Self Guided Graveyard Tour Brochure

SELF-GUIDED TOUR BOOKLET FOR THE GRAVEYARD

For some years we have had a self-guided tour brochure for visitors wishing to view the inside of our historic church. Now we are pleased to have a similar guide for the graveyard. This beautifully designed and informative brochure guides the visitor to many of the interesting graves and gravemarkers in our remarkable cemetery. The brochure contains information about some of the notable personages interred in the graveyard and images of some of the artistry exhibited on a number of interesting gravemarkers. These are all located on a map of the graveyard.

This brochure was created by five students in a graduate class in Public Archaeology taught by Dr. Richard Veit at Monmouth University. The students used information from our graveyard records including the Genealogy of the Graveyard, the scripts for the Costumed Graveyard portrayals, and the survey map of the graveyard. They then selected the specific personages and gravemarker artistry and synthesized these into this beautiful booklet.

Some of these brochures are in the narthex. In addition, at the July 1 Independence Day service, this brochure was distributed and described by Bob Kelly in a “virtual” tour in the nave.

Self-guided graveyard tour

For those who wish to take this self-guided tour the graveyard is always open. The brochure is available in the parish office, usually open from 9 am to 2 pm on Tu-Fr. There is also a brochure holder attached to the arbor at the juncture of the parking lot and the brick walkway.

Queeni Cay Scholarship Fund

Queeni Caay Scholarship

Queeni Caay Scholarship

Walter Dein is a Christ Church parishioner who has been involved with an outreach program in the Philippines providing financial support for children in need. Queeni Caay, a high school student, is one such student and one with special financial needs. Here is her story.

Queeni grew up in a palm reed weaved shanty with her grandmother and younger brother on the tiny island of Dinagat, Philippines.  Her father left even before she was born, and her mother works as a live-in house maid in the distant City of Davao where she could not include her children.

When Queeni was 13 and her brother, Howard, was 8 their elderly grandmother died. This left young Queeni in charge of Howard and herself. During this time, it was Queeni attending Howard’s parent teacher conferences and concentrating on her own studies.  Undernourished and nearly overwhelmed by her circumstances, Queeni contracted a very serious case of Typhoid fever. The doctor said if she had waited any longer to seek medical help she would have died. Sadly, the disease has left her heart valves scarred and as she grows, this gradually puts an increased strain on her damaged heart.

She is active in Girl Scouts and with her own undertaking, she has organized and leads a growing weekly Bible study for her school. At one point the school authorities had considered stopping the Bible study until the students petitioned to allow it to continue and the teaching staff recognized the good and positive influence it was making on the students.

With no fatherly support what so ever, and an impoverished mother who is barely earning enough to support herself, Queeni saw no possibility of attend college even with her impressive achievements. She tried applying for scholarships, but the possibility of attending college was just an elusive dream.

Queeni graduates this spring. She is an active member of the school yearbook committee. College begins in June.

Through Christ Church, a scholarship fund has been established to help cover her college costs, beginning with an annual tuition of $800.

Christ Church videos

KEITH SIGN WITH UTILITY WIRES TAKEN OUT

NEW VIDEOS OF CHRIST CHURCH

Four videos describing various perspectives of Christ Church have been created. These videos provide information about the Church and feature aerial video of the Church building and surrounding graveyard.

The videos were taken by Jeff Smith, videographer from Atlantic Highlands and composed By Amanda Kontor. Amanda was a student intern from Monmouth University and a Communications major. She has now graduated and is attending graduate school at the University of Vienna.

Introduction to Christ Church: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Rt7AdNj1hk8

Christ Church History: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ggFsBpID8g

The Christ Church Graveyard: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Im51q2bw6sk

Our Spiritual Life: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dM5dlJU6dS4

GFS 2017 2018 Schedule

Girl’s Friendly Society

 2017 – 2018

 Kind Heart, Fierce Mind and Brave Spirit

GFS is open to all girls ages 5 through 21

The Purpose of the Girl’s Friendly Society is to help girls understand what it means to be a Christian within their own particular life situations; to discover their own relationships with God, family, community and the world to help girls utilize their given talents, to attain physical, mental, emotional and spiritual growth through program centering around worship, fellowship, service, study and creative activities. In other words, we hope to be an asset to our girls as they grow into womanhood.

Click for schedule of events

 

Graveyard Grant

CHRIST CHURCH RECEIVES HISTORIC PRESERVATION GRANT

Christ Church has been awarded a grant from the New Jersey Historic Trust for preservation of its historic graveyard. The grant award is for $117,413 and includes a 1:1 match by the Parish. Here is a description of the scope and participants in the work that has been funded.

SUMMARY DESCRIPTION

CHRIST CHURCH SHREWSBURY GRAVESTONE RESTORATION

The graveyard at Christ Episcopal Church in Shrewsbury is an historic one. The land has been used as a graveyard since the acquisition of the property in 1706. The oldest gravestone dates from 1719 and the markers are of every composition and design. The graveyard has been continually active since its inception and forms an historical record of the evolution of the area. The graveyard has about 1500 souls interred and 880 gravemarkers.

The proposed project involves the restoration and preservation of a significant number of deteriorating or fallen gravemarkers. This project can be viewed as a continuation of work begun in 2015-2016 under a Department of the Interior grant related to storm repair and resiliency. The previous project resulted in a comprehensive condition assessment and photography of every gravemarker. This information was added to our existing searchable database containing all those individuals in the graveyard with substantial genealogical information. This earlier project also resulted in the restoration of 14 gravemarkers in critical condition, mostly 18th century brownstones.

Since we have a complete condition assessment completed, the proposed project can begin with some detailed specifications for the next series of stones and, of course, the associated restoration work itself. The talented firms involved in the earlier project will bring their expertise and knowledge of this graveyard to the project. These are Lorraine Schnabel LLC who performed the condition assessment and Jablonski Building Conservators who executed the restoration work. There will also be one or more workshops for the public for lichen removal led by Ms. Schnabel. Further a self-guided tour of the graveyard will be developed by Dr. Richard Veit, Chair of the Department of History and Anthropology at Monmouth University and a leading expert in New Jersey graveyards.

A total of about 75 gravestones will be treated in this new project.

In addition, an element of the project will include expanding our communication of the graveyard and its history with the broader community. This will involve development of a self-guided tour that will address gravestone, genealogical, and historical aspects of the graveyard coordinated by cemetery expert Dr. Richard Veit of Monmouth University who will also consult on the overall project.

The public benefits from the project through the preservation of the gravemarkers that tell us our history and the expanded, informed access to that history through the self-guided tour.

Sandy Disaster Relief Grants

SANDY DISASTER RELIEF GRANTS

Christ Church has received two grants for the purposes of repair and resiliency work on its two historic sites both as a result of Superstorm Sandy and to protect against future such storms. The grant amounts for both the Church building and graveyard and the Rectory total about $350,000

Support for this project was provided by a Sandy Disaster Relief Grant for Historic Properties provided by the Historic Preservation Fund of the National Park Service to the New Jersey State Historic Preservation Office, awarded by the New Jersey Historic Trust.

These grants were awarded in early 2015 and much has occurred since that date. Much of the early work has been oriented toward a detailed understanding of the specific work to be undertaken.

A thorough Condition Assessment of the Church and the Rectory were undertaken by Westfield Associates of Haddon Heights, NJ. The resultant documents provided a complete understanding of the condition of the historic structures and formed the basis for a bid process to select a general contractor to undertake the work. The condition assessment also included the creation of construction documents as part of the bid process to guide the selected contractor in performing the work according to established historic site construction principles. This bid process is currently underway with contractors for the two sites to be selected in early November.

There also was a Condition Assessment performed on all of the gravemarkers in the churchyard. This work was performed by Schnabel Conservation L.L.C. of Trenton NJ. This Assessment included photographs of each gravestone with a description of each marker’s current condition. This information was integrated into the church’s graveyard database. Here is an example of this work.

sandy-graveyard-spreadsheet

This records the condition of a brown sandstone gravemarker recording the death of Joseph Tole, nineteen years old at his death in 1781.

This gravemarker assessment work also included more detailed guidance on repair work to be performed on markers in most critical need of restoration. In a bid process Jablonski Building Conservation of New York City was selected to perform the restoration work on an initial set of thirteen gravemarkers.

