Plainfield Garden Club

Member: Luce, Mrs. Donald C. (Mary Edith Shotwell) '52

1942 Address: R.F.D. 1, Cooper Road, Scotch Plains

1953 Address: R.F.D. 1, Cooper Road, Scotch Plains

1061 Rahway Road

January 1999 PGC newsletter reported that Edith Luce had passed away.

New York Times Obituary April 3, 1982 for Donald C. Luce

Donald C. Luce, former president of the Public Service Electric and Gas Company of Newark, died Thursday at his home in Plainfield, N.J., after a long illness. He was 81 years old.

Mr. Luce joined the company in 1924, the year he graduated from Lehigh University. He became president in 1954, and held that position until he retired in 1965.

He had been a director of the American Gas Association and the Plainfield Trust Company, and a member of the American Institute of Electrical Engineers, the Committee on Economic Development in the City of Newark and the board of trustees of the Newark Museum and the New Jersey Safety Council.

He is survived by his wife, the former Mary Edith Shotwell of Plainfield; two sons, Donald C. Jr. of Bridgewater, N.J., and William S. of Clinton Township, N.J.; a daughter, Anne C. DeAngelis of Mountainside, N.J., and seven grandchildren

May 17, 1957 Club Commemorates Founding of Iris Garden

Caption: GARDEN MARKER VIEWED – Standing before the marker commemorating the 25th anniversary of the Iris Garden in Cedar Brook Park are (left to right) Mrs. Frederick Lockwood, Victor B. King, Jr., John C. Wister, Mr. Richard Tracy and Miss Harriette R. Halloway, founder of this garden. (Courier photo by E. T. Wiggins)

The Plainfield Garden Club and guests yersterday dedicated the the entranceway of the of the Iris Garden in Cedar Brook Park.

Miss Harriette R. Halloway, found of the garden and chairman of the garden of the Iris Garden [not legible] the project was started in 1932, was presented a medal by Mrs. Frederick M. Lockwood, president of the Garden Club.

The medal is [not legible] "from the grateful members of the Plainfield Garden Club Harriette R. Halloway founder and director of the Iris gardens of Cedar Brook Park, Plainfield, 1932 - 1957."

[Not legible] viewed a recently installed [not legible] tablet marking the anniversary of the garden.

"Excercise in Perfection"
Victor R. King, president of the Union County Park Commission, led the gathering [not legible] the garden display was "an excercise in perfection is [not legible]," he said.

The park commission provides the setting for the garden and have [not legible] in the project [not legible]

W. [not legible] Tracy, executive had of the Park Commission when the Iris Garden was started paid tribute to Miss Halloway for her "tireless work and painstaking effort."

Another speaker was Dr. John C. Wister of Swarthmore, Pa., president of the American Iris Society when the garden was started and author of [not legible] article about the garden in the current issue of the Journal of the New York Botanical Gardens.

Miss Halloway spoke briefly and [not legible] on the work of the [not legible] who care for the Iris Garden. She introduced Kenneth Smith, one of the largest contributors of plants to the garden [not legible]

Mrs. Lockwood presided at the program. Guests included members of [not legible] garden clubs and contributors to the garden.

The Iris Garden Committee includes Mrs. Morris E. Benton, Mrs. Alden de Hart, Mrs. Lockwood, Mrs. Donald E. Luce, Mrs. William K. Dunbar, Jr., Mrs. C. Northrop Pond, Mrs. Webster Sandford, Mrs. Arthur D. Seybold, Mrs. John R. Wells, Mrs. Willian G. Wigton, Mrs. Robert MacLeod, vice chairman, and Miss Halloway, chairman.

Special slides [not legible] for the chairman were Mrs. Charles A. Eaton, Jr., Mrs. F. Willoughby Frost ad Mrs. Edwin M. Treat, Jr.

Mrs. Victor M. King was chairman of the special committee assisted by Mrs. J. Harold Loizeaux, Mrs. E. B. Newberry, and Miss Margaret Tyler. Also cooperating were Mrs. N. C. Barnhart, Jr., Mrs. William P. Elliott, Mrs. Homer Cochran and Mrs. H. I. Flanders.

Hostesses (not legible)
Other hostesses were Mrs. William W. Coriell, Mrs. Leslie E. Fort, Mrs. William A. Holliday, Mrs. Richard M. Lawton, Mrs. Robert T. Stevens, Mrs. C. Boardman Tyler, Mrs. William S. Tyler. Mrs. Thomas Van Boskerck and Mrs. Orville G. Waring.

The Iris Garden now has more than 1,800 named varieties properly labeled, representing all types of Iris and totaling more than 75,000 plants.

The main part of the garden is [not legible] caring Iris [not legible] and is expected to be is good blooms thorugh the rest of the month.

First Presbyterian Church of Plainfield 1888

Contributors: William H. Shotwell, Freeman J. Shotwell, A.V. Shotwell

1081 Rahway Road

**Miscellaneous source has Mrs. Luce living in 1953 at 1081 Rahway Road. This is probably a misprint.

1081 Rahway Road was also the home of Mrs. Barlow, Jr.

Plainfield Public Library
Detwiller Archives

Collection Detwiller
Title Addition to Garage for Mr. & Mrs. Dewitt Barlow, Jr. Rahway Road, Plainfield, New Jersey
Description Single sheet plans, plot plan, and elevations for a new tool shed added on to a garage.
Building Type Outbuilding
Work Type Alteration and/or Addition
Condition Dark
Blueprint ID D-1160
Permit 43222
Year of Permit 1970
Microfilm Roll 0023
Microfilm Frame 0289
Condition 1001
Address 1081 Rahway Road
Historic District
City Plainfield
Architect Charles H. Detwiller, Jr.
Architect Firm
Owner Dewitt Barlow, Jr.
Business Owner

Catherine Randolph Webster

Ladies Home of Plainfield
313 Franklin Place

Monday, August 6, 2007
A bit of history on Catherine and her wishes
To continue the Catherine Randolph Webster story, one has to remember, or know, that the Websters along with the Randolphs are an integral part of Plainfield's history. Two of their many contributions are still here. One is Quaker Meeting house in Watchung Avenue, the other: the Muhlenberg Hospital which was built on land given, and thanks to the generosity, of the Randolph family.

Following here is a bit of history on Catherine Randolph Webster and her wishes. We hope that by sharing this information, the reason of us so stubbornly advocating for this house starts becoming clear, not only to us, but to those who are opposed to our raising questions about the recent decision to sell this house under a lack of transparency on the part of the people in charge of the Catherine Webster Estate and the Ladies Home.

Catherine Webster had a tragic beginning on life.

Catherine Randolph Webster was born in her grandfather Webster's homestead, which became know later as the Ginna tract on Watchung Avenue, March 6, 1825. Her mother, for whom she was named, died when Catherine was three weeks old and her father, was fatally injured by a fall from a hay-mow in her fourth year.

Left an orphan, the little Catherine was reared by devoted grandparents, and in 1837, when she was twelve, she moved with them into the house which her grandfather, a well-know builder, had built on the northeast corner of East Second and Church Streets. There she lived until her death, in her eighty-third year, on October 15, 1906.

Miss Webster was educated in Plainfield schools and later attended a Seminary in Renssalaerville, New York. She was a birthright member of the Friend's Meeting and was actively identified with many charitable works in Plainfield.

She worked all night on the outline for a "Home for Gentlewomen" when formulating that plan. In the morning, Miss Webster had clearly in her mind what she wanted to do. She had her will drawn up, signed it on January 27, 1900, appointing Joseph B. Coward and John H. Van Wincle, her executors.

In her will, Catherine requests that all the remainder of her estate be managed by her executors, or the survivors of them; that her real estate be sold at such time and in such manner as they might best for the purpose of said trust, and that they execute with the monies from the sale of her real estate and her goods, the purchase of a lot of land in the City of Plainfield, New Jersey.

A lot, of suitable size, on which to erect or assist in erecting a building for the purpose of founding a Home for the aged and infirm women, to be known as a "Ladies Home".

She then asks that her executors, and the survivors of her executors, and then the successors of such survivors to the executors, that her will be executed and delivered to a corporation to be organized for the purpose of said Ladies Home, to be held by it and its successors and assigns forever.

Her fund amounted back then to $72,000 dollars. In 1927 it had accrued to $115,258.00.

The Ladies Home of Plainfield became incorporated on June 10, 1910 under the New Jersey act of 1898.

On August 3, 1916, the Plainfield Trust Company was appointed Substitute Administrator with the Will Annexed and trustee under the Will of Catherine Randolph Webster.

After unavoidable delays due to the first World War, high building costs, inadequate endowment to maintain a Home such as Miss Webster had envisioned, the Gough property on 313 Franklin place was purchased April 1, 1927 for the amount of $34,856.91. The Catherine Webster Home was first opened in the fall of 1927.

The Grandfather clock that was standing at the front hall of the Home dates back beyond 1802. Miss Webster's grandfather traded a wood lot in the Watchung Mountains for it, the year in which he married her grandmother, Amy King.

The neighborhood association continues to be astonished at the actions of the YWCA, a well respected organization, locally and nationally. Our hope is that they will return our call and sit with us to discuss this house that represents so much to the Crescent Area Historic District. A house that also talks of Plainfield's founding families, the Websters, the Randolphs, and the Vails.

1953 Check Book

No. 1000
March 31, 1953
Jeanette Stuart
Exhibitor Flower Show

No. 1001
March 31, 1953
Harriette Halloway
Shipping charge on arboretum

No. 1002
Mar. 31, 1953
dues for Luce & Heely
1/2 year

Benjamin Shotwell House

Location: Runyon's Lane
Edison, New Jersey
Coordinates: 40°32′50″N 74°24′16″W / 40.54722°N 74.40444°W / 40.54722; -74.40444Coordinates:
Click the blue globe to open an interactive map.
40°32′50″N 74°24′16″W / 40.54722°N 74.40444°W / 40.54722; -74.40444
Built: ca. 1750-1775
NRHP Reference#: 87000875[1]
NJRHP #: 1840[2]
Significant dates
Added to NRHP: June 4, 1987
Designated NJRHP: April 28, 1997

The Benjamin Shotwell House, or the Shotwell-Runyon House, is a historic house in Edison, New Jersey listed on the New Jersey Register of Historic Places and National Register of Historic Places in 1987. The farm on which is located in part of Route 287. The Shotwells were early settlers of "The Plains".

1956 Check Book

No. 1228
September 25, 1956
Edith S. Luce
75 double post cards
for special notices for
bus trip to Botanical Garden

Donald C. Luce, Jr.

LUCE, JR, Donald C., 51, , Sep 6, 1984, ,
Born in Plainfield NJ. Army veteran. Survived by his wife, Mrs. Marcia
Gates Luce; 3 daughters, Linda Luce, Christie Luce and Julie Luce; his
mother, Mrs. Edith Shotwell Luce; a brother, William S. Luce and a sister, Mrs. Anne DeAngelis.

1997 Mansions of May

1061 Rahway Road

Ensconced in history, the 100 year-old foundation for this 3 story mansion sits at the highest point in Plainfield. In another era, this home overlooked the site of the Battle of Short Hills. On a clear day, from teh third floor balcony, there is a view of Staten Island. The downstairs has been completely remodeled to include many of the characteristics attributed to homes built in the 1920's. Of particular note is the Engligh Pine paneling on the second floor.

313 Franklin Place

Pinterest Page by current owner

1954 - 1970 296 Images from Plainfield Library Scrapbook

1940 US Census

Edith S. Luce in the 1940 Census
First Name: Edith
Middle Name: S.
Last Name: Luce
Age at Time of Census: 37
Gender: Female
Race: White
Ethnicity: American
Estimated Birth Year: 1903
Birth Location: New Jersey Map
Enumeration District: 18-44
Residence: North Plainfield Borough, Somerset, NJ Map
Relationship to Head of Household: Daughter
Other People in Household:

Freeman Shotwell
70 yrs, Male
Donald Luce
39 yrs, Male
Anne Luce
7 yrs, Female
Donald Luce
7 yrs, Male
William Luce
6 yrs, Male
Marital Status: Married
Language: English
Genealogical Society Number: 005462187
NARA Publication Number: T627
NARA Microfilm Roll Number: 2383
Line Number: 59
Sheet: B
Sheet Number: 9
Collection: 1940 U.S. Federal Population Census