Washington Crossing State Park~ General Washington’s Historic Crossing Makes You want to Spark.

Washington Crossing State Park

355 Washington Crossing-Pennington Rd.
Titusville, NJ.

Yummygal’s Top Things To See In The Philadelphia Area.

Around 1700, this area was a happening place. It transported folks back and forth on the river via a ferry for commerce and trade. Fast forward to December 25th 1776, this was about the only passable place for General Washington’s Continental Army to travel across. Plus, this site was very strategic on his part. It was a blistering cold month. Most of the Delaware River was frozen solid. The soldiers froze and starved to death.


(Sign near the overpass to the Delaware River at Washington Crossing State Park

Washington was able to get his posse to New Jersey safely. This “infamous” crossing was the beginning of a 10 day struggle. These 10 days were climatic. It led to the Battles of Trenton and Princeton. These wars were instrumental victories for Washington’s troops against the Hessians and British soldiers. These “wins” were a defining moment for the American Revolution.


The site of the infamous crossing. Washington Crossing State Park

During these battles, Washington and his minions set up shop in The Johnson Ferry House about a 1/4 a mile from the banks of the Delaware River. This house served as the vital headquarters.


The Delaware Canal

The name, Johnson Ferry is derived from the area known as the Johnson plantation. Johnson (Jansen) owned and operated the ferry that crossed the river. As you see, Johnson (the name) plus the ferry he owned and voila….The Johnson Ferry House. However, Johnson had perished years earlier and his heirs inherited the property. His sons were forced to sell their inheritance due to bad debt they both accumulated.


Inside tour of the John Ferry house

The farm was sold to a man named Abraham Harvey. He in turn rented it to a man named, James Slack. Slack continued with the operations of the ferry and the farm. He saw 2 weeks of soldiers coming and going on the premises.


Another shot indoors of the John Ferry house

Fast forward 130+ years later, an agglomeration has ensued. In 1912, Washington Crossing State Park was secured at 100 acres. It now encompasses 1,399 acres. Way to go!! Seriously this park is awesome.


Roadway in the park

The park boasts a Visitor Center Museum and has artifacts of the Continental and Hessian soldiers. Including various weapons, apothecary, uniforms, traditional clothing of the time, and hand-written letters and publications. This center does not allow photography. Sorry folks. This is a “WOW” place to go and see even if you don’t enjoy nature and the park. You will appreciate the affectation.


Pretty picnic pavilions

Washington Crossing State Park possesses a great view of the Delaware River and the canal. If you are hungry and didn’t bring a picnic lunch, there’s a quaint little bar with pub fare. It has a deck that overlooks the river for your eating delectation. (It’s not in the park, but across a little street from it.)


Cute pub across the street

Also suited at the park, is a Nature Center and natural area. This section suits 140 acres within the Park. Offering Excellent educational displays for the kids and for us well-to-do adults. The Center has a few animals for the children’s merriment, computers, interactive displays, and books. Plus, Ranger Warren. He is quick-witted and will answer any questions you have. The Ranger is very informative about the area and the wildlife in the park.


Display in the Nature Center

The most attractive feature at the nature center is the honey beehive. My golly, very cool. The bees come inside via a plastic tube from the outside. You will see an actual working beehive covered in glass with bees producing honey. Just rad!


The “indoor” beehive

There are many other facilities on the grounds. An outdoor amphitheater that sits up to 800 people. They put out some major acts from time to time. It’s in a very natural hillside setting and the acoustics I hear are awesome.


More lovely grounds

Other offerings include; Picnic pavilions, 13 miles of hiking trails, horseback riding trails, fishing, the Nelson house, camping, bike riding, bird-watching, etc etc. The list is limitless.


Washington Crossing State Park

I truly enjoyed my day here at the park. They had an encampment going on with various folks dressed in colonial garb. They were offering oratory history lessons and kid activities.


Kitchen garden. John Ferry house

The mature trees, the friendly staff, the Delaware River, and everything else above make this an ideal place to visit.


Pretty as a postcard at the park

Every Christmas, the famous crossing is reenacted and thousands come out to watch.

Enjoy this gracious park my friends. You will enjoy all the FREE accoutrements.

The Jonas Cattell Run, Haddonfield to National Park, NJ Event

The Jonas Cattell Run Yearly Event

Haddonfield to National Park, NJ


Sign at the battlefield in National Park


Another top thing to do in the Philadelphia Area before you die….

The Jonas Cattell run occurs in October of every year. The reason why I have it on my list is because of the interesting story behind the legend.


View at National Park, NJ

So here’s the briefing….

Jonas Cattell 1/2 Lenni-Lenape and only 18 years old. Was taken into custody by the Hessians, in Haddonfield, NJ. October of 1777.

He had to spend the night in jail because he was caught past curfew. He overheard the Hessians and the British soldiers speaking about planning a surprise attack at Fort Mercer (currently National Park, NJ.) to overthrow the American patriots that were there.

The next morning, he was released from prison. Jonas Cattell was familiar with the trails (legend says he even built them) and ran from Haddonfield to National Park to warn our soldiers of the attack.

The American soldiers were outnumbered 3 to 1, but because of this warning from Jonas Cattell. They were able to defeat the British (and they annihilated them).

That’s the gist of it, tons of other stories about this cool dude. He’s pretty badass.


My son trying to crawl at National Park back in March


Another tidbit …

Cattell is also featured in Ripley’s Believe It or Not for hand delivering a letter from Woodbury to Cape May and back (160 miles) on foot in only 2 days. That’s incredible!

Told ya, badass.

He is a real revolutionary legend. Not like Johnny Appleseed or Davy Crockett.

Jonas Cattell is the real deal.


Shot of the river walk with Philadelphia across the river

This event is ran every October in commemoration of his honor. It’s about 10 miles. They run from Haddonfield to the Red Bank Battlefield in National Park just like he did back in Oct. 1777.

Jonas Cattell is a true South Jersey hero.