The gravestone restoration work supported by the SDRG grant is now complete. The original plan to address 13 gravemarkers was expanded by one marker due to savings on work on the first group. The one added was that of Christina Hageman, who died at the age of two in 1785 and was marked by a brownstone. Christina’s gravemarker was in many pieces and was both reconstructed and moved near where the walkway approaches the Memorial Garden.

This is a list of the restored gravemarkers.

  1. Marker 601 Joseph Tole  1762-1781
  2. Marker 316 Sarah Throckmorton   1659-1743
  3. Marker 428 Margaret Throckmorton  1765-1817
  4. Marker 331 Hartness Throckmorton  1735-1760
  5. Marker 490 Elizabeth Vaughton   1715-1800
  6. Marker 491 Mary Wessells   1728-1816
  7. Marker 494 Susannah De Haert   1724-1780
  8. Marker 502 Mary Leonard   1716-1782
  9. Marker 731 Zilpha Halstead   1723-1754
  10. Marker 366 Hendrick Pool 1798-1818
  11. Marker 392 Mary Slocum 1734-1809
  12. Marker 717 John Hart 1759-1805
  13. Marker 701 Clara Wheeler 1782-1855
  14. Marker 866 Christina Hageman 1781-1784

graveyard-11-2016

Lorraine Schnabel and Stephanie Hoagland-Bond with newly restored gravemarker of Zilpha Halstead.

Some additional work has been completed under the grant’s auspices. One is the repair of the 1874 E Howard clock and bell control mechanism. Some of the parts of this complex mechanism were repaired by Stevenson Services of Bristol CT.

The clock faces have been synchronized and the clock timing adjusted for accuracy.

sandy-clock-pic

In addition one of the aspects of protecting the Church and Rectory buildings is careful control of tree growth. Both sites have considerable mature trees. These trees were trimmed with deadwood removed. A dead 100 foot tulip tree was removed. This work was performed by Becker’s Tree Service of Tinton Falls, NJ.

sandy-tree-pic

SDRG WORK PROGRESSES

SDRG work has continued at both the Church and Rectory, mostly performed by the Masonry Preservation Group. At the Church this has included repairing the cupola louvers, replacing the bulkhead doors, and restoring the front steps. At the Rectory, this has included implementing a new CMU wall in the basement for stability and installing steel posts with cement footing. Further work on the Rectory exterior has begun with shutter removal. These will be restored at the MPG woodworking shop. Further on-site work will resume in the warm weather.

Shutters being removed

Shutters being removed

New bulkhead doors

New bulkhead doors

New CMU wall in rectory

New (black) support column

New (black) support column

Church front steps

Church front steps

WORK CONTINUES ON THE RECTORY

Work progresses on the Rectory. Scaffolding is up and the building is being powerwashed.

rectory1a

 rectory1  rectory3

Rectory work extends to cornice repair and painting. The color is terra cotta.

rectory4 rectory5

Aerial Video of Christ Church

New Video of Christ Church

A new video of Christ Church has been created based on aerial video footage. This particular video is a general portrait of the church building and graveyard depicting these from numerous vantage points.

This is the first in a series of a family of videos that will focus on different aspects of the church and parish including our extensive history, the iconic graveyard and our spiritual life. Stay tuned for these informative videos.

aerial video

Click here for Aerial Video

New Historic sign installed

GEORGE KEITH SIGN 2016

NEW HISTORIC SIGN INSTALLED

The sign along Broad Street that marks the History of Christ Church and the role of George Keith has been replaced through the efforts of the parish. The original sign was badly worn and only partially legible. This bright new sign now makes the history more clearly known to the many motorists passing by each day.

20160407_181257

To see more pictures of Christ Church click Church Pictures.

Clock Tower 1/2016

The Town Clock and Bell are Back in Operation!

Due to some failed components of the 1874 E Howard #2 clock and bell drive mechanism, the clock and bell have been out of commission for about 3 months. This situation has been remedied with the damaged parts machined and reinstalled. The clock faces have been synchronized and the clock timing adjusted for accuracy.

CLOCK TOWER JAN 2016THE E HOWARD 2 CLOCK MECHANISM (002)