Plainfield Garden Club

Member: Ackerman, Mrs. Ernest Robinson (Nora L. Weber) '15

1909 Plainfield Directory:

ACKERMAN, ERNEST R., cement, h. 506 W 8th
ACKERMAN, MARION S, cement, h. 929 Madison av

1919 Address: 506 West 8th Street, Plainfield

1922 Directory: not listed

Mrs. Ackerman is related through marraige to Mrs. M. S. Ackerman '35 and Mrs. Townsend (Jean Murray) Rushmore '20. The Frakers and the Warrens are also related to the Ackermans.

Ernest Robinson Ackerman

Ernest Robinson Ackerman (June 17, 1863 – October 18, 1931) was an American Republican Party politician who represented New Jersey's 5th congressional district in the United States House of Representatives from 1919-1931.

Early years
Ackerman was born in New York City and moved with his parents to Plainfield, New Jersey very shortly thereafter. He was educated at public and private schools and graduated from Plainfield High School in 1880. Employed in cement manufacturing, Ackerman was a member of the Plainfield common council in 1891 and 1892.

Political career
Ackerman was as a member of the New Jersey Senate from 1905 to 1911, serving as president in 1911. He was a delegate to the Republican National Conventions at Chicago in 1908 and in 1916 and a member of the board of trustees of Rutgers College, New Brunswick, New Jersey, 1916-1920. He was a Federal food administrator for Union County, New Jersey during the First World War and a member of the New Jersey Board of Education 1918-1920.

In September 1907, Ackerman and his wife Nora attended the maiden voyage of the Cunard liner RMS Lusitania from Liverpool to New York.

Ackerman was a member of the New Jersey Geological Survey and associate of the American Society of Civil Engineers. He was elected as a Republican to the Sixty-sixth and to the six succeeding Congresses and served from March 4, 1919, until his death in Plainfield, New Jersey on October 18, 1931. He was buried in the family plot in Hillside Cemetery.

Ackerman was a famous philatelist, and had created a number of award winning exhibits of postal stamps and postal history. He was known for his famous collections of British Guiana and Spain, but he was regarded as an expert in postage stamps and postal history of the United States. His U.S. collection included scarce carrier and local stamps, United States Department stamps, and U.S. essays and proofs. A part of his valuable United States collection was bequeathed to the Smithsonian Institution's National Postal Museum in Washington, D.C. Ackerman was named to the American Philatelic Society Hall of Fame in 2000.

February 24, 1914 New York Times article Says Thieves gives $25,000 Gems Back

Nora Ackerman had some serious jewelry including a pearl necklace that was valued at $10,000 in 1914.


Ackerman Jewels Turned Over to Insurance Agency, According to Detective


And They Were Insured for $15,000 – Stolen on Jan. 14 from Plainfield, N.J., Home

More than $25,000 worth of jewelry, stolen from the home, in Plainfield, N. J., of State Senator Ernest R. Ackerman on the evening of Jan. 14, has been recovered, according to information given out yesterday afternoon by the Val O'Farrell Detective Agency of 27 William Street. Practically all the jewelry, it was said, had been turned over to an insurance agency, which had insured the valuables for $15,000. Soon after the jewels were stolen the insurance company offered $5,000 reward for them. Mr. Ackerman was formerly President of the New Jersey Senate and Acting Governor. He is Vice President of the Lawrence Portland Cement Company of 1 Broadway.

On the evening the jewelry was stolen Mr. Ackerman, his wife, and sister-in-law went to dinner about 6:30 o'clock. The weather was stormy, and when Mr. Ackerman felt a draught through the room he thought that a window had been left open in his bedroom upstairs. He started up to the room to see if the windows were open, and as he mounted the first steps the door to the bedroom slammed violently.

Entering the room, Mr. Ackerman found that a window opening out over the side porch was open. He was closing it when the lights went out. After a few minutes, while he was fumbling at the switch, the lights suddenly were turned on again. mr. Ackerman then noticed that the drawers of a bureau were open and in great disorder. He also found that his wife's jewelry, always kept in one of the drawers, was gone. The drawers were locked when he left the room to go down to dinner. Muddy footprints were visible on the carpet.

Hastening back downstairs Mr. Ackerman told Mrs. Ackerman of the disappearance of the jewelry. Just then one of the servants entered the dining room from the kitchen and informed the family that the sound of an automobile horn and the whirring of its engine had been heard in the street on the east side of the house about fifteen minutes previously.

When he was convinced that the jewelry had been stolen Mr. Ackerman notified the police of Plainfield. Chief Kiely found fingerprints and other marks on one of the posts supporting the porch. Apparently the burglar climbed the post to one side and just beneath the ledge of the window and then swung himself up by grasping hold of a drainpipe that went close by the side of the window. The O'Farrell Detective Agency was then employed by the insurance company to investigate the burglary.

Fingerprint photographs which were sent to Chicago were identified by the Chicago police as those of Frankie Brown, known also as "Three-fingered Jack" and "Capt. Brown."

Several days after he received the record of identification from Chicago, O'Farrell said that one of his men found an associate of Brown and learned that the burglars were trying to dispose of the jewelry. O'Farrell said he then notified the insurance agency that the stolen jewelry could be purchased, and at the same time informed them that he would not aid in negotiations for paying a reward for them. O'Farrell said that the jewelry had been returned, thought he was unable to say on what terms, to an adjuster for the insurance company. The adjuster could not be found yesterday, but Mr. Ackerman said that the jewelry had not been turned over to him.

Among the articles of jewelry stolen were a pearl necklace, consisting of eighty-give pearls, varying in size from 3 to 15 grains. Seventy-five of the pearls were gathered and matched in the course of four years by Mrs. Ackerman, and the remaining ten were given to her as a present last Christmas by her husband. The necklace was valued at $10,000. Another pearl necklace, with a clasp set with large diamond surrounded by smaller diamonds and valued at $1,500, also was stolen.

Some of the other articles taken were a gold chain bracelet, gold alternating with sapphires; pearl and diamond ring valued at $500; pearl and diamond ring, value unappraised; princess ring, with three rubies alternating with diamond settings; solitaire ring engraved "E.R.A. to M.A.W."; princess ring, with three large diamonds and other stones valued at $1,000; ring set with turquoise and diamonds; ring of sapphires and diamonds folding gold lorgnette set with twelve pearls; diamond crescent, wedding gift; how knot, edging of diamonds set in platinum with pearls in centre.

Also there were stolen an oval pin set with pearls and diamonds alternating; bar pin with six Ceylon pearls, bought and matched in Ceylon by Mrs. Ackerman; a butterfly pin, set with rubies, opals, sapphires, and diamonds, valued at $1,000; a gold circle of diamonds and pearls, made to order at a cost of $500, in addition to $300 in cash placed in several envelopes with a check for $25.

The New York Times
February 24, 1914

William Taft letter to Ernest R. Ackerman

William H. Taft sends a typed letter to Senator Ernest R. Ackerman of thanks for the letter of support.
Typed Letter Signed: "Wm H Taft" as President, 1p, 7x8Ύ. Washington, D.C., 1911 July 25. On White House stationery to Senator Ernest R. Ackerman, Plainfield, N.J. In full: "I thank you for your very kind letter of July 22nd. I shall look forward to seeing you in the Fall. The cordial words of commendation and support which you are good enough to use concerning me are both gratifying and encouraging, and I assure you of my gratitude. Heartily reciprocating your good wishes for a pleasant summer, I am, Sincerely yours". In 1910 and 1911, President WILLIAM HOWARD TAFT made a notable effort to secure the ratification of arbitration treaties that had been negotiated with Great Britain and France, and was thereafter known as one of the foremost advocates of world peace and arbitration. Ironically, Taft's actions angered his predecessor, Theodore Roosevelt, under whom Taft had served as Secretary of War (1904-1908). While Roosevelt had initially supported Taft for the presidency, which he won in November 1908, Roosevelt's supporters tried to wrest the nomination for a second term away from Taft at the Republican National Convention held in Chicago on June 18-22, 1912. When they failed, they left the Republican Convention on June 19th, organized the Progressive Party and nominated Roosevelt for President. The Democrats had nominated New Jersey Governor Woodrow Wilson for President on July 2nd. In the November 5, 1912 election, Wilson was elected President (6.3 million popular votes, 435 electoral votes, 40 states), Roosevelt came in second (4.1 million, 88 electoral, six states) and Taft finished third (3.5 million, 8 electoral, two states), becoming the only incumbent President to finish third in a national election. Nine years later, Taft would become the only U.S. President to also serve on the U.S. Supreme Court, serving as Chief Justice from 1921-1930. Republican ERNEST ROBINSON ACKERMAN (1863-1931) served as a U.S. Representative from New Jersey from 1919 until his death in office in October 1931. Slight "haloing" of ink. Lightly creased, not at signature. Shaded at perimeter from prior framing, lightly soiled at blank margins. Overall, fine condition.

Ladies Home of Plainfield 1910 -2007

founded by Mrs. Ernest R. Ackerman and others

313 Franklin Place, Plainfield

After unavoidable delays due to the First World War, high building costs, and inadequate endowment to maintain a Home such as Catherine envisioned, the property at 313 Franklin Place was purchased on April 1, 1927 for $34, 856.91. The Catherine Webster Home first opened in the fall of 1927. Entrance requirements were as follows:

Any woman between the ages of sixty-five and eighty years may apply.
Applicants must have been a resident of New Jersey for some time.
Applicants must have been in reasonably good health (Doctor's certificate required)
Applicants must have furnished a guarantee of payment by two responsible persons acceptable to the Finance Committee, covering payment of weekly board, all expenses of illness (doctors, nurses, etc.) and funeral expenses.
Applicants must have agreed to obey house rules that make for harmonious living.

Plainfield Library Archives

August 26, 1894 New York Times article

Plainfield City of Homes

Ernest Ackerman; Congressman; World Famous Stamp collector

From Plainfield, New Jersey's History & Architecture by John Grady and Dorothe Pollard

Ernest Ackerman resided on West Eighth Street, one of Plainfield's grand esplandes. His home, still standing today (2008) featured unusual stepped Flemish dormers.

