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Somerset County Weekend Journey Through the Past
October 9, 2022 @ 12:00 pm - 4:00 pm
The Friends of the Boudinot-Southard-Ross Estate is pleased to participate in the 17th Annual Somerset County Journey Through the Past on Oct. 8 and 9. Ross Farm volunteers first participated in county-wide event in 2006 to highlight the property that had just been acquired by Somerset County. Few local residents knew the history of the property at 135 N. Maple Ave. in Basking Ridge, and the name Elias Boudinot was not a familiar one to most residents. Even as activities at the Ross Farm have expanded to include school field trips, a popular music series, Halloween and holiday drive-thrus, and Boudinot’s Giving Garden, “History Weekend” remains one of the highlights for volunteers, in conjunction with Trilogy Repertory, because it honors the history and the residents who lived through that history. The event will run from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 8 and from noon to 4 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 9.
In 2007, FoBSR President David Becker told the Bernardsville News, “This is truly a grassroots volunteer event.” Becker remains proud that volunteerism is the core of so many activities at the Ross Farm, from local students performing their community service hours to adults donating time and energy in Boudinot’s Giving Garden all year long. “Folks show up to help whenever we have needs. Many then come back to enjoy our events knowing they directly contributed to what Ross Farm has become today. It has truly been heartwarming to watch this place become ingrained in our community over time.”
Visitors to the Ross Farm will learn about the fascinating history and enjoy the beauty of the property which was home to several prominent figures who played critical roles in the founding and early years of the United States. Elias Boudinot, President of the Continental Congress from 1782-1783, purchased the land in 1771. He sold the property to Henry Southard in 1785, who served in the House of Representatives for New Jersey from 1801 to 1821. His son Samuel, who attended the Brick Academy, later became Governor, a Senator, and Secretary of the Navy. The Ross Farm is so named for its last private owner, Edmund Ross, whose estate sold the property to Somerset County in 2005.
A self-guided walking tour will take visitors around the property, and volunteers will be on site to answer questions and share stories about the site. Weather permitting, outdoor games will be set up for families to relax and enjoy the site. Katherine Craig, caretaker of the Boudinot’s Elizabeth, NJ home Boxwood Hall, will share the Boudinots’ history through displays and stories inside the home. No visit to the Ross Farm is complete without looking at Boudinot’s Giving Garden, where volunteers have harvested a record-smashing more than 4,000 pounds of produce, all of which is donated to local food pantries, soup kitchens and Community Hope at the Lyons VA. Plein air painting is also encouraged for any artists.
Follow @TheRossFarm on Facebook and @rossfarmbr on Instagram to keep up with all the activities, and visit the website www.rossfarm.org to sign up for the email list.
The Friends of the Boudinot-Southard-Ross Estate is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, and The Ross Farm is listed on the New Jersey and National Registers of Historic Places.