On these New Jersey fields, George Washington rallied his forces to defeat British troops, a crucial turning point in the Revolutionary War. A portion of the battle site, however, faces a significant threat – the construction of eight townhouses and seven detached residences for faculty of the Institute for Advanced Study. As proposed, the project would radically alter the integrity of a rare, intact battlefield.
Waged 235 years ago, the battle at Princeton transformed prospects for the American Revolution. Not only did Washington's success inspire countless soldiers to renew their commissions, it reinvigorated support for the sometimes desperate Colonial effort .The story of our country's fight for independence is incomplete without a fully preserved Princeton Battlefield.
- Prevent the construction of housing on a never-developed portion of the Princeton Battlefield.
- Permanently protect the battlefield from future development.
Ways To Help
Since the beginning of our campaign we have had some success in our efforts to prevent residential construction on a pristine tract of land associated with the Revolutionary War Battle of Princeton. The threatened Princeton Battlefield remains undeveloped today as a result of dedicated local preservationists, thorough environmental review and several important legal victories.
However, these results are in serious jeopardy because of a recent reversal from the Delaware Canal and Riparian Commission. Twice before, the commission had denied applications from the Institute of Advanced Studies because of adverse impacts to sensitive wetlands on the site. In February the commission reconsidered its previous decision, without a new application, and approved the Institute’s plans. This approval clears one more important hurdle for the Institute. The Princeton Battlefield Society is appealing this decision.
We continue to consult with the Princeton Battlefield Society in their ongoing litigation and efforts to permanently protect this portion of the battlefield. For continuing information and updates on the battlefield please see the Princeton Battlefield Society’s website.
For updates on the latest decision by the commission see these stories:
- Battlefield Society Will Appeal “Illegal Do-Over”
- In Princeton, a court appeal over future of old battlefield
- Battlefield Society to appeal Institute plans to build faculty housing
- Princeton Battlefield serves as backdrop for new national initiative to preserve historic battlefields
Thank you for your support of our efforts to preserve this hallowed ground. Please visit other National Treasures on this website to see how the National Trust and its allies are making a difference in saving important places that matter.
Written by Jessica Pumphrey, Team Member
Earlier this month, the Civil War Trust announced a new national initiative called, "Campaign 1776" to protect battlefields associated with the Revolutionary War and War of 1812. The first project of this new initiative will be to help preserve the D’Ambrisi property at Princeton Battlefield. To read more about this great new initiative, check out the full article here.
--Written by Walter Gallas, Project Manager
The hearing for the appeals to the Battlefield Society's legal challenge to the approval by the Regional Planning Board of Princeton of faculty housing construction on Princeton Battlefield land by the Instiute for Advanced Study takes place on May 9. The Princeton Battlefield Society is working to meet a challenge grant that will support its legal and preservation defense fund. As spring arrives, the activities at and about the battlefield begin to build. Of particular interest is a symposium presented with support from the National Trust for Historic Preservation entitled "New Revelations on the Battle of Princeton," Thursday, May 16, 7:00-9:00 pm at the Princeton Public Library. Featured speakers are Kip Cherry, Bob Selig, and Wade Catts. Looking ahead to the Fourth of July, mark your calendars for the Princeton Battlefield State Park Open House on the battlefield and at the Clarke House.
On January 1, 2013, the Princeton Battlefield Society will be sponsoring a tour of the Battle of Princeton, which occured on January 3, 1777.
Join William P. Tatum III, society trustee and noted British Army historian, to trace the steps of American and British units at the same time of day as the original battle. Attendees will come away with a better understanding of the rigors of eighteenth-century combat and a deeper appreciation of the engagement at Princeton.
There is no charge for this tour, though donations to the park are much appreciated (suggested donation of $5 per person). Attendees should wear warm clothes and strong shoes or boots. The tour will be walking intensive over variable ground. Please contact Will Tatum at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions and to RSVP for the tour. The tour begins at 7:00 a.m. and will conclude around 9:30 a.m. at Princeton Battlefield State Park, 500 Mercer Road, Princeton, NJ.
Written by Walter Gallas, Project Manager
I’m Walter Gallas, the National Trust’s project manager for Princeton Battlefield. I’ll be posting regular updates on the work we are doing to protect a portion of this important Revolutionary War site.
In naming Princeton Battlefield – specifically the site of Washington’s counterattack – to the National Trust’s annual list of America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places, we knew we would be taking on a challenge. We hope to find a solution that ensures that the landscape where the critical turning point of the Battle of Princeton took place isn’t lost to development of faculty housing by the Institute for Advanced Study.
We will be reaching out to the leadership of the Institute, and I will keep you posted on our progress.
Claude Xavier Medeot on May 17, 2013
If you destroy a piece of our history you obstruct the continuation and the spirit of America. You prevent future generations to appreciate that time & space which gives us our freedom today. A housing development can be put anywhere except they should never be allowed to destroy grounds that are hallowed. The fact that such a housing development was entertained is an insult to the legacy of George Washington & our Founding Fathers - as stupid as wanting to build it in front of the Washington Monument in Washington D.C.
Kip Cherry on June 06, 2012
The Princeton Battlefield became a dramatic historical place for me at the moment that my parents gave me a colorful volume on the American Revolution. For me, the Battle of Princeton has come alive as I have learned more and more about the course of the battle and seen in my imagination ghostly images of flashing muskets, loud canon, and falling soldiers. I have realized that this place is more than a battlefield; it is symbolic of the Constitutional principles I hold dear.