SHREWSBURY - Former Mayor Donald Burden, president of the Shrewsbury Historic Society, was recently presented with the Historic Preservation Recognition Award of the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution. The honor was presented at a regular meeting of the Shrewsbury Historical Society, with members of the Shrewsbury Towne Chapter of the DAR in attendance for the presentation.
The award recognizes and honors an individual who has done recent remarkable volunteer work at the community level, including achievements in all areas of historic preservation, publication, preservation of properties and records as well as photography collections and service as a historical guide or interpreter.
In the congratulatory letter from the national society’s Recognition Committee, National Vice Chair Sally E. Patterson said Burden’s award was particularly significant and noteworthy not only for his work in history but also for the broad breadth of his accomplishments, not only in the historic field but in government, education,, scouting, and county volunteerism.
Patterson noted that “those of you who live in the center of the origins of America are blessed to have the opportunity to ensure history is preserved as well as taught truthfully. “Shrewsbury is especially blessed to be the beneficiary of the dedication of Mr. Burden.”
In nominating Burden for the national honor the officers of the Shrewsbury Towne Monmouth Chapter of the DAR said “Mayor Burden has accomplished more than any others in the historic preservation community,” citing numerous accomplishments from earning a degree in history and publishing several books,including his recent “Story of Shrewsbury Revisited, 1965-2015” highlighting the prominent citizens of Shrewsbury, he has also worked through civic service and volunteerism to preserve and educate the public on the importance of buildings, landmarks, manuscripts, maps and archival materials.
On the practical aide, the officers pointed out Burden also spearheaded a cosmetic renovation of the Historic Society‘s building, giving it a more esthetic atmosphere, improving indoor temperatures for every season and ensuring additional light installation for safety in addition to providing furniture, a podium, storage space and constant care of the building to ensure its continued improvements.
The nominating team also cited some of Burden’s accomplishments in civilian government, not only as Mayor for five years and a member of the Board of Education, but also has a member of the Shade Tree Commission, numerous governmental committees, and as township historian. For Monmouth County, he has served as a member of the Monmouth County Historical Commission as well as the Monmouth County Library Commission and was also chairman of the Two River Council of Mayors for three years, a council of all the mayors in the Two Rivers area. A published writer several times over, he has also been honored as co-author of the local Society’s publication which earned the Society a top award for Distinguished Achievement for the Publication of a Book by the state League of Historical Societies.
A graduate of Gettysburg College, Burden has received numerous awards as a member of the college’s Board of Trustees, and his continuing service to the college throughout the 55th years since he was graduated.