DISCOVER                               ENGAGE                                SUSTAIN

Past Events & Activities in 2022

September 12: Event NMHA Community Paddle the Navesink at Maple Cove, Red Bank

Paddle the Navesink at Maple Cove in Red Bank in colorful wooden canoes any time between 10am and 2pm! It's free!. Canoes, life vests, and paddles provided. 

Open to the Monmouth County community, to ALL families, adults, youth, and kids (under 15 must come with an adult).

Click HERE to see phots of paddlers on the water.

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July 20 - Agust 20 Events Set Sail! Art ad Design in Maritime at the Atlantic Highlands Arts Counci and Sandy Hook Bay.

A month-long collaboration between AHArts and the Navesink Maritime Heritage Association celebrated the maritime heritage of the greater Atlantic Highlands and Navesink areas. This colaboration included a canoe building event, a canoe painting contest, kids camp classes, an exhibition on the history and art of boat painting, all held in the AHArts gallery on First Ave, Atlantic Highlands. the last day of the exhibition ws marked by paddleing the canoes in Sandy Hook Bay! Click HERE to see pictures of all the events.

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July 10: Event The Members BBQ and Flea market at Grover House, 930 West Front Street, Red Bank.

Grover House is a c.1730 farmhouse built by a descendent of one of the founders of Monmouth County in 1665, named James Grover, and has been NMHA's headquarters since 2014.


NMHA volunteers have upgraded part of the first floor, and Eagle Scout projects have enhanced the grounds. Burgers, veggie burgers, franks and bratwurst were served to a hungry crown on a glorious summer day! 

Click HERE to see pictures of the event

June 4: Event Rally for the Rivers Eco-Fest at Victory Park, Rumson organized by Clean Ocean Acton and the Rumson Environmental Commission.

A gathering of some 20+ environmental and ecology-friendly organizations entertained and educated children and adults through fun projects and activities throughout the morning, focusing on keeping our local rivers and creeks healthy. This this was the fourth Eco-Fest to be held in Victory Park. NMHA had a booth and amused many children with its "sink a boat with pennies" challenge

May 18: Presentation The Meaning of Colonel Tye: Loyalist Blacks in the American Revolution by Graham Hodges, Professor of History and Africana Studies, Colgate University, via Zoom.

This talk examined the history and impact of the famous Black freedom Fighter, Colonel Tye. He escaped from his Quaker master, John Corlies of Shrewsbury, in November 1775 and returned three years later as leader of a "motley crew," to terrorize White Patriots of New Jersey.

Tye operated from Sandy Hook and ravaged Monmouth County for three years until his death in 1780. Memorialized in the nineteenth century as a brave fighter, Tye has captured the imagination of American Historians. 


This presentation was supported by a grant from the New Jersey Historic Trust 

April 13: Presentation The Grovers, Founding Family of Middletown by Rick Geffken, via Zoom

Rick Geffken presented an enthralling and well researched tale of the Grover Family of Monmouth County before and after James Grover (1686-1753), who built the Grover House in 1730 (and which has been the NMHA HQ since 2014).

Grover and his descendants occupied the house for over two hundred and fifty years. Research was based on Grover Wills, property deeds, genealogical records, newspaper articles, and other historical documents.

The land where the Grover House stood (near Exit 109 on the Garden State Parkway) was part of a tract of 330 acres which Governor Carteret granted in 1676 to James Grover I on the Swimming River and which Grover referred to as “Grover's Inheritance.” It was on this tract of land that the Grover House was built and where Grover's descendants lived until the death of Anna Lum in 1983. Nine generations of Grover’s lived in this historic Middletown, New Jersey, house. In 1902, historian William Nelson claimed that “The old Grover homestead was originally built in 1730; this date is authentic, since it is plainly cut into the old shingles of the roof which still form ample protection against wind and weather.

This presentation was supported by a grant from the New Jersey Historic Trust 

April 9: Event Bird Watching Cruise. View Local & Migratory birds from the deck of the MARINER!

Members and friends joined NMHA on its fourth bird watching trip on Classic Boat Rides' MARINER with Captain Dan at the helm.

