The Historical Society of Princeton sponsors several lecture and panel events throughout the year, as part of the Lewis B. Cuyler Annual Meeting Lecture Program, the Speaking of History series, and others. Check back often for ways you can learn from and engage in conversation with local scholars of history!

Speaking of History

This event series aims to foster civil dialogue around contemporary issues that beg a historical context and perspective.

Princeton, The Nation’s Capital: 1783

Thursday, September 7 at 6:30 pm
Location: Updike Farmstead

The American Revolution shooting war had ended in 1781 and the Colonies are awaiting word that peace negotiations in Paris will result in a treaty. Because of delays in negotiating across the Atlantic, Congress is in a dilemma. It has no money to pay the troops, but it cannot disband the army until there is a peace treaty. In June 1783, Congress, in session in Philadelphia, must flee after an Army mutiny (demanding back pay). Congress relocates to Princeton where it remains in session for 4 ½ months.  

On the 240th anniversary of this pivotal time in American history, join educator (and long-time HSP walking tour guide) Barry Singer for an illustrated talk describing the developments and the people involved, as this small rural town provides the backdrop for the historic events of that summer and fall.

Free; please click here to register so we can have the space set up for the expected audience.


On Freedom Road with author David Goodrich

Monday, October 16 at 6:00 pm
Location: Updike Farmstead

Over the course of four years, author and climate scientist David Goodrich traveled the routes of the Underground Railroad by bicycle, delving into the history and stories in the places where they happened. On his 3,000 mile trek east of the Mississippi, Goodrich followed the most famous of conductors, Harriet Tubman, from where she was enslaved in Maryland, on the eastern shore, all the way to her family sanctuary at a tiny chapel in Ontario, Canada. He also followed Underground Railroad routes in the Mississippi and Ohio Valleys. His journey is chronicled in the book, On Freedom Road: Bicycle Explorations and Reckonings on the Underground Railroad. 

Join us in the historic barn at Updike Farmstead, where Goodrich will describe the heroes and stories, both known and hidden, of the Underground Railroad. He will show us familiar places in a different light: from the vantage point of desperate people seeking to outrun the reach of slavery. 

Free; please click here to register so we can have the space set up for the expected audience.

Co-sponsored by the Princeton Public Library.

Past Events

October 16, 2019: Committed to Memory: The Art of the Slave Ship Icon

August 8, 2019: “Green Oval” Digital Tour

April 1, 2019: What is Oral History?

March 12, 2019: Project Apollo: Origins, Missions, and the Legacy

February 9, 2019: The Garden State: Where Ideas Grow

October 18, 2018: Princeton Plan Panel Discussion

September 12, 2017: Memory and History: The Meaning and Future of Monuments in the Aftermath of Charlottesville