a. Preservation/ Restoration – no nominations
b. Continuing Use – no nominations
Award: The Wrightstown Grist Mill , 30 Railroad Avenue, Wrightstown, NJ 08562
Nominating Party: Denis McDaniel
Property Owners: Denis McDaniel
Historically located across the street from the site of the Wrightstown railroad station of the Pemberton & Hightstown Railroad, which began operations in 1868, brothers Edwin and Wilbur Davis constructed the Grist Mill around 1898 . The Mill operated as “Davis Brothers Custom Milling.” The company was short lived due to the sudden death of Edwin in 1924 at the age of 53. Kirby Brothers purchased the mill shortly afterwards and within a year it was sold again to Forrest Bright, who dismantled and moved the milling equipment and operated a feed store and coal distribution company for almost 50 years. In 1973 it became an airline catering facility for nearby McGuire Air Force Base. By the end of 1982, the site was practically abandoned and appeared slated for demolition.
On December 1, 1982 Denis McDaniel, great-grandson of Edwin Davis, purchased the old family gristmill, bringing it back to the family after 58 years. Denis initially leased the property for use by trucking operations for his various enterprises: HAC Farms, Sined Leasing and Cyned Transport and used the building for storage. The roof was replaced immediately to prevent further deterioration. On May 12, 2011, a complete rehabilitation for use as an office building and headquarters for the logistics and transportation operations of Synergy Enterprises, which serves the sweetener industry, primarily Corn sweeteners, operated by Denis McDaniel.
Architect: Eric Million, Wrightstown; General Contractor: Gangel Construction, Jacobstown.
d. Public Structure/Object/Site:
Award: Woodlawn Cemetery, Route 563, Chatsworth, NJ
Nominating Party: Woodland Township Historical Society
Property Owners : Deeded to former residents - 1888
The Woodlawn Cemetery was originally deeded to local prominent Chatsworth residents in 1888. As far as is known, it was never identified by any signage, but simply known to residents as the Chatsworth Cemetery, with little community awareness of its historical significance.
The Woodland Township Historical Society initiated a cemetery beautification project aimed at cleaning up the cemetery, documenting information about citizens who are interred there, and constructing a suitable and identifiable entrance way. The project would be funded through private donations.
In 2010 Phase I was completed with the installation of a wrought iron, handcrafted archway bearing the name of the cemetery, Woodlawn, designed with a pine cone motif. In 2011, Phase II expanded the archway in the same pine cone motif, with a fence wing on each side. In 2012, the final Phase included matching fence across the front of the property. The total project also included the creation of a digital site document listing the names of the deceased who are buried there from as far back as the Civil War.
The cost of the project was $18,000 and funding was accomplished largely through donations from residents, families and friends. Fabrication was contracted with Atlas Ironworks and members of the Woodland Township Historical Society donated their personal time and skill to associated construction and record gathering projects.
e. Preservation Planning/Education:
Award: Indian Mills Memorial School’s 2010 Image Program for Gifted and Talented Students.
Project: Preservation of the Dr. James Still Family Cemetery Site.
Nominating Party: Indian Mills Historical Society
This project has its roots in 1975 when Kenneth Woytowich, an Indian Mills Elementary student wrote an essay for a school assignment which identified the history and location of the Still Family Cemetery in Shamong, located near his school and his home. The site was rehabilitated and preserved. However, as time passed, it became overgrown again until in 1996, when the area was slated for a housing development, residents remembered Kenneth’s project and intervened, through the Indian Mills Historical Society, and once again preserved the site. For a second time, over several years, the site was again neglected, overgrown, and vandalized until in 2010 as a new generation of students looked for class projects, the Still burial ground became an object of their interest.
The fifth and sixth grade students of the Indian Mills Memorial School’s Image Program became intrigued with the history of how Dr. James Still became known as the Black Doctor of the Pines. Under the inspiration of their teachers Karen Clementi and Dee Alspach, the Still Cemetery again became a fourth, fifth and sixth grade research project.