Embarking at Atlantic Highlands, we viewed the resident and migrating birds of Sandy Hook Bay and Shrewsbury River, starting with a look at the bayside flats at the tip of Sandy Hook, then cruising to the mouth of the picturesque Navesink River. Brant, Cormorants, Osprey, Gulls, Terns, Oyster Catchers, Ducks, were some of the birds we saw, ably spotted and narrated by Chuck Abel, a NMHA Trustee and avid bird watcher and boater.  

March 20: Event The First History Cruise Around Staten Island with Seastreak!

NMHA members and friends boarded a Seastreak ferry and explored Staten Island by sea and learned about its incredibly rich maritime, industrial, cultural and environmental history. Departing from Highlands and travelling up Arthur Kill and around Staten Island in its entirety, we passed a number of landmarks of unexpected significance. Rik van Hemmen, NMHA's president, was the guide and narrator.

We passed the site of the first manned and controlled flight, an unsuccessful Revolutionary War peace negotiation, the oldest yacht club in the United States, a ships' graveyard, and one of the world’s most impressive manufacturing cities. As we travelled around the island, we heard stories from many ages ago, ranging in time from the 1500’s to present day.

March 16: Presentation Take me to the River, an Insider's Guide to Waterfront Access at Monmouth County Parks via Zoom by Paul Gleitz, principal park planner, Monmouth County Park System.

Much of our public access to the waterfront is provided by the Monmouth County Parks System. Paul Gleitz, principal park planner at the Parks System, described the expanding recreational opportunities on local rivers and future plans for riverfront parkland acquisition and programming.

He explained the recently completed Open Space Plan with its vision of an integrated network of preserved public land that links trails, greenways, and 'blueways', into a comprehensive network of natural resources that serve people and wildlife. Paul also highlighted recent projects and future plans for some Navesink area sites, including Swimming River Park, Hartshorne Park, Claypit Creek, and beyond.

February 16: Presentation T. Thomas Fortune: The Most Famous Person You Never Heard Of via Zoom by Gilda Rogers, Executive Director of the T. Thomas Fortune Cultural Center.

Gilda Rogers introduced us to the important work of T. Thomas Fortune, who challenged the American body politick to live up to its ideals of freedom, justice and equality for all people.  We learned about the history of the home, the life of Fortune and how the T. Thomas Fortune Cultural Center is continuing his legacy, as an important resource in the greater Red Bank community.

T. Thomas Fortune was a stalwart for social justice. Born into slavery in 1856, he became one of the most influential American journalists and newspaper publishers of the 19th and 20th centuries. Fortune christened his home in Red Bank, New Jersey, “Maple Hall,” where he and his family resided between 1901-1915.  Here he entertained the great African American leader Booker T. Washington and other prominent figures of the time.

You can view the presentation HERE

January 26: Presentation The AJ Meerwald and New Jersey's Oyster Industry via Zoom by Rachel Rogers Dolhanczyk, MA.

Rachel Dolhanczyk of the Bayshore Center at Bivalve shared highlights from the new book that charts the history of New Jersey's Delaware Bay oysters and the historic ship that carries the industry's traditions today. 

The AJ Meerwald is a restored Delaware Bay new style schooner that was built to dredge oysters under sail but saw a lifetime of change. She served the US Coast Guard during World War II, returned to oystering under power for 10 years, was converted to dredge clams and then was left to rot in Maryland before being saved in 1986 by John Gandy and the Bayshore Center at BivalveYou can order the book, The AJ Meerwald and New Jersey's Oyster Industry, HERE.

Rachel Dolhanczyk's presentation may be accessed HERE

January 19, 2022: Presentation NMHA AGM & REVIEW of 2021-2022 via Zoom by Rik van Hemmen and Michael Humphreys

NMHA successfully conducted its 2021 AGM and Review via Zoom which was well attended. We reviewed the events and activities of 2021 and described our plans for an active 2022, COVID willing. The agenda: 1. Welcome and Review of 2021    2. Outlook for 2022    3. Election of Officers.

Click HERE to see the slide show covering all our diverse activities: presentations, boat cruises, childrens' and families canoeing, Sea Scouts, and more.

Election of Officers: NMHA Members voted unanimously to re-elect the Board of Trustees, whose bios can be accessed HERE


Copyright © Navesink Maritime Heritage Association

Navesink Maritime Heritage Association is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to preserving knowledge and appreciation of Monmouth County's maritime heritage through programs  that responds to its mission: DISCOVER, ENGAGE, SUSTAIN.

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