mcha allen 4th julyPHOTO:  Reading of the Declaration of Independence at MCHA's 4th of July Celebration.

SHREWSBURY – Gather with Monmouth County Historical Association for its historic celebration in honor of Independence Day with a public reading of the Declaration of Independence on Tuesday, July 4, at Allen House, 400 Sycamore Avenue, starting at 10 a.m.


Association President Linda Bricker will act as master of ceremonies. Mayor Donald W. Burden of Shrewsbury and Reverend Lisa Mitchell from Christ Church will also join in the festivities. The bells at Christ Church will ring in honor of the signing. Members of the public are invited to participate in reading parts of the Declaration. Shrewsbury Boy Scouts, along with their Troop Leader, will serve as color guard during the Pledge of Allegiance. Attendees will have the special opportunity to see one of the original copies of the Declaration, on loan to the MCHA from the archives of the Monmouth County Library in Manalapan for this day only.

Costumed interpreters will welcome guests and the Allen House will remain open for tours and visitors until noon. Cookies and lemonade will be served following the ceremony.

Attendees are welcome to bring lawn chairs. Parking is available in the Shrewsbury municipal parking lot across the street from the Allen House.

Allen House was initially built circa 1710 as a second residence for a wealthy merchant, his wife and eight children. By 1754, Josiah Halstead had purchased the property and transformed the home into the Blue Ball Tavern, “the most noted tavern in Shrewsbury.” Taverns served as community centers in the 18th century as well as places to drink and eat. Today, the house is furnished to reflect its early use as a tavern.

This free program is made possible in part by sponsorship from House Sotheby's International Realty.

Monmouth County Historical Association is a private non-profit organization that has been working to preserve history and provide educational opportunities since its founding in 1898. The Historical Association’s Museum and Library is located at 70 Court Street in Freehold. Museum hours are: Tuesdays - Saturdays 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Library is open Wednesdays through Saturdays. The Historic Houses are open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, from May 1 through September 30, 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. For further information about the Association, please call (732) 462-1466 or visit the web site at

Monmouth County Historical Association received an operating support grant from the New Jersey Historical Commission, a division of the Department of State.