The History of 199 Broad Street

Welcome to restoring 199 Broad Street.  The project began with a goal of taking an historic building in the heart of Red Bank, NJ and upgrading it to a modern office for my firm Smallwood Capital Management currently located in Shrewsbury, NJ.

My goal was to keep it’s historic charm.  As we began this process so many people said you should just level it and build a new building.  But I had a vision for its potential that I just couldn’t dismiss.   So I set out to assemble a team of professionals that shared my same interest.  It was not easy.  I think you will enjoy the transformation.  We hope to occupy the building in late 2014.

Smallwood Capital Management is a wealth management firm dedicated to providing financial guidance to individuals who are highly successful in their industry.  I have created a quick 3 minute video that discussed our approach to wealth management that you can watch here:http://www.smallwoodcapital.com/Home.aspx?

Enough of us and lets move onto to the building.  For the last 40 years the building was owned by Bernard Hoffman, Esq and occupied by his law firm Hoffman and Shreiber, PC.  They were considered one of the best firms in Monmouth County specializing in Divorce.  Follow this link to find out more about Bernard at http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/mycentraljersey/obituary.aspx?pid=167421183

As I began to remove some of the interior cover ups, I became very interested in the history of the building.  According to our records it was built in 1904 by George Sutton.   I went to the Monmouth County Hall of Records in Freehold, NJ to explore the tax records.

I was able to spend a few hours in the basement reviewing the historic tax record books dating back to 1910.  It was an amazing experience to see how these books were organized and maintained.  The early books were handwritten and then as technology advanced they transformed into preprinted books with handwritten entries and then online entries.   The method of organization changed numerous times up to about 1960.

I have not been able to find any meaningful information on George Sutton, but this was truly a special home that he built.  The woodwork, stained glass windows and many other features suggest that George was a prominent figure in the Red Bank community.  If you know the history or anything about the family I would love to know about it.

Over the next 30 years it appeared that the home stayed in the family shifting to various people with the last name Sutton until the 1950’s.  At this point the Monmouth County records are not clear.  My understanding is that building became a boarding house of sorts in the 1960’s.

In the late 1960’s Daniel O’Hern and Chester Apy owned the building for a few years before selling to it Bernard Hoffman in 1972.  He later served as an Associate Justice of the New Jersey Supreme Court, where he served from August 6, 1981 until his retirement upon his 70th birthday.[2]  I found a great post on Mr. O’Hern at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daniel_Joseph_O’Hern

If you know something unique about the building or its former owners or residents I want to know about it.

Enjoy the journey

 

John L. Smallwood

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