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Church And Cannon Chapter, NSDAR - Springfield NJ
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Nancy J. Donhauser
Regent, Church And Cannon

  Message from our Regent
  Welcome to the website of the Church and Cannon Chapter, NSDAR in Springfield, New Jersey! We are glad that you have taken the time for a visit.

Please take a look at our program calendar for this year as we have many exciting activities, including guest speakers and field trips, planned for our members which support our motto of "God, Home, and Country."

If you would like to be a part of this journey, connecting with other patriotic women and giving back to the metropolitan Springfield communities, please contact us for more information.

Our Chapter always welcomes the interest of prospective members.

Chapter Officers | Chapter History

Vice Regent
Heather Sanford
Janice Bongiovanni
Recording Secretary
Bonnie Morrison
Corresponding Secretery
Heather Sanford
Barbara Pierson
Bonnie Morrison
Pam Steiner

The Church And Cannon Chapter, NSDAR, was founded in 1951, and has a very interesting story behind its name. 

Although the Battle of Springfield is not always mentioned in every New Jersey history book, facts show this battle to be a decisive one.  On June 23, 1780, General George Washington and his army were camped in Morristown, New Jersey.  The British army had crossed over from New York to Elizabethtown, and were planning to march to Morristown to take Washington by surprise.  Their route would be over the New Jersey Turnpike, which passed through Springfield and Hobart's Gap, the latter being one easy access through the Short Hills.  Washington had directed that a cannon, and a tar barrel on a pole, be placed on the highest point at the Gap.  The flaming tar barrel at night was the "call to arms." By day, the responding echo of the cannon warned all within earshot that the British were coming.  On June 23, the militia and farmers had gathered in response to the cannon fire, and put up such stiff resistance that the well-trained British soldiers and their Hessian mercenaries were forced to retreat, burning homes and buildings as they left.  They never reached Hobart's Gap, but were turned back between the cannon on the hill, and the Presbyterian church (which the British also burned).  This battle marked the last of the British efforts to invade New Jersey.  The story of this historic battle is not complete without mentioning the courageous Parson Caldwell who replenished the supply of paper wadding for the guns by using the Watts Hymnbooks from the Presbyterian Church, stripping the pages from them, and saying to the soldiers, "Give 'em Watts, Boys."

On Hobart Avenue in Summit, New Jersey, can be found a bronze plaque, located on a huge boulder, which marks the spot where the cannon and lighted tar barrel sent out their alarm.  This plaque is about one hundred yards from the Morris Avenue Turnpike.

Part of the battleground has been protected, and thanks to the Sons of the American Revolution, it is now the property of the Church And Cannon Chapter, NSDAR.  The Cannon Ball House, 126 Morris Avenue, one of the four buildings left standing after the retreat, is now owned and cared for by the Springfield Historical Society. (Excerpt from History of Chapter Names of the New Jersey State Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution, 1891-1985. pp. 13-14)

The Church And Cannon Chapter, NSDAR, is the proud owner of the Battle Ground Cemetery, located at the corner of Morris and Mountain Avenues in Springfield, New Jersey.

Originally, the Flemer Family in Springfield owned all of the land across from the First Presbyterian Church of Springfield (the land now being the General Greene shopping center) and had the “Flemer House Cemetery” right on the corner.

The following Revolutionary Patriots buried here (see tombstone photographs below):
Abraham Woolley, 1756-1812
Daniel Reeve, 1768-1780
Isaac Reeve, 1745-1780
Jacob Brookfield, 1722-1782

Click on the thumbnail photographs to see a larger view
Tombstone of Abraham Woolley
Tombstone of Abraham Woolley
Tombstone of Isaac Reeve
Tombstone of Isaac Reeve
Tombstone of Jacob Brookfield
Tombstone of Jacob Brookfield
Tombstone of Daniel Reeve
Tombstone of Daniel Reeve
Memorial in Battle Ground Cemetery
Memorial in Battle Ground Cemetery

Wreath laying ceremony held during the 225th Anniversary events
Wreath laying ceremony held during the 225th Anniversary events (the British "Red Coat" re-enactors were participating because it is believed that there are some British soldiers who were buried in or near the cemetery during the Battle).

The Flemer House Cemetery was dug up as far back as the brook in 1912. A building erected on the spot in the late 1920s, now home to the local Department of Public Works, served as a terminal for trolley cars. Most likely, this land was part of the original Flemer House Cemetery.

There are six names of Continental Soldiers buried in the cemetery: William Stites, Capt. Joseph Horton, Capt. Isaac Reeve, Jacob Brookfield, Daniel Reeve, and Capt. Abraham Wooley.

The cemetery is open to the public and visitors are welcome. Please stop by and share in our little piece of history!

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