• Paterson Great Falls

    Paterson Great Falls

    National Historical Park New Jersey

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  • Interested in Reserving a Tour

    Are you planning to visit Paterson Great Falls this winter? If so, plan ahead and make a reservation in advance for the free orientation tour - A Stroll Through History. More »

  • Mary Ellen Kramer Park Closure Announcement from the City of Paterson

    Due to landscape improvement project, Mary Ellen Kramer Park, landing & footbridge will be closed on November 4, 2013. The project may be completed by end of 2014. Reservations for NPS programs will still be taken. Falls can be viewed from Overlook Park

Everyone Has A Story To Tell

History is more than names and dates, places and events. History is also the daily lives of ordinary people. It is the events that make up the life of a community. Oral histories give us the opportunity to discover what a community's life was like from the people who lived it. They are an authentic record that goes well beyond the pages of a textbook. Through stories, experiences and various anecdotes, historians can begin to construct a social history of an era. In this way, oral history is a tool for making the past important and relevant to future generations.

The goal of the Oral History Project at Paterson Great Falls National Historical Park is to connect with the men and women who lived and worked in Paterson and the surrounding towns. The stories they can tell us represent an often untold historical record that will paint a richer picture of America's first planned industrial city. The stories might be accounts of mill or factory work, passed down from parent to child; those parents may have been mill or factory owners, or the workers themselves. Labor leaders and other residents of the community had stories to tell as well. The narratives we collect will better allow us to share the great history of Paterson, New Jersey, with our visitors.

Listen to a few of Paterson's stories here.


Do you have a story to tell of Paterson's past? Would you like to participate in our Oral History project?

Please fill out the "Paterson Great Falls Memories" form here.

You can mail the completed form to:

Paterson Great Falls National Historical Park
ATTN: Oral History Project
72 McBride Avenue
Paterson, NJ 07501


E-mail it to: oralhistorypagr.nps@gmail.com

You can call the park at (973) 523-5295 if you have any questions.


Did You Know?

William Paterson

The city of Paterson was named for William Paterson, the governor of New Jersey who signed the charter for S.U.M.? The city was named before a site for it was chosen! More...