John Noble Pierson & Sons

Isaac Kremer/ October 1, 2021/ preservation, Writing/ 2 comments

John Noble Pierson (1855-1930) was an accomplished terra cotta modeler and architect. He attended the Cooper Institute, the Boston school of Art and the Boston School of Sculpture.

Museum of Fine Arts, Copley Square, Boston, Massachusetts.

The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston was founded in 1870 and initially located on the top floor of the Boston Athenaeum. In 1876 the museum moved into a Gothic Revival building by John Hubbard Sturgis and Charles Brigham in Copley Square at Dartmouth and St. James Streets. This brick building had terracotta imported from England. John Sturgis oversaw the architectural program. MFA continued to operate here until 1907.  The Copley Plaza Hotel replaced it in 1912.[1]

John Noble Pierson was in Indianapolis around 1883. The Indianapolis Journal reported a lecture given at the Indianapolis Seminary by Joseph Joiner, superintendent of the Indianapolis Terra Cotta Works.  Pierson who was identified as “sculptor at the terra cotta-works” showed illustrations of “The history of ancient pottery was traced down to the Christian era.”[2] Pierson’s eldest son Truman Tertius Pierson was born in Indianapolis October 12, 1884.

Next the young family relocated to Chicago that was undergoing a boom of construction following the disastrous fire years prior. While in Chicago John Noble Pierson supervised the designing of the Phoenix Insurance Company building and the Chicago Art Institute with Burnham and Root.[3]  These two buildings were so important to him, in fact, that they were referred to in his April 4, 1930 obituary.[4]

Phoenix Building, Jackson Boulevard between LaSalle St and Clark St, Chicago, Illinois, 1887.

Designed by Burnham & Root, with staff supervision by John N. Pierson, the Phoenix Office Building had a structural steel frame and was advertised as “absolutely fireproof.” This claim was supported by an innovative technique of wrapping the steel in terra cotta. The Northwest Terra-Cotta Company of Chicago was responsible for producing the terra cotta in this building. The structural system was a “rail and concrete foundation” similar to that used in the Rialto and Rookery buildings.[5]

Detail of Phoenix Office Building[6]

Art Institute of Chicago (later Chicago Club), 400 South Michigan Ave at Van Buren

The Art Institute of Chicago was designed by Burnham & Root, with staff supervision by John N. Pierson. When the Institute moved across the street in 1892, it was bought by the Chicago Club as their fourth clubhouse and served as that until it collapsed during remodeling in the 1920s. A new building was constructed on the site in 1929, designed by Granger and Bollenbacher, and the Burham & Root triple-arched entrance was retained, but moved around the corner, to 81 East Van Buren Street.[7] Subsequently Pierson oversaw construction of schools and other buildings in New Jersey, Connecticut and other states. [8] 

John Noble Pierson’s second son, Aylin Pierson (1886-1955), was born January 6, 1886 in Chicago. Six months after Aylin was born the family moved to Metuchen, home of their mother Lucy Clara Kempson (1855-1897) where she once had lived. John Noble Pierson kept his architectural skills active. “When he came East (Pierson) worked in association with other architects in and around Perth Amboy.”[9]

There were still Kempson family members in Metuchen, including St. George Kempson (1858-1907) who continued to live in the family home on Woodbridge Ave at a location called “Daniels Hill.” St. George and his wife Amy were recorded as living there in the 1900 US Census.[10] This is where the story takes a detour to better understand Saint George Kempson, his relation to Pierson, and the connection through his first wife Helen A. Hall (1881-1936) to the Perth Amboy Terra Cotta Company of which Pierson served as a modeler.

St. George Kempson was a politician and editor of the Middlesex County Democrat of Perth Amboy. One story illustrates his character and the complex relationship with John Noble Pierson, his brother-in-law. While in Rahway for a hearing that had been demanded for a charge of a breach of the peace, Kempson quarreled with his brother-in-law John Noble Pierson on the depot platform. “Pierson, it is alleged, struck Editor Kempson on the nose, sending the blood streaming from that organ over his face.” Officer Ayers separated the men, and Kempson called on the policeman to lock Pierson up, saying he wanted to charge him for assault and battery. When the officer advised Kempson to let the matter drop he persisted, and called on the officer to do his job. Pierson made a counter charge. Getting frustrated with the whole situation, Policeman Ayers took both men to the station house and locked them in separate cells and sent for Police Justice Frazee to take Mr. Kempson’s complaint. The justice was aroused from bed and made his way to the police station, but when he got their neither man made any charge. This angered the justice, who ordered Officer Ayers to make a complaint against both men for breach of peace. Pierson promptly pleaded guilty, paid his fee, and was discharged. Editor Kempson refused to pay and demanded a hearing. He gave bonds for his appearance and was released. At the hearing he was sentenced to pay a fine and costs.[11]

