Allaire Village
PO Box 220
Allaire, NJ 07727
(732) 938-2253 -- 919-3500 Group Tours

Located within the confines of beautiful Allaire State Park, this historic village had its beginnings as Williamsbridge Forge, a name found in records as early as 1793. Benjamin Howell of Philadelphia leased the property in the early 1800's and invited New York brass founder, James P. Allaire, to visit the site with a view to improving it. Within one year Allaire purchased the property, naming it the Howell Works.

Allaire Village was a bog iron producing community of over 400 people. They lived with their families on the Howell Works premises in brick row homes built by Allaire -- more than 60 structures overall, including factory buildings. Bog iron ore is a renewable source of iron oxide deposited in decaying vegetation in swampy areas. The iron was smelted and cast into the shapes of cauldrons, stoves, pipes, sadirons and other objects. Howell Works prospered until around 1850, when financial reversals and competition from areas west caused its demise.

During the early 1900's a newspaperman acquired the property, allowing it to be used as a Boy Scout camp. Later, in 1941, Allaire Village was deeded to the State of New Jersey for park purposes. Today it is run as a living history museum, funded largely by private contributions.

Visitors here will find many structures in varying states of renovation, and many of them can be toured for a first hand glimpse of 19th-century industrial life. Allaire was a complete village and so offered the necessities of life to its citizens. A bakery, carriage house, horse barn, carpenter shop, general store, and many other features can be enjoyed in a tour. Tours often include re-enactments of 19th-century life; some even include children's games. Allaire Village even gives access to a series of Nature Trails that wind through the forest, topping off a wonderful family or group outing.

Throughout the year many special events and family workshops are held here that families and groups will love. Music, re-enactments, special exhibitions and other great activities can be enjoyed by all. Call for a current calendar.

A tour alone qualifies as a first rate learning experience, but School and other Groups can also choose from several historical interpretive programs for no additional fee.

Historic Village Hours:
Memorial Day - Labor Day: Wednesday - Sunday, 12 - 4 pm. Labor Day through mid-December: Weekends Only, 12 - 4 pm. Closed mid-December thru April except for special events, closed major holidays. Schedule is subject to change; please call prior to your visit.
Allaire Mansion Hours: Tours begin on the Hour and Half Hour. Memorial Day - Labor Day: Wednesday - Sunday, 12 - 3:30 pm. Labor Day through November and May: 12 - 3:30 pm. Closed mid-December thru April except for special events, closed Major Holidays. Call to confirm days and hours.
The Visitor's Center: Memorial Day - Labor Day: Open Seven Days, 10am - 5pm. Labor Day - Memorial Day: Wednesday - Sunday, 10am to 4pm. Hours may be expanded during evening events in the Historic Village.
Allaire State Park: Memorial Day - Labor Day: Open Seven Days, 8am - 8pm. Spring and Autumn: Open Seven Days, 8am - 6pm. Winter Hours: Open Seven Days, 8am - 4:30pm.

There is a $5.00 per Vehicle Parking Fee on Weekends and Holidays Memorial Day through Labor Day.

Admission: (Weekends only, May thru October)
Adults $3.00 Children 6 - 12 $2.00 Seniors $2.00
There may be an additional nominal fee for individual buildings.There is a $5.00 per Vehicle Parking Fee on Weekends and Holidays Memorial Day through Labor Day
Groups: Call for Group rates.
Group Reservations: At least 2 weeks in advance.
Lunch: State park has picnic and charcoal facilities, snack bar.
Handicapped Access: Not accessible.
Directions: Garden State Pkwy. to exit 98. West on Rt. 524. 2 miles to entrance. 60 - 90 minutes from Philadelphia.

Copyright © 1996-2014 by Patrick Tadeushuk. All Rights Reserved.