Hopewell Township appointed David Blackwell, this month, as the first Hopewell Township Historian. The Township Historian will be tasked with preserving and perpetuating the history and culture of Hopewell Township and is non-salaried. To qualify, the bar is quite high and, based on the praise spoken at the meeting, Blackwell certainly exceeds them. The historian must have demonstrated a substantial knowledge of Hopewell Township history, ability to write and speak to the pubic extensively regarding the subject, keep the history of the Township before the public eye, and coordinate with the Township Committee for commemorative events, monuments, or signage.
“Mr Blackwell is very qualified. He knows more about my family than I know about my family,” Committeeman John Hart joked. “He’s the best guy to lead our town as Historian.
“Congratulation to Mr. Blackwell,” said former Committee member Todd Brandt, who served on the historic preservation committee for three years. Brant shared how much the community appreciates hearing Blackwell’s wealth of knowledge about local history.
“I just want to add that it is such a credit to you that the person everyone in this room envisions in that role is you,” said Mayor Kevin Kuchinski, listing examples of Blackwell’s contributions to the Township including the recent rededication of Woolsey Park.
“History is what makes us unique,” said Blackwell. “This makes me extremely happy, and I look forward to many more years of helping put our history in front of all of us — because it does inform us.” Blackwell also spoke about an upcoming Heritage Families program that will identify early families who have lived in the Township. Blackwell also hopes to help identify the historic landscape to help make planning decisions based on how the landscape has influenced the past.
(updated to include quote from David Blackwell on 4/19/18)