Two years later Lucy Clara Kempson, the wife of John Noble Pierson, died on April 28, 1897, at the age of 42.[12] Following the death of his wife the three daughters in Pierson’s custody were placed in the Christ Church Home in South Amboy, New Jersey. Amy (age 4), Esther (age 7), and Norma Pierson (age 9) are listed as living there in the June 1900 US Census. Amy would go on to be a physiotherapist in Walter Reed Hospital during World War I, and later at the Akron City Hospital in the 1920s.[13] Her marriage was announced by her brother Aylin Pierson in October 1930. Esther married Nelson Rorary, a teacher, and they lived at 16 Graham Ave in Metuchen.[14]

US Census of 1900, showing John Noble Pierson living with his sons Truman and Aylin on Elm Ave.

The 1900 US Census showed John Pierson and his sons Truman and Aylin as the only family and people living on Elm Ave. Looking back at the 1876 Atlas, there also was only one house on Elm Ave, this one at the location of 32 Elm Ave and labeled “Estate of W. Robins.” This title is problematic for Wright Robins would not die himself until 1882. Most likely is that this was part of the estate of Captain Nathan Robins (1782-1858) that his son Wright Robins was responsible for administering.

After having two sons and four daughters together, the death of Lucy Clara Pierson on April 28, 1897 was surely a setback of the Pierson family. The two oldest sons – Truman and Aylin – proceeded with their rise into positions of importance. Truman became justice of the peace and later postmaster of Metuchen, a Republican committee member for Middlesex County, and active in local politics. His primary occupation was selling insurance, though he also dabbled in real estate.

Truman T. Pierson building, 397 Main Street (center)

Truman is associated with the building at 397 Main Street where he both lived and had his offices for a period of time. [15] While one could easily write extensively about both brothers, the output of Aylin Pierson could easily fill a book, whereas Truman T. Pierson during his time in Metuchen might make a very full chapter. We will seek to capture the key points of Truman’s time in Metuchen.

Briefly on John Noble Pierson, he would live until the age of 75. Pierson died April 3, 1930. His funeral was held a few days later at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church and he was buried at Hillside Cemetery in Metuchen. Interestingly his wife whom predeceased him, Lucy Kempson has a headstone beside her father and step-mother at the Presbyterian Church cemetery on Woodbridge Ave only a few blocks away from her family home. Pierson’s obituary recounts his distinguished career. As for his prolific output as an artist and architect, that will have to await a more fuller treatment.

Truman T. Pierson

Truman T. Pierson in Metuchen

Truman T. Pierson started simply enough as a newsboy in Metuchen during the Spanish-American War in 1898, then became a messenger. Later he moved to Brooklyn for a brief time before returning to Metuchen in 1903 when his upward trajectory rapidly started. He was associated with the New Brunswick Business College in February 1904.[16] While associated with the college he took a position as clerk in the Middlesex Water Company in February 1904 as a stenographer and bookkeeper.[17] He rose to assistant superintendent under Robert M. Kellogg. Around this time he took an interest in politics “with the vigor of an old campaigner” as one newspaper account mentioned (The Courier-News, November 11, 1908). He was also a newspaper correspondent and a reporter for the New Brunswick Home News.

Major life events came quickly in this year between February 1904 and February 1905. He met Edna M. Bennett while in Asbury Park, and the two became engaged. The engagement was announced August 22, 1904.[18] Edna Bennett was referred to as “one of the popular and pretty young ladies of Asbury Park and Ocean Grove.” And as “a talented young member of society, well known for her musical ability.” Pierson, on the other hand, was referred to as “a well known young journalist of Middlesex county.” It was explained they met when he abandoned a trip to Indianapolis and St. Louis and came to Asbury Park for his vacation. “The result is that the engagement is announced.” [19] They married February 12, 1905, at St. Jude’s Episcopal Church in Brooklyn. Rev. C.M. Dunham, former pastor of St. Luke’s Church in Metuchen was officiant. The ceremony was performed “in the presence of relatives of the couple.”[20]  Another article recounted how “The ceremony will be performed in the presence of near relatives of the couple and will be a quiet affair.”[21]

