Posts tagged ‘architecture’

May 27, 2013

Still here

Inside the casino, gosh

As promised, the inside of the Asbury Park casino was cleared out and reopened as a pedestrian throughway in time for Memorial Day.

May 15, 2013

North End

Ocean Grove North End Pavilion, May 2013

Depending on your source, the North End Pavilion may or may not be a remnant of Ocean Grove’s 1911 North End Hotel complex.

North End Hotel, Ocean Grove

North End Hotel. Image from the Ocean Grove Historical Society.

In 1938, the hotel suffered a brutal fire, and its pier was swept away by a winter storm, but the overall structure kept standing… until it was demolished in 1978.

I don’t know whether the remaining North End Pavilion structure (such as it is, after Sandy; until now, it’s always held a variety of quaint beach shops) is a recreation of the original North End Hotel, or a façade of the original. Any shore residents want to weigh in on this?


EDIT: My dad posited that this is definitely the original structure because it looks like the original. But I’ve seen cases where replicas and homages of historic buildings are erected after the original is no longer there, and I was skeptical. I did a little extra digging, though; turns out he’s right. There are some photos of the 1978 demolition on Blogfinger that show how they carefully preserved this one little section of the complex.

According to that same link (Blogfinger is a great resource for all things Ocean Grove; it’s like NPDP but way better), after the North End Hotel was torn down, the site was slated to be turned into a retirement community. Never happened, though.


P.S. The top photo also shows off Ocean Grove’s brand-new asphalt walkway. Ooh la la.

May 6, 2013

Arcanum Hall

Westfield's Arcanum Hall (during the 2013 Spring Fling)

I have a bunch of piecemeal sources that I’ve tried to assemble into a linear history, but I’m not 100% sure of any of this, so please correct me if you know I’m wrong.

Arcanum Hall is a neat little copper-domed building in downtown Westfield on the corner of Elm and East Broad Street. It’s been there for at least a hundred years or so.

Arcanum Hall, c. 1906

Arcanum Hall, c. 1906. (From Lipson 1996, p.100.)

It’s called “Arcanum Hall” ‘cos it was built by “the Fireside Council #715 of Royal Arcanum,” which was the local chapter of a fraternity kind of like the Masons. Initially, apparently the original Arcanum Hall was a block away on a different corner (Prospect and East Broad), but that building burned down in 1892. And so the Royal Arcanum rebuilt the current hall in its current location shortly afterwards.

At the moment, the ground floor is home to Sole Italian shoes.


Fuzy III, F.A. (2011?). “The history of Westfield; Westfield historical information; Interesting facts.” Tamaques Elementary.

Lipson, S.H. (1996). Images of America: Westfield: The Golden Age of Postcards. Arcadia Publishing: Dover, NH. ISBN 0752404067.

Philhower, C.A. (1923). History of Town of Westfield. Lewis Historical Publishing Company: New York.

Ricord, F.W. (1897, reprint 2001). History of Union County, New Jersey, Volume 1. East Jersey History Co.: Newark, NJ; reprint: Heritage Books, Inc.: Bowie, MD. Google book.

April 28, 2013

Greenwood Gardens

Greenwood Gardens: The reflecting pool terrace (minus a reflecting pool, currently)

Greenwood Gardens, near Old Short Hills Park, is usually an admission-only space, but they opened it to the public for free today. (Who doesn’t like free things?)

Greenwood Gardens: Main house and main lawn

In 1906, Joseph P. Day purchased 80 acres of land in Short Hills and called it “Pleasant Days.” The original house on the property was destroyed by a fire in 1911, so Day built a huge Italianate mansion in its place. By the time the property was purchased by the Blanchards in 1949, the 1911 mansion “had deteriorated significantly,” so it was replaced by the modest Georgian Revival mansion you see here (“modest” my foot).

And, y’know, if you’re gonna purchase a large estate and call it your own, you might as well call it by a name YOU prefer, like “Greenwood Gardens” (because, really, “Pleasant Days?” that’s like so 1910s, OMG, really) so there was THAT.

Greenwood Gardens: Garden of the Zodiac

In 2000, a Blanchard descendent began working with the Garden Conservancy to establish Greenwood Gardens as a nonprofit public garden and conservation organization. They’re in the process of fully restoring everything to its glory, but (in my humble opinion) it looks pretty good now.


Greenwood Gardens. (n.d.). “Garden Guide and Walking Tour.” (Pamphlet).

April 25, 2013

Wick House

Wick House! Jockey Hollow, Morristown, NJ (formerly the Tempe Wick House, I think)

HISTORY TIME!!!!!!!!!!!

This is the Wick House.

It was built by Mr. Henry Wick around 1750 (possibly 1752 exactly), and is currently preserved within the Morristown National Historical Park.

That would be cool in and of itself, but during the Revolutionary War, Continental soldiers loitered around the Wick Farm from 1779-1782, chopping down 600 acres of Mr. Wick’s trees, and made themselves at home IN his home (this house) during the winter encampment of 1779-1780.

…Well, SOME soldiers (officers) hung out in his house. Most soldiers had to make do with makeshift huts.

There’s a lot of talk of Major General Arthur St. Clair using the house as a headquarters during that time. (I’d never heard of him, but maybe you have.)

…And then there’s the Legend of Tempe Wick. According to the story, Tempe (Henry Wick’s daughter) was out riding her horse when some soldiers tried to commandeer it; Tempe was like “screw you,” galloped the horse back home, and stashed her steed inside the main house. The soldiers eventually followed her back to the house, but found themselves stumped because obviously horses aren’t found in houses. And thus the horse was saved.

I must’ve read this next part on a sign board somewhere and neglected to document the sign, so I can’t verify this information—but in recent years, I believe the accuracy of the story is unverified, so they’re not promoting it as hard truth anymore. As such, the former “Tempe Wick House” is now called simply the “Wick House.” Regardless, there’s still a Tempe Wick Road in Morristown.


Aaaaaand this is what the building looked like many years ago (specifics unknown, but apparently it’s from an old Water Company brochure):

Wick House, back when it was still called the Tempe Wick House.

Oh, and because I put an “architecture” tag on this post: apparently it’s a Cape Cod. There ya go.



National Park Service. (n.d.). “Jockey Hollow.” Morristown National Historical Park, New Jersey. (2008?). “Wick House: The Revolutionary War in North Jersey.”

“The Wick Farm.” Information plaque near Wick House. Morristown, NJ. Documented April 2013.

Williams, J.M. (1996). Images of America: Morristown. Arcadia Publishing: Dover, NH. ISBN 0752402072.

April 4, 2013


Tito's Burritos

Behind Tito’s Burritos. I oughta check out the inside of this place someday.

February 20, 2013

Things change

New Providence, Grove Terrace abandoned greenhouse

Last February, on a Weird NJ message board, I saw a tip for some old abandoned greenhouse in New Providence. I don’t know if this is what they meant, but I eventually tracked down this abandoned structure on Grove Terrace and snapped a photo.

This February… well, they’ve been busy over the past year. This green house is built where the old shed used to be.

New Providence, Grove Terrace new construction

As you can see, it’s no longer an empty or abandoned lot. I dunno if anyone’s living in that green house yet, but it’s certainly more livable than it used to be (heh).

The grown-up in me says, “good! At least the land will be used properly now,” but the rebellious adolescent in me says “awwwww, I never got inside!”

February 6, 2013

Spring house!

Possibly the last spring house in NJ!

This week is so full of winter, ugh. I mean, snow is prettier than the usual barren brown winter colors, and I’d take winter over summer any day, but seriously, I am ready for spring, aren’t you?


It’s part of Berkeley Heights’ Littel-Lord Farmstead.

That’s all well and good (I hear you say), but WHAT IS A SPRING HOUSE?

A spring house is a sort of old-fashioned refrigerator. Back in the olde days, you’d go find a natural spring, and build a little shed on it, and voila! you could keep your perishables longer ‘cos they were cooled with freezing spring water. Like an ice box without ice. (And it self-replenishes!)

And this building might be the last known spring house in New Jersey, which is pretty nifty!

This structure was originally built to keep perishable foods cool. A natural spring flows from the Spring Shed, under the walkway between the shed and the house, then around the two sides of the inside of this structure. The cool waters of the spring flow year-round and make this stone building into a primitive refrigerator. Meats, dairy, etc. would have been immersed in the flowing water or stored on shelves and hooks to afford a longer shelf life than the hot summer days would allow. Few, if any, spring houses remain in New Jersey so this structure is of great historical significance.



Berkeley Heights Historical Society (Documented September 1, 2012). Spring House (sign). 28-31 Horseshoe Rd., Berkeley Heights, NJ.

“Spring house.” (Last edit Dec 2012). Wikipedia.

January 11, 2013

Paramount sunset

Convention Hall by sunset. Ah.

When I began extending my radius-of-photography to include more of New Jersey, I figured this would allow me to pull from my years of archival photographs from the Jersey Shore (and elsewhere) when I was running low on local New Providence photos.

Unfortunately, as I look through my years of archival photographs from the Jersey Shore, I realize I haven’t been to most of those shore areas since Sandy, and I have no idea whether or not the subject of my photo is still there or not.

I have, however, been to Asbury Park’s Convention Hall/ Paramount Theater/ Grand Arcade recently, and I can confirm that the building is still standing.

Asbury Park even still has a boardwalk to the north! (not shown in this photo, but trust me, it’s there.)

(Image originally posted at Monmouth County Daily Photo.)

January 6, 2013

Sayre House

The Revolutionary-era Sayre House in Madison, NJ!

Clearly this is out of season, but the house still looks pretty much like this. (I imagine. I haven’t actually been there recently. Maybe a tree fell on it.)


The Sayre House was built around 1745! That’s old.

According to legend, perpetuated by a couple of signs on the front of the house, General Anthony Wayne (“Mad Anthony”) occupied the house in 1777 while the continental army was encamped nearby, and Reverend James Caldwell stopped by now and then too.

Sayre Homestead, headquarters of General Anthony Wayne. This house was occupied by General Anthony Wayne while the Continental army was encamped in Loantaka Valley, 1777. Placed by Loantaka Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution, October 22, 1936.

Sayre Homestead
Headquarters of General Anthony Wayne
This house was occupied by General Anthony Wayne while the Continental army was encamped in Loantaka Valley, 1777.
Placed by Loantaka Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution
October 22, 1936.



Sayre House Built about 1745, was the headquarters of Gen. Anthony Wayne in 1777. Rev. James Caldwell was frequent visitor here.

Sayre House
Built about 1745, was the headquarters of Gen. Anthony Wayne in 1777. Rev. James Caldwell was frequent visitor here.


The house was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1980.

And then I came along and took its picture in 2012.




Cunningham, J.T. (1998). Images of America: Madison. Arcadia Publishing: Dover, NH. ISBN 0738537802.

Daughters of the American Revolution, Loantaka Chapter. (1936). “Sayre Homestead, Headquarters of General Anthony Wayne.” (Sign marker). Documented September 2012.

Frazza, A. (2012). Revolutionary War New Jersey: A photographic field guide to New Jersey’s role in the Revolutionary War! “Revolutionary War sites in Madison, New Jersey.”

State of New Jersey (n.d.). “Sayre House.” (Sign marker). Documented September 2012.

Wikipedia. (2012). “Sayre House.”

%d bloggers like this: