Published in The Coast Star on May 11, 2000
May 5, the state of New Jersey Historic Preservation Office formally announced Camp Evans, Wall Township, as a New Jersey Historic district.
Volunteers of the Information Learning Center accomplished this extraordinary feat with key help from William P Gray, of Wall Township.
Mr. Gray, a freshman at Montclair University, researched the activities of a group known as the Monmouth Pleasure Club Association in 1998 as a Wall High School student. Mr. Gray then relayed his research to the Information Learning Center. The club owned Camp Evans from the period between 1924-1930.
In December 1999, the state reviewed the 110 page application for historic status: the state board. was pleased with the treatment of the Marconi wireless period, the World War I Navy communications center, period, the The King’s College period, the historic contributions of radar toward winning World War II; the opening of the space age in 1946 and later Army projects with communication, computers, lasers and transistors and the McCarthy era communist spy accusations and congressional hearings.
Director of the Information Age Learning Center, Fred Carl, explained that the board felt the presentation of the Pleasure Club period was inadequate and asked for more information on the period.
“When we researched the history behind Camp Evans we didn’t even bother with the area because is was not related to technology,” noted Mr. Carl.
Fortunately, Mr. Gray’s research of the 1920’s and issues of the The Asbury Park Press from the 1930’s
provided the requested information: “Mr. Gray’s information really saved the day. Without it, the board really didn’t like the application,” explained Mr. Carl.
The updated application was approved and has been forwarded to the National Park Service in Washington, D.C. for consideration as National Register Historic District.
The application is online at www.infoage.org
The following are a list of people who contributed to the application. Robert Judge, of Shark River Hills, took the required black and white photographs developing them on special paper to meet the state requirements. Wall Township residents Larry Tormey, Wilma Morrissey and Jim Stigliano corrected and reviewed the application.
Mark Swanson, of New South Associates, reviewed the application and provided considerable research. Russ Henderson, Richard Napolitan, the Marconi Archives of England and Stanford University Library supplied the historic 1914 photos submitted with the application.
The Old Wall Historical Society supplied the historic photos and difficult to locate information for the application. Robert Craig, of the State Historic Preservation Office, provided invaluable guidance with the complex application.
The Information Age Learning Center is a consortia of not-for-profit groups working to preserve and reuse historic Camp Evans as a science-history center to inspire young students to explore technology as a career choice.
The goal of the ILC is to create an interactive hands-on science center where people can experience science and technology. And a place where corporations, professional groups, individual volunteers and the military can contribute to science education while preserving the historic site.
Army scientists and engine will give classes to K-12 grade stt dents in math, computers and the hard sciences.
The Army declared Camp Eva as surplus property several yeas ago, and will convey the property Wall Township after remediation the site is concluded Portions of the 208-acre site may also be conveys to some non-profit and educational institutions, including approximately 60 acres to Brookdale Community. College for a southern camps
page created September 02, 2000