The FASH mission is to support the ongoing care and restoration of the house and its grounds, and to research and interpret the history of the property and its people.
The goal is to foster an understanding of this history and its relationship to the history of South Bound Brook, surrounding communities, the State of New Jersey and our Country.
To promote this understanding, the Friends develop and present public and educational programs, exhibits, publications and presentations in various media.
This mission began in 1999, when the Borough of South Bound Brook acquired the house and property from owner Walter Bielicky, with the help of a grant from Somerset County.
In 2000, the South Bound Brook Historic Preservation Advisory Commission was established to guide preservation efforts for the historic home and the surrounding community. In 2002, the Friends of Abraham Staats House, Inc., a non-proft group, was created to assist with outreach, programming, volunteer activities and planning centered on preservation of the home and its connection to the history of the town and area.
Work began immediately, on several fronts, including applications to the New Jersey State and National Registers of Historic Places, research on the architecture, use and history of the property in a guiding document called an Historic Structures Report,** outreach to the community in the form of programming and activities, grant seeking, creating a volunteer base, archeological studies, and much, much more.
This work has been in progress for nearly two decades, time in which the house and grounds have served as a community gathering place featuring a broad array of educational programs, events and activities centered on history and its importance in our lives today. Generous support through grant programs have ensured that the house and outbuildings have received the attention needed to repair, renovate and rejuvenate the physical structures as well as assisting with the planning efforts needed to ensure the continued operations of this historic property as a public museum.
Click on the topics below for more information about preservation efforts at the Abraham Staats House:
**A historic structure report is generally commissioned by a property owner for an individual building and its site that has been designated as historically or architecturally significant, particularly buildings open to the public, such as state capitols, city halls, courthouses, libraries, hotels, theaters, churches, and house museums. A historic structure report provides documentary, graphic, and physical information about a property’s history and existing condition. Broadly recognized as an effective part of preservation planning, a historic structure report also addresses management or owner goals for the use or re-use of the property. (From National Park Service, Technical Preservation Services)
We Made the List
THE NATIONAL AND NEW JERSEY STATE REGISTRIES OF HISTORICAL PLACES
The Abraham Staats House has been recognized on a state and national level as a site of historic significance.
National Register of Historical Places Program
The National Register of Historic Places is the official list of the Nation’s historic places worthy of preservation. Authorized by the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, the National Park Service’s National Register of Historic Places is part of a national program to coordinate and support public and private efforts to identify, evaluate, and protect America’s historic and archeological resources.
The Abraham Staats House (known as the Staats House in the registry) is listed under its National Registry Reference #: 02001483 It was approved Dec. 4, 2002. View the Staats House description.
The State of New Jersey Registry of Historic Places
This lists properties and historic districts that have met the New Jersey and National Register criteria for significance in American history, archaeology, architecture, engineering or culture, and possess integrity of location, design, setting, materials, workmanship, feeling and association. The NJ State Registry reference ID for the Abraham Staats House is ID#: 256 It was approved Aug. 29, 2002.
The Abraham Staats House and the Library of Congress
About the Historic American Buildings Survey/Historic American Engineering Record/Historic American Landscapes Survey
The Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS) and the Historic American Engineering Record (HAER) collections are among the largest and most heavily used in the Prints and Photographs Division of the Library of Congress. Since 2000, documentation from the Historic American Landscapes Survey (HALS) has been added to the holdings. The collections document achievements in architecture, engineering, and landscape design in the United States and its territories through a comprehensive range of building types, engineering technologies, and landscapes, including examples as diverse as the Pueblo of Acoma, houses, windmills, one-room schools, the Golden Gate Bridge, and buildings designed by Frank Lloyd Wright.
Administered since 1933 through cooperative agreements with the National Park Service, the Library of Congress, and the private sector, ongoing programs of the National Park Service have recorded America’s built environment in multi-format surveys comprising more than 581,000 measured drawings, large-format photographs, and written histories for more than 43,000 historic structures and sites dating from Pre-Columbian times to the twentieth century. This online presentation of the HABS/HAER/HALS collections includes digitized images of measured drawings, black-and-white photographs, color transparencies, photo captions, written history pages, and supplemental materials. Since the National Park Service’s HABS, HAER and HALS programs create new documentation each year, documentation will continue to be added to the collections. The first phase of digitization of the Historic American Engineering Record collection was made possible by the generous support of the Shell Oil Company Foundation.
(Source: online Library of Congress)
IT TAKES A VILLAGE… AND MONEY: GRANT SUPPORT FOR THE ABRAHAM STAATS HOUSE
Grants awarded to the Borough of South Bound Brook through the Somerset County Historic Preservation Grant Program in support of the Abraham Staats House 1999 – 2017
ABRAHAM STAATS HOUSE
Borough of South Bound Brook
The Friends of Abraham Staats House also received grant funding in the amount of $3, 978 for 2017 through the State/County History Partnership Program (SCHPP). The grant was used to develop and print initial copies of a new brochure and to develop a Collections Management plan.
For 2018, the FASH has been approved for a $4,000 grant under the SCHPP. That grant funding is being used to upgrade our website and is in progress at this time.
Source: Somerset County website
For information about the Somerset County Cultural and Heritage Commission historic preservation grant programs, click here.
Archeological Digs: Unearthing the Past
ARCHEOLOGICAL DIGS: UNEARTHING THE PAST
Archeological studies at the Abraham Staats House have played a key role in helping to discover and interpret the life of the family and household members of this historic home. With the support of a number of grants, Dr. Richard Veit Professor of Anthropology and Chair of the Department of History and Anthropology at Monmouth University, has conducted a number of archeological explorations of the house and grounds with his students and colleagues, to help put the pieces of the past together.
Following the digs and research of the family, Dr. Veit and his colleague Michael Gall have documented their findings in reports and in presentations that provide fascinating information about the Staats family and household during the nearly 200 years of their residence.
Learn more about the Staats household by reading this fascinating report, “2009 Patriots, Tories, Inebriates, and Hussies: The Historical Archaeology of the Abraham Staats House, as a Case Study in Microhistory“, by Dr. Richard Veit and Michael Gall.