Pierson and Bennett wed on Valentine’s Day, February 14, 1905. The wedding party included the bride’s uncle George W. Matthews of Asbury Park. Her attendant was Miss Sadie L. Bennett of Metuchen as maid of honor. The best man was Aylin Pierson, brother of the bridegroom. Following the wedding Mr. and Mrs. Pierson will reside in Metuchen “where Mr. Pierson is connected with the Middlesex Water Company and is also engaged in journalistic work.”[22] Truman Pierson’s new wife was confirmed into the Episcopal Church by Bishop John Scarborough on April 21, 1905.[23]

Returning to affairs relating to the development of the Borough of Metuchen – when the Metuchen National Bank opened for business the first time on May 23, 1905, the first deposit was made by Truman Pierson. The charter for the bank had been granted under a new law relating to national banks.[24] A few short months later in July 1905 discussion began on building a new and more permanent building. “The Metuchen National Bank is doing a very good business and the stockholders and officials are well pleased with the outlook for the future.” Samples of marble and stone were delivered in July 1905 for exhibition prior to construction of new bank building.[25] Truman’s father John Noble Pierson was the architect responsible for building this new structure along with his son Aylin, also an architect.

1905 New Jersey Census showing Truman and his wife Edna living on Main Street in Metuchen.

Truman T. Pierson who was operating a real estate agency leased the Vorhees building on Main Street (today 410 Main St) adjoining the Metuchen National Bank property. The Middlesex Water Company took on a three-year lease to occupy the space as an office.[26] Their initial lease was subsequently extended, for the 1910 Sanborn map clearly shows the office still there at this location. Despite alterations, some of the historic building fabric of the earlier frame building remains buried deep within the walls of the current building today.

1910 Sanborn Fire Insurance Map. Red outline is Middlesex Water Company office, blue outline is Truman T. Pierson office for his insurance company, purple outline is the Truman T. Pierson Building where he one-time resided and his offices later moved, and green is the Post Office when Pierson served as postmaster.

Very early on Truman showed aptitude for politics. At the age of 21 he was named the youngest Justice of the Peace in New Jersey. This spoke to how highly he was thought of by voters in the Borough. Metuchen also went from having the oldest Justice of the Peace in New Jersey to the youngest, speaking to a generational shift underway.[27] He was elected November 7, 1905 on the Republican ticket to fill that role after the previous Justice of the Peace J.K. Moss died in office. [28]

Pierson and his wife had a new daughter born at their home in July 1906.[29] Following birth of his daughter Pierson was engaged in a campaign for postmaster. The Democrat-run Metuchen Recorder had several anonymous articles with criticisms of Truman’s roles as a reporter for the rival New Brunswick Home News. Interstingly, Pierson’s uncle St. George Kempson (brother of Pierson’s mother Lucy Kempson) had been associated with the Metuchen Recorder and died one year later in 1907. Truman defended his participation with that paper, the Water Company, and his real estate and insurance business. He then issued an extraordinary statement about his independence.

“Regarding my being a tool for any man or corporation I beg to state openly that I am under no man’s thumb, nor will I ever be crushed under any man’s heel. I am my own boss and have a reputation in Metuchen which is good, and will stay good whether I win or lose at the polls, regardless of charges inspired by jealousy of the meanenst kind and hatred of a few who sought to reach the front and failed.” [30]

The controversy served one important purpose for posterity, providing an impressive list of the civic groups that Pierson was involved with at the time:

  • F. & A. M., Met Zion Lodge
  • Trustee of the Jr. O.U.A.M., Metuchen Council
  • Member of the Metuchen Woodmen
  • Secretary of the Hook and Ladder Co.
  • Member of the Metuchen Club
  • Member of the Library Association
  • Member of the Borough Improvement League

This led the editor to conclude, “In a word he is one of Metuchen’s most honored and most useful men.”[31]

There was some controversy on election day in 1906 when Pierson “was cut election day by nearly sixty of his fellow republicans.” The article went on to describe a deal “on which was gotten up by certain Fordyce men, and their work was so dirty that it is a stench to respectable citizens of either party.” In a remarkable turn the article described how people worked to vote against their own party and for the Democrat instead. Then when it came time to name “The most contemptible traitor of the lot” the article omitted naming names and only gave two lines to signify where the name should go. In its place only clues are given such as it was a male who hadn’t lived in Metuchen a long time, and was aligned with a “Reform-Traitor Republican movement.”[32]

In December 1906 it was announced that Edward Burroughs, who had served as postmaster at Metuchen for the past five years, intended to soon resign. Following his resignation it was up to the bondsmen of Mr. Burroughs, who were William McAdams, E.J. Drake and John N. Connor, who along with Republican county chairman, R.H. Wilson, to represent Metuchen in the county committee. This group was reported to be “likely to favor Mr. Pierson.”[33]

On December 29, 1906, Truman T. Pierson was appointed postmaster for Metuchen[34] to succeed Edward Burroughs in January 1907 at a salary of $1,700 annually.[35] And while Postmaster he was elected Republican county committeeman. As his responsibilities mounted, on June 1, 1907, Truman resigned his position with the Middlesex Water Company. This allowed him to “devote his entire time to his duties as postmaster and to his real estate business.”[36]

Advertisement for the Truman T. Pierson Company, April 1911.[37]

Truman T. Pierson had a very high visibility office that occupied the south half of the Metuchen National Bank building, where the Optique Unique business is located today. Originally the building had a central entrance with small vestibule opening to storefronts on either side, and a staircase leading to the upper floor. Later this was reconfigured to have a deeper vestible and a new staircase on the south wall of the building leading to the upper floors. An advertisement for “The Truman T. Pierson Co.” in The Sun from 1911 clearly showed the building and original office orientation and entrance. The visit of former U.S. Senator John Kean to Pierson’s office gave a description of the look and feel of the office: “Real Estate Agent Truman T. Pierson has many callers at his office, it being the centre for much political gossip of the borough and county, also the next thing to a headquarters for a board of trade.” That same article alluded to Pierson’s prowess with real estate sales – referring to him as “proprietor of ‘The Million Dollar Agency’.”[38] 

It was at Pierson’s office that Republican John Franklin Fort addressed the public while campaigning for Governor of New Jersey. An article recounting the event stated “At Metuchen was a platform for Mr. Fort to speak from, on the porch of Postmaster Truman Pierson’s real estate agency.” In his brief speech he made reference to the settings, particularly Robins Hall across the street. “I have spoken here before in that hall across the street… I am running for Governor. I want to be elected and believe I will be elected” (The Central New Jersey Home News, October 10, 1907). Ultimately he prevailed and served as Governor from 1908 to 1911.

Pierson’s accomplishments as postmaster were many. In 1907 he was elected as Vice President of the National Association of Postmasters (The Central New Jersey Home News, October 24, 1907). He grew revenues in 1908 to more than $5,000, making it possible for Congress to amend the present section of postal laws giving Metuchen carrier service. He mentioned at this time “I intend going to Washington next week in the interest of the rural delivery service. After several months of hard work, I have laid out the entire township of Raritan so that nearly every resident will have his mail delivered at his door. In order to properly serve the borough of Metuchen and the township of Raritan, we will have to have at least five carriers and an additional clerk in the post-office. I do not know whether all my pains will be carried out, but if they are, our office will be transformed completely.”[39]

US Census, 1910, showing Truman Pierson, his wife Edna, and daughter Muriel living on Hanson Avenue in Metuchen.
Sanborn Fire Insurance Map, 1920, Sheet 7

With the stipend as postmaster and proceeds from his other businesses, Pierson and his family moved from their building at 397 Main Street to a house on Hanson Ave by 1910. A little detective work helps to locate the house that Pierson and his family resided in. The Sanborn Fire Insurance Map from 1910 does not extend out far enough to show that area, however, the 1920 Sanborn Fire Insurance map does. And, even though Pierson and his family had already left Metuchen by then, one can ascertain the location of their house by observing several important facts. First, is a house located facing Hanson Ave, the street on which the 1910 US Census said the family resided. Second, is the presence of a 2-story outbuilding or stables, the only house on Hanson Ave to have this feature. As a careful reader will note this barn factored prominently in agricultural activities undertaken by Pierson. A caretaker cottage is just north of that and a caretaker was also referenced in relation to the stable in newspaper articles. Finally, and most interestingly, when an axis is drawn from present-day Pierson Avenue to the south, this intersects very near the house at Pierson Ave and Hanson Ave. While development of Redfield Village in intervening years erased portions of this street, the geometry points to this being the location where Truman T. Pierson and his family resided during the most prosperous and challenging time in Metuchen, when Pierson reached his peak of influence before leaving Metuchen a handful of years later.

Pierson had his appointment as U.S. Postmaster renewed for a second term under President Taft, though he ultimately declined the appointment clearing the way for Howard I. Campbell. The transition was a peaceable one, despite the fact that Pierson had beaten Campbell twice previously for the same office. There was a suggestion in the article about Pierson’s recent campaign for county committeeman, and how “Influences from outside the borough were at work to defeat Pierson because he has always been an organization man.”[40]

A happy diversion to the Pierson story occurred on August 5, 1911, when aviators Charles K. Hamilton, Lincoln Beachey, and Hugh Robinson flew over Metuchen in Curtiss biplanes. The article suggested a good place to watch the flyover would be “the big yard adjoining the Pierson Building and the Lyric Theatre” (The Central New Jersey Home News, August 4, 1911). Indeed, as the airplanes approached, bulletins were provided within the Lyric Theater through a “special arrangement with the New York Herald and the New York World, local people were kept informed right up until the time the airships had passed over the town” (The Central New Jersey Home News, August 7, 1911). [41] While this might have been very well a highlight for Pierson, just over a month later his fortunes changed around the 1911 special election.

During the special election on September 12, 1911 in which Commission government for the Borough was on the ballot, Truman T. Pierson got into a conflict with ex-Chief of Police John T. Gedney. The two got into a tussle on Main Street, “during which several blows were struck.” Pierson made an atrocious assault charge against Gedney.[42] Later, Pierson made formal charges against Enos Fouratt, Borough Marshal. A statement was made that on September 8, just before the special election, while Pierson and his wife were heading to their office in the Metuchen Bank building, in the vestibule on the way to his office where “Enos Fouratt was standing in the doorway of the said bank building in uniform on duty, and was in a state of intoxication, so much so that upon leaving the building and passing out the door he fell on the sidewalk.” That day Pierson claimed “in the presence of my wife, he used vile, profane and indecent language.” A few days later Fouratt “publicly threatened that if he met me the next day he would lay my head open with his club.” Finally, on election day after Pierson was assaulted by John T. Gedney who “knocked me about the head and eyes fully nine times,” Fouratt made no attempt to arrest Gedney. Next, Pierson claimed that Fouratt “holding his club in his hand, grabbed me by the arm, saying and cursing me, ‘If you don’t keep your mouth closed, I will put you down; I will put you out you bastard.’”[43]

In a packed standing-room only common council meeting at Robins’ Hall charges Pierson made against Marshal Enos Fouratt were heard. Each of the charges were refuted and Fouratt was found not guilty. Then serving Mayor Wilson and his supporters claimed that Pierson’s allegations were hatched for political purposes “since Mr. Wilson is the Republican candidate for reelection and Mr. Pierson is working hand and glove with his opponents to bring about his defeat.”[44] Pierson was not satisfied with the resolution and continued to pursue his case to the Supreme Court.[45]

Pierson’s troubles continued to pile up. In April 1912, Pierson field a lawsuit to recover the value of a much-prized Irish setter that had been poisoned.[46] Despite political and personal setbacks, business appeared to be proceeding apace in June 1912. An announcement was made about election of officers for the Cozy Homes Company of Metuchen. Truman T. Pierson was elected President; Charles A. Sibley as Vice-President; and William R. Bayes as Secretary and Treasurer. A large tract was reportedly purchased where “Six houses will be built at once.”[47]

Pierson was chairman of the Roosevelt Campaign Committee for the Bull Moose Party.[48] That did not prevent him from supporting Democrats. They had their headquarters in his building during the 1912 election.[49] Pierson participated in a rally of Prohibition Party in October 1912.[50] Clearly his support of the three parties was a strategy to counter the then Republican mayor of Metuchen and others in his party. This of course is ironic given Pierson’s appointment as Postmaster by a former Republican US President and his role as committeeman for the Middlesex County Republican Party.

Much was happening for Pierson in the later part of 1912. “A moving picture show is to open on Saturday in Postmaster Pierson’s building, near the post office. Entertainments are to be given evenings and matinees on Saturday.” On and after December 1, 1912, Truman T. Pierson, John Noble Pierson & Son, and a number of others moved offices from 406 Main Street to 397 Main Street.

From Perth Amboy Evening News, December 3, 1912.

Politics became very personal in 1914 when a horse Pierson owned was let out of his stable to suffer and succumb to the winter cold.

“I am at a loss to understand how anybody, no matter what his feeling against an individual, could make a poor dumb beast suffer to gratify desire to work out a spite. As to who perpetrated this latest outrage I am not prepared to say until after the police finish their investigation, and as to the motive of the guilty person or persons I do not care to say. This is only one of a long chain of undeserved mean acts. Threats have been made and were made three years ago to drive Truman Pierson out of business and out of town. Actually efforts were made to take the very roof from over the head of wife and child. Once I was warned that my barn would be in ashes. If it was generally known exactly what I have been up against I believe there would be some big surprises. I don’t care for the threats. I can even stand the uninterrupted string of petty indignities, but this latest is too much. But as to my future I cannot make it too clear that I will remain in business and in this town which I have done so much for in spite of everything and everybody. I will not be driven out and while I have a breath left I am going to stick.”[51]

Two years later he was living in Plainfield where he was “Notary Public” and “Commissioner of Deeds.”[52] With the onset of World War I he relocated to Quincy, Illinois, where he worked with the Chamber of Commerce there. This led to an interest in roads. Pierson was instrumental in promoting the Mississippi River Scenic Byway together with his brother Aylin, an architect, between 1920 and 1926. This was a smaller part of a $100 million scheme for good roads. Truman Pierson later in his life served as deputy assessor for the city of Minneapolis and in 1958 retired from the Minneapolis Post Office. He unsuccessfully ran for public office. Pierson helped found Allied Cat Lovers International in 1938 and served as its president before it merged with the International Human Education Foundation. He was an officer of the Mississippi River Scenic Highway Foundation, the International Human Education Foundation and the Minnesota Grand Jurors. He died May 8, 1967 in Minneapolis at 82 years old.[53] Truman Tertius Pierson truly had a distinguished life and proved to be a formidable figure in the first decades of the 20th century helping to form Metuchen as we know it today. Without him we might not have mail delivery, several handsome buildings, and civic institutions that have persisted from these early years.

Note: This article was updated to reflect some factual information related to the death of Lucy Clara Kempson in 1897 and not in 1896 as originally written (Isaac Kremer, January 21, 2023).

[1] Museum of Fine Arts, Boston – Wikipedia

[2] The City in Brief, Indianapolis Journal, September 20, 1883, p. 2.

[3] John N. Pierson Dies, Metuchen, The Courier-News, April 4, 1930, p. 1.

[4] Noteworthy is that the architects he worked with were not named by name, but rather by their reputation.

[5] Inland Architect and news record, 1887, p. 146. The Inland architect and news record : Free Download, Borrow, and Streaming : Internet Archive

[6] Inland Architect and news record, 1887, p. 146. The Inland architect and news record : Free Download, Borrow, and Streaming : Internet Archive

[7] “About the Club” on the Chicago Club website, last accessed April 28, 2021.

[8] John N. Pierson Dies, Metuchen, The Courier-News, April 4, 1930, p. 1.

[9] Pierson Rites Set Tomorrow, Metuchen Recorder, July 28, 1955, p. 1.

[10] – 1900 United States Federal Census

[11] Blood Was Spilt, Climax of the Difficulty Between Editor Kempson and His Brother-in-Law, September 28, 1895.

[12] Kempson-Pierson, May 1, 1897.

[13] Wedding Announced, The Akron Beacon Journal (Akron, Ohio), October 11, 1930, p. 7.

[14] – U.S., City Directories, 1822-1995, Metuchen City Directory, R.L. Polk & Co., 1937-1938.

[15] Truman Pierson Making Gallant Fight in Metuchen, The Central New Jersey Home News, p. 8.

[16] Personals, The Central New Jersey Home News, February 26, 1904, p. 1.

[17] Personals, The Central New Jersey Home News, February 26, 1904, p. 1.

[18] Engagement Announced, Asbury Park Press, August 22, 1904, p. 1.

[19] Personals, The Central New Jersey Home News, February 26, 1904, p. 1.

[20] Personals, The Central New Jersey Home News, February 10, 1905, p. 1.

[21] To Wed Tomorrow, Asbury Park Press, February 11, 1905, p. 1.

[22] Miss Bennett Weds Young Journalist, The Central New Jersey Home News, February 13, 1905, p. 1.

[23] Metuchen, The Central New Jersey Home News, April 21, 1905, p. 7.

[24] Metuchen Bank Opens for Business, The Central New Jersey Home News, May 24, 1905, p. 1.

[25] Metuchen Bank Talks of New Building, The Courier-News, July 18, 1905, p. 8.

[26] Metuchen, The Central New Jersey Home News, September 7, 1905, p. 1.

[27] 21 Year Old Justice of the Peace, The Central New Jersey Home News, November 29, 1905, p. 1.

[28] 21 Year Old Justice of the Peace, The Central New Jersey Home News, November 29, 1905.

[29] Metuchen, The Central New Jersey Home News, July 9, 1906, p. 6.

[30] Truman Pierson Making Gallant Fight in Metuchen, The Central New Jersey Home News, p. 8.

[31] Truman Pierson Making Gallant Fight in Metuchen, The Central New Jersey Home News, p. 8.

[32] Metuchen Reformers Show Up, The Central New Jersey Home News, November 17, 1906, p. 4.

[33] Metuchen’s P.M. to Resign, The Central New Jersey Home News, December 21, 1906, p. 1.

[34] Truman Pierson is Metuchen’s Postmaster, December 29, 1906.

[35] The Courier-News, January 3, 1907

[36] The Central New Jersey Home News, May 1, 1907-

[37] The Sun, April 2, 1911, p. 41

[38] Perth Amboy Evening News, August 4, 1911.

[39] The Central New Jersey Home News, March 30, 1908.

[40] The Central New Jersey Home News, April 3, 1911.

[41] The Central New Jersey Home News, August 4, 1911.

[42] Pierson and Gendey in a Little Mix-Up, The Central New Jersey Home News, September 13, 1911, p. 1.

[43] Make Charges in Metuchen, Perth Amboy Evening News, October 3, 1911, p. 7.

[44] Find Fouratt is Not Guilty, Perth Amboy Evening News, November 4, 1911, p. 3.

[45] Metuchen Case Off for the Term, The Central New Jersey Home News, January 2, 1912, p. 2.

[46] Seeking Poisoners of Metuchen Dogs, The Central New Jersey Home News, April 15, 1912, p. 8.

[47] To Build at Metuchen, The Courier-News, June 24, 1912, p. 1.

[48] Roosevelt Man Cut; Assailant Arrested, The Morning Post (Camden, New Jersey), May 29, 1912, p. 10.

[49] Prohibition to Raise Banner, Perth Amboy Evening News, October 9, 1912, p. 2.

[50] Perth Amboy Evening News, October 11, 1912, p. 1.

[51] Pierson Stable Entered; Horse Sent Out to Die, The Central New Jersey Home News, February 27, 1914, p. 18.

[52] Advertisement, The Courier-News, February 1, 1916, p. 7.

[53] Truman T. Pierson, May 10, 1967.

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About Isaac Kremer

A nationally recognized downtown revitalization leader, downtowns Isaac managed achieved $350 million of investment, 1,300 jobs created, and were 2X Great American Main Street Award Semifinalist and a 1X GAMSA winner in 2023. His work has been featured in Newsday, NJBIZ, ROI-NJ, TapInto, and USA Today. Isaac is a Main Street America Revitalization Professional (MSARP) with additional certifications from the National Parks Service, Project for Public Spaces, and the National Development Council.


  1. Thank you for your work! I am a historian working on the history of the Port Arthur to Port Arthur Scenic Highway (now parts of it are known as the [Mississippi River] Great River Road) and the man behind the project – Truman T. Pierson.

    I noted your commentary: “Following the death of his wife on April 28, 1896 in Metuchen, a few months after the fourth daughter Amie Victorian Pierson (1895-1958) was born, ” In fact, Lucy died on April 28, 1897 after the April 14, 1897 birth of their son George Alden Pierson. The Philiadelphia Times reported her death on May 1, 1897.

    thanks for your citations as well … they are certainly a help in my research!

    1. Appreciated. I’ll be sending you an email with additional materials. I continue to be very interested in Truman Pierson and would like to encourage others with a similar interest.

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