Published in The Asbury Park Press on November 1, 1999
Board member Fred Carl said the board will request about 55 acres of the 212-acre site be placed on the National Register of Historic Places at a Dec. 1 meeting with federal officials in Trenton.
“This area contains the heart of the historic activities at the site,” Carl said at a meeting Tuesday.
During its 59-year history, Camp Evans was one of the country’s leading research facilities. It was closed in 1993 as part of a nationwide effort to reduce the number of military facilities, and the board was created to oversee its transfer to civilian use.
Carl said the camp was used from 1914 to 1925 for communication experiments by Guglielmo Marconi and served as an essential communications-research facility during both world wars and the early years of the U.S.
“It was one of the leading communications facilities in the world and various buildings, including some designed by (engineer) Buckminster Fuller, are on the site,” Carl said.
Joseph Murphy, a historical archaeologist with the Army Corp of Engineers, said the National Historic Preservation Act requires that any historic structures receive strict and careful architectural documentation before they can be demolished.
“Brookdale will have to document the buildings if they intend to tear them down,” he said.
Cleanup of contamination on the site, including mercury in the sewer system, is ongoing, and an archaeological survey of the site is expected to be completed soon.
The advisory board will sponsor a tour of Camp Evans from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Nov. 20, and further details will be provided in the near future.