BELMAR, NJ — For Belmar longtimers, it’s not too difficult to figure out what the eight featured businesses in Belmar Historical Society’s latest exhibit have in common.
All have graced the borough’s downtown district for nearly 50 years or more — beginning with Taylor Hardware, which has been a staple on Main Street, formerly F Street, since 1894.
Sterner (now Jaeger) Lumber, Jack’s Tavern, Don’s Pizza King, Belmar Barber Shop, Klein’s Fish Market, Belmar Discount Paint and A&B Cleaners also are showcased in the “Time-Honored Establishments" exhibit in the Sixth Avenue lobby of the Belmar Municipal Building, 601 Main Street.
The display contains vintage photos, old menus, advertisements and other memorabilia — including a Sterner Lumber sales apron — from these establishments, which have been frequented by generations of Belmar residents and visitors alike for decades.
“As the population of the borough grew, the various businesses were established to supply the needs of the residents,” according to BHS secretary Karen Heulitt, who designed the exhibit.
For example, Taylor Hardware sold poultry supplies, farm fencing, furniture and dry goods when it opened 125 years ago. Twenty-five years later in 1919, the new Sterner Lumber store met the community’s demand for lumber, hay and straw.
While Don’s Pizza King on Main Street has been tossing pies for more than 40 years, the restaurant also boasts its own display of Belmar memorabilia.
The BHS exhibit can be seen during regular business hours in the Sixth Avenue lobby of the Belmar Municipal Building, 601 Main Street. It plans to display other Belmar time-honored establishments in a future exhibit.
An all-volunteer, nonprofit organization, BHS welcomes donations of Belmar memorabilia to add to its historical archives at its museum, located at 900 E Street in the annex of the Union Firehouse. The museum is open to the public every Monday from 2 to 4 p.m., every Thursday from 10 a.m. to noon, and the second Saturday of each month from 1 to 3 p.m., or by appointment.
In addition to offering museum tours and conducting research to further its mission to save and preserve Belmar’s history, BHS invites the public to joins its ranks, attend free Belmar history classes and learn to serve as a docent to give tours.
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