Bill Hine

Bill Hine (1924-1997) was affectionately known as the “village guardian” of Basking Ridge.  His full name was Willard Foster Hine, Jr., and he was born in Westfield.  Bill suffered an oxygen deficiency at birth, which left him unable to work at a regular job.  After his family moved to Spencer Road in Basking Ridge in 1961, Bill became well known around the village interacting with residents in front of the Peppermill Deli and Brush’s.

He was also noted for his photography, music, poetry, and positive outlook on life.  Later, Bill moved to Bernardsville and then to the Ridge Oak Community in Basking Ridge. He was also active at St. James Catholic Church.  Bill published a collection of his poetry, “Poems to Live By” in 1976.


I love to live in Basking Ridge,
It’s such a friendly town—
Especially in the evening
As the setting sun goes down.

I love to hear the laughter of the little children
And see a smile upon their face,
I love to be in Basking Ridge,
It’s such a lovely place.

I’ve been to other towns before,
But not as nice as this,
If I should have to go away
It’s this town that I’d miss.

If you happen to be driving by,
Just stop and you will see—
It’s the town of Basking Ridge,
That’s where you’ll want to be.

(from Poems to Live By, p. 80)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Become a Member of THSSH

Subscribe to THSSH Blog

Sign up to receive updates via email.*

Upcoming Events

Freemason Secrets

March 21, 2024

Latest Comments

  1. Hi Marion, The Belcher family, including J. Malcolm Belcher, donated over 11 acres of land directly to the Raritan Watershed…

  2. If memory serves correctly, Moggy Hollow was gifted to the Leonard Buck Gardens by my grandfather, James Malcolm Belcher, Sr.…

  3. My dad, Harold J. Dobbs, flew airplanes out of this airport in the 1930's. He was one flight short of…

  4. I grew up in the Bedminster Reformed Church on Main St. My parents attended there until the late 1980's I…