Archive for February 6th, 2019

February 6, 2019

City hall of Perth Amboy, NJ!

So in an odd post as will put in the France category as well as Brittany but this is the USA my previous old home to France. This is the first city I lived there , the one of my teens , middle and HS schools, driving license, US citizenship, English, and first taste of real work before moving on there in life to Florida and then France. A long journey indeed, looking back it was all worth it.

However, there is not a place I have been that I am not thankful for whatever was given to make me a better person. The city of Perth Amboy and my Panthers of High School are still within me. I had written a post a long time ago about the City, County,and State but believe for historical reasons that I like necessary to mention the City or Town Hall of Perth Amboy as worthy of a post on its own. Therefore, here it is.

Perth Amboy is a city in Middlesex County, New Jersey, USA. The City is part of the New York metropolitan area. Perth Amboy was settled in 1683 by Scottish colonists. It was called “New Perth” after James Drummond, 4th Earl of Perth, and the Lenape Native Americans called the point on which the city lies “Ompoge”; the native name was eventually corrupted and the two names were merged. Perth Amboy was formed by Royal charter in 1718, and the New Jersey Legislature reaffirmed its status in 1784, after US independence. The city was a capital of the Province of New Jersey from 1686 to 1776.

The City Hall in Perth Amboy, Middlesex County, New Jersey, is a historic building built in the early 17C, listed on New Jersey Register of Historic Places and the U.S. National Register of Historic Places. It is now the oldest City Hall still in use in the United States.  Located at 260 High St, not far from the waterfront and across NY.

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Perth Amboy is also home to the oldest City Hall in continuous use in the United States, built during 1714-1717 or 1718, to serve as the County courthouse and jail. It burned in a fire in 1731 and was not rebuilt until 1745. It was again burned in 1765 or 1766 when a man named Martin, angered by his earlier imprisonment in the City Hall on debt charges, allegedly set fire to the building. It was rebuilt in 1767. City Hall contained court chambers, rooms for the Provincial Assembly until 1775, and was used as a schoolhouse and for community meetings. It was in City Hall that the State of New Jersey became the first State to ratify the Bill of Rights. Although City Hall was renovated in 1826, 1872 and 2006, some of the 1717 structure still remains. The current structure is Victorian with a mansard roof and several new wings. A City Hall Park was also developed with a historic statue of George Washington and an exact replica of the Liberty Bell. In addition to the municipal offices, City Hall has been used for law courts, a jail, legislative meetings, church services, concerts, shows, public meetings, and a school.

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On November 20, 1789, the State of New Jersey became the first to ratify the United States Bill of Rights. On March 31, 1870 Thomas Mundy Peterson became the first African-American to vote in an election under the just-enacted provisions of the 15th Amendment to the United States Constitution!

The historical footnote in this hard working class city is that Benjamin Franklin had a son called William Franklin, and they did not agree on principles. Therefore, Benjamin was the American heroe and a huge historical figure for the United States. While William was at traitor who sided with the English! They met twice during the war to try to settle their difference but to no avail, each hung strongly to their beliefs.

Benjamin and William Franklin only saw each other one time after the end of the war, when they met in London in 1785. The purpose of the meeting was not to heal the rift between them, but to sort out some business and financial matters, including the property which William owned in Willingboro.  The two men never reconciled as father and son, and they never spoked again.  Benjamin died in Philadelphia in 1790, and William died in London in 1813!

A webpage on the American wars on their story and that of Perth Amboy: Revolutionary wars in New Jersey on Perth Amboy

A wonderful building full of history and a town full of colonial historical treasures such as the house of Governor of East Jersey for the crown of England and where William lived ,still preserved in town as Proprietor House.

Some webpages to help you plan your visit here searching historical treasures of the U S A!

City of Perth Amboy on its history

Middlesex County gov on Perth Amboy

Local newspaper Amboy Guardian

US landmarks site on Perth Amboy city hall

It is a nice ride from either New York or Philadelphia by train ,and nice big roads by car even if traffic has picked up over the years. I learned to drive a car there and as we used to say locally, drive here you can drive anywhere! indeed proven! From EWR Newark inter airport the AirTrain to Long Beach, NJ and then train to the Perth Amboy train station. From Grand Central Station in NY metro S line to Times Square 42 st walk over to Port Authority bus terminal and take the 116 bus line to Perth Amboy. By car , the easiest is to go under the Lincoln tunnel to the I95 interstate road that becomes the  NJ turnpike exit 10. Follow signs for Perth Amboy.

Hope you have enjoyed the bit of historical tip and do come over to New Jersey , a small State but huge in American history. And of course, Perth Amboy is a big part of it!!! Not to mention my life’s travels ::)

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!

 

 

 

February 6, 2019

Palacio de Cristal, Madrid!

So why not tell of the other palace in the Retiro park of my beloved Madrid! There is so much on this park alone to make a couple days in my Madrid! We love it, family love it ,and I am in love since teen years living there; a must for me to visit and of course will be yours too if see it.

I have written a lot of posts on my Madrid here, but seldom a single post on this Crystal Palace (the Spanish translated to Glass palace!) but it was done similar to the one in London. It deserves a single entry on its owns merits. Therefore, here is my contribution to the Palacio de Cristal of Madrid!

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The Palacio de Cristal (Crystal Palace)  is a metal and crystal structure located in the Parque del Buen Retiro (Retiro Park) of Madrid. It was built in 1887 on the occasion of the exhibition of the Philippine Islands, held that same year. The majestic structure of 22 meters high opened its doors!. It was the first non industrial building of its genre that saw the day in Spain. Nowdays, contemporary art exhibitions are currently held.

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It was built inspired by the Crystal Palace, erected in London in 1851.  The structure is metal, and is completely covered by glass plates, hence its name. The ceramic decoration used in small friezes and finials highlight the figures of grotesques with heads of mallards. The Palacio de Cristal, in the shape of a Greek cross, is made almost entirely of glass set in an iron framework on a brick base, which is decorated with ceramics. Its domed roofs makes the structure over 22 meters high.

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At its feet is an artificial lake and there is a staircase that is immersed inside it, where you can find several specimens of Cypress marsh trees, whose main characteristic is that part of its trunk and its roots are under water. The building is surrounded by  chestnuts trees. The Lake contains ducks. geese, black swans and terrapins, who will swim close to the steps, or you can hire boats on the lake for a closer view.

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On May 10, 1936, the Palacio de Cristal at the Retiro park was the scene in which Manuel Azaña was elected as President of the Republic. The courts had remained small to host the mixed assembly of Deputies and Commissioners and the Crystal Palace was chosen for voting and inauguration of  Azaña, the only candidate!.

Nowadays, it is part of the Reina Sofía Museum, and in its interior there are exhibitions of contemporary art.

Located at the Paseo Républica de Cuba ,inside the Retiro park. Go there by Metro lines 1 Atocha, Line 9 Ibiza, and line 2 Retiro. Also , Renfe-Atocha trains and bus lines  2, 15, 19, 20, 26, 28, 51, 52, 61, 74, 146, and 152.

Some webpages to help you plan your visit here ,which is a must, are

City of Madrid on the Palacio de Cristal

Tourist office of Madrid on the Crystal Palace

Official Reina Sofia museum on venues such as the Crystal palace

There you, covered the two wonderful palaces in the enormous beautiful Retiro park of my beloved Madrid. Again, I like to repeat this famous old phrase; “From Madrid to heaven and a hole in the sky to look down on it every day!” Enjoy the Palacio de Cristal!

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!

 

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