Department of Military and Veterans Affairs

New Jersey Historic Trust Affiliated with the Department of Community Affairs

Church of the Presidents

Garden State Historic Preservation Trust Fund
Capital Preservation Grant, Level II
Grant Award: $342,410 (2004); $400,779 (2008)
Grant Recipient: Long Branch Historical Museum Association
County: Monmouth
Municipality: Long Branch

Constructed in 1879 as St. James Episcopal Chapel, the structure served as the house of worship for wealthy families who vacationed in Long Branch, including seven U.S. Presidents. Designed in the Shingle Style, the imposing tower was added in 1895, causing some structural deficiencies that the current owners needed to stabilize. The applicant acquired the property in 1953 and ran a museum for many years until structural failure resulted in closing the property to visitors.

The 2008 Trust grant helped fund exterior restoration, including repairs to the shaped wood shingles, porch restoration, exterior painting in historically appropriate Victorian-era colors, and masonry repointing. Interior stabilization and the first phase of exterior restoration were completed with the aid of a previous Trust grant.

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