The historical society recently launched a unique fundraiser
The opportunity to acquire authentic, full-sized street signs doesn’t come along every day.
So when Kara Hyde learned she could purchase a Lakeview Avenue sign from the Historical Society of Haddonfield, she jumped at the chance.
Hyde and her husband both grew up on the street, although the couple didn’t meet until a mutual friend connected them while they were both living in Manhattan years later.
“It has a lot of memories for my husband and I,” said Hyde, who moved back to Haddonfield in May. “It’s really neat.”
Hyde participated in a fundraiser recently launched by the historical society. For a minimum donation of $100, anyone can own a vintage Haddonfield street sign. All proceeds benefit the nonprofit society.
“It’s kind of a unique, one-time sort of thing,” said Doug Rauschenberger, the historical society’s board president. “Once these signs are gone, there are no more that we know of.”
As of last week, there were 28 signs left, and they’re flying off the shelves.
“We have sold quite a few of them,” Rauschenberger said. “People seem to be very interested in it.”
Rauschenberger said the historical society acquired the signs several years ago when the borough was in the process of replacing the older heavy metal signs with something reflective and more durable.
Most of the signs are at least 30 years old, and some are older, Rauschenberger said.
“The original thought was to do an exhibit, but that never happened,” he said.
So, with funding needed for repairs to the society’s headquarters, Greenfield Hall, which was built in 1841, the society decided to sell the signs to raise money.
“There’s always a need for funding,” Rauschenberger said. “This presents an opportunity.”
Rauschenberger said the historical society even got the borough’s blessing to hold the fundraiser.
At first, the effort started by word-of-mouth, with representatives from the historical society contacting folks who may have been interested in the signs. Then, the society spread news of the fundraiser by putting information on its website and social media channels.
So far, most of the buyers have been residents or former residents with an association to a particular street, Rauschenberger said.
Hyde and her husband have fond memories of growing up on Lakeview Avenue and exploring wooded areas nearby.
“The street name is Lakeview, but there’s no lake,” Hyde said. “It’s just a really nice street — quiet, kind of tucked away.”
Hyde said she plans to hang the sign in the garage of the family’s shore house in Ocean City.
Specific streets and quantities are limited. For more information on the fundraiser, contact society trustee Karynna Baresel at firstname.lastname@example.org call the historical society at (856) 429–7375.