Treasures found at Old Wall flea market

Julia Jannarone, age 10, from Wall looks over a Steiff plush toy for sale at The Old Wall Historical Society annual flea market this past weekend. (MARK R. SULLIVAN/THE COAST STAR)

WALL TOWNSHIP — The Old Wall Historical Society hosted its annual flea market fundraiser this past weekend, drawing crowds to browse the wares of unique vendors and artisans at the society’s property on a beautiful Saturday afternoon.

De Haren, president of the organization, said Saturday’s market was a great success as one of the society’s fundraising events it holds throughout the year.

“Everyone seemed really pleased. The weather really cooperated and we seemed to have a good amount of foot traffic,” Ms. Haren said.


“This was really mixed this year,” she said of the wide array of vendors present.

The historical society has been hosting an event like this going back to 1983, Ms. Haren said.

“We used to have an antique show but we didn’t have enough dealers so we tried to change it around a little bit. Right now people are into the retro [style] and so now we’re drawing more of the younger people.”

The Old Wall property features a 10-room farmhouse that was formerly the general store in the New Bedford area of Wall. It was built around 1800 and operated as the general store in the 1840s and 1850s. 

Additionally, the society moved an old one-room schoolhouse that was on Sea Girt Avenue to its property. That school has been restored, and now the society works closely with Wall Township Public Schools, teaching occasional classes in the building to second grade students “as if it was 1850 for a day.”

“The kids love it. It’s really neat, and way better than just walking through the school building,” Ms. Haren said.

For the last nine years, the society has been working to restore the Morris-Allgor-Kittel Wheelwright Shop, built in 1840, across the street. 

“We’re probably one of the best kept secrets in Wall Township,” Ms. Haren said. “We’re a smaller organization, kind of nestled up here in the north end of Wall where Info Age and Allaire are a bit bigger.”

All the funds raised go to restoration projects or maintenance, she said.

Upcoming at the society’s property, located at 1701 New Bedford Road, is the annual Civil War encampment, in which groups of Civil War reenactors spend a few days camping out from June 25 to 26, giving insights to the daily lives of soldiers 175 years ago.

“They let the kids go right into the tents to touch and see how they lived and what they used,” Ms. Haren said.

The pandemic put financial strain on the organization, but with restrictions lightening it hopes to be a public fixture once again.

The society is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year and hopes to commemorate it with a celebration sometime in September.

The historical society is also always seeking new membership. For more information about it, visit the township’s website or the Old Wall Historical Society Facebook page.

Tours are available on the second and fourth Sundays during the summer months from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Private tours can also be arranged by appointment by calling Ms. Haren at 732-681-3806.

Check out our other Wall Township stories, updated daily. And remember to pick up a copy of The Coast Star—on newsstands Thursday or online in our e-Edition.


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