Other NJ News

Hillsborough Author Nominated for 3 National Book Awards

009345c392eca343f4e6_hillspixrikkilynhauss__3_.JPG
Author Rikki Lynn Hauss holds a copy of her book, "The Duchess of South Somerville." Credits: Rod Hirsch
66a02572018f87c8f7d8_hillspixdorisdukeestate2.jpg
The Duke Mansion in Hillsborough Credits: Tapinto File Photo
688bba7fd2d044e6f689_hillspixdorisdukedemo2.JPG
Demolition of the Duke estate begins in 2016. Credits: Tapinto File Photo
ba9441f165bebf3f17da_hillspixdorisdukedemo1__1_.JPG
Workmen sift through the rubble as the demolition of the Duke estate gets under way in 2016. Credits: Rod Hirsch
80f37f7655add36cf9e1_hillspixdorisdukeestatepostcard1__1_.jpg
Postcard ca. 1912 shows the majestic Duke Estate in Hillsborough. Credits: Tapinto File Photo
413155c62f837280ba91_hillspixrikkilynndorsduke.jpg
Author Rikki Lynn Hauss in character as a young Doris Duke. Credits: Courtesy "The Duchess of Somerville"
e422e9d6fd1266b9aab7_hillspixrikkilynhaussbookcover__1_.JPG
009345c392eca343f4e6_hillspixrikkilynhauss__3_.JPG

 

HILLSBOROUGH, NJ – Just four months after its publication, “The Duchess of South Somerville,” a 179-page chronicle of Doris Duke, her legacy, her beloved mansion and its controversial demolition in 2016, has been nominated for three national book awards.

Writen by Rikki Lynn Hauss, a 2012 graduate of Hillsborough High School, The Duchess of South Somerville has been nominated for the 2018 IPPY Awards in three categories.

“I'm still digesting how amazing this news is,” she said. “I really am surprised, to think that so early in the game I would have something like this to show,” she added. “Something like this takes years to accomplish.”

Sign Up for E-News

The IPPY Awards, or Independent Publisher's Book Awards, have served to recognize independently-written and published books for 22 years on an annual basis.  Medals are awarded in 83 hard-copy book categories, 12 regional categories, 11 e-book categories, and 8 unique awards per year.

IPPY judging is based on quality of content, originality, design, and production with an emphasis on innovation and social relevance. Judges includes experts from the fields of editing, design, reviewing, bookselling and library. 

The awards program is open to all members of the independent publishing industry, and authors and publishers worldwide who produce books written in English and appropriate for the North American market.

IPPY award winners are invited to an awards program in California and celebration reception during BookExpo America. Winners will be notified next spring.

The Duchess of South Somerville has been nominated in the categories of Best First Book – Nonfiction; Autobiography/Memoir II, and Regional Mid-Atlantic of the Year.

“The Duchess of South Somerville” chronicles Duke’s life, including first-person reminisces from those who worked for her over the years, and a chronology of the controversy leading up to and surrounding the demolition of the mansion in 2016.

The 179-page book includes hundreds of vintage and color photographs, including pictures that were taken inside the mansion shortly before it was leveled.

When Doris Duke was born in 1912, newspaper society columnists christened her "the richest little girl in the world."

She was larger than life, destined to live a life of extravagance and elegance; as a young teenager she inherited her father’s wealth, his tobacco empire and his beloved mansion in Hillsborough alongside the Raritan River, the victor in a bitter dispute with her mother.

Some called her eccentric and enigmatic, while others who worked for the billionaire and who lived on the grounds of the expansive 2,700-acre estate knew her to be compassionate, generous and down-to-earth, not afraid to get her hands dirty working chores in the fields, the barns and the greenhouses surrounding the mansion.

Duke touched thousands of lives and had a huge impact on the world stage and in the towns that surrounded her majestic mansion in Hillsborough; her benevolence stretched across the country and around the world, but she always took care of the grass roots organizations in the communities close to home: the Hillsborough Boys’ Football Association, Hillsborough fire departments and rescue squads; the Manville First Aid Squad, the Raritan Police Department, the Franklin Township Food Bank, the Somerset County Salvation Army unit, the United Way of Somerset County and many others. 

