Sunday, April 23, 1775,news of the Battle of Lexington reached Hopewell. While the people were worshiping in the First Baptist Church, at the close, Joab Houghton, standing on this block, inspired the men with love of liberty and desire for independence. In closing he said, "Men of New Jersey, the Redcoats are murdering our brethren of New England! Who follows me to Boston?" Every man answered "I".
On October 13, 1775, he was made a Capt. and March 15, 1777 a Lieut. Col. He was a member of the first legislature of the state, and also of the Baptist Church. Died 1796.
As a memorial to him and these events, this block was erected July 4, 1896, by the People of Hopewell.