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The Journals are the premier publications for high-quality, hyperlocal news and advertising in Monmouth County, New Jersey

Jul 01, 2017

Rumson’s First Historic Preservation Commission Awards

During the May 23 Rumson Borough Council Meeting, Mayor John Ekdahl and Charles Shay, chairman of the borough’s Historic Preservation Commission, presented the first Historic Preservation Commission Awards, as part of an awards program that was launched this year. The five categories of eligibility included:

  • Restoration/Rehabilitation – Older structures where major original features have been carefully preserved or replicated for original use
  • Stewardship – Effective ongoing maintenance and care of properties of historic and/or architectural significance
  • Sympathetic/Sensitive Addition – Construction of an addition to an existing structure that is consistent with the original architectural style of the structure
  • Compatible New Construction – Any new structure that is consistent with the original architectural style of the neighborhood or that utilizes historic materials and techniques
  • Preservation Champion – Celebrating an individual dedicated to preserving Rumson’s heritage

The 2017 award recipients were recognized for their outstanding contributions in the Preservation Champion, Stewardship, and Sympathetic/Sensitive Addition categories.

Mr. Randall Gabrielan, a local historian and author of numerous historical books, articles, and research reports on Rumson and surrounding towns, was recognized as a Preservation Champion. Mr. Gabrielan has served as executive director of the Monmouth County Historical Commission for over 13 years. He also serves as the county’s appointed historian. His books, specifically on Rumson, have been an invaluable resource to the Rumson Historic Preservation Commission.

The Historic Preservation Commission 2017 Award for Stewardship was presented to John and Marjorie Tedesco of 90 West River Road. On the property, there are three structures dating back to 1889: a carriage house/ballroom, a working carousel in the old stables, and a caretaker’s home that includes a private chapel. These three structures are all that remains from the original estate. Each has been painstakingly restored and maintained by the Tedescos. Their dedication and commitment of stewardship has preserved a significant part of Rumson history.

The final 2017 Historic Preservation Commission Award was presented to Lauren and Jon Carras of 30 Lafayette Street for the Sympathetic/Sensitive Addition category. Theirs is a Victorian home built in 1887 that had fallen into disrepair. In addition to a total renovation, they designed an addition that would seamlessly incorporate a third turret to mirror the two original ones on the front of the home. As a finishing touch, gaslights were added on both sides of the original front door, which may have been taken out of a local church when the home was being built.

The Historic Preservation Commission thanks all three of the award recipients for their dedication to preserving Rumson history and hopes that their work is an inspiration to others.


Pictured, left to right: Charles Shay, Rumson Mayor John Ekdahl, and Randall Gabrielan