Mr. Peck is available for lectures
and book events.
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Mr. Peck enjoys sharing his history knowledge
Donald Johnstone Peck
"Old Stone Cottage"
Fords, NJ 08863
North of the Raritan River and high on the Terminal Moraine of the Wisconsin Glacier of the last ice age is Old Stone Cottage. It is situated on Route 514, Main Street, Fords (the old Native American and Dutch road in 1664 called the King’s Highway by the English). Surrounded by a few remaining hillside acres of preserved grounds and gardens, its circa 1690 fieldstone walls are the last remaining evidence of one of the barns of a several hundred acre farm of the Cutter family during the 18th and 19th centuries.
During Commander-in-chief George Washington’s “long Retreat” of November 20th to December 7, 1776, with 2,000 Continental troops, Washington and Captain Alexander Hamilton, on November 29th, passed by here pursued by 6,000 British Red Coats and Hessian mercenaries under Lord Cornwallis’s command. During this retreat Tom Paine, limping along with the ragged and hungry Continentals, wrote his famous words: “These are the times that try men’s souls…”
After the American Revolution a triumphal George Washington, passed by here, April 22, 1789. Enroute to his inauguration as President of the United States, farmers assembled at crossroads, gentry bowed welcome from their porches and soldiers saluted and cheered.
Donald Johnstone Peck is a long-term preservationist associated with restoring the Montrose School House, Colts Neck and the Proprietary House, Perth Amboy. Most recently he has been actively responsible for the restoration of the buildings, gardens and grounds at Old Stone Cottage, at the site of the historic Cutter Farm, Fords, New Jersey. He is the author of many historical articles and monographs and the book George Washington and the Ghosts of the Revolution in Central New Jersey.
Old Stone Cottage and its unique historic setting have been carefully preserved. It is a private residence not open to the public.
OLD STONE COTTAGE and Gardens
AT CUTTER FARM