Washington Crossing State Park

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Park Overview:

This is the place out of the history books where the Continental Army crossed the Delaware River on Christmas night 1776.

Trail Uses:Hiking
Dogs:Dogs on leash
Trail Miles:15 miles
Park Acreage:3126 acres
City/County/
State:
Titusville/Mercer/NJ
Park Description:

Established in 1912, Washington Crossing State Park is the site where the Continental Army landed after crossing the Delaware River on Christmas night 1776.  Within the 3,000-acre park is a 140-acre natural area containing fields in various stages of secondary succession and a mixed hardwood forest. In addition, the park includes a visitor center museum, the Johnson Ferry House, an observatory [open Friday nights seasonally] and a nature center, plus facilities for picnicking.

Trails Overview:

With 15 miles of hiking trails there are plenty of places to walk in the park.

  • Seasonal fees, check with the park's web site below in Contact Information.
Directions:

Take NJ 29 north from Trenton to County 546 (Washington Crossing - Pennington Road).

  • A right turn at this intersection onto County 546 leads to the park entrance and visitor center.
  • A left turn onto County Road 546 and then a right turn onto River Road leads to the parking lots near the approximate site of the George Washington's crossing.
Contact Information:NJ DEP, Division of Parks and Forestry
609-737-0623
Region:Central Jersey
Fees:Some times and places; check with park

Comments

Washington Crosses the Delaware, This Time More Accurately

For those who wish a little background about the depiction of Washington's crossing the Delaware, here's an article from the New York Times, December 25, 2011, about a famous painting and an updated interpretation:

"There are few images as enduring in American history as the one of General George Washington standing tall, next to the Stars and Stripes, in a rowboat gliding past mini-icebergs as he leads his troops across the Delaware River on Christmas Day 1776 to start a surprise attack on Hessian forces during the Battle of Trenton.

In his 1851 portrait, “Washington Crossing the Delaware,” among the best-known of American paintings, the artist, Emanuel Leutze, did not shy away from imbuing the scene with a dose of glory, inspiration and heroism.

He also did not let the facts get in the way of his masterpiece — the original hangs at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

The only thing wrong with this historical image is the history part, said Mort Künstler, as he recently put the finishing touches on his own version of Washington’s crossing. As it rested on an easel in Mr. Künstler’s studio on Long Island, the painting looked nothing like the Leutze version.

“I’m not knocking the original: it’s got great impact and Leutze did a heck of a job,” Mr. Künstler said. “I give Leutze higher marks for a good painting than for historical accuracy, but why can’t you have both?”"

The newstory continues by clicking here.

Goat Hill Overlook

NJDEP News Release, October 14, 2009

 

DEP PRESERVES SCENIC ACRES ALONG THE DELAWARE RIVER

(09/P24) TRENTON - Department of Environmental Protection Acting Commissioner Mark N. Mauriello today announced the preservation of a 213-acre scenic property in West Amwell Township, Hunterdon County.

“With its breathtaking beauty and spectacular views of the Delaware River, this property is a real treasure,” Commissioner Mauriello said. “It’s hard to imagine that this land was at risk of being developed for new housing. Through the commitment and leadership of Governor Jon S. Corzine, we are protecting New Jersey’s priceless natural resources.”

The DEP’s Green Acres program purchased the Goat Hill Overlook property for $4.5 million from Constructural Dynamics Inc. of Fairless Hills, Pa. The company acquired Goat Hill Overlook from the Boy Scouts in 1983 and originally intended to use the land for mining operations. That plan was later changed in favor of constructing a residential development complex at the site.

In addition to views of the Delaware River, the property features a prominent rock, known as Washington Rock. According to local legend, General George Washington used the views from Goat Hill Overlook to assess battle conditions during the Revolutionary War. The site also offers miles of hiking trails and contains a variety of wildlife and plant species.

The Goat Hill Overlook acquisition is part of the Green Acres’ Crossroads of the American Revolution land preservation initiative, which links Revolutionary War sites across the state to help interpret New Jersey’s role in the American Revolution. More Revolutionary War battles and skirmishes took place in New Jersey than in any other state. The DEP’s Division of Parks and Forestry will manage the area as part of Washington Crossing State Park.

The DEP's Green Acres program purchases land to protect environmentally sensitive open space, water resources and other significant natural and historical areas. Land acquired by Green Acres becomes part of the statewide system of parks and forests, wildlife management areas and natural areas. Green Acres provides funding to county and municipal governments and nonprofit organizations to acquire open space and parks in their communities.

Since its inception in 1961, the program has protected more than 640,000 acres of open space, in addition to funding the development of hundreds of parks throughout New Jersey. New Jersey's statewide system of preserved open space and farmland now totals more than 1.4 million acres.