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Department of State

New Jersey Historical Commission

The Hon. Tahesha Way, Lt. Governor and Secretary of State
Fife Drummer

About The Historical Commission

New Jersey’s people and varied resources have helped shape the mid-Atlantic region, the Nation, and the world for more than 350 years. Its notable diversity of inhabitants was evident from its beginning in 1664. Due in no small part to its location, it has seen all the great themes of the Nation’s history play out within its borders. Its pivotal role during the American Revolution and early industrialization, and continuing legacy of technological innovation, distinguish it in the historical record. For these and many other reasons, the study of New Jersey history is both engaging and relevant to the state’s residents and visitors



The New Jersey Historical Commission (NJHC) is a state agency dedicated to the advancement of public knowledge and preservation of New Jersey history. Established by law in 1967, its work is founded on the fundamental belief that an understanding of our shared heritage is essential to sustaining a cohesive and robust democracy.

The NJHC receives its funding primarily by legislative appropriation. It fulfills its mission through various initiatives, as well as an active grant program. The goal of the grant program is to engage diverse audiences and practitioners in the active exploration, enjoyment, interpretation, understanding, and preservation of New Jersey history. In addition to other awards and prizes, the NJHC offers a free archival evaluation service called Caucus Archival Projects Evaluation Service (CAPES).


Commission Members

Maxine Lurie, Ph.D., Chair
Margaret Westfield, R.A.Vice-Chair

Senator Anthony M. Bucco
Catherine Cassidy
Susan P. Coen
Assemblyman Craig Coughlin
Joseph Fagan
Senator Gordon M. Johnson
Assemblyman Paul Kanitra
T.C. McCourt
Jonathan Mercantini, Ph.D.
Richard Veit, Ph.D.
B. Michael Zuckerman, Ph.D.

ex-officio members
Tahesha Way, Secretary of State-designee
State Librarian Jennifer R. Nelson
Katherine Marcopul, Ph.D.


Staff Contact List

Sara Cureton, Executive Director

Noelle Lorraine Williams, Director, African American History Program

Shawn Crisafulli, Chief Grants Officer

Niquole Primiani, Chief Programs Officer

Marc Lorenc, Chief Public Historian

Synatra Smith, Project Manager, Black Heritage Trail

Rachel Thimke, Programs and Outreach Manager

Noel Dempsey, Administrative Coordinator

Gregory Odey, Assistant Project Manager

Sophia Hudzik, RevolutionNJ Project Manager

Main Number: 609-292-6062



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