Historical Society receives grant

The Gloucester County Cultural and Heritage Commission at Rowan College of South Jersey recently announced grants totaling $9,976 for the Harrison Township Historical Society’s exhibitions and programs at Old Town Hall Museum and Richwood Academy Cultural Center.

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“The Commission’s support allows us to continue our expanded programming at the museum and the Academy,” noted the society’s president, Robert Schumann, in announcing the awards.

Funds regranted from the New Jersey State Council on the Arts and the New Jersey Historical Commission will underwrite twelve lectures and concerts as well as a new exhibition at the museum, Back to the Fifties, focusing on the township’s mid-century history.

The 1950s represented a critical moment in Harrison, South Harrison and Elk Townships’ history. While agriculture still dominated the local economy, the population was growing, and new houses were popping up along the edges of the farms and forests and the decade was bracketed by the opening of new, modern schools in Mullica Hill and Harrisonville. The new exhibition at the museum will explore these changes through objects, photographs, ephemera and film from the era. The exhibition opens on Sunday, March 26 and continues on Saturdays and Sundays, 1 to 4 p.m. through June 10. Programs at the Richwood Academy Cultural Center will complement this theme with presentations focusing on music, television and the civil rights movement in New Jersey.

The series opens on Sunday, March 5 at3 p.m., with a program celebrating the accomplishments of Irene Hill Smith of Mullica Hill. Always at the civil rights forefront, she worked with Dr. Martin Luther King and was one of the community leaders called by President Lyndon Johnson to help craft the landmark 1964 Civil Rights Act. Family members and friends will gather to discuss her life and work. Spring programs will also feature performances by emerging young artists from

Rowan University’s College of Performing Arts. All the programs and the exhibition are open and free to the public.

Upcoming program information can be found at the society’s public Facebook page, where programs are live streamed and archived. Old Town Hall Museum is located at 62 South Main St., Mullica Hill. The Cultural Center is at 836 Lambs Rd. in Richwood. For information contact the Society at 856-478-4949 or hthsmhnj@gmail.com.

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