Thursday, December 13, 2012

G. G. Green Avenue: Pennington Seminary

G.G. Green Avenue in Pennington NJ is named after the Woodbury, NJ multimillionaire
The more I research George Gill Green, the multi-millionaire from Woodbury, New Jersey, the more I am amazed at his wealth and subsequently, his contributions to society. Sometime in the mid 1800s, G.G. attended school at the Pennington Seminary, now known as the Pennington School which is located north of Trenton. While a student there, he founded the Philomathean Society and became their first president. He sat on the Board of Trustees for many years after graduating and once he amassed his fortune, he donated significantly to the school. He donated an entire library to the Philomathean Society, which was then aptly named the George G. Green Library. He and his wife, Angie, also donated a collection of "rare and valuable minerals." Side Note: Frank Moore, a former pastor of Kemble Church in Woodbury, NJ later became president of Pennington in 1905.

His most remarkable contribution to the school and in fact, to the whole town, was in the form of a road that he had constructed which led from the train station right to the steps of the school. It was named G. G. Green Avenue in his honor (see top photo). Judging from Google Maps, the road is still named after him, now called Green Street and Green Avenue. Unfortunately, I feel that many even in Pennington School today have forgotten G. G. Green, whose portrait once hung in the school halls. Much mention of any Green within Pennington School of late is of a Francis Harvey Green who was headmaster sometime in the 1920s. I'm afraid that many assume that Green Street is named for Francis and not George Gill. Unfortunately, I feel this philanthropic multimillionaire from Woodbury, NJ and his many contributions far and wide are largely unremembered today.

Aerial image of Pennington, NJ in 2012 showing G.G. Green from Woodbury, NJ road namesake.
Aerial image of Pennington in 2012,
showing school and Green road namesake.
Hanlon, T. (1892). Annual cataloge of the pennington seminary and female collegiate institute of the new jersey annual conference. Trenton, NJ: MacCrellish & Quigley. Retrieved from "g.g. green"&pg=RA2-PA45

Hanlon, T. (1886). A concise history of pennington seminary. Trenton, NJ: MacCrellish & Quigley. Retrieved from "g.g. green"&pg=PA11