CHPS News And Events

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The Elizabeth M. Wagner History Center was dedicated at a community event on Sunday, November 11 at 2 p.m. at the Cranbury Firehouse. The event honored the memory of Betty Wagner, a remarkable woman who worked tirelessly with others to preserve Cranbury's history and historic character. She educated, enlightened and inspired our community and helped to establish Cranbury as the model for historic preservation in New Jersey.

Walking Tours of Historic Cranbury will be given on Sunday, March 24, April 14 and May 19. All tours will begin at 2 p.m. at the Cranbury Museum, 4 Park Place East. A donation to the Society of $7.00 per person is suggested. The tour will cover the history and architecture of Cranbury. To sign up please call tour guide, Richard Moody, at 609-819-1359. In the event of inclement weather, the tour will be cancelled.

A new Cranbury Museum exhibit, "The History of the Cranbury Police" will open on Sunday, March 3. The Museum at 4 Park Place East is open on Sunday, 1-4 pm.

The next Historic Cranbury House Tour will be held this fall. If you would like to be on the planning committee for the house tour, please email the Society at The first meeting of the committee will be in May.


The Cranbury History Center is now open by appointment only. If you would like to make arrangements to visit the History Center or have questions for our History Center volunteers, please email the History Center at If you need genealogical or town information, please contact or visit the Cranbury Public Library. The Library has digitized records of Cranbury's First and Second Presbyterian Churches, the Methodist Church and the Cranbury Press. The library staff will help you with the research.

Cranbury Museum needs more enthusiastic and dedicated docents. The Museum, established in 1972 to highlight local history, is open on Sundays, 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM. Docents make the Museum come alive for visitors by leading tours and also focusing on the current exhibit. This is a perfect opportunity for adults and high school students who are passionate about their town and can commit to one Sunday a month. Training and museum policies will be provided. To learn more, please contact Sue Saravalli, Docent Coordinator, at

CHPS is restoring the Wagon House and Corn Crib in the Cranbury Barn Park on Cranbury Neck Road. The barns must be repaired and restored so they can be enjoyed for future generations. If you would like to contribute to the Society’s Preservation Fund, please mail a check, payable to CHPS, to CHPS Preservation Fund, 6 S. Main Street, Cranbury, NJ 08512.

For a self-guided Historic Cranbury Walking Tour, please pick up a copy of the Historic Cranbury Walking Tour booklet that is available in the pocket by the front door of the Cranbury History Center, 6 South Main Street.

A Walking Tour DVD and many other Cranbury gift items are available at the Cranbury History Center,  6 S. Main St., open by appointment by emailing

You are invited to become a member of Cranbury Historical & Preservation Society.

Cranbury: A New Jersey Town from the Colonial Era to the Present

Cranbury: A New Jersey Town from the Colonial Era to the Present is a hardcover book, with 272 pages and 50 illustrations, that was written by Cranbury resident, Rutgers history professor and award winning author, John Whiteclay Chambers II. The book, a project of Cranbury Landmarks, Inc., has been very well received since it was made available in May of 2012. This year, the book can be purchased at a special price of $20.00 at the Cranbury History Center, open by appointment, and at Cranbury Museum, open Sunday, 1-4 PM.

Memorial Day 2016

2016 Float
2016 Float 2
New MonumentNew Monument 2

Cranbury Author, John Chambers, wins 2013 Leadership in History Award of Merit

NASHVILLE, TN — June 2013 — The American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) proudly announces that John Whiteclay Chambers II is the recipient of an Award of Merit from the AASLH Leadership in History Awards for his book, “Cranbury: A New Jersey Town from the Colonial Era to the Present” (Rutgers University Press, 2012). The AASLH Leadership in History Awards, now in its 68th year, is the most prestigious recognition for achievement of outstanding state and local history.

A Rutgers history professor and Cranbury resident, Chambers wrote the book for Cranbury Landmarks, Inc., a local preservationist organization. While providing an in-depth history of Cranbury since 1697, he also placed the town’s development in the context of major trends in the history of New Jersey and the nation. In dealing with the town’s historic preservation and balanced economic growth in recent years, Chambers showed how local people influenced their community’s future through effective activity. The AASLH Award affirmed that the book was “an inspiring model for writing local history.”

Since its publication in the spring of 2012, the book has been enthusiastically received in the community, helping to generate a groundswell of interest in the town’s past and in local history. It was featured in several talks and newspaper and magazine articles. The Cranbury Museum sponsored a prize-winning float assembled by local students and the Cranbury Historical and Preservation Society added new historic markers and is updated its Village Walking Tour.

Most extensively, with a grant from the Middlesex County Cultural and Heritage Commission, Cranbury Public Library instituted a far-reaching program, “One Book, One Cranbury,” in 2012-2013 that included lectures, reading groups, exhibits, historic tours and even a scavenger hunt, all related to the town’s history.

This spring, Chambers and Cranbury Landmarks, Inc., deposited copies of a expanded “Reference Edition” of the book, an unabridged, bound, typescript containing additional text, plus 600 extensive endnotes and a bibliography of 400 sources, at the Cranbury’s public library, town hall, museum and history center, as well as at the Rutgers University Library, New Jersey Historical Society Library, and the New Jersey State Library and Archives.

The awards program of the AASLH, a national organization with headquarters in Nashville, Tennessee, was initiated in 1945 to establish and encourage standards of excellence in the collection, preservation, and interpretation of state and local history throughout the United States. Awards will be presented at the Annual Meeting of the AASLH to be held September 20, in Birmingham, Alabama.

Cranbury Township Flag

Cranbury Historical & Preservation Society designed a flag that was approved as the official flag of Cranbury Township. The 2' X 3' flag, on sale for $20.00, features the Cranbury Township seal on both sides against a cranberry background. If you would like to purchase a flag, please visit the Cranbury History Center on Thursday, 10:30 a.m.- 1:30 p.m. or the Cranbury Museum on Sunday, 1-4 p.m. A limited number of flags are available, so don't wait too long to purchase yours.

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