15 results for month: 03/2016

The MHS Mission

The Matawan Historical Society is a volunteer, non-profit organization founded in 1969. Its goals are the preservation of and the education about local history.


The MHS meets the fourth Monday of the month at 7:30 pm from September — June. Visit the About MHS page for details.

St. James A.M.E. Zion Church

100 Atlantic Avenue Erected in 1851, this church was a focal point of the African American community once known as Africa that grew up along Atlantic Avenue in the early 1800's. African Methodist Episcopal churches were among the first established by African Americans.

Matawan Railroad Station

Main Street at New York Long Branch RR Matawan became a busy railroad junction in the 1870's with the completion of the first railroads through town. This 1875 Stick Style depot is among the oldest on the New York & Long Branch Railroad line. A similar depot at Red Bank, and the historic photo shown here, provide models for the restoration of this significant site.

J.L. Rue Pottery Company / Matawan Tile Company

32 Main Street The Matawan area was once home to a thriving ceramic industry with the manufacture of stoneware, brick, pottery, and tile. The J.L. Rue Pottery Company was established here on Main Street in 1881 and produced brick as well as a variety of earthenware. After the Rue firm closed down, the Matawan Tile Company purchased the site and began operations about 1903. Facilities were expanded and the firm produced floor and wall tile. Decorative tiles are still visible on some of the buildings.

Aaron Longstreet House, 80 Main

80 Main Street Most of Matawan's 19th-century housing stock was made up of modest two-story clapboard houses like this well-preserved example. Lumber and hardware merchant Aaron Longstreet built this Greek Revival/Italianate dwelling in the 1840's. Paneled double doors, a tin roof, and terra cotta chimney caps are among its distinguishing early features.

Fountain, Honor & Sons Store

154 Main Street Built in 1854 as a dry goods and grocery store, this early store building retains its pronounced bracketed cornice and window trim seen on Italianate storefronts of the era. Asbury Fountain, the original proprietor, was a prominent local merchant and president of the Farmers and Merchants Bank.

Aaron Longstreet House

167 Main Street This clapboard-sided Greek Revival house shares similarities with substantial farmhouses built in Monmouth County in the 1850's and 1860's. The house is notable for its original wood trim, windows and doors, and Ionic columned porch. D.S. Stillwell owned the property in 1860, after which it was purchased by Aaron Longstreet.

Fountain House

201 Main Street Until the 1880's, Matawan's houses were mostly rectangular shaped with straight front porches. The Queen Anne style brought turrets, projecting bays, wraparound porches, and a variety of shapes and patterns to residential buildings in the 1880's and 1890's. Nearby, at 196 Main Street, lumber merchant Francis P. Simpson updated his early 19th century home with the addition of a Queen Anne corner tower. The Fountain House, built in 1895, represents the "Free Classic" phase of the Colonial Revival. Its two-story portico and "basketweave" balcony enliven Main Street.

Lydia Arrowsmith House

205 Main Street Matawan's mid-19th century houses often employed a variety of decorative wood trim available from local mills such as Phoenix Mills. Built in the 1850's, this house was owned by Lydia Arrowsmith during the second half of the 19th century. The arched windows and doors, scroll brackets, and trim are characteristic of other Italianate and Victorian Gothic houses found in Matawan.