NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ – Linda Kale and Kerry Lee of the New Providence Historical Society attended the Borough Council meeting on Monday, Feb. 24 to present the society’s plan to install historic markers this year as part of the tricentennial commemoration.
The society is suggesting that they install a total of three markers at the most prominent borough locations. The first is to be placed at the Presbyterian Church, preferably before the celebratory Turkey Dinner scheduled to be held at the church on Saturday, Apr. 25. The second marker is planned to be placed in front of the old borough hall on Academy Street, and the third at the Salt Box Museum.
The single post signs cost approximately $2,000-$2,500 each, Lee explained. He added that the society will pick up the cost for the first marker and asked for the borough’s assistance for funding the other two.
Lee acknowledged that since it takes approximately a year to get funding from the county or the state the society “missed that window of opportunity.” He suggested a partnership arrangement to assist with the funding. The potential partners could be other organizations or the Tricentennial Committee. He is also hoping to receive small donations from the friends of the society.
Council President Robert Robinson suggested that the borough pick up the full cost for the second marker. Mayor Al Morgan agreed that this can be worked out.
The signs are approximately 30”x42” in size. It takes about 6-8 weeks to get the markers manufactured. “We need to submit the artwork, narrative and get it back in time so that it can be installed, hopefully by the public works,” Lee said. The Historical Society will not decide what will be written on the markers. The Presbyterian Church will provide the narrative for the first marker. The church will also decide the location of the marker, Kale added.
The intention is to have the signs be visible for pedestrians and motorists stopped at traffic lights. The narrative will be on both sides of the sign, Lee said. The church sign could have a 19th century picture while the town logo will be featured on the Salt Box Museum sign. For the Academy Street sign the society has a lot of pictures to choose from, Lee said.