Jersey City Council to take final vote on converting Apple Tree House into historical museum


The Jersey City Council is set to take the final vote on converting the Apple Tree House in Journal Square into a historical museum at this evening’s meeting.

The Apple Tree House in Jersey City will be converted into a historical museum. Photo courtesy of the City of Jersey City.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

“The Apple Tree House embodies Jersey City’s rich history and diverse communities, which is why it was our priority to restore the historical landmark as part of our broader efforts to bring Journal Square back to life as the premier destination for arts and culture,” Mayor Steven Fulop said in a statement.

“Establishing this Jersey City-centric museum furthers our efforts to preserve our city’s history and culture while also expanding opportunities to educate and inspire our community.”

The first floor of the Museum of Jersey City History at Apple Tree House will host permanent historical exhibits highlighting different aspects of the city’s history. The level above will feature rotating Jersey City-themed historical exhibitions.

“The Museum of Jersey City History (MJCH) is grateful to the Mayor and Council of the City of Jersey City for providing the museum with a perfect home in the splendidly restored and maintained Apple Tree House, rich in memories of every period of our City’s history from the Lenni Lenape to the present renaissance of Journal Square,” added MJCH Board President Martin Pierce.

MJCH was recently gifted with an oil portrait of Mayor Frank Hague by Bill Doyle, great-nephew of John Malone, Hague’s long-serving deputy mayor and close friend to whom Hague had personally gifted the portrait.

The painting will serve as the centerpiece of the museum’s inaugural exhibition, “Frank Hague’s Jersey City: Yesterday and Today.”

Located at 298 Academy St., the building, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, is named after the apple tree under which General George Washington dined with French Major General Marquis De Lafayette in 1779 to strategically plan for battle against the British during the Revolutionary War.

Fulop committed to restoring and reviving the Apple Tree House early in his tenure and following construction, the historic landmark was reopened to the public in 2017.

“For years, we fought to restore the Apple Tree House and find a permanent place where we not only preserve Jersey City’s historical significance but also where residents and visitors can learn about the key role our City has played in our nation’s history,” added Ward C Councilman Rich Boggiano.

“I’m proud to have the Museum of Jersey City History at the Apple Tree House in Ward C.”

The Apple Tree Advisory Committee noted that the preliminary planning stages of the historical museum began in July of last year.

As part of the larger planned Journal Square revitalization, Centre Pompidou will occupy the Pathside building, while the Loew’s Theatre is getting renovated by Devils Arena Entertainment.

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