The Laurelton School on Route 88 in Brick, built in 1934, may be short on time. But a piece of it will remain in the care of those dedicated to preserving the township’s rich history.
Earlier this year, the township’s planning board gave its approval to a plan that subdivided the school property. The district will continue to own and operate a piece of land with a warehouse behind the old school, which was closed over a decade ago, and will sell the school property itself. While not guaranteed, it is expected that the building will be demolished.
News of the school building’s impending demise led to the preservation of one of its iconic symbols, however, when the Brick Township Historical Society set out to find a new home for the original weathervane that sat atop the building.
“We are very happy to have it,” said Jane Fabach of the historical society, adding that society president Ed Mangold is attempting to restore one figure from the weathervane that is missing.
When the school was closed, society members realized that if the building were to be sold, the distinctive weathervane, depicting a little girl being led to school by a Pied Piper type figure, might become a lost piece of Brick’s history. The society wrote letters over the years stating their interest in the weathervane and their ability to display it at their Havens Homestead Museum property on Herbertsville Road, Fabach said.
Mangold eventually got in touch with Mayor John Ducey, who helped facilitate the transfer. The school district could not legally donate the figure to the society, so it had to go through the town, which then sold it to the society for $1.
Due to the height of the building, in order to properly remove the weathervane from the school, the Laurelton Fire Company, Station 23, was called in, explained Fabach. It was removed July 13 and delivered by the Public Works Department to the museum property.
According to Mangold, the society is planning to install it on a cupola on the roof of a red barn on the property once it is fully restored. The barn houses many historic displays inside, and when the weathervane sits above it, it will now have an extra special feature.
Editor’s Note: For more information about the Society see its website at: www.bricktownshiphistoricalsociety.com or call 732-785-2500. The next event at the property will be the Civil War Encampment August 3 from 10 am to 4 pm and August 4 from 10 am to 2 pm.