Estonian artefacts join Lakewood museum
Published in the Asbury Park Press : 07/01/2005
By RICHARD QUINN
TOMS RIVER BUREAU
LAKEWOOD, USA -- A used linen shirt, an orange wool skirt and a well-worn pair of leather shoes need some special qualities to be in a museum.
Oh, they're 216 years old? Yep, that'll do it.
And so the Lakewood Heritage Museum accepted a traditional folk costume from the Lakewood Estonian Association. Thursday in the first official partnership between the two groups.
Juhan Simonson of Lakewood, a current member and former president of the Estonian American National Council, said he wanted the museum to have an Estonian presence because his community has been prevalent in the township since World War II.
Estonian refugees came to Lakewood -- via New York City -- in the late 1940s and early 1950s. Many became hard labourers, as evidenced by the Estonian Lutheran Church built on E. Seventh Street in the 1960s.
The Lakewood Estonian Association will celebrate its 60th anniversary later this year in part by donating more artefacts to the museum.