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Park Commission Press Releases

DEATH AND MOURNING in the 19th Century
MORRIS TWP., NJ – Get ready for spooky Halloween nights with an invite to attend the 1864 wake of Stephen Vail at Historic Speedwell in Morristown, on Friday, October 26 and Saturday, October 27 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Mourners witness how the Vail family would have prepared to host the event in their house, as well as the customs and traditions they would have participated in when someone died. Follow the horse-drawn hearse as it carries Stephen’s body to his home.

The Vail family, dressed in traditional mourning clothing from the 1860s, welcomes you to their home as they mourn the loss of the family patriarch. Journey back to this period with authentically costumed interpreters. Learn the reasons that wakes were held in the home, and what preparations were made for the event, including decorations and traditions.

The Historic Speedwell is located at 333 Speedwell Avenue in Morristown. Public parking is available on the corner or Cory Road and Speedwell Avenue. This event is FREE, however registration is required. For more information, or to register, please call: 973-285-6550.

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Morris County Park Commission, is one of the region’s best park systems in the state of New Jersey, currently protects and maintains 18,600 acres at 38 distinct sites and a year-round calendar of events and activities.