Vineland in southern New Jersey was a wilderness fifty-four years ago. The story of its settlement and subsequent history is of absorbing interest and in the annals of the state as worthy of record as that of the early settlers who made their homes within its borders.
Vineland, as we see it to-day, was made possible through the industry, energy and intelligence of its early residents, and while their achievements lack the charm of antiquity, we are brought closer to the living, moving, pulsating life of the people who during the half century or more have called the place their home. These men and women, through whose efforts the town was established are deserving of some recognition from the present inhabitants who are indebted to them for many of the privileges they now enjoy.
The Vineland Historical and Antiquarian Society has preserved among its archives some records of the place and its people, and now proposes to have an organ of its own through which these records may become available to those who are interested in learning more of its past. The field that is open to us is not restricted to the society's collections; for there is a wealth of material to be obtained from other sources worthy of preservation in printed form; indeed, were we to include Cumberland County, of which Vineland is a part, a still larger field could be found, richer and quite as interesting for us to explore.
All new projects are necessarily experimental and this venture of the Society's is no exception; how it will be received and what success it may attain is problematical. We trust, however, the preservation of Vineland's early records, the history of the place and the people who have made it so widely known, may prove of value to some and of interest to many.