Netherwood Station

Netherwood Station, yo.

The city of Plainfield is served by not one, but two train stations! I’ve shown you one (Plainfield Station), so here’s the other one: Netherwood Station. It’s another station on the Raritan Valley Line (which is the present incarnation of the Central Railroad of New Jersey.)

According to a plaque on the side of the station, “the station takes its name from a once fashionable area of Plainfield so named by the longtime C.N.J. [Central Railroad of New Jersey] president, John Taylor Johnston, after his mansion ‘Netherwood’ located nearby” (which to me translates as “Netherwood The Neighborhood was named after this dude’s private mansion”), but online resources ([1], [2]) suggest that the Netherwood neighborhood was in fact named for the Netherwood Hotel (built 1878, demolished 1918).

Regarding the history of the station itself, nobody seems to know any specifics. The aforementioned plaque, for example, attributes the station design to “possibly… Bruce Price or Frank B. Bodine… based on stylistic analysis.” Its construction was probably “after the year 1887.”

Apparently, Netherwood Station was originally a Victorian monsterpiece…
Netherwood Station, original Victorian splendor, date unknown

…but it was destroyed by a fire and replaced by its current “stone structure of more modest proportions.” (I don’t have the dates for any of this.)
Netherwood Station, date unknown

It’s been called a blend of Richardsonian Romanesque and Queen Anne styles, but if you know what that means, you probably already knew that from lookin’ at the pictures.

Apparently, the fate of the station was briefly threatened in 1962 when the CNJ proposed closing both Plainfield and Netherwood stations, and building a new station with more parking in between the two. But the City of Plainfield was like “f*ck that” and so it never happened.

To continue ensuring the existence of these stations, they were both added to BOTH the National and NJ Registers of Historic Places in 1984.

This concludes everything I know about Netherwood Station.

 

References:

Grady, J. and Pollard, D. (2008). Plainfield New Jersey’s History and Architecture. Schiffer Publishing Ltd.: Atglen, PA. ISBN 0764329154.

National Registers of Historic Places. (n.d.) “Netherwood Station.” Sponsored by NJ Transit. (Sign marker.) Documented May 2012.

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3 Responses to “Netherwood Station”

  1. Great post! Thanks for sharing the history (always my fav part of your posts). I need to start showing my husband your posts… he is a history nerd and loves stories attached to buildings, etc… great photograph and great post!

  2. Hi, just came across this. Thanks for linking to our Netherwood Heights Neighbors site!

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