Preserve Our Borough’s History
The Bradley Beach Historical Society, a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, depends upon memberships, donations and sales to support research, programs, projects, and partnerships that preserve our coastal community’s picturesque past.
Purchase an annual membership, make a one-time or recurring donation, volunteer your time, or share your memories to ensure that all our cherished stories and those of early day-trippers, weekenders and seasonal residents are passed on to future generations.
Become a Member of BBHS
The Bradley Beach Historical Society is a member-supported, 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization, incorporated under the laws of the State of New Jersey.
Join BBHS today so we can maintain a solid base of financial support throughout the year. Annual membership dues fund our operations, including website development and design, research resources, outreach materials and displays, community alliances, and expenses associated with keeping our all-volunteer organization going and growing.
Membership is a commitment to the collection, preservation and celebration of the Borough’s rich heritage. The benefit of membership is securing ongoing opportunities for Bradley lovers of all ages to explore various aspects of local history stretching back over 130 years.
Membership automatically renews annually on the anniversary of joining. You can opt-out of automatic renewal when establishing your account.
Make a Donation to BBHS
Make history by donating to the Bradley Beach Historical Society’s short-term programs and long-term projects. Your tax-deductible contributions make multi-year initiatives like Mapping Main Street possible. We are in Year Two of identifying and documenting all the businesses along Main Street from the founding of the Borough through present day. Donations allow deeper dives into the history of Bradley Beach’s Early Beachfront, the origins of the Bradley Beach Police Department, and Treasures of Bradley Beach like Virgil’s where everyone was like family. Recently, BBHS offered a Virtual Stroll Along Main Street revisiting Schwarz Drugs, Vic’s, and The Palace Theater and more strolls back in time are planned. In August, we hosted a day-long Chinatown by the Sea Reunion featuring minibus tours of the North End, a dumpling-making demonstration & tasting, and a panel moderated by the the Museum of Chinese in America that focused on oral histories of early families.
Every gift to BBHS makes a difference. Every dollar you donate deepens understanding of all the people, who have lived and loved life down the shore for over a century.
Share Your Time
Volunteers are the heart and soul of the Bradley Beach Historical Society. Everyone who contributes time, talent or ideas plays a pivotal role in collecting, preserving and sharing the Borough’s rich heritage.
BBHS offers a variety of volunteer opportunities – all based on individual interest, skills, and availability.
For example, Mapping Main Street (MMS), a multi-year initiative to identify and document all the businesses along Main Street from the founding of the Borough through present day, needs volunteers to research each address; track property and business owners over the years; collect ads, photos & artifacts associated with each business; interview business owners (past and present); write summaries and capture personal memories of each business; enter info into database; manage & staff MMS display; coordinate annual Virtual Stroll along Main Street on ZOOM.
We welcome program planners, writers, designers, researchers, and archivists as well as people who like to enter data, write press releases, manage projects, mount exhibits, fundraise…. The list is open-ended.
Complete the form below to let us know what you like to do and how much time you have available; we’ll contact you to explore ways you can get involved.
Time is passing. Reach out today.
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Share Your Stories & Memorabilia
“There’s always room for a story that can transport people to another place.” – J.K. Rowling,
When BBHS hosted a virtual Bradley Beach Grammar School Reunion for the classes of 1955 – 1959, everyone had a story to tell. Whether memories were about the annual trip to Washington, Friday night canteens, stick ball games in the playground on Saturday, or best advice from a favorite teacher, each story transported classmates back over 60 years to the Brinley Avenue school they had all attended as kids. Such stories keep the past alive, which is part of the reason BBHS exists.
Each BBHS project has a storytelling component.
- Volunteers who interview business owners for Mapping Main Street (MMS) often find family, friends or customers, who might recall Kil-ve, a treatment for head lice developed by the owner of Schwarz Drugs, or lining up for fresh rolls on Sundays at Master Bakers, or paying 9 cents to watch a double feature plus a newsreel and cartoons at the Palace on Saturday afternoons.
- Under the Boardwalk, Over the Moon: Love Stories from Bradley Beach celebrates sweet and salty young love and some summer romances that have led to long, happy marriages.
- Up Close and Personal preserves a record of daily life in Bradley Beach during the Covid 19 pandemic.
Please share your story.
Share Your Story Form
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