Historical Commission: Records & Grants, 1990-2015

Record Group: Other County Records
Record Series #: 11600
Series: Monmouth County Historical Commission
DATES: 1990-2015
VOLUME:  20 record cartons

MC Historical Commission Seal


The Monmouth County Historical Commission is an official County body created by the Board of Chosen Freeholders and dedicated to the preservation of the County’s historical heritage. The Historic Preservation Grant is the Commission’s principal program.  It provides matching grants for municipal and non-profit historical preservation projects and awards to individuals and groups for preservation efforts.  This undertaking recognizes the acute need for funding “to preserve the County’s rich and diverse built environment and provides enabling funds to serve as model for other giving and to encourage municipal and organizational commitment.”

The Monmouth County Historical Commission was established by a Board of Chosen Freeholder Resolution approved August 25, 1988, in accordance with the New Jersey County Historical Commission Act of 1987 (NJSA 40:33B-1 et seq.).  This action followed a special meeting of the County Heritage Committee attended by representatives of local heritage committees, historic associations and museums to hear Freeholder Ted Narozanick propose its formation. Since the Heritage Committee completed its mission to celebrate the Nation’s bicentennial and later, the Constitution’s bicentennial, the Historical Commission was organized to emphasize historic preservation as its primary focus. The first appointments to the Commission were: Chairperson Elaine Frey of Holmdel; Bruce Bahrenburg of Keyport; Jeannette Blair of Millstone; Stockton Hopkins of Matawan; Barbara Kolarsick of Spring Lake; Theodore La Brecque of Red Bank; Mary Lou Strong of Rumson; Robert Van Benthuysen of Long Branch; and Lydia Wikoff of Manalapan. James Mayor of Freehold Township served as the Commission’s first Executive Director.

The Monmouth County Historical Commission’s primary activities include the administration of a Historic Preservation Grant Program to assist non-profit organizations and municipalities in maintaining historic structures; a Historic Preservation Awards Program to recognize successful rehabilitation projects completed without County funding support or other historic initiative, such as establishing a museum; and a Fifth Grade Essay Contest to encourage students to write about a historical site or an individual family member, who inspired their interest in history. The Commission also coordinates a self-guided tour of historic sites throughout the County on the first weekend in May, known as “A Weekend in Old Monmouth.” All these activities are supported by funds appropriated by the County’s Board of Chosen Freeholders. In addition, the Commission operates the History Regrant Program with funding from the New Jersey Historical Commission.

The records include Grant Applications from various organizations. Each folder may include an application form and supported documents such as minutes, correspondence, photographs etc.  In addition, there are folders of administrative records for each year, including information about meetings, correspondence, lists of applicants, etc. The records also include research related to various projects initiated by the Commission and student essays from the annual essay contest for years ranging from 2002-2015, with 2010, 2011 and 2013 omitted.
These records are open to researchers without restrictions.
Records may be accessed at the Monmouth County Archives. This finding aid can be used to locate files.  For grant recipients or application, search by year and then alphabetically by name of grant applicant.
The original record series is housed in seven numbered boxes. After two administrative folders, the remaining folders pertain to grant applications, which are grouped first by year and then alphabetically by grant applicant.

A supplemental set of 14 boxes are a mix of grant applications, administrative files, essays, and more. Boxes 14-18 are primarily administrative and research files.  Box 19 contains photos of events and locations, and is located in the vault.  Box 20 houses videotapes and CDs, and is also located in the vault.

Millstone Township’s Clarksburg School Project in 2002 is the only record separated into two files.  Parts 1 & 2 are in one file and Part 3 in a separate file.

Monmouth County Archives
125 Symmes Drive
Manalapan, NJ 07726
Phone: 732-308-3771
The original seven boxes of records were transferred by John Fabiano, Executive Director of the Monmouth County Historical Commission, on September 1, 2014 (Accession 2014-11). A supplement of fourteen boxes was transferred by John Fabiano on August 26, 2015 (Accession 2015-08).
The finding aid was drafted by Kofi Nantwi on June 26, 2015 and revised with history prepared by John Fabiano, August 3, 2015. Lisa Iannucci and Shelagh Reilly processed a portion of the supplement in 2016 and 2017. The remainder of the supplement (Part II of the Container List) was processed by Marry Hussey in early 2018.