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Farmhouses and Farm Buildings
Through its land acquisition program, the Hunterdon County Parks System has acquired several farms with farmhouses, barns and other outbuildings. The farmhouses and farm buildings may be historically significant individually or as they contribute to the traditional farm setting. While most of the farmhouses have undergone significant modern renovations, many of the barns have retained their historic integrity. Wooden barns in Hunterdon County - as well as most other suburbanizing areas - are becoming scarce. With today's agriculture, the old wooden barn is being replaced by modern metal structures that are resistant to fire and are large enough to accommodate a variety of equipment and products. Barns are of historic interest because they are a mark of individuality and handcraftsmanship. They were constructed of local materials and designed specifically for the farmer's needs - reflecting the topography of the land, the climate, the economic conditions and the actual use of the land. As farming has changed over the last 100 years - so has the appreciation for these old structures and their place in the County's agrarian history.
Hunterdon County has a wealth of historic bridges, presumably due to the number of stream crossings, the success of agriculture, and the materials available to construct the bridges. Over several dozen metal truss bridges, mostly from the 19th century, have been determined by the NJ Historic Preservation Office to be eligible for the National Register of Historic Places. Additionally, there are over 100 extant stone arch bridges in the County, the largest concentration of stone arch bridges in the entire country - according to a bridge preservation consultant. Many of these stone arch bridges have been deemed either eligible or potentially eligible for the State and National Registers of Historic Places.
Flemington has been the County seat since 1790. Still owned and maintained by the County are several important historic structures, including the Hunterdon County Courthouse and Jail, the Choir School, the Southard Building, the Hall of Records, and the Democrat building. These buildings are all located in the downtown section of Flemington which is listed on the State and National Registers of Historic Places and are located within a locally designed historic district. Other County owned buildings are located in Raritan Township and on various parkland throughout the County.
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