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Camera, No Trespassing Signs Coming to Lansdale Historical Society

Chief Robert McDyre told the public safety committee that measures need to be taken to protect the 'valuable' assets at the Jenkins Homestead on Jenkins Avenue

, the Lansdale Historical Society is getting some help from Lansdale Police and the borough public safety committee.

Lansdale Police Chief Robert McDyre told the committee last week that no trespassing signs and surveillance cameras will soon be installed at the homestead.

"I think the items are too valuable to suffer loss any further," McDyre said.

Lansdale Historical Society President Dick Shearer said he has been very appreciative of the increased surveillance that the borough has provided ever since the increase in vandalism, which has ranged from graffiti on a historic home to damaged shakes on the roof of an 18th-century spring house.

"I am very concerned about the situation down there. The situation within the neighborhood has deterioriated over the last few years," Shearer said.

, he said, is the only residential building that is on the National Register of Historic Places.

"Both the borough and the society have worked hand-in-hand for 40 years to upgrade it to make it the facility it is today," Shearer said.

Shearer told the public safety committee that he is disappointed to see the type of activity that goes on around the homestead and how quickly the problems have come upon the property in the last five years.

"Anything the council can do, the police can do or the people in the community can do to value this property and preserve it is extremely important," Shearer said. "I came to see you to thank you for your concern and thank you for your efforts." 

Public Safety Committee Chairman Mike Sobel told Shearer he came directly to the right person to help the society.

McDyre said that the property is open to the public, but the time has come to do something to prevent further vandalism and destruction of history.

"The property is so valuable and the items can't be replaced. We'll try with signs and the camera and keep scaling it up," McDyre said. "There are windows there from 1770 and they are irreplaceable. It's not worth the risk." 

Shearer said the initiatives are very good ideas.

"Our members talked about the idea of some type of surveillance there for a while, but it never escalated to the point where we pushed the issue," Shearer said. "Now that it will be monitored at the police station, because we don't have people there 24 hours a day, it will make a big difference." 

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