BELMAR, NJ — If you’re running out of new things to do while staying at home, the Belmar Historical Society suggests it may be an ideal time to create a “family tree.”

Families can begin to delve into their local ancestry by visiting the society’s website, where there is free access to the “Coast Advertiser,” which was published for 80 years — from 1893 to 1973.

Just click on “Research” to access the extensive database, which is searchable by both dates and keywords, making it easy to find out more about a family’s relatives by names and addresses, as well as whether they made the headlines of bygone days.

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“Digging into one’s family history is an interesting and rewarding vocation,” said BHS Vice President Pat O’Keefe, adding that the nonprofit group offers the community this web-based assistance at all times.

Due to the current coronavirus health crisis, the Belmar History Museum at 900 East Street is closed, but the nonprofit group’s volunteers continue to work from home to further its mission to save and preserve Belmar’s history.

A major event that will be rescheduled is the celebration of the museum’s fifth anniversary, which was to be held on April 11. It’s not the first time the museum has been dealt a setback. Its grand opening was originally scheduled for November 2012, but Superstorm Sandy devastated the Jersey Shore four days before that, leaving the building flooded and BHS volunteers working for months to preserve the many artifacts stored on site.

It would be another three years before the museum opened at its current site in April 2015 — in the annex of the Union Firehouse at the corner of Ninth Avenue and E Street.

BHS welcomes donations of Belmar memorabilia to add to its historical archives at its museum. For additional information on making donations or becoming a member, contact Belmar Historical Society at 908-309-3380 or, or visit its website by clicking here.


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