An adventurous globe trotter who fancied the world’s cultures, at times dripping in diamonds, with palatial homes across the country and Hawaii, the heiress had a profound impact on those who knew her; for those who only know of her through the photos, news stories and gossip columns from the past, there is a continuing fascination with the wealthiest resident to have ever lived in Hillsborough.

Hauss is the youngest member of DORIS – Destruction of Residence is Senseless – a grass-roots group of historic preservationists, people who had worked for Duke, people who had lived on the property and others, like Hauss, who couldn’t understand, and wouldn’t accept the fact that the mansion, built in the early 1900s, was beyond restoration or that the Doris Duke Charitable Trust, owner of Duke Farms, was determined to level the mansion built by her father.

DORIS mounted a spirited effort to halt the demolition through a series of lawsuits that extended over a year’s time, but eventually, all legal remedies were exhausted, with the demolition taking place in March and April of 2016.

“Our fight was to spare heritage, history, and a sense of home that this billionaire tried so hard to maintain. My head still spins over how much work was put into the Estate . . . and how quickly it all reduced to rubble and memory,” Hauss writes in her book.

It took Hauss 10 months to complete the book. She said the experience was most gratifying because so many of the contributors to the book were open and generous with their time.

“Being welcomed into peoples’ homes and learning why Doris Duke was special to them, and the mark she left on people, it was very humbling for them to trust me with that information and for me to provide a venue,” Hauss said.

"My greatest hope is that between my fellow DORIS members and I, we each find ways to preserve the legacy and original intentions of the Duke family. This book is my way of honoring how many lives the Dukes continue to impact in some way."

Hauss has reduced the cost of the book to $19.99 to celebrate the nominations. “The Duchess of South Somerville is available online through the Duchess Bookstore: https://sites.google.com/site/theduchessbookstore/home.

Hauss can be contacted online at theretrorevivalist@gmail.com

 

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Montclair

McGovern's Summer Renovation Closing Party Celebrates Change

June 20, 2018

It always takes a few seconds for your eyes to adjust when you walk into McGovern's Tavern in Newark, a downtown fixture since 1936.

But this Friday afternoon, there were two immediate sights that demonstrated something was different.

First, most of the photos, portraits, and articles that cover the bar's walls were removed, the relics of decades of history gone.

Second, you ...

Suspect Charged with Using Sword in Fight Over Parking Spot in NJ

June 19, 2018

 

SOMERVILLE, NJ  - A Manville man has been charged with aggravated assault and other charges after police say he attacked another man with a sword in a dispute over a parking space.

The victim had attacked the suspect, Jared Razzano, 35, of North 9th Avenue, with a contractor’s four-foot level, according to the Somerset County  Prosecturors Office, but he has not been ...

Upcoming Events

Wed, June 20, 6:30 PM

Pleasantdale Chateau , West Orange

Taste & Toast Gala

Giving Back

Wed, June 20, 6:30 PM

Pleasantdale Chateau , West Orange

Taste & Toast Gala

Giving Back

Wed, June 20, 7:00 PM

Hospital Conference Room 2 (Ground Floor), Glen Ridge

Becoming a Parent

Health & Wellness

Montclair Police Blotter: Thai Chef Burglarized, Four iPhones Stolen and More

June 13, 2018

MONTCLAIR, NJ -  The following police blotter was compiled by the Montclair Police Department on June 12, 2018:

Burglary/Theft:

06-05-2018 (Union Street) Burglary to an apartment.  Cash was taken in this incident.  Access was gained through an unlocked rear door.  

06-05-2018 (Union Street) Theft of a scooter from the rear yard of a residence.

06-05-2018 (Elm ...

Montclair Community Band Summer Concert #1, June 26

June 20, 2018

Please join us for the

Montclair Community Band

Outdoor Summer Concert #1

Conducted by Jim Wasko

Tuesday, June 26th, 7:30 PM

 

ON THE FRONT LAWN AT MONTCLAIR HIGH SCHOOL

On Chestnut St at the corner of Park St

(rain place, MHS Auditorium, enter on Park St)

 

Free Admission – No Tickets Needed

Perfect for the whole family!

BRING A CHAIR OR A ...