The war memorial known as “Patriot Isle” is located at the Historic Four Corners in Shrewsbury, NJ. On Memorial Day 2021, a group of women stood at this memorial, noticing the shabby state of the Allen House fence across the street. This was no ordinary group of women; they all share a common bond that predates them by more than two centuries. These women are Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) and, like their ancestors, they are dedicated to honoring their country through historic preservation, education, and patriotism.
The Allen House, a c.1710 structure that heard the rumblings of discord within its tavern walls and witnessed the everyday actions that defined the American Revolution, is now a historic house museum owned and operated by the Monmouth County Historical Association (MCHA). Established in 1898, the Association is a non-profit organization that relies on funding from grants and private donations to do the good work of collecting, preserving, and bringing Monmouth County history to all. Prioritizing one project over another is often a difficult necessity, and the white picket fence at the Allen House fell into noticeable disrepair.
Knowing the Revolutionary past of the structure, Leslie M. Clark and her DAR Shrewsbury Towne-Monmouth Chapter cohorts decided to do something about it. After securing the funds from their board, they volunteered to repair and restore the fence. It was a gracious and much-needed gift. But as we all know, no good deed goes unpunished! The condition of the fence was...a bit shabbier than initially thought. This did not deter the ladies of the DAR, who rose to the challenge and set to work.
With the help of Leslie's husband, the decaying wood supports and posts were replaced and reset, post caps and moldings were added, missing pickets were replenished, and countless holes were patched. The newly fortified fence was then power washed, sanded, primed and painted. Patrons of the popular Tavernfest fundraising event on Saturday, October 16th will be greeted by this true labor of love. The fence looks beautiful, and somehow seems to stand with a new air of pride and gratitude that was missing just months before.
“We are very honored to have been able to take on this project,” said Leslie. Thank you, DAR Shrewsbury Towne-Monmouth Chapter. It is MCHA who has been honored by your generosity, selflessness and service. The spark of patriotism has clearly been passed down to you in the reverence and care you have shown this historic landmark, and we are truly grateful.