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Contact: Dana Loschiavo (609) 984-1423
Elaine Makatura (609) 292-9289


(02/52) Trenton -- The restoration and development of the Rockingham Historic Site in Kingston will begin shortly according to Bradley M. Campbell, Commissioner, Department of Environmental Protection (DEP). The money earmarked for the project was part of the state's deferred capital funding, putting the restoration on hold. The $1.8 million was recently released allowing the department to continue its efforts to replenishment the site.

"This project is important to a lot of people in New Jersey. Rockingham represents an important part of New Jersey's historic heritage and our nation's struggle for independence," said Campbell. "Once restored, residents and tourists alike will have an opportunity to relive a piece of United States history."

The restoration is slated for the main portion of the 288-year-old mansion, returning its look to the days when George Washington stayed there in 1783. In addition, the restoration will include the construction of a new kitchen wing and installation of new utilities and a geothermal heating and air conditioning system.

Site development will include a remote parking lot and pedestrian bridge and fencing, as well as creating walkways to the canal towpath and the house. The DEP anticipates the official reopening of Rockingham to the public by the spring of 2003.

The historic house was moved closer to its original site last July to accommodate its restoration and to increase visitation. Since then, the house has been placed on a new foundation awaiting restoration. This was the third move for the house, which was moved in 1896 and again in 1956.

Listed on the New Jersey and National Registers of Historic Places, it was at Rockingham that General George Washington wrote his Farewell Orders to the Armies of the United States, making it the last military headquarters during the American Revolutionary War.

Washington and his wife Martha lived at Rockingham from August 23 to November 10, 1783.



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