First Middlebrook Symposium and Research Competition

On Saturday, June 17, 2017, the Heritage Trail Association and the Friends of Bridgewater History will sponsor a symposium commemorating the 240th Anniversary of George Washington’s First Middlebrook Encampment. The events of this encampment led to the British forces abandoning their New Jersey campaign in June, 1777. The symposium will focus on the Continental Army encampment in Bridgewater’s Washington Valley between the First and Second Watchung Mountains (May 26 to July 3, 1777).

Calling attention to that encampment, which ended after the enemy evacuated its army (June 30, 1777), will promote a better understanding of the shift in British strategy that concluded New Jersey’s role as a major theater of war and turned it into a no-man’s-land between opposing forces.

It is hoped this symposium can stimulate research into underlying themes, such as how the state’s terrain shaped military strategy; disease as a component of warfare; the genesis of the New Jersey beacon system; and turning raw recruits into an army.

Prior to the symposium, the sponsors are offering a $5000 prize for original research about the First Middlebrook Encampment. Entries will be judged by a group of scholars of the Revolutionary War.

The criteria:
• Original research based on primary resources to the extent possible.
• Any topic related to the First Middlebrook Encampment
• Up to 25 pages of content, plus a bibliography, footnotes, illustrations, and/or maps
• Format: 8.5” x 11” double-spaced, 12 pt. font, with 1” margins

Entries are due by April 1, 2017 and may be mailed or emailed in PDF format to the Heritage Trail Association, 941 East Main Street, Bridgewater, New Jersey 08807; [email protected] Please send the cover sheet as a separate document.

The winner will be invited to present a summary of his/her research at the symposium. Copies of the winning research will be available at the symposium. Entries will be judged by Jude Pfister, Chief of Cultural Resources, Morristown National Historical Park; Dr. Raymond Frey, Professor of History and College Historian, Centenary University; and a third judge, not yet confirmed.

For more information contact the Heritage Trail Association.



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