Harrington Park Historical Society
   P.O. Box 105, Harrington Park, N.J. 07640       
201 768-2615       
501(c)3 Corporation       

Recipient of the Bergen County 2011 Historic Preservation Commendation Award for the Old Burying Ground           
Photo of Old Burying Ground
by Dr. Davis Ross
Upcoming Lectures & Events

All Lectures Are Held at the Harrington Park Library, 10 Herring Street, Harrington Park, New Jersey 07640 7:30 P.M. - 2nd Floor
All are welcome!
Proud Sponsor
of the
Harrington Park
Arts Council
"The Art of Today - The History of Tomorrow!"
A Legacy Project  of the HPHS for the 350th Anniversary of the
State of New Jersey

To increase the interest of our community in the arts, to assist all who wish to make an artistic contribution, and to bring the artist and the community-at-large together in a mutually beneficial relationship. To develop, promote, and coordinate the arts at the community level as an expression of Harrington Park’s talents, needs, resources, and aspirations under the auspices of the Harrington Park Historical Society.

To learn more, please click on the Arts Council Button
or visit the Arts Council on
and on Facebook - Arts Council of Harrington Park 


Welcome to the Harrington Park Historical Society - we are glad you are visiting with us on our website!  Please browse around our website to learn more about us and what we do.

We hope you will join us for our ten lecture series on various history subjects that range from local to the far away on interesting historical topics. We meet the first Monday of every month, except July and August, in the Harrington Park Public Library, 2nd floor, at 7:30 P.M.

Typically our meetings include a top notch speaker, question and answer segment, followed by a reception where you can greet our guest and enjoy some refreshment.  Our lecture series is open to everyone and we do not charge a fee to attend.

In addition to our lectures the Society maintains and preserves two historic cemeteries in Harrington Park, namely; the Perry Cemetery, and the Old Burying Ground.  The Perry Cemetery is a small family burial ground located on what was the farm of David Perry (1809-1871). The Old Burying Ground cemetery is part of the land apportioned to Garret Huybertsen Blauvelt, son of one of the original sixteen grantees of the Tappan Patent approved by the Governor of New York in 1686. Although there are believed to be earlier ones, the first known burial was in 1722 and the last in 1905.
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Old Burying Ground
Photo by Dr. Davis Ross

A lifelong resident of Bergen County and a graduate of Montclair State University, Eric Nelsen has been an historical interpreter for the Palisades Interstate Park's NJ Section since 1992 and director of the Park's historic Kearney House, a 19th-century riverfront homestead and tavern now serving as a living history museum, since 1998. He was project coordinator for the video documentary A New Deal for the Palisades (2001) and coauthor of New Jersey's Palisades Interstate Park (2007, part of Arcadia Publishing's "Images of America" series). He is best known for the "history hikes" he leads, during which hikers explore beautiful views of the Hudson - along with the ruins of grand cliff-top estates and fishermen's villages, all part of a unique Interstate Park that is both a National Historic and National Natural Landmark.

He brings a rich understanding of the many facets of the Palisades to his presentations. Day to day in the park, Eric creates park publications including the njpalisades.org website, brochures, interpretive signs, and social media. When he’s unplugged from his office, he can be found leading one of his popular history hikes — or dressed to party like it’s 1849 at a living history program at the Kearney House.​

​January 8, 2018 - 7:30 P.M. - Harrington Park Library

Eric Nelsen, Guest Speaker - 
        “From the Hard Winter: the Legacy of the New Deal in the New Jersey Palisades”

The Harrington Park Historical Society is pleased to welcome back good friend and historian Eric Nelsen as their guest lecturer on Monday, January 8, 2018, 7:30 P.M. at the Harrington Park Library located at 10 Herring Street in Harrington Park. Mr. Nelsen’s lecture is entitled “From the Hard Winter: the Legacy of the New Deal in the New Jersey Palisades.”

The Civil Works Administration, or CWA, existed for exactly one season: winter. In the depths of the Great Depression, when unemployment rates stood as high as 25 percent, the CWA provided work for around four million men nationwide. The program expired after March 31, 1934 — it was to be a stopgap, not a permanent measure. A year later, the Roosevelt Administration created the more permanent Works Progress Administration, or WPA, which operated until 1943. Today, the WPA is far better remembered than its predecessor. Yet over that one season in the Palisades, the CWA left an impressive legacy.

CWA workers first reported to the park in December 1933. They came mostly from the towns just to the south, from Fort Lee or Cliffside or Fairview. On average, they were around five hundred men each day.

Mr. Nelsen’s presentation about these CWA workers and their efforts will be interspersed with photos of their work in the Park from Fort Lee to Alpine, most of it along the riverfront; including seawalls at Hazard’s Landing, additional fireplaces, and other general improvements.

The Society welcomes everyone to come, enjoy, and learn from their lectures which are free of charge. A reception will follow the presentation. For more information about the Society and its activities please call Gerri Gibney at 201 768-2615 or follow the Society on its Facebook page, or at its web site, www.harringtonparkhistoricalsociety.com. 

To view the documentary "A New Deal for the Palisades " go to https://vimeo.com/22023989