Main Street – 185

The Geran House

In the 1860s, Gordon D. White lived and operated a stove and tin emporium here. White was born about 1823 in New Jersey. He was living with his wife Catharine and four children. In 1870, William Spader is listed as owner.

The most prominent family that lived here was the GeransGeran Hall was known for having dances and masquerade parties with many Matawan residents in attendance.  It was located on what was commonly known as being on “Geran’s block.” In the winter, they would remove the stage and host baseball games. The Hall was later purchased by the American Legion.

Charles A. Geran and his wife, Lydia, had two sons and daughter: Henry, Elmer and Laura. All of their children attended the Glenwood Institute.  Charles owned a hardware store. The ad below is from 1886. His future son-in-law Arris Henderson worked there while he was a student.  Arris later worked as a lithographer and became Mayor of Matawan.  He was acting mayor at the time of the shark attack at Matawan Creek.

185-main-geranHenry Geran moved to Montana and lived on a ranch for some time but returned to Matawan and opened a crate factory. When he returned here, he married his wife, Sarah.   He returned to live in this house with his mother upon the death of his wife. Henry died tragically in a car accident in 1937.  His mother Lydia died only weeks later.

185-main-old-1220px-Elmer_H._Geran_(New_Jersey_Congressman)His son Elmer H. Geran was a lawyer and sheriff for Monmouth County, He was also the attorney for both the Boro of Matawan and the Matawan Bank.  He was elected President of the Matawan School Board, Congressman and appointed U.S. attorney by then President Woodrow Wilson. Elmer and his wife moved to Glen Geran estate and dairy farm on Texas Road. There they hosted amazing fundraising events to help the local hospital and had a fund for those patients that could not pay.  One such event was a garden party with forty card tables for people to play cards; lunch was served, and prizes were won at each table.

185-main-geran-milkArchitectural Notes

Built 1840-1860. Greek revival with center hall, 6/6 sash windows with large projecting lintels.  Door frames by side and transom lights. Porch was supported.



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Barry Orr


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