"The Bridgeton Christmas Historic House Tour" Bridgeton by lblethen

Bridgeton Travel Guide: 20 reviews and 52 photos

Historic House Tours

There are so many wonderful places to visit throughout New Jersey during the holiday season. Bridgeton, New Jersey's annual Christmas house tour is an absolutely wonderful experience for anyone who is a history buff or who simply yearns for an old fashioned holiday experience. First, the tour begins at The Nail House Museum nestled at the city park entrance on Mayor Aitken Drive and visitors to the tour are transported throughout the tour area via horse drawn trolley. The visitors will have the opportunity to tour public historic buildings, private residences, and churches dating as far back as 1740. Bridgeton's Christmas House Tour is truly unique in that it may be perhaps the only historic tour that includes both colonial and victorian properties.

Colonial meets Victorian

It is truly a unique experience to wander about a town in the silence of a winter's evening and enjoy visiting some of the most amazing historic properties on the east coast. Bridgeton comes to life during the holiday season and invites visitors to enjoy touring historic properties...the likes of which can only be rivaled by Colonial Williamsburg.

Potter's Tavern dated 1740 is one of the rarest colonial taverns in existence today. Potter's Tavern was a popular meeting place just prior to the Revolution. In 1775 at Christmas time, patriots published a manuscript newspaper called "The Plain Dealer" at Potter's Tavern. The first newspaper ever printed in New Jersey. Dedicated to the cause of liberty, it called for separation from the crown rule. Matthew Potter, Tavern keeper, risking charge of treason, thus became one of the unsung heroes of the Revolution.

Old Broad Street Church 1792. This church is an outstanding example of Georgian architecture, with Palladian window, high-backed wooden pews, wine glass pulpit, brick-paved aisles, and brass lamps that once held whale oil. Bridgeton, NJ's first house of worship, Old Broad Street Presbyterian was built in 1792. The church was preserved and never altered after 1836 when the congregation relocated a few blocks away to a new location on West Commerce Street

The tour includes countless private homes dating from the early 1800's through the early 1900's spanning various periods through historic Victorian architecture. One of the homes featured on the tour has been attributed to one of the most famous architects in history: Wilson Eyre.

The New Sweden Farmstead Museum at Christmas

A replica of an actual 17th C. Swedish Settlement.

As the story goes, in 1638 just eighteen years after the arrival of the Pilgrims, the Swedes and ethnic Finns arrived in Delaware on the ships the Kalmer Nyckel and Fogel Grip to found a colony in the New World. Although the colony existed under the control of the Swedes for only 17 years, the Swedish people were remarkable among European colonists for their ability to live peacefully among the indigenous Lenni Lenape peoples, with whom they truly shared the lands and resources. The New Sweden Colony can therefore be considered a success story in the history of European/Native American relations.

The Christmas celebration will be a magical time filled with the sights, flavors and sounds of Sweden. The main house and two barns will be opened to the public with a fire in the hearth accompanied by an extraordinary musical presentation by Seventh Sanctuary who will share with us authentic Swedish music from that period. Music, saffron and cardamom buns, gingersnaps, coffee and the joy of Christmas will permeate the air.

The Bridgeton Renaissance League's Swedish Christmas is being celebrated on December 1, 2007 from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. at one of the most important sites for the education and enjoyment of Swedish culture on the east coast. The Farmstead is located in the heart of the City's park. The tour for the historic homes and the farmstead Christmas event each depart from the Nail House Museum at the City Park's entrance situated along West Commerce Street. Your transportation to the museum can be by foot, your own vehicle or by horse drawn sleigh. Yes, a horse drawn sleigh. The magic of the experience is immeasurable.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Bridgeton is a wonderful place to be. Granted, it has had its economic up's and down's, however it remains one of the truly magnificent historic treasures of our nation.
  • In a nutshell:Bridgeton comprises one of the largest historic districts on the east coast containing some of the most valuable historic properties in America today. Anyone interested in learning about history should be sure to visit during the holidays.
  • Last visit to Bridgeton: Dec 2006
  • Intro Written Jul 11, 2007
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