The JLMC is very fortunate to have the original Rumson Fire House at 55 Center Street as its home. In 1906, the firehouse was built as a commitment by the Volunteer Fire Company to protect and serve the residents of the town of Rumson, NJ. The hickory wood fire station originally held one horse drawn carriage. As the town grew, the fire company relocated in 1956, and the JLMC purchased the building for one dollar.
Back then, residents of the town traveled the roads in horse and buggy; the Navesink and Shrewsbury Rivers via steamboat. The hickory wood built fire station originally utilized one horse drawn carriage because this was the mainstay of fire fighting during the pre World War I period. It was several years later that two motorized fire fighting trucks would find a home in the strongly supported bays of the fire house. It was at that time that the first structural change was introduced to the building: the entrance located in the front of the fire station was moved to the side to accommodate the addition of garage doors necessary to conveniently use the new equipment.
As the years went on, the town of Rumson grew, the fire company relocated, and in 1970 the Junior League of Monmouth County took up residence at Fifty Five Center Street, the site of the original Rumson Fire House. The fire station now performed a different but important community function. It housed a diverse women's organization committed to promoting volunteerism, developing the potential of women and improving communities through effective action and leadership of trained volunteers. The League's purpose was and still is exclusively educational and charitable.
Fifty Five Center Street acts as a symbol of our mission and a reminder of our history. Preserving the League's Headquarters is crucially important to us as well as to our surrounding community. Beginning in 2000, as our building began to age and deteriorate efforts began to historically restore and preserve the building for our meetings, training sessions, and community functions. Over time the JLMC has undertaken significant and necessary improvements such as wood replacement, restoration of the original pressed tin ceilings and walls as well as the hardwood floors, chimney reconstruction, and replacement of the wood framed windows on the first floor of the building.
Fifty Five Center Street is a historically significant building with a long history of service to the community. We are honored to reside in such a building, and we as an organization remain steadfast in our commitment to restore and preserve not only the building but the service to the community that it represents.