Basking Ridge Historic White Oak Tree Selected as 3rd Keepsake in Series

Mr. Local History Archives - #catsmeowvillage

Mr Local History is proud to announce the release of the third in the collectible series, the 619 year old Basking Ridge Historic White Oak Cat’s Meow collectible. The collectible is now available online.

The iconic historic Basking Ridge 619 year old White Oak Tree was the oldest of its kind in North America. The keepsake is available for only $25.
Welcome to the Historic Somerset Hills Cat’s Meow Village.

The Historic Somerset Hills Village keepsake collection is a collectible series honoring historic iconic buildings, properties, and fixtures that are part of the historic fabric of our community. The third keepsake was selected based on community feedback and a voting process. Brooks Betz stated, “the tree was the oldest resident in our town. It was here 300 years before the church it stood next to. It truly was the icon of Basking Ridge.”

This edition was created for the local historical society depicting the history of the greatest white oak tree in North America. While the keepsake is not made from the original wood from the tree, it’s a perfect reminder of one of Basking Ridge’s greatest historic icons.

The Keepsake Series

Additional keepsakes will be added to the Somerset Hills collection as part of a multi-year effort to promote and preserve history in the Somerset Hills including Bedminster, Bernards Twp., Bernardsville, Far Hills, Peapack and Gladstone. The series was started by Brooks Betz, a resident of Basking Ridge. “There are so many great historic icons in the Somerset Hills and we’re really excited to launch our keepsake program in conjunction with the Society’s 90th anniversary. We plan on adding additional keepsakes throughout the year and will even sponsor a contest where the public gets to vote for a future keepsake.” The keepsake is meant to display on a counter or shelf. It is made of a sturdy 3/4″ handmade wood block and then painted.

Many people collect other village pieces and build a village collection. The creations are part of the historic Cat’s Meow Village Collection, which has been producing iconic wood ornaments for over 35 years.

The local historical society and other local outlets will be producing limited batches of the Somerset Hills Keepsake Village. A small inventory should also be available at the Brick Academy Museum as well as online via the Mr. Local History Gift Shop.


If you like, you can even get your Basking Ridge Village collectible with a hanging ribbon and put right on the Christmas tree.

How do I Get One?

The easiest way to get one is to order online via our Etsy Store.
Our online store accepts multiple forms of payment including credit/debit cards and Paypal. Orders are now being taken online. The collection is the ultimate local personal gift. Great for those moving into the area, or for those who’ve left the area. They also make great gifts for those who just like to remember the fond memories of the area.

The Cat’s Meow

The Cat’s Meow Village is a small company founded in Wooster, Ohio in 1982 from one simple wooden house Faline cutout on her grandfather’s saw in the loft of the hog barn. 35 years later, Jones with her crew continues to craft “little wooden buildings” of local, national, and international landmarks that spark memories and kindle smiles on the faces of “real life adventurers” like you.

The Historic Somerset Hills Village is created by T3 Consortium who then licenses out to various organizations for fundraising and promotional activities.

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