Join us Saturday, November 5, 2016 on the
Victorian Tea Party Bus to the Merchant’s House Museum in NYC!
Do you ever wish you could go back in time to the 19th century? On this bus excursion, you can — at least for a little while.
Here are the details:
The Bus. A luxury bus with restroom facilities will pick up travelers from Fireman’s Park in beautiful Ocean Grove, New Jersey on Saturday, November 5, 2016. (By the way, Ocean Grove has the highest concentration of Victorian architecture in the state! You may want to come early and enjoy a stroll. You can also book a walking tour with me.)
Departure. Bus departs promptly at 12:00 PM from Fireman’s Park, Main & Delaware Avenues, Ocean Grove, NJ
The Destination. The stunning Merchant’s House Museum in New York City. Considered one of the finest surviving examples of domestic architecture from the period, the 1832 late-Federal and Greek Revival Merchant’s House is a designated landmark on the federal, state, and city level. It is furnished with over 3,000 items comprising the possessions of the Tredwells, the wealthy merchant-class family who lived in the House from 1835 to 1933. Our group will enjoy a guided tour.
Dining. On the bus you will enjoy a 19th century style savory pie lunch catered by Burbelmaier’s of Ocean Grove with your choice of hot or cold tea, or water. Vegetarian and gluten-free options are available.
On-Board Entertainment. Also on the ride we will view a film that some say was inspired by the 19th century love story of Gertrude Tredwell who lived in the Merchant’s House. [Actually, the film was inspired by the Henry James novel Washington Square which in turn inspired a stage play and then two film versions: The Heiress (1949) and Washington Square (1997).] Which one will we watch? You get to vote when you make your reservation. Majority rules!
Dress Code. Please wear whatever makes you comfortable. However, if you’re like me, you’ll look for any excuse to dress in Victorian vogue. So please — feel free to join me in wearing your favorite 19th century duds! Whether you go all-out or just wear a single vintage or Victorian-inspired piece (a hat, perhaps? gloves? button-up boots?) your participation will make our trip extra special. Plus, the Merchant’s House Museum will allow us extra time after our tour to take photos in the glorious parlor.
Return Trip. We will return to Fireman’s Park in Ocean Grove at approximately 6:00 PM. We will enjoy dessert on the ride home.
Accessibility. Please note that the Merchant’s House Museum does not have an elevator. The tour involves climbing several sets of stairs.
Ready to Go?
$119 ticket includes lunch, dessert, museum tour and round-trip bus transportation between Ocean Grove and New York.
Life’s too short not to have little adventures that make our hearts sing! I hope you’ll join me for history, beauty, fun and friendship on Saturday, November 5, 2016.
Are you curious about our Women’s History Walking Tour? We don’t blame you! Last summer it was such a huge success, we’re bringing it back again! Led by historian Dell O’Hara, the tour travels on foot through charming Ocean Grove, New Jersey, stopping at sites connected to remarkable women who lived or visited here in the past. It’s partly a “living history” tour, with volunteer residents dressed in costume, portraying real women from the 19th century — innkeepers, a spiritual leader, a physician and more.
You have three opportunities to catch the tour in 2015:
June 25th – 10:30 AM
July 23rd — 1:00 PM
August 20th — 1:00 PM
Reservations are a MUST. Tour is $10 per person, $8 for seniors. Call 732-774-1869.
Hope you enjoy this video trailer we put together with scenes from last year’s tours:
Today’s “Then and Now” features The Broadmoor:
In the late 19th century, Ocean Grove, New Jersey was teeming with lady business owners, most of whom presided over hotels and guest houses. One of those ladies was Elizabeth Sherman Moore.
Miss Moore owned The Broadmoor Hotel at the corner of Central Avenue and Broadway. As early as 1881, the property belonged to her married sister Emogen Hewson, but at some point ownership was transferred to Elizabeth.
Elizabeth Moore seems to have enjoyed being a businesswoman. In March of 1889, she decided to expand her holdings and contracted with the firm of Carman & Holbrook to build two more houses, which she would later call the Holly and Laurel Cottages. It cost her $3,500.
The “Carman” of Carman & Holbrook was William H. Carman: Civil War veteran, Freemason, Democrat, and builder/architect whose firm erected many of the earliest homes and hotels in Ocean Grove.
Now I can’t help but wonder what Miss Moore thought about her hired contractor. Did she find Mr. Carman handsome? As she chatted with him over cottage blueprints, did she blush?
Ah, but what did it matter? He was a married man, after all.
But as fate would have it, in 1894, Mr. Carman’s wife passed away. She had been ailing for several years.
Four years later, on Christmas Day, a wedding took place in the parlor at The Broadmoor — that of William H. Carman to the landlady herself, Elizabeth S. Moore.
While the second Mrs. Carman enjoyed life as a hotelier, Mr. Carman’s business thrived. He was also appointed aide-de-camp on the staff of Commander in Chief of the Grand Army of the Republic for the department of New Jersey, and was appointed as a member of the election board in Ocean Grove. He was known to speak to schoolchildren about his time in the Civil War and loved walking alongside his fellow vets on parade.
He also found time to champion the cause of introducing gaslight to Ocean Grove. He felt it was necessary for the advancement of Ocean Grove, and was quick to remind folks that it was cheaper than electric lights.
Carman was the kind of guy you’d like to have for a neighbor. Mr. W.J. Cramer would certainly know. Late one January night in 1896, he was cooking up some kind of turpentine concoction in the kitchen of 107 Embury Avenue when the substance caught fire. Cramer tried to throw the pot out the back door, but instead he wound up dropping it and soon the kitchen woodwork was in flames. Luckily for Mr. Cramer, William Carman was just two doors down. Carman rushed in with a bucket of water and helped douse the flames.
Never a dull moment in Ocean Grove for Mr. or Mrs. Carman!
William H. Carman died in 1916 and Elizabeth Moore Carman in 1918. Several years before her death, Mrs. Carman had become a semi-invalid due to a fall and a fractured hip, and it seems The Broadmoor passed into the care of a Mrs. M.H. Hennig. Here’s an ad from The Ocean Grove Times of July 6, 1916, trumpeting Mrs. Hennig’s skill in the kitchen:
Like Mrs. Hennig, future owners of The Broadmoor would keep its name, although sometimes with slight variations (like the Broadmoor “Inn” of 1932). Eventually it would become, and stay, a private residence.
Funding has been provided by the New Jersey Historical Commission.