Twenty-five fourth and fifth graders, with the help of their teachers and the Indian Mills Historical Society and the essay written in 1975 by Kenneth Woytowich, re-discovered the Still Family Burial plot where Levin and Charity Still, the parents of Dr. James Still are buried along with his first wife and daughter, and Native American friend Job Moore. Engaging the help of several local residents, the plot was cleared of overgrowth. The students decided to conduct a fund raiser in order to purchase a headstone to mark the site. They also engaged the help of the Still Family, descendants of Dr. Still. The headstone was purchased, engraved and set in place, adorned with appropriate shrubs and flowers. On May 9, 2012, the site was dedicated in the presence of dignitaries, Still family members, students and teachers. The site is now permanently marked and open to visitors. It will be continually maintained by members of the Indian Mills Historical Society and Shamong Township Boy Scout Troop No. 47.
f. Archival Records/Documentation:
Award: Tabernacle Historical Society
Nominating Party: Tabernacle Historical Society
Type of Activity: Creating and Implementing a system for cataloging and tagging the history artirfacts and documents Possessed by the Tabernacle Historical Society.
The project for cataloging and tagging all the items in the Pepper House, the Friendship School and the Tabernacle Historical Society started in 2011 with the arrival of three new members in the organization: Ann Franzen, Mary Ann Silvers and Peg Pitney. Throughout the spring and summer of 2012, the women met every Monday for cleaning, cataloging and tagging the items in the historic Pepper House on Carranza Road. Their agenda includes next moving on to the Historic Friendship One Room School.
The process required the creation of a consistent cataloging system including sources, codes, location, etc. using customized forms, capably designed by former librarian, Mary Ann Silvers. Cross referencing was also introduced along with the creation of special catalog cards. Multi-media versions of the documentation support the maximum utilization of the information.
g. Preservation Leadership:
Award : Fieldsboro Mayor David Hansell
Nominating Party: Friends of White Hill Mansion
Type of Activity: Supporter and Driving Force behind the White Hill preservation project.
Mayor David Hansell succeeded his predecessor as interim Mayor and was formally elected to the post in December, 2012. He, himself, serves as the Treasurer of the White Hill Board. He was supportive in the acquisition of the 501©3 status of the organization and paid the incorporation fees from his Mayor’s stipend. His support extends to having encouraged the Borough Council to allocate funds for additional insurance so the Mansion can be opened to the public.
With fundraising as the primary mission of the Board at this time, the Mayor’s role as cheerleader for the project has been evident since he took office. He has helped the board surmount several obstacles by using his political influence within the community and by leading by personal example, rolling up his sleeves in projects at the site and in planning community events in support of the restoration.
a. Published History
Award: Author, Weldon Storey
Nominating Party: Lumberton Historical Society
Project: “Lumberton, Then and Now” – A Little Town With a Big Heart.
A long-time resident of Lumberton, 92 year-old Weldon Storey’s third book painstakingly relates the oral history of resident Anita Bryant, reproduces many articles filed in the historical society museum and chronicles the history of the homes of residents who eagerly shared it with Mr. Storey. What results is a potpourri of tales of the early days of Lumberton from various sources, along with personal commentary and recollections from Mr. Storey himself.
This personalized, homey style gives the account a very human flavor where emotions are mixed with actual facts wherein the spirit of the community is palpable with every story related. Mr. Storey self-published the book and the members of the Lumberton Historical Society purchased them.
See accompanying book jacket
b. Achievement and Leadership
Award: Terry Schmidt, Washington Township, NJ
Nominating Party: Paul W. Schopp
Activity: Salvaging, organizing, conserving, and arranging Washington Township’s official records
Terry Schmidt, who manages the Batsto Visitor’s Center as a state employee, has been fascinated with local history for many years. In addition to collecting stories and historical material about Green Bank and Lower Bank and elsewhere in the Pine Barrens, in recent years Terry has become involved in salvaging, organizing, conserving, and arranging Washington Township’s official records, ranging from Vital Statistics books and township minute books, to tax records. The arrangement of these records, the final step in making them available to local citizens, historians, and genealogists, will provide those seeking answers about the past history of Washington Township or the residents who lived there, with unparalleled access to that information not available anywhere else. The Burlington County historical community is in Terry’s debt for accomplishing her work as a volunteer, leading other local citizens to reexamine their connection with the past and salvaging important material from their own attics to add to the historical record.
c. Education (no nominees)
d. New History (no nominees)