18th-Century Style Birthday Party for George Washington on Feb. 22

The Washington Camp Ground Association invites fans of George Washington to a special luncheon to celebrate his legacy. The word is he may come...

The “Hopkinson Flag” is flown at the Washington Camp Ground, both day and night,  by special permission of a formal resolution of the United States Congress.
The “Hopkinson Flag” is flown at the Washington Camp Ground, both day and night, by special permission of a formal resolution of the United States Congress.

Written by Robert Fazen of the WCGA

During the summer of 1777, and again in the winter of 1778-1779, General George Washington, with his troops of the Continental Army, encamped in the Watchung Mountains, just north of Bound Brook.  

Now 237 years later, the Washington Camp Ground Association finds itself owning a portion of the land Washington used for his Middlebrook Encampments.  Today, a 19.3 acre plot is being preserved through the generosity and foresight of the Honorable George LaMonte.  The Association is dedicated to preserving this land for educational and memorial purposes and to commemorating the struggle of the colonists for freedom and independence in the American Revolution.

On Saturday, February 22, the Washington Camp Ground Association will gather its members and other interested history enthusiasts for a special Washington’s Birthday luncheon at Madeline’s on Vosseller (518 Vosseller Avenue) in Bound Brook. 

 “Our 12 noon luncheon will include a business meeting to elect new officers, update membership on Camp Ground preservation efforts, provide new members with a historical perspective, and conclude with period entertainment,” said Washington Camp Ground Association President Robert Fazen.  “Of course, traditional cherry pie will be served.” 

Colonial Era songs and dances from the performing arts group “Spiced Punch” and an appearance by General George Washington will highlight luncheon celebration


 Guests will enjoy lively songs of 18th Century tipplers, soldiers, and common folk performed by the singing group Spiced Punch (Tom & Marianne Tucker, Stacy Roth and David Emerson); and a presentation by General George Washington (portrayed by David Emerson of “History on the Hoof”). The General will share recollections of the Middlebrook Encampment, including his memories of the first official flag of the United States.

On June 14, 1777 the Continental Congress, meeting in Philadelphia, adopted the 13 Stars and Stripes flag as America’s colors.  During the Continental Congress meeting, Francis Hopkinson, a delegate from New Jersey, proposed a design for the flag, now recognized as the “Hopkinson Flag.”   As shown above, the flag attributed to Hopkinson has thirteen stripes and thirteen stars in five rows of 3-2-3-2-3 on a blue field.

While the Continental Army was encamped at the “Washington Camp Ground,” this flag was believed to have been delivered to the troops where it was flown proudly.  Replicas of the “Hopkinson Flag” are available from the Washington Camp Ground Association.

 The Washington Camp Ground’s Officers & Trustees for 2014 will include: President, Robert Fazen; 1st Vice President, Richard Shive; 2nd Vice President, Jamie Schleck; 3rd Vice President, John Haelig, Jr.; Secretary, Robert Kapp; and Treasurer, Philip Schuyler.  Trustees scheduled for induction include: 2012-2014 Trustees Jesse Havens, Richard Hall, John Kuhn, Richard Shive and Robert Papp; 2013-2015 Trustees Robert Haase, H. Kels Swan, Jamie Schleck, John Haelig, Jr. and Robert Kapp; and 2014-2016 Trustees John Haelig, Sr., Robert Fazen, Philip Schuyler and Herb Patullo.

General public and members interested in attending the February 22nd luncheon may do so by making a reservation before February 20th.  Reservations can be made by calling Robert Fazen at (732) 735-0634.  Mail reservations can be made by sending a check payable to: Washington Camp Ground Association (WCGA) to: Robert Fazen, 571 Watchung Road, Bound Brook, NJ  08805.  The cost of the luncheon is $20.00 per person    

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