In 1880 Plainfield High School graduate, Ernest Ackerman had interests in the Dragon Cement Manufacturing Company. Having served on the Plainfield Commone Council, Ackerman went on to serve as state senator from 1905 to 1911. From 1919 until his death in 1931, Mr. Ackerman served in the United States Congress. After his death, a portion of his world famous stamp collection was donated to the government.

506 West 8th Residence: Ackerman

Twenty-fifth Anniversary of the Plainfield Garden Club by Lucy Von Boskerck

Historical People Buried at Hillside Cemetary

Ernest Robinson Ackerman (1863-1931) US Congressman

Senator Ackerman leads inquiry into death penalities

December 11, 1903

Daily Princetonian, Volume 28, Number 140, 11 December 1903 – GLEE CLUB CONCERT In Plainfield To-night. Program and List of Patronesses.


In Plainfield To-night. Program and List of Patronesses.

The second concert of the Glee, Banjo and Mandolin Clubs will be given in the Casino of Plainfield, N. J., to-night at 8.15 o'clock. The clubs will leave Princeton to-day at 1.21 p. m., and arrive at Elizabeth at 2.20. Leaving Elizabeth on the C. R. R. of N. J. at 2.35, they will reach Plainfield at 3.03. The men will be entertained at the homes of the Princeton alumni, and immediately after the concert adance will be given in honor of the clubs. On the return trip the men will leave Plainfield on Saturday at 9.40 a. m., reaching Elizabeth at 10.04, leave at 10.06, and arrive in Princeton at 11. The program of the concert follows: PART FIRST. 1. Old Nassau, Carmina Princetonia Glee Club. 2. A Rag Time Ball, J. H.Jennings Banjo Club. 3. 1904 Medley, Arranged by K. S. Clark Glee Club. 4. Selections from Babes in Toyland, Herbert Mandolin Club. 5. Fantasienstuck, Arranged Banjo Club. PART SECOND. 1. Step Song, Carmina Princetonia Glee Club. 2. Gondoliere, Nevin Mandolin Club. 3. The 1904 Rakion, Joseph Chapman Banjo Club. 4. Solo, Selected Mr. Truesdale. 5. Espanola Viva, Arranged Glee and Mandolin Clubs. 6. The White Crow, Paul Eno Banjo Club. PART THIRD. 1. Bedelia, Schwartz Mandolin and Banjo Clubs. 2. Selection, Arranged Glee Club. 3. Danse Caprice, Grieg Mandolin Club. 4. Triangle Song, Carmina Princetonia Glee, Banjo and Mandolin Clubs. The patronesses are as follows : Mrs. Charles F. Abbott, Mrs. Frederick H. Andrews, Mrs. Ernest R. Ackerman, Mrs. John T. Baker, Mrs. Eliot T. Barrows, Mrs. James R. Blake, Mrs. Charles I. Brooks, Mrs Howard W. Beebe, Mrs. E. H. Booth, Mrs. P. W. Bakely, Mrs. P. T. Brown, Mrs. J. Hervey Buchanan, Mrs. J. Edgar Corlies, Mrs. George A. Chapman, Mrs. J. B. Dumont, Mrs. M. E. Egerton, Mrs. Chapman Fisk, Mrs. Howard Fleming, Mrs. Walter Gaston, Mrs. Wm. T. Gaugh, Mrs. John F. Harmon, Mrs. Ellis W. Hedges, Mrs. Eugene H. Hatch, Mrs. W. E. Honeyman, Mrs. James Hayes, Mrs. Samuel Huntington, Mrs. Henry L. Hall, Mrs. Henry C. Irons, Mrs. D. C. Ivins, Mrs. William T. Kaufman, Mrs. William E. Lowe, Mrs. Edward H. Ladd, Jr., Mrs. E. L. Mack, Mrs. George P. Mellick, Mrs. H. Raymond Munger, Mrs. William H. Murray, Mrs. Henry A. McGee, Mrs. Walter Mc- Gee, Mrs. Samuel St. J. McCutchen, Mrs. Frank S. Martin, Mrs. Theodore W. Morris, Jr., Mrs. F. G. Meade, Mrs. Arthur J. Otterson, Mrs. D. W. Pond, Mrs. W. G. Peckham, Mrs. W. A. Pinto, Mrs. Joseph W. Reinhart, Mrs. David Rowland, Mrs. George S. Ring, Mrs. George T. Rogers, Mrs. Joseph M. Shellabarger, Mrs. Walter E. Stewart, Mrs. Lemuel W. Serrell, Mrs. Alfred F. H. Streuli, Mrs. Henry M. Stockton, Mrs. Joseph W. Sandford, Jr., Mrs. C. L. Sykes, Mrs. R. B. Strong, Mrs. George A. Strong, Mrs Duncan W. Taylor, Mrs. Evarts Tracy, Mrs. Lewis G. Timpson, Mrs. Mason Tyler, Mrs. Edward M. Van Buren, Mrs. George W. Van Boskerck, Mrs. A. Vandewater, Mrs. J. Vandewater, Mrs. William B. Wadsworth, Mrs. Orville T. Waring, Mrs. Lewis E. Waring, Mrs. Theodore D. Wilson, Mrs. E. Woltman, Mrs. John S. Zelie.

James Hervey Ackerman

Birth: 1837
New Brunswick
Middlesex County
New Jersey, USA
Death: Sep. 4, 1885
Union County
New Jersey, USA

James Hervey Ackerman was born 1837 in New Brunswick, Middlesex County, NC the youngest of 8 known children (4 boys/4 girls) born to prominent businessman and financier, Jonathan Coombs Ackerman and his wife, Maria Smith.

He was the paternal grandchild of Geleyn Ackerman & Jane Coombs of New Brunswick; and gr-grandchild of Abraham Ackerman and Janet Romeyn who had removed from Hackensack, Bergen County, NJ to settle in New Brunswick. He was a direct descendant of this family's patriarch, Abraham "David" Davidtse Ackerman, who came to New Netherlands from Holland and married Aeltie Adrianse Van Laer, later becoming one of the early Dutch settlers of Hackensack NJ.

James entered Rutgers (now University), but shortly after the death of his father in 1852, his mother removed the family to Manhattan, NY where he completed college at the University of New York, and studied law at Albany Law School. Following graduation he began his practice with Benedict & Boardman in New York City.

In 1862 the 25-year old attorney married 26-year old Ellen Robinson Morgan, daughter of Episcopal Rev. Richard U. Morgan DD and his (1st) wife, Sarah "Sally" Markley, of Montgomery County, PA. At the time of their marriage, her father was a widow and Rector of the Trinity Parish Episcopal Church in New Rochelle, New York and would later wed his (2nd) wife, Sarah P. Jarvis.

J. Hervey and Ellen would become parents to 4 known children (2 sons/2 daughters): Senator Ernest Robinson Ackerman (1863-1931), Marion S. Ackerman (c. 1869), Mary Louise Ackerman (c. 1870), and Lydia Platt Ackerman (1882).

In about 1870, the couple removed to Plainfield, Union Co, NJ where J. Hervey passed the NJ Bar in 1871. He was for many years counsel of the Newark India Rubber Company, the same firm in which his father held stock and from which his brother Warren earned great wealth. J. Hervey served for many years on the Common Council of the City of Plainfield and in 1874, he became a Judge in Plainfield.

Judge J. Hervey Ackerman died young, passing in 1885 at about age 48. His wife of 23 years would survive him another 20 years, passing in 1905 at about age 69.

Of his 4 children, both sons went into the portland cement business, no doubt because both were legatees in the will of their uncle Warren who held a large financial interest in the Lawrence Portland Cement Company, headquartered in New York City, for which both Ernest and Marion at one time carried the title President. Both married and resided in Plainfield, but only Marion was found to have children.

Ernest Ackerman was for six years the Senator from Union County. The passage of the first Civil Service law enacted in New Jersey was largely due to his efforts; it is known as the Ackerman Civil Service Law. Of interest to this researcher is that much of the biographical information on Warren mentions his maternal roots to the Markley family and their role in the Revolutionary War, with no mention of the greatness of his Ackerman ancestors. Ernest married Nora L. Weber of Maryland in 1892. No children were found from this union. He died in 1931 and is buried in Hillside Cemetery in Scotch Plains, NJ.

Marion S. Ackerman was married twice, having 2 sons (Marion Jr. and Warren) by his first wife, and a 3rd son, James Hervey Ackerman by his 2nd wife. They lived in Plainfield. It is not known by this researcher when he died and where he was buried.

Daughter Mary Louise Ackerman married Robert Rushmore in 1891, son of the prominent Rushmore family of Plainfield who founded Rushmore Dynamo Company in that city. Daughter, Lydia Platt Ackerman (named for her aunt who had married both George and Warren Ackerman) married in 1901 to Arthur Murphy, son of Episcopal Rev. T. Logan Murphy, who at the time was the newly appointed curate of the American Church at Paris, but one time rector of the Church of Holy Cross in Plainfield.

Family links:
Jonathan Coombs Ackerman (1793 - 1852)
Maria Smith Ackerman (1793 - 1873)

Willow Grove Cemetery
New Brunswick
Middlesex County
New Jersey, USA

Created by: pbfries
Record added: Jan 24, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 47043235

New York Times February 5, 1895


Entertainmnets Which Have Helped to Make the Week Pass Pleasantly

PLAINFIELD, N. J., Feb. 16 – On Wednesday evening a cotillion was danced at the home of ex-Mayor Q. V. F. Randolph of East Front Street.

Herman Simmonds of Watchung Avenue has gone to Florida, to remain until Spring.

Mrs. Dudley Insley of Tacoma and Miss See of Sing Sing are guests of Mrs. E. E. Runyon of Madison Avenue.

Mrs. Howell of Chester, who has been visiting her sister Mrs. F. D. Whiting of East Sixth Street, has returned home.

Next Tuesday evening the ladies of the Monroe Avenue Chapel will hold their annual supper.

Mrs. Robert Downy of Madison Avenue gave a tea this afternoon from 4 to 7.

By far the largest and most brilliant social function that has ever been given in this city was the Ackerman reception at the Casino on Monday night. About 500 guests were present, the largest number that has yet gathered in that pretty clubhouse and ballroom. Mrs. J. Hervey Ackerman received, assisted by Mrs. Robert Rushmore, Mrs. Ernest R. Ackerman, and Mrs. Marion S. Ackerman.

Plainfield Countil of the Royal Arcanum celebrated the addition of the two hundredth member to its ranks Monday night with an entertainment.

William C. Ayers, one of Plainfield's oldest residents, celebrated his eighty-sixth birthday Tuesday. He was born on Feb. 12, 1809, on the same day as Lincoln.

Wednesday evening the ladies of the Seventh Day Baptist Church held a sale and supper in the church.

An interesting meeting of the Monday Afternoon Club was held in the parlors of the Crescent Avenue Church Monday, at which David P. Hall gave a talk on parliamentary usage.

The Third Regiment Cadet Corps of this city will go to Bound Brook on Washington's Birthday to take part in the parade of that place.

Several new members were received into the Plainfield Bicycle Club at a meeting Monday night.

On Thursday evening, Feb. 21, a Martha Washington tea will be given in the First Presbyterian Church.

Tuesday evening Mr. and Mrs. B. O. Bowers of Franklin Place entertained the Musical Club.

The Ladies Committee of the Young Women's Christian Association met Tuesday afternoon and elected the following officers: President – Mrs. Henry M. Maxson; Vice-President – Mrs. J. Wesley Johnson; Treasurere – Mrs. J. H. Manning; Secretary – Miss Embury.

Next month Miss Fannie Westphal will be married to George Gray of Brooklyn.

Tuesday, Mrs. Marion S. Ackerman of West Seventh Street gave a dinner in honor of her guest, Miss Cox of New York. The guests present were Miss Gertrude Waly, Miss Cox, Miss Marion Dumont, Miss Waldron, Miss Lawrence, Miss Carey, Harry Munger, Laurens Van Buren, Fred Waly, Dr. B. Van D. Hedges, Mr. Waring and Mr. Wharton.

A union meeting of the Woman's Foreign Missionary Societies of the Crescent Avenue and First Presbyterian Churches as held Tuesday afternoon at the latter church. The subject discussed as "China," papers being read by Mrs. M. E. Dwight, Mrs. Luchey, Mrs. Cornelius Schenck, Mrs. Pruden, and Mrs. Wyckoff.

Next Saturday Mrs. Henry McGee of Washington Park will give an afternoon tea. The hours will be from 4 to 7 o'clock.

During the week Miss Florence Honneger of New Brighton, S. I., has been the guest of Mrs. J. R. Hill of Belvidere Avenue.

Plainfield's handsome new Young Men's Christian Association Building was formally opened Tuesday night. Addresses were made by Mayor Alexander Gilbert, the first President of the association; the Rev. Dr. William R. Richards and William D. Murray, the present President. The building cost about $50,000.

New York Times April 11, 1901

PLAINFIELD, N.J., April 10. – The wedding of Miss Lydia Platt Ackerman and Arthur Murphy took place this afternoon at Grace Church. The bride is a daughter of Mrs. Ellen R. and the late J. Hervey Ackerman. Her brothers are New York business men. The bridegroom is the son of the Rev. T. Logan Murphy, the newly appointed curate of the American Church at Paris.

Miss Ackerman was accompanied to the altar by her married sister, Mrs. Robert Rushmore, matron of honor, and by Miss Anna Riker of New York, Miss Mary Scott Denniston of the State College of Pennsylvania, and Miss Catherine DePauw of New Albany, Ind. The best man was Clarence L. Murphy, the groom's brother. The ushers were Marion S. Ackerman, James F. Middledith, and Rufus F. Finch of Plainfield, and Townsend Morgan of New York. The bride's three nephews, dressed in white sailor costumes, were pages.

The service was read by the Rev. T. Logan Murphy, assisted by the rector of Grace Church, the Rev. Erskine M. Rodman. After the marriage at the church a reception was held at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Robert Rushmore.

August 26, 1894 New York Times Article: Plainfield, City of Homes

Some of the others that do business in New York and have handsome homes here are . . . Ernest R. Ackerman, the cement manufacturer;

Warren Ackerman

December 14, 2011
Hillside Cemetery

Birth: 1827
New Brunswick
Middlesex County
New Jersey, USA
Death: 1893
Scotch Plains
Union County
New Jersey, USA

Warren Ackerman was born 1827 in New Brunswick, Middlesex County, NC the 5th of 8 known children (4 boys/4 girls) born to prominent businessman and financier, Jonathan Coombs Ackerman and his wife, Maria Smith.

He was the paternal grandchild of Geleyn Ackerman & Jane Coombs of New Brunswick; and gr-grandchild of Abraham Ackerman and Janet Romeyn who had removed from Hackensack, Bergen County, NJ to settle in New Brunswick. He was a direct descendant of this family's patriarch, Abraham "David" Davidtse Ackerman, who came to New Netherlands from Holland and married Aeltie Adrianse Van Laer, later becoming one of the early Dutch settlers of Hackensack NJ.

Warren was educated at private schools in New Brunswick and acquired a thorough education preparing him for a mercantile life. Upon the marriage of his eldest sister, Caroline E. Ackerman to Dr. Abraham Coles, the young man left New Brunswick to make his home with them in Newark. As he matured, he entered the India Rubber business, having received from his father, who was one of the founders of the India Rubber industry in New Jersey, some shares of the capital stock of Newark India Rubber Company. He at once took an active interest in the development and success of this company, soon being elected to the Board of Directors.

Owing largely to his individual efforts, this company was very successful until the year about 1850 when, in opposition to his advice and that of others, an inferior article of rubber was purchased and manufactured into goods which proved worthless, and nearly ruined the credit and business of the company. He prospered, though, forming Ackerman & Company who became the selling arm of the Phoenix Rubber Company of Connecticut, and he became very wealthy selling rubber shoes and other rubber-based equipment (including pontoons) to the United States government during the Civil War.

Warren became involved in all types of profitable business ventures in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, and those who knew him recalled him as a wise counselor and reliable friend. He was instrumental, along with others, in preventing the foreclosure of the mortgages on the Central Railroad of New Jersey in 1877.

Sometime between 1874-1880, Warren, then in his late 40's, married for the first time; taking as his bride, his brother George's widow, Lydia Platt, who was then in her early 40's. Lydia was an heiress in her own right, and the youngest child of Isaac L. Platt, wealthy merchant and banker of New York, who retired to Plainfield, NJ in the 1870's.

In 1882, Warren purchased the town of Feltville at public auction and transformed it to a summer resort called Glenside Park. Today known as the "Deserted Village" this hamlet is located in the Watchung Reservation, Union County, New Jersey, and is a historical part of this area which still stands to this day.

The first settler of this area was Peter Willcox, an Englishman who moved here from Long Island about 1736. The area then was a frontier. He built a sawmill, but it was demolished as more people came to the area. David Felt, a businessman in Boston, Massachusetts, in 1825 decided to move to New York City. By 1844, the production of his mill could not grow fast enough to meet the demands of the merchants he supplied. Therefore, Felt began to look for land in New Jersey on which to build a second factory and at last bought land from the descendants of Peter Willcox. In but two years, David Felt built a mill on Blue Brook, two dams for the mill, and a town for the workers in the mill. He named this new town "Feltville". Within the little town, he as owner gained the nickname of "King David", for he obliged the residents to attend divine service in the churchhouse and their children to attend classes in a one-room schoolhouse.

By 1850, about 175 people lived in Feltville, often four families in each of the larger houses and two in each of the smaller. After fifteen years, "King David" Felt sold the property and several successor businesses failed, the place becoming known as "the deserted village".

Warren's "Glenside Park" didn't last long as the interest of vactioners soon soon dwindled as more people chose to summer on the New Jersey shore instead. After the place was again deserted, the Union Country Park Commission bought it and included it in the Watchung Reservation, renting the houses to families.

Another source of Warren Ackerman's great wealth was his interests in Portland Cement through the Lawrence Portland Cement Company in Pennsylvania (ca. 1889), a business interest later managed by his nephews, Ernest and Marion Ackerman, the sons of his younger brother, James Hervey Ackerman.

Warren Ackerman died at his home in Scotch Plains, NJ in 1893, after a short illness. He was 66 years old. The bulk of his extensive wealth was willed to his wife with 11 other family members receiving considerable trusts. By the time his wife died in 1907, there were only 7 of the trustees still alive. A battle over the interpretation of the trusts ensued, but all were satisfied with the outcome.

Lydia Platt Ackerman, widow of both George and Warren Ackerman, died in 1907 in Scotch Plains, NJ. She was about 73 years old. Her final resting place has not been found by this researcher. Funeral services were held at the First Presbyterian Church in Plainfield, NJ, and it is possible she is buried in their cemetery.

Family links:
Jonathan Coombs Ackerman (1793 - 1852)
Maria Smith Ackerman (1793 - 1873)

Willow Grove Cemetery
New Brunswick
Middlesex County
New Jersey, USA

Created by: pbfries
Record added: Jan 24, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 47043179

Warren Ackerman Jr.

December 14, 2011
Hillside Cemetery

Priscilla Warren Ackerman

December 14, 2011
Hillside Cemetery

Catherine Randolph Webster

Ladies Home of Plainfield
313 Franklin Place

Uploaded by usphilately on May 20, 2011
Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865) had appeared on at least one denomination of every regular issue since 1866. When the definitive issue of 1908 (the Third Bureau Issue) bore only the portraits of Washington and Franklin, there was considerable public disappointment.

The 100th anniversary of Lincoln's birth created an opportunity to correct the situation. Ernest Robinson Ackerman, a well-known stamp collector, successfully led the appeal for a special commemorative stamp. Ten years later (1919) Ackerman would represent New Jersey in the U.S. Congress. The National Postal Museum now owns part of Ackerman's United States collection.

The 2-cent Lincoln stamp of 1909 had the dimensions of a definitive stamp, but it was the first U.S. single stamp commemorative issue. The Lincoln portrait is based on a statue by sculptor Augustus Saint-Gaudens. It was also the first commemorative issued with and without perforations. A number of stamps of this time period were made available imperforate, intended for perforation and manufacture into coils by private companies for use in vending and affixing machines.

Famous Stamp Collectors

Since the issuance of the Penny Black, the first pre-paid postage stamp in 1840, people have collected stamps. The focus and levels at which they collect differ, but, nonetheless, all share the world's most popular hobby. Through stamps, schoolchildren, businesspersons, laborers, artists, and retired persons all enjoy something significant in common with royalty, entertainers, politicians, industrialists, and business giants.

Stamp collecting has been called the "hobby of kings" because so many famous individuals have been avid collectors. Use the links provided here as gateways to the private stamp collecting interests of these illustrious individuals.

Presidents, Royalty, Heads of State

King George V, Great Britain
• A Magnificent Collection

Queen Elizabeth II, Great Britain
• The Queen's Own: Stamps that Changed the World
• Kristen Ollies Collection: Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II

King Farouk I, Egypt
• Finding Guide for Royal Imperforate Printings
• Finding Guide for the Henry A. Meyer Collection of French Revolution

Prince Rainier III, Monaco
• The Smithsonian Philatelic Achievement Award Recipients of 2002

Franklin D. Roosevelt, U.S. President
• Franklin D. Roosevelt
• Delivering Hope: FDR & Stamps of the Great Depression
• FDR–Stamp Collecting President
• Mail to The Chief

Political and Government Leaders

Ernest A. Ackerman, Congressman
• Ernest R. Ackerman
• U.S. and International Stamps Gallery

James Farley, U.S. Postmaster General
• James A. Farley
• "Farley's Follies" Uncut and Ungummed Press Sheets

Harold Ickes, Secretary of the Interior
• "Farley's Follies" Press Sheet

Business Leaders

William H. Gross, Founder, PIMCO
• William H. Gross
• William H. Gross Stamp Gallery

John P.V. Heinmuller, President, Longines-Wittnauer Watch Co.
• John P. V. Heinmuller


Charlie Chaplin, Actor
• Trailblazers & Trendsetters: The Art of the Stamp

John Lennon, Musician
• John Lennon: The Lost Album


Ayn Rand, Novelist
• Literary Arts Series: Rand Issue


Amelia Earhart, Aviatrix
• Amelia Earhart
• Amelia Earhart's Solo Transatlantic Mail
• Pilot Stories: Amelia Earhart

Other Prominent Persons

Simon Wiesenthal, Hunter of Nazi War Criminals
• Simon Wiesenthal|s1=1|

Born in New York City in 1863, Ernest R. Ackerman amassed one of the nation's greatest philatelic collections during his lifetime. Intrigued by the stamps on envelopes his father, a patent lawyer, received from the Patent Office in Washington, D.C., Ackerman began his business career as a stamp dealer, building an impressive mail order business. Within a few short years, he moved into other mercantile endeavors, numerous of which related to cement and water. He traveled widely, and interest in philately opened many doors for him, including that of King George V, also a collector. Throughout his life, Ackerman's exhibits won numerous awards.

Though a successful businessman, Ackerman devoted much of his adult life to politics. He held many posts in the New Jersey legislature, and was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1919.

Ackerman died in office in 1931. His will left "all proofs of United States Stamps which shall be owned by me at the time of my death" to the Library of Congress. Although proofs formed the great bulk of his massive collection, only three volumes were ever received by the Library. Estate appraisers classified many proofs as "special printings," "reprints," or "essays" in order to exclude them from the bequest. Ackerman's heirs tried to sell the material privately, but collectors stayed away, fearful that the government could claim title. The remainder of the Ackerman collection was finally sold at auction in 1950.

The Library of Congress transferred its Ackerman Collection to the National Philatelic Collection in 1958.

W. Iriving Glover, 3rd Asst. PMG (1921 025), 2nd Asst PMG (1925-1933)

Hon. Ernest R. Ackerman

Glover frequently sent flight covers to Representative Ernest R. Ackerman, a Congressman from New Jersey. As shown above, Glover serviced covers for the occasion of the first flight of CAM 30 for his wife and Ackerman. Mrs. Glover received a cover for the Chicago to Evansville flight leg and Ackerman received a cover for the return flight leg from Evansville to Chicago.

Ackerman was world famous for his exceptional stamp collections. He was also philately's most important Congressional advocate of the time. Along with Senator Joseph Frelinghuysen, also from New Jersey and a stamp collector, he worked for the successful passage of the law permitting printing of illustrations of postage stamps in the United States. Ackerman was elected to the APS Hall of Fame in the year 2000.


June 29, 2008 - I bought the cover below recently in an eBay auction, because I collect souvenirs of WIPA 1933. It has a copy of one of the History of Mail Transport poster stamps on the back, nicely tied by two of the postmarks.

My first reaction when I saw it was that there had to be an error in the dates of the handstamps, since all are for January, 1932, yet the 1933 WIPA (Vienna International Philatelic Exhibition) did not take place until June, 1933. Surely those labels were not available that long before the show! But how could it be a mistake in the dates? One handstamp with the wrong date, sure (HERE is an example of that), but ten!? No way.
So I emailed my friend Roger Riga, cinderella dealer (RIGASTAMPS), and asked his opinion.

Roger replied:

I have my suspicions that the cover is part fake and part real, the real part being the German cover mailed to New York. The fake part being the forwarding to Washington, DC. Of course the extremely early use of the WIPA label steers me in that direction. The second thing is all the rubber stamped forwarding address (Why would the P.O. in NY have a large rubber stamp for a hotel in Washington, DC?) Also all of the forwarding cancels etc are in the same P.O. purple ink. and all clearly readable. Just luck ?
I've kown people to apply labels and fake transit markings to "dress up" an otherwise uninspiring cover. I don't pretend to be enough of an expert on postal history to say if there is anything else to suspect but the whole thing raises questions to me.

I emailed the eBay seller, asking what he knew about the cover's provenance, and questioning the date for the WIPA labls. He replied:

It is curious isn't it! The label is very definitely tied with JAN 14 1932 postmark so the label must have been available at that time. It came with a genuine estate I picked up in the US so I doubt if there is anything dubious about it.
Roger Riga's repsonse to that was:

The problem with the owner's comment regarding the cancel is that the canceling devices themselves are available in the marketplace. I have one myself that I picked up at a local bourse for $5.00. That doesn't mean it's a fake, just that it could be.
I emailed Bill Weinberger, another cinderella expert, and he replied as follows:

Paul Kohl was a stamp dealer, and wrote an article on early Romania. Thus, the cover does have some philatelic connection, but is certainly commercial.
In those early years, event labels (not just philatelic) were issued for publicity purposes and it is not unusual to see them on letters or entires several months before the show date. However a year and a half, I admit,has to be quite unusual and perhaps unique as it is so early.

Today most stamp show labels are given or sold at the show as souvenirs rather than publicity.

I tried emailing a couple of other contacts who share my interest in the 1933 WIPA, but the only one who responded was Peter Sanders of The Netherlands. He replied:

It surely is an early use, because says 'Erscheinungstermin 1. August 1932' (Issue date August 1, 1932). That doesn't fit. But the label is from the first printing, according to the color, and that printing might have been earlier? The stamps were issued to get money to organize the show in June/July 1933. The letter looks genuine to me. ...
The fee is as follows:
30 Pfg Einschreiben (Registration)
30 Pfg Ruckschein (return receipt)
25 Pfg Auslandsbrief bis 20g (foreign mail)
so 85 Pfg is correct!

Michel 1996 says it is worth 15 DM, but the interest in well-franked letters makes it worth buying, especially in combination with the label (the little damage would not bother me).

That was enough to convince me I should bid on the cover, so I did, and won it for a price I considered reasonable ($19.49, including postage).

BUT I'm still curious when the HoMT labels were issued.
I emailed, quoted above as giving an issue date for the labels of August 1, 1932. Gabriele Sander replied that the person who added that information to their web page is no longer with the company!

I tried posting an inquiry on Richard Frajola's message board but got no response there (I didn't really expect to, it's outside the subject matter of that forum, but I figured it couldn't hurt.)

July 21, 2008 - At Roger Riga's suggestion, I wrote to Herb Trenchard, the dean of U.S. philatelic history who apparently shares my obsession with the WIPA 1933. I was told by other contacts that Herb has no email, so I Googled his name and found his ordinary mail address on the American Philatelic Society web site. I fired off a letter.

Herb replied promptly as follows:

The WIPA 1933 History of Mail Transport labels were available to the public in November 1931 (and perhaps earlier). That was the date of the first WIPA 1933 Prospectus, where they are mentioned in the text. The Austrian philatelic journal Die Postmarke (which contains the journal Die Sammlerfreund) has an ad for them in its January 1932 issue ( click here). So there is no question that Paul Kohl could have had them in January 1932 to use on your cover.

Your cover is addressed to "The Heirs of the late Mr Ernest R Ackerman" who had been a Congressman from New Jersey, and during his years in Congress lived at the Wardman Park Hotel in Washington, DC. Ackerman was an active philatelist known world-wide for his many gold-medal winning collections at international philatelic exhibitions. You can rad my biography of him on the APS web site -

WIPA 1933 was one of the greatest of all pre-WWII exhibitions. Edwin Mueller was the man behind it. [He was also the publisher of Die Postmarke.] Later, after his escape from Austria, he ran Mercury Stamp Co., and I looked forward to visiting him and hearing him tell about his Vienna days!

Mystery solved! My sincere thanks to Herb for resolving the issue so decisively and informatively.

July 23, 2008 - Bill Weinberger, after reading all of this, added the following:

All now ties in but there is a strange thing about the cover that I don't think anyone noticed before: It is addressed to Plainfield NY, but Ackerman's home town is Plainfield NJ! Obviously misadressed.
But it got to NJ without delay because the NY post office knew the correct state somehow.
Note the dates on back-
1) NY arrival Jan 13
2) Plainfield NEW JERSEY arrival Jan 14
3) Plainfield must have made a special stamp for forwarding since there had to be lots of mail.
4) Washington arrival Jan 15
5) Either the Heirs picked up mail at the hotel or maintained his apartment there.

How many days do you think it would take for the letter to be delivered under the same circumstances today!?

1932 Letter to Ackerman Heirs

History of Union County

The subject of this review stands as a representative of one of the old families of the state of New Jersey. A native of the city of New York, Ernest R. Ackerman was born on the 17th of June, 1863, the son of J. Hervey Ackerman and Ellen (Robinson) Ackerman, a memoir of the former of whom appears on another page of this volume. His father became of the prominent and influential men of Union County,

January 12, 1896 New York Times

A WEEK'S EVENTS IN PLAINFIELD.; Numerous Receptions – Doings of Clubs and Societies.

PLAINFIELD, Jan. 11. – A reception was given by Mrs. I C. Pierson of Watchung Avenue, Tuesday evening. She was assisted in receiving by her daughters, Mrs. Malcolm MacKenzie of New-York and Miss Mabel Pierson; Miss Corbitt of New-York, Miss Cochran of Wilmington, Del., and Miss Hunter of North Adams, Mass.

The members of the North Plainfield Dramatic Club were entertained at the home of Mr. and Mrs. James E. Bailey, Jackson Avenue, Tuesday evening. Among those present were Mr. and Mrs. Andrew E. Keneey, Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Neeley, Mr. and Mrs. James Harper, Miss Mary Hughes, Miss Ellen Mullon, and Frank Off.

A Past Master's jewel was presented to Calvin H. Rugg of Jerusalem Lodge, F. and A.M., Tuesday evening. The same evening John J. Lynch, for several years President of the Plainfield Catholic Club, was presented with a gold-headed cane by the members of the club.

A. D. Shepard and family of the Gables have gone to Buckingham, New York, for the Winter.

The class of '96 of the North Plainfield school was entertained by Miss Emma and Miss Bertha Stevens Wednesday evening.

Mrs. John Valiant of Craig Place gave a reception and tea Wednesday. She was assisted in receiving by Mrs. H.K. Carroll, Mrs. A. A. Tafty, Mrs. F. H. Randolph, Miss Grace Carroll, Miss Bessie Valiant, Miss Florence Valiant, and Miss Mary Steiner.

The Park Club gave an entertainment Wednesday night at the clubhouse on Washington Avenue. The patronesses were Mrs. C. A. Reed, Mrs. Samuel St. John McCutcheon, and Mrs. J. H. Howell.

Miss Imogene See of Sing Sing, N.Y., is a guest of Mrs. Elmer E. Runyon of Madison Avenue.

Miss Eda Mills of Summit Avenue gave a party to her friends Wednesday night.

Miss Mollie Lawrence of New York and Miss Mather of Bound Brook are guests of Mr. and Mrs. Marion S. Ackerman of Crescent Avenue.

Miss Emily Coriell of Church Street is visiting in Brooklyn.

Miss Edith Allen of Webster Place is spending the Winter in Flushing.

Mrs. J. H. Ackerman and daughter, Lydia, have returned from a two month's trip to the Pacific coast.

Miss Randolph, daughter of Thompson F. Randolph of New-York, is visiting her sister Mrs. Judson Bonnell of East Front Street.

Mrs. Lewis of Binghampton, N.Y., is the guest of Mr. and Mrs. D. F. Ginna of Watchung Avenue.

Miss Rachel Fay Buckley of Newburg, N.Y., and Harry Ellis Green of Plainfield were married Wednesday night at the bride's home.

Mr. and Mrs. C. O. Moore of Ithaca, N.Y., are the guests of Mr. and Mrs. George Squires of North Plainfield.

Miss Laura J. Runyon of East Fifth Street is visiting friends in Philadelphia.

Miss Harriet Loomis of New York City is a guest of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph E. Morse of Franklin Place.

Miss Josie Burlingham of Albany Normal College is a guest of ex-Councilman Seymore G. Smith of Crescent Avenue.

Miss Jennie Foster of New York and Howard Foster of Princeton Colelge are guests of D. N. Groendyke of Mercer Avenue.

Miss Helen L. Moore of New York is the guest of her sister Mrs. S. A. Cruikshank, of Belvidere Avenue.

Miss Freeman of Rahway is visiting her aunt, Mrs. W. C. Ayres, of West Second Street.

Miss Baldwin of Baltimore has gone home, after a visit with her uncle Councilman J. H. Valiant of Craig Place.

Howell Division, no. 97, Sons of Temperance, celebrated its twenty-seventh anniversary Wednesday evening. AMong those present form the out of tow were A. P. Sutphen of Somerville, Grand Worthy Patriarch Ross Slack of Excelsior Division of Trenton, Past Grand Worthy Patriarch Fred Day of Newark and Worthy Patriarch Evenson of Newark, and Worthy Patriarch Evenson of Philadelphia. James J. Perine of Brooklyn is the only living charter member of the division.

Mrs. Yerkes, wife of the Rev. Dr. D. J. Yerkes of the First Baptist Church, has gone to Greenville, S.C., to visit a daughter.

Mr. and Mrs. Ernest R. Ackerman, who are making a tour around the world, are now at Hongkong.

Feltville, Deserted Village, Glenside Park and Watchung Reservation

506 West 8th Street

506 West 8th Street

506 West 8th

1920 Muhlenberg Hospital Womens Auxiliary

Mrs. E. R. Ackerman
506 West Eighth Street

October 26, 1919 New York Times


Daughter of Mr. and Mrs. J. Maxwell Carrere Married in St. James's Church

The marriage of Reginald Rowland, a son of Mrs. David E. Rowland of Plainfield, N.J., and Miss Beatrice Carrere, a daughter of Mr. and Mrs. J. Maxwell Carrere, took place at 4 o'clock yesterday afternoon in St. James's Church, Madison Avenue and Seventy-first Street, the Rev. Dr. Frank Crowder officiating. The bride was attended by Miss Louise Cattus as maid of honor, and the bridesmaids included her cousins, the Misses Helen and Elizabeth Carrere, Susanne Field and Blanche Butler. Warren Ackerman was Mr. Rowland's best man, and the ushers were Story Rowland, a brother of the bridegroom; Robert M. Carrere, Edward Stevenson, and Roger Mellick

Email correspondence 2012 - 2013

Dear Ford:

Happy New Year. Yesterday a group of us were sorting through the '30's
archival boxes at the Plainfield Library and I discovered the attached.
Mrs. Frank D. Warren would be your great-grandmother. I thought you would like to read the tribute from her friends.

Since I was the one who discovered it (out of a room of about 10 people
sorting piles of paper) I am taking it as a sign that I am remiss from
calling your grandfather! I plan on calling next week – in the afternoon
– and I hope I don't have too many questions for him.

We just received another email from the great-granddaughter of Mrs. Mead. I have a feeling your grandfather will know the Meads as Mrs. Mead and
Mrs. Warren were good friends.

Enjoy – Susan


Thank you for your detailed reply. I will discuss your questions with him
but can answer the following ones directly (my responses are below your
questions). I have also copied my uncles (Harrison, Ford and Chris Fraker) on this email and they may have additional comments and can correct anything I have wrong or also add additional information:

For starters, the first question would be: How is he related to the 3
Fraker members?

1. Fraker, Mrs. George Washington (Agnes Warren) '32

George was his father and Agnes was his mother.

Is Mrs. G. W. Fraker (Agnes Warren) related to Mrs. Frank D. Warren '15?
Here is the direct link to that album:

The Warrens were Agnes' family, so this was her mother.

2. Fraker, Mrs. Philip W. '32

I do not know but will ask.

Is your grandfather the "Harry" that recounts Nantucket in the 1920's?

Yes; he is the one. I think that article appeared originally in one of the
Nantucket magazines about three years ago.

Are the Frakers related to the Ackermans?

Yes; Harry had two sisters (can't remember their first names) and one of them married an Ackerman. I do not recognize the first names below but will inquire.

Ackerman, Mrs. Ernest Robinson (Nora L. Weber) '15

Ackerman, Mrs. Marion S.(Sarah M. Wills) '35

3. Fraker, Mrs. H. C. '26

We do not know too much about this member. Was she the mother-in-law of the other two Fraker members? A sister-in-law? Any idea who Margaret Fraker is?

I do not know who she is but will ask.

When you grandfather said he grew up on "Plainfield farm" – what is that location? Is it the house on Rahway Road?

Yes, that is the house. I heard it had been restored.

Tell him that house (now #1001) has been completely renovated and is a show place. I can try to get some photographs for him.

If you or your grandfather has any photos or memorabilia, we would love to include it. Did he know any of the Detwillers? They have sent in quite a bit for the ladies in their family that belonged to the club.

I do not know; he has moved several times and now lives with my uncle (his son) Chris Fraker in Nantucket. I know he would be delighted to discuss the above with you. He can be reached at (508) 228-9501. He is best in the middle of the day or early evening. You can reach Chris on his cell at (XXX) XXX-XXXX. His email is above.

Best, Ford

On Nov 29, 2012, at 9:10 AM,<>

Dear Mr. von Weise,

Thank you so much for writing to us. It is always a thrill when a
relative discovers our little website<> The garden club was founded in 1915 and we are the second oldest remaining organization in Plainfield – the Music Club is a few years older!

Two years ago we began to collect the MANY boxes of archives that have
accumulated in members' attics and basements over the past 97 years. We have only scratched the surface of piecing together this memorabilia. We created the online membership list and any time we come across something that is remotely related to that member, we scan it into their album. The plan is to go back and organize later – we will see if this happens. This is our explanation for the jumble of information that appears in your family's files. Our apologies!

We have a record of 3 "Frakers" in the club. Below are the links and a
few questions if you could ask your grandfather (Please send him our
regards. Did he happen to know Barbara Sandford? We just celebrated her 94th birthday a few weeks ago. If he did, I will send you some photos to show him.)

For starters, the first question would be: How is he related to the 3
Fraker members?

1. Fraker, Mrs. George Washington (Agnes Warren) '32

Is Mrs. G. W. Fraker (Agnes Warren) related to Mrs. Frank D. Warren '15?
Here is the direct link to that album:

2. Fraker, Mrs. Philip W. '32

Is your grandfather the "Harry" that recounts Nantucket in the 1920's?
Are the Frakers related to the Ackermans?

Ackerman, Mrs. Ernest Robinson (Nora L. Weber) '15

Ackerman, Mrs. Marion S.(Sarah M. Wills) '35

3. Fraker, Mrs. H. C. '26

We do not know too much about this member. Was she the mother-in-law of the other two Fraker members? A sister-in-law? Any idea who Margaret Fraker is?

When you grandfather said he grew up on "Plainfield farm" – what is that location? Is it the house on Rahway Road? Tell him that house (now #1001) has been completely renovated and is a show place. I can try to get some photographs for him.

If you or your grandfather has any photos or memorabilia, we would love to include it. Did he know any of the Detwillers? They have sent in quite a bit for the ladies in their family that belonged to the club.

Thank you again for writing to us. Let me know about Barbara and the
house on Rahway Road – he would probably like to see the photos.


Susan Fraser
co-President Plainfield Garden Club

You've received a new submission from your "contact us" through your
"Plainfield Garden Club" Andy's Web Tools web site.

name: Ford von Weise
phone: (XXX) XXX-XXXX


My daughter came across the article on your website about my grandfather,Harry Fraker, who is till alive today at 94 and living on Nantucket. He grew up in Plainfield on Plainfield Farm, went to Lawrenceville, and then Princeton served in WWII at an artillery officer and then raised his family in Princeton. The article asked questions regarding if he was Mrs. H.C. Fraker's husband. The answer is no; he is the husband of the former Marjorie Tomlinson. She died in 1986. I would be happy to answer any questions. Please feel free to call or email.

Thanks for using Andy's Web Tools!

Bradford L von Weise<>

+1 XXX XXX XXXX Mobile

1915 Meeting Minutes

Plainfield Garden Club
Minutes of regular meetings
May 12, 1915 to March 20, 1918
From its origination

May 12 – 1915

Minutes of the 1st General Meeting

First general meeting of the Plainfield Garden Club was held at the home of Mrs. Conner on Wednesday, May 12th at 3.30 o'clock.

President in the chair. Roll call showed 39 members present.

During the meeting rain began to fall to everyones regret making a tour of Mrs. Conner's garden impossible.

A few ? of congratulations on the formation of the Club by the President was followed by some notices given, and request to have members offer to exchange plants when possible.

We then listened to a most comprehensive talk on perennials given by Mr. Maurice Field of New York which was greatly enjoyed and appreciated by the members. He brought specimens of many plants showing how to divide and separate grubs and other garden enemies.


All felt stimulated and helped by his talk and as the rain prevented us from going in the garden his lecture of two hours ?? too long.

After a cup of tea the meeting adjourned.

Ella M. Gilbert Secy

May 26, 1915

Minutes of the 2nd General Meeting

Second general meeting of the Plainfield Garden Club was held at the home of Mrs. Barrows on Wed. May 26th at 3 oclock.

President in the Chair.

Roll call showed 33 members present.

Minutes of previous meeting were read and approved.

Giving to the inclement conditions of the weather the meeting was held indoors. ?? later on the sun came out and a visit to the garden was enjoyed by all.

Mrs. E. Yarde Breeze of Raritan ? Garden Club gave a very delightful paper on foreign gardens.

A letter was read from Mrs. W. S. Tyler giving notice of sale of garden things for the benefit of a young boy that she and some others were especially interested in.

It was noted ?? bring out of town guests and the Hostess. Plainfield friends After enjoying the hospitality of the hostess tea being served the meeting adjourned.

Ella M. Gilbert secy

June 2 – 1915

Minutes of the 3rd general meeting

The third general meeting of the Plainfield Garden Club was held in the garden of Mrs. Dumont on Wednesday June 9th at three oclock.

The president in the chair.

Roll call showed 25 members present. Minutes of the previous meeting were read and approved.

Miss R. E. Zimmerman of Brooklyn gave a most interesting and helpful talk in "L?? garden flowers."

It was noted to have a "Bird talk" during the year and also to have Mr. Maurice Field give a course of lectures during our next season beginning in April.

It was a most glorious June day and the garden most beautiful which was enjoyed and appreciated by those present who strolled about among the flowers. Tea was served in the tea house. The meeting then adjourned.

Ella M. Gibert Secy

June 23 -1915

Minutes of the 4th general meeting

The fourth general meeting of the Plainfield Garden Club was held in the garden of Mrs. Runkle, on Wednesday June 23rd at 3 oclock.

The president in the chair.

Roll call showed 25 members present.

Minutes of the former meeting were read and approved.

Mrs. L. A. Brown of Shedvira?? Garden Club Garden City L. I. read a most useful and interesting paper on color harmony in gardens she also answered very pleasantly all questions asked regarding plants and flowers.

July 14 – 1915

Minutes of the 5th General Meeting of the Garden Club was held on July 14 in the garden of Mrs. Fleming.

The day was a perfect summer one and we were addressed by Mr. L. V. F. Randolph who read an original paper on "What Some Plants Feel and Think."

An interesting discussion followed after which we took a stroll in Mrs. Fleming's charming garden and then were refreshed with fruit punch and cakes served under a ?? on the lawn. After a delightful afternoon meeting adjourned.

Ella M. Gilbert Secy
Per H. B. H.

September 15 – 1915

Minutes of the 5th General Meeting of the Garden Club

A regular meeting of the Garden Club was held at the delightful farm of Mrs. Eaton on Valley Road, on Wednesday, Sept. 15th. The President presiding.

In the absence of the Secy, Mrs. Patterson called the roll and heard the minutes of the last regular meeting. The Pres. Welcomed the members of the Club after the separation of the summer & suggested that some slight expression of gratitude for the please we had enjoyed at the Garden Club meetings or shown by a gift of 100 glasses of jelly to the Fruit & Flower ?ision. This idea was approved by the members present in that 2 glasses of fruit jelly from each member may be sent to the house of the Pres. For this purpose. A letter was read from Mr. Chester Jay Hunt extending a warm invitation to the Garden Club to visit his tulip gardens next spring and make a picnic of the day there. We then listened to a delightful talk on "Roses" by Mr. Geo. H. Peterson of Fair Lawn, N. J. and were afterwards ?? with fruit punch and cakes in an arbor on the grounds.

A visit to the farm buildings & flower garden brought to a ?? a delightful day.

Ella M. Gilbert Secy
From H. B. H.

September 22 – 1915

Minutes of the 7th General Meeting of the Garden Club

A regular meeting of the Plainfield Garden Club was held at the Bungalow of Mrs. Mellick on Wednesday Sept. 22nd at three o'clock.

Mrs. E. J. Patterson acting as Sec'y in the absence of Mrs. Gilbert.

The afternoon was given up to a talk on "Birds in Our Gardens" by Mr. Bucher S. Bowdish – Secty v ?? of the ?? State Audubon Society of was felt greatly moved by the pleasure of Mrs. William Dra??? Who has done so much for the conservation of Bird Life in America. The Club was entertained delightfully by Mrs. Mellick after which we adjourned.

Ella M. Gilbert – Secy
Per H. B. H.

Oct 13 – 1915

Minutes of the 8th General Meeting of the Garden Club

A regular meeting of the Plainfield Garden Club was held at the residence of Mrs. H. N. Stevens on Wednesday Oct 13th at 3 o'clock. Pres. In chair. After roll call & minutes of last meeting read to approved, a letter was read from our lecturer on "Birds" of the meeting before. Minutes were approved by two of the members. The day was like one in June and all enjoyed the interchange of ideas and the informal talk of our garden troubles. The lecturer of the day was Mr. Otto Shilow Sec'y & Treas. Of the Duer ? Co. who gave us a most instructive and helpful talk on "the care of our gardens." All had so many questions to ask that after a long ?? it was difficult for Mr. Shilow to get a cup of tea before his departure for Philadelphia.

All expressed the wish that we might have the pleasure of having him again. After a social gathering about Mrs. Stevens tea table, the club adjourned.

Ella M. Gilbert, Secy
Per H. B. H.

NOTE: This next entry follows in the order the Meeting Minute notebook was photographed, however the date is "1916" – not sure if this entry is from 1916 or was not recorded correctly as "1915" which seems unlikely.

Oct. 27, 1916

Minutes of the 9th General Meeting of the Garden Club

A regular meeting of the Plainfield Garden Club was held at the residence of Mrs. E. T. Barrows on Wednesday Oct. 24? At 3 o'clock.

The Pres. In the chair. After the roll call and the minutes of the previous meeting read & approved, the Pres. Brought up the subject of the mid winter lecture, to be held in the evening and for which an admission should be charged.

After some discussion it was decided to have Mr. Shilow give his illustrated lecture "Flowers From Snow to Snow" admission to be 50 center and each member to be responsible for two tickets.

The time and place was left to be determined.

The Pres. Expressed our great sorrow in the death of Mrs. Louis Hyde – the members of the Club all standing and moved that a note of condolence be sent to Mr. Hyde and his family.

The Pres. Announced that Mrs. Ackerman and Mrs. Ivins had provided a lecture from Mr. Field for the . . . instead of having a meeting of their homes this year. He then spoke to us on "Bulbs.: Late in the afternoon tea was served & the meeting adjourned.

Lucy Van Boskerck
Secy pro tem

1915 - 1918 Meeting Minutes

July 13, 2013 Grace Church Yard Sale Saturday

Sale held in the Ackerman Garden

National Register of Historic Places

The church complex is sited between East Sixth and Seventh Streets and Cleveland Avenue, Block 837 Lot 1. On the west side the church complex is bordered by an approximately one acre garden enclosed by a wrought iron fence. This garden (Photo 10) was designed by the well known landscape architects mnocenti & Webel in 1969 and was the recipient in 1971 of the Church Garden Award made by the National Council of State Garden Clubs. It consists of mature shrubs(i.e.mountainlaurel, azalea, rhododendron, and holly) that follow the contour of the church and alongside the fence on SeventhStreet. Along the length of the property line from Seventh Street down towards Sixth Street is a row of pine trees. In between the row of pine trees and the shrubs by the church building is a wide lawn interrupted only by English yews in two square patterns begining in the middle of the lawn and continuing toward SixthStreet. Along the side of the parish house is a row of flowering cherry trees.

National Register of Historic Places

Crescent Avenue Historic District

Crescent Area Historic District

Post Office: Plainfiled
Zip: 07060

Hillside Avenue Historic District
Van Wyck Brooks Historic District

The Crescent Area Historic District was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1980. Portions of the text below were adapted from a copy of the original nomination document. [†] Adaptation copyright © 2013, The Gombach Group.

Prior to the arrival of the white man, the Lenni-Lenape Indians, part of the Algonquin Tribe, lived in this area of New Jersey. The Ice Age had endowed this area with a protective terrain, productive farmlands and forests and "wonderful pure air and springs." Indian trails became the highways and streets still in use in Plainfield today.Watchung Avenue located in the heart of the Crescent Area Historic District was once one of those trails. Remains of an Indian village and burial grounds have been found in the locality of First, Second and Third Place which are within the boundaries of the Crescent Avenue Historic District.

The first white settlers from Scotland and Holland arrived in the area in the 1680's. The first permanent settler was Thomas Gordon whose home was on Cedarbrook Road adjacent to Crescent Avenue, and whose land holdings covered most of what is present-day Plainfield. The enthusiastic letters back home detailing the healthful climate, plentiful game, fish and fowl, good soil and water brought other settlers to New Jersey, in spite of the "Flee by the salt marshes, most troublesome in the summer." These elements continued through the years to attract new residents.

During the Revolutionary War, patriots from area families served in militia regiments as foot soldiers and officers. An important battle, the Battle of the Short Hills, was fought in the area in June of 1777 and was instrumental in repelling the British in New Jersey. Some of the homes of those who supported the cause of the Revolution still exist today: The Drake House Museum, where Washington rested and briefed his officers, and the Vermule Homestead, where the officers were quartered.
Following the war, industry and transportation began to grow and take on added importance, contributing to the economic prosperity. Plainfield became officially recognized on April 1, 1800 with a population of 215. The Gordon Gazetteer in 1834 gave a glowing account of all the rich resources in Plainfield and noted that "the society is moral and religious."

It was in Plainfield in 1847 that the model for the public school system for the state was devised. Through the efforts of Dr. Charles H. Stillman, Plainfield physician, the New Jersey Legislature empowered the city to raise money by taxation in order to establish a public school system. An account of the day declares, "No one can measure the effect of this enlightened policy in extending the fame of the city and building up its prosperity." Many of the people who were active in education and cultural activities lived within the bounds of the Crescent Area Historic District.

The most influential force to the development of Plainfield was the railroad, which brought about a change in the social and economic character of the town. When a direct connection was made between Plainfield and New York City, c.1850, Plainfield became a commuter town.

During the Civil War, many local residents were involved in the fighting. General Sterling, a general on McCleland's staff, built his home and settled on First Place after the War.

Job Male, a philanthropist, who became known as "Plainfield's Grand Old Man", settled in Plainfield in 1867, following the Civil War. An inventor, he had simplified the loading of ferry slips with a patented leveling device. He purchased with Evan Jones, twenty four acres of land "in the suburbs and laid it out in village lots and streets and erected twenty substantial residences of fine architectural design, drawing the plans for them all himself." He was his own contractor and owned a greater part of the land that includes Crescent Avenue and Watchung Avenue. He designed a particularly distinctive style of architecture "stucco-walled, Mansard roofed, still standing today." He continued to build homes in different parts of the city until his possessions included more than one hundred Plainfield houses. His obituary notice in 1891 noted that "his purse always ready to respond to the calls of deserving charity." He was a public benefactor, making possible the Public Library and the Job Male Art Gallery, and donating the land for the hospital, the Crescent Avenue Presbyterian Church, and the Unitarian Church.

A Central New Jersey Times account in 1870 of "Our Town Improvements" wrote, "The improvements in building is the expression of a spirit that leads to progressive movements in other directions. The old houses are not recognizable with tints of brown and cream and olive, their plain roofs metamorphosed by pediments, fancy gables and cornices, their primitive simplicity converted into modern beauty by wings, bay windows, recessed projections and every variety of architectural development." The writer further comments on the "new houses, with their aspiring towers, French roofs and cupolas." It was the kind of community that led the Elizabeth Herald in May of 1888 to write, "The bustling activity of the city of remarkable." And to conclude, "The next move in Plainfield, no doubt, will be the horse cars."
Plainfield had become a fashionable summer resort and eventually attracted many wealthy New York businessmen to settle here year 'round. The Gas Light Age evokes memories of Plainfield with theatricals, minstrel shows, roller rinks and other forms of entertainment. The site of many hotels, the Netherwood was reputed to be one of the "most healthful, comfortable and accessible inland summer resorts in the country."

By 1890, with substantial wealth and improvements, Plainfield continued to advance and prosper, attracting people of substance to live here. As successful businessmen and their families settled in the Crescent Avenue area, they became active in the cultural, religious, and educational affairs of the city. James W. Jackson, William D. Murray both served as presidents of the newly-formed YMCA. Henry C. Squires established the Hope Chapel on January 1, 1888 as a branch of the Crescent Avenue Presbyterian Church. Augustus Baldwin worked closely with Job Male in establishing the first free public library and the art gallery. In 1883 some of the first subscribers to "the last word in modern efficiency," the telephone, lived in the District: George Goddard, F.O. Herring, Leander Lovell, and the Dumond family. Many served as members of the Common Council.

After Job Male's death, Plainfield continued to be a highly desirable neighborhood and remained that way until the 1930's, when many of the large homes were converted to apartments. This process continues with single family residences almost non-existent today. The alterations for the most part are tastefully done and are not detrimental to the basic style and charm of the original building. This makes for a particularly fine collection of buildings appropriate to an Historic District.
Notes on Recollections of Long-time Residents of the Area
Longtime residents of Plainfield have been interviewed regarding their recollections of famous residents of this area. Those persons interviewed were Mrs. Lawrence Heely, Mrs. Henry Noss, Mrs. Dorothy Wills, Mrs. Helen Mygatt, Mr. John Harmon, Miss Gwen Cochran, Mrs. Dorothy DeHart, Miss Dorothy Leal, Mr. Alfred Genung, Mr. Alex Kroll, Mr. A.L.C. Marsh, Mrs. Hendrick Van Oss and others.

Many people have lived there who were outstanding in cultural fields, education and politics, as well as very successful professional and business men, active both locally and in New York City. Also educators and statesmen lived here.

John Carlson, a renown artist and member of the National Academy lived on 3rd Place as did Alex Seidel who achieved international fame for his designs for Steuben Glass. Another prominent artist who lived here was Thomas Hart Benton whose brother lived for many years on Crescent Avenue. Also William Gilbert, a well known illustrator, lived on Crescent Avenue.

The author of the White Cliffs of Dover, Alice Duer Miller, A. Van Dorn Honeyman, the famous historian, lived on 9th Street, and also Van Wyk Brooks another well-known author. Ernest Ackerman, a representative in U.S. Congress in the 1870's and his brother Marion Ackerman, who lived on Crescent Avenue, founded the Lone Star Cement Company and were deeply involved in many large national important financial and industrial enterprises.

The famous opera singer, Mario Caruso, married a Goddard and was frequently a visitor to Plainfield to the Goddard House at 213 East 9th Street. This family had a profound influence on the musical advancement of the entire area.

The area abounded in lawyers, judges and politicians, including four Mayors of Plainfield, and people in the foreign service for 25 years, such as Hendrick Van Oss, most recently served as ambassador to Madagascar and other countries.

The Crescent Avenue area was truly the heart of the town and boasted the most important and influential people of the period 1860 through 1920. The homes of these people reflect their taste, affluence and are a tangible piece of architectural history reflecting a glorious past.

The Crescent Area Historic District is a great deal more than a lot of old houses. It is probably one of the finest collections of Victorian architecture in the country. The term Victorian is all inclusive and embraces numerous styles that echo tastes and decorative devices of other periods of architecture from other countries and other times than the one in which the present buildings were constructed. The majority of these have what in architectural terms is referred to as Italianate which stems from the architectural styles popular in Italy going back as far as Byzantine derivative styles, and 15th century Venetian palaces. These variety of design styles result in the sudden surge of interest in European cultures and an attempt by the suddenly successful and new class of wealthy businessmen who were anxious to reflect their success in the work of finance in their homes. These interests were stimulated by their travels abroad and what they had seen, which was considered elegant. Thus we have Tuscan towers, Italian villas, Palazzo's with loggia and arcaded window and arches, Renaissance, Egyptian motifs, classical elements, and finally the exuberant eclectic styles throwing the more American traits of Carpenter Gothic and Stick style in for good measure. English architecture is also reflected with half timber, projecting gables, Eastlake influence, Queen Anne and Edwardian styles. The detail photos of these buildings reflect the painstaking craftsmanship of the builders and imaginative design abilities of the architects. It is truly a tangible record of the past which should be preserved as close to its original state as practical, in their new role of many being converted for multi-family use.

The Crescent Area Historic District is one of the finest collections of suburban Victorian architecture in New Jersey. Developed as a speculative real estate venture in the 1870's by Job Male, the buildings are an impressive presentation of Italianate and Second Empire style architecture of the mid to late 19th century. The houses were primarily designed for wealthy businessmen and, consequently, visages within the district still retain a fine elegance in their total ambiance of buildings and their association with landscaping, rustic streets, sidewalks, and trees.

Blumenson, John J.G. Identifying American Architecture
Central New Jersey Times, 1870-1885.
Clayton, W. Woodford. History of Union & Middlesex Counties, 1882.
Cochran, Jean Carter. The History of Crescent Avenue Church
The Courier News, History of Plainfield, 1964.
The Courier News, November 1-4-8, 1954.
Devlin, Harry. To Grandfather's House We Go.
Downey, Andrew Jackson. The Architecture of Country Houses.
The Drake House Museum & The Plainfield Public Library, Scrapbooks and Files.
Dunham, F.A. Atlas City of Plainfield and Boro of North Plainfield, 1894.
Fitzgerald & Co. (Pub.). Springfield, Massachusetts, Plainfield City Directory, 1876-7.
Gowans, Alan. Images of American Living.
Honeyman, A. Van Dorn. History of Union County, Volumes I, II, & III.
Lapsley, Howard G. History of Plainfield, 1942.
League of Women Voters. This is Plainfield, 1954.
McCabe, Wayne. Historic Tour – Plainfield, N.J.
Plainfield Area Chamber of Commerce, Plainfield Area, N.J.
Pub. by Plainfield Courier News. Plainfield & Vicinity in Pictures, 1926.
Plainfield Daily Press, Friday & Saturday, January 30, 31, 1891.
Plainfield Evening News, Saturday, May 23, 1888.
Plainfield & North Plainfield City Directory, 1879-80.
Plainfield & North Plainfield City Directory, 1894-5.
Pratt, Dorothy & Richard, A Guide to Early American Homes.
Smiley, F.T. History of Plainfield, 1891.
† Charles H. Detwiller, Jr., A.I.A., Architect and Marilyn Rupp, Architectural Historian, Crescent Area Historic District, Union County, New Jersey, nomination document, 1979, National Park Service, National Register of Historic Places, Washington, D.C.

Crescent Avenue Historic District

Crescent Avenue Historic District form for the National Register of Historic Places

311-15 Franklin Place
c. 1890
Ladies Home of Plainfield

Remaining porte cochere – squared and partially turned columns – main gable projects three feet with half-timber ornamentation. The porch railing is geometrically cut with balusters alternating in groups of three plain and three turned.

This house, sympathetically altered, remains an impressive example of turn-of-the-century architecture.

313 Franklin Place

Pinterest Page by current owner

Painting by Brian Townsend, 1995


Email to the Club, December 15, 2013, from a local Plainfield resident that owns this paintings.

Here are pictures of the paintings of the interior of the Ackerman House on W. Eighth Street which were painted by Brian Townsend in 1995.

Painting by Brian Townsend, 1995

Painting by Brian Townsend, 1995

Entrance Hall

Plainfield Library Bio Card

Monday Afternoon Club Membership

Jonathan Ackerman Coles

Birth: May 6, 1843
Essex County
New Jersey, USA
Death: Feb. 26, 1926
Scotch Plains
Union County
New Jersey, USA

Jonathan Ackerman Coles was born 1843 in Newark, Essex County, NJ the eldest of two children (1 boy/1 girl) born to prominent physician/surgeon and poet author, Dr. Abraham Coles and his wife, Caroline Elizabeth Ackerman.

He was the paternal grandson of wealthy farmer and legislator, Dennis Coles & Katrina Catherine Van Duersen of Scotch Plains, Union County, NJ; and gr-grandson of James Coles & Elizabeth Frazee of Scotch Plains. He was a direct descendant of the Puritan, James Cole, who arrived at Plymouth, MA, between 1620-1630. This branch of the Cole(s) resettled in Oyster Bay, Long Island, about 1665. In 1688 the family became established at Scotch Plains, New Jersey (then called East Jersey), and remained there for many generations. On his mother's side, he was the grandson of wealthy merchant/financier Jonathan Coombs Ackerman & Maria Smith of New Brunswick, Middlesex County, NJ.

Jonathan was only 2 years old when his mother died one day after her 28th birthday, and just about 7 months after the birth of his only sibling, Emilie Smith Coles. His father never remarried, and following the death of his wife devoted his life to his children and his profession and lust for learning; and the three became a tight-knit family unit. The young man grew up traveling the world with his father, maintaining residences at his father's two homes: "The Coles Homestead Building" at 222 Market Street, Newark, purchased by his father in 1842 and consisting of office complex and luxurious apartments above; and the sprawling 17-acre "Deerhurst" Estate, on land owned by the Coles for generations and landscaped by his father to model European gardens, and converting the estate into a park of rare and enchanting beauty.

Jonathan Coles was prepared for college at the Collegiate School of Forest and Quackenbos in New York City, where he was awarded the prizes for proficiency in German and rhetoric. In 1860 he entered Columbia College, graduating in 1864; and from the College of Physicians and Surgeons in New York City where he graduated with honors in 1868; and, after serving in the New York Bellevue and Charity hospitals, opened an office in the City of New York, becoming a member of the New York Academy of Medicine and the New York County Medical Society.

During the years 1877-78, he traveled Europe studying in the medical schools and hospitals of London, Paris, Heidelberg, Berlin and Vienna. After visiting Syria, Palestine and Egypt, he returned home and became associated with his father in the practice the practice of medicine and surgery in Newark and Scotch Plains.

It was during this period he edited new editions of his father's works and contributed to the medical and general press. He became a member of the New York Academy of Medicine and of the New York County Medical Society; and in 1891 was elected president of the Union County NJ Medical Society. He was made member of the American Medical Association, a trustee and life member of the New Jersey Historical Society, a member of the Washington Association of Morristown, NJ, and a fellow for life of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.

Jonathan never married, and following the death of his father in 1891, continued his father's philanthropy, contributing many classical works in bronze and marble to the educational and public buildings in Newark, New York, and elsewhere around the world. The New Jersey Historical Society, the Free Public Library, the High School, the Academy, the City Hall and the Post Office in Newark have been especially benefited thereby. He contributed for permanent improvements one thousand dollars toward the celebration of the 250th anniversary of the founding of Newark.

After his retirement, he devoted himself to travel and the collecting of interesting historical and artistic objects. And, today, despite being an accomplished and well respected physician, he is best known as a philanthropist.

Dr. Jonathan Ackerman Coles died at "Deerhurst" in 1926 age 82. He was the last surviving member of this family, having lost his dear sister, Emilie, seven years earlier in 1919.

Family links:
Abraham Coles (1813 - 1891)
Caroline Elizabeth Ackerman Coles (1817 - 1845)

Jonathan Ackerman Coles (1843 - 1926)
Emilie Smith Coles (1845 - 1919)*

*Calculated relationship

Willow Grove Cemetery
New Brunswick
Middlesex County
New Jersey, USA

Created by: pbfries
Record added: Jan 24, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 47042908

Deerhurst, Scotch Plains, NJ

Caroline Elizabeth Ackerman Coles

Birth: Aug. 22, 1817
New Brunswick
Middlesex County
New Jersey, USA
Death: Aug. 23, 1845
Essex County
New Jersey, USA


Caroline Elizabeth Ackerman was born 1817 in New Brunswick, Middlesex County, NC the eldest of 8 known children (4 boys/4 girls) born to prominent businessman and financier, Jonathan Coombs Ackerman and his wife, Maria Smith.

She was the paternal grandchild of Geleyn Ackerman & Jane Coombs of New Brunswick; and gr-grandchild of Abraham Ackerman and Janet Romeyn who had removed from Hackensack, Bergen County, NJ to settle in New Brunswick. She was a direct descendant of this family's patriarch, Abraham "David" Davidtse Ackerman, who came to New Netherlands from Holland and married Aeltie Adrianse Van Laer, later becoming one of the early Dutch settlers of Hackensack NJ.

Caroline was noted by her contemporaries as a beautiful and accomplished woman. She was 25 years old in 1842 when she married 29-year old Dr. Abraham Coles of Scotch Plains, NJ, a young and coming physician. The couple set up housekeeping at a large building the doctor purchased at 222 Market Street in Newark, forever referred to as the "Coles Homestead Building", which afforded a well-appointed residence as well as ample office space from which the doctor practiced for many years.

They would become parents to two known children: Jonathan Ackerman Coles (1843-1926) and Emilie Smith Coles (1845-1919).

Caroline died within 7 months of giving birth to her daughter, passing on August 23, 1845 at the young age of 28. Her devoted and loving husband of just 3 years never recovered from the losing the love of his life, and as a consequence, never remarried. He devoted the remainder of his long life to his children, his profession, and the pursuit of scholastic studies. Besides his well-established practice, the 32-year old widower went on to become a lawyer, published translator, poet, Orientalist, consummate world traveler, and a world-renowned art collector.

Dr. Abraham Coles dies in 1891 at age 77 and was buried next to his wife in Willow Grove. Both their children lived to maturity, and both became well-known philanthropists in their time; however, neither child married and the line of Abraham Coles ended when his only son died in 1926.

Family links:
Jonathan Coombs Ackerman (1793 - 1852)
Maria Smith Ackerman (1793 - 1873)

Abraham Coles (1813 - 1891)*

Jonathan Ackerman Coles (1843 - 1926)*
Emilie Smith Coles (1845 - 1919)*

Caroline Elizabeth Ackerman Coles (1817 - 1845)
Theodore J. Ackerman (1821 - 1911)*
Jeanie C. Ackerman Bucknell (1823 - 1904)*
George Ackerman (1825 - 1874)*
Warren Ackerman (1827 - 1893)*
Mary S. Ackerman Hoyt (1830 - 1895)*
Mary S. Ackerman Hoyt (1830 - 1895)*
Maria L. Ackerman Hoyt (1832 - 1901)*
Maria L. Ackerman Hoyt (1832 - 1901)*
James Hervey Ackerman (1837 - 1885)*

*Calculated relationship

Willow Grove Cemetery
New Brunswick
Middlesex County
New Jersey, USