Clear Space: Please return 2005 Cottage Award medallion

Stolen off rare surviving example of beach bungalow at 413 Rehoboth Avenue
May 1, 2020

Story Location:
Joseph House
413 Rehoboth Avenue
Rehoboth Beach, DE 19971
United States

Clear Space Theatre Company is asking for the return of a Rehoboth Beach Main Street 2005 Cottage and Town Award medallion taken from a cottage at 413 Rehoboth Ave.

Clear Space Executive Director Wesley Paulson said he noticed it was missing April 27, roughly a week after he last knew the medallion was in place.

“I am disappointed someone has taken the medallion, since it is a part of the history of the house and likely as significant an artifact as the other items we would salvage,” said Paulson, in an email April 28.

The property is one of three consecutive lots – 413, 415 and 417 Rehoboth Ave. – recently purchased by the theater, which is planning to use them for a new facility.

As part of an environmental assessment required by the U.S. Department of Agriculture for a community facilities loan application, the structure at 413 was designated as a rare surviving example of a beach bungalow. The house at 415 Rehoboth Ave. did not receive the same designation.

The historical designation requires Clear Space to market the house. A public notice was issued in late March announcing the cottage was being offered for free to someone who wants to move it, in as-is condition. Paulson said there were more than a dozen inquiries, but no serious followup. He said the loan application is still under review; it’s unclear how much longer the wait will be before the house can be , COVID-19 has slowed the process down.

Paulson said the theater was planning to incorporate the medallion in a plaque memorializing the house. If demolition takes place, he said Clear Space also plans to repurpose some of the doors and fixtures.

Paulson said he would be happy if the medallion is returned. He said the medallion can be put back on the house, left in the theater’s mailbox at 20 Baltimore Ave., or dropped in the mail slot at 415 Rehoboth Ave.

“There will be no questions asked,” he said.

Subscribe to the Daily Newsletter