, Tony Tretick arrived in Peace River from Saskatchewan to buy Palace Transfer, a dray business, which used a low truck or horse-drawn cart to deliver freight barrels, heavy equipment and such. At the time, he had two drays with teams of horses for each. The company s warehouse was near the railway bridge on the east side of the tracks. Tony sold Palace Transfer in 1941 and started a new trucking business Tony s Truck Service, which hauled freight for many years to Keg River, Hay Lakes and Fort Vermilion. He only hauled in winter, as the trails were impossibly impassable in the summer. The Peace River Fort Vermilion trip took three days at the best of times. Needing summer work, Tony started farming at Fort Vermilion in 1947 and sold the trucking business to the Stranaghan brothers in 1967.