One of the highlights of Bruce Springsteen’s hit Broadway show was the singer talking about his love of his hometown of Freehold, New Jersey. While he spent his early years singing about wanting to leave home, “Now I live ten minutes away from where I grew up,” he said.
Now, Springsteen fans can get a deeper understanding why: New Jersey’s Monmouth County Historical Association, located in Freehold, has announced Springsteen: His Hometown, a historical exhibit that promises to be “a comprehensive look at how Monmouth County, NJ has been thematically woven into Bruce Springsteen’s music and art throughout his career.” It opens on September 29th (just a few days after Springsteen’s 70th Birthday on the 23rd) and will run through the fall of 2020, with proceeds benefiting the historical association.
The exhibit will include more than 150 items, many from the Bruce Springsteen Archives and Center for American Music at Monmouth University. The items range from early-career mementos (like an original color poster from Springsteen’s first band the Castiles, a scrapbook put together by Springsteen’s mother, Adele) to items that go further back in the Springsteen family tree (there is a 19th century Civil War document that includes Alexander Springsteen, one of Bruce’s ancestors.)
The exhibit was co-curated by Melissa Ziobro, Monmouth University’s Specialist Professor of Public History and Bernadette Rogoff, Director of Collections for MCHA. Eileen Chapman, Director of The Archives, and Robert Santelli, founding director of the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles, are advisors. Tickets are available here.
“The MCHA is honored to have the opportunity to exhibit some of the most unique, and some never-before-seen items that reflect the unparalleled career and life of Bruce Springsteen,” Linda Bricker, President, MCHA Board of Trustees, said in a statement. “Springsteen remains an essential part of the fabric that comprises the deep history of Monmouth County. We would especially like to thank Eileen Chapman, Melissa Ziobro and the Bruce Springsteen Archives and Center for American Music for their continued generosity and collaboration.”