The Plainfield Public Library is excited to announce the fourth annual Tri-County History Fair for Middlesex, Somerset, and Union Counties. Join colleagues, friends, and neighbors for a fun day of historical discovery, resource sharing, raffles, and more. On Saturday, September 28th from 11 am to 3 pm, more than 20 local history organizations, museums, and libraries will be exhibiting and promoting their historical collections and programs on the library’s lower level around the fountain. Photographs from the John Grady Historical Collection will be on display in the Anne Louise Davis room at this time.
This year’s program is as follows:
11:30 am to 12:30 pm – Carol Simon Levin, author and storyteller, will present “Reclaiming Our Voice: New Jersey’s Role in the Fight for Woman Suffrage.” Carol will portray Lillian Feickert, president of the New Jersey Woman Suffrage Association from 1912-1920, who lived in both Plainfield and North Plainfield.
1:30 pm to 2:30 pm – Lawrence Hogan, Ph.D., professor emeritus of history at Union County College, will present, “The Best Kept Secret in American Journalism: The Associated Negro Press.” A story of persistence, creativity, and determination, the Associated Negro Press and its founder Claude Barnett delivered national and international news coverage that was remarkable for its substance and scope. Barnett, a Tuskegee Institute graduate, founded the ANP in 1919. Despite limited resources and numerous difficulties, the ANP ran for over forty years. Eventually, the Press was often referred to as “the greatest single power in the Negro race.” This session is sponsored by the New Jersey Council for the Humanities Public Scholars Program.
Between lectures (12 to 2 pm) – "Find Your Family in 1940: One-on-One Lookups in the U.S. Census." Meet with staff genealogists to discover your family history. Visitors can register for a 15 minute consultation session when they arrive at the fair.
Innovative Document Imaging of East Brunswick will be available to answer questions about digitizing historical materials and family treasures, such as photographs, VHS and cassette tapes, and more.
Throughout the day, raffles will be drawn for door prizes, including one grand prize Newspapers.com Publishers Extra subscription. Upon entry, each attendee will receive one free raffle ticket.
All activities will be indoors on the library’s lower level and are free to the public. The library is an ADA-accessible facility. Contact the Local History Department for details and to register for the antiques appraisal program, which will be limited to two items per person. Appraisals completed as time permits.
Confirmed exhibitors include the Afro-American Historical and Genealogical Society-NJ Chapter, Elizabeth Public Library Local History & Special Collections, Central New Jersey Genealogical Club, Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR)-New Brunswick, Elizabeth Public Library Local History Department, Genealogical Society of New Jersey, Genealogical Society of the West Fields, Green Brook Historical Society, Heritage Trail Association, Historical Society of Plainfield/Drake House Museum, League of Historical Societies, Metuchen-Edison Historical Society, New Brunswick Free Public Library, Peter Lubrecht (author), Plainfield Historic Preservation Commission, Plainfield Symphony Society, Raritan Millstone Heritage Alliance, Somerset County Historical Society, Somerset County Library System, South Plainfield Historical Society, and the Ukranian History & Education Center.
The Local History Department is supported by funding from the Friends of Plainfield Public Library (FOPPL); the New Jersey Historical Commission, a division of the Department of State; The Plainfield Foundation; and the Plainfield Cultural & Heritage Commission.
Plainfield Public Library is located at 800 Park Avenue. For hours of operation, call 908-757-1111 or check the website at plainfieldlibrary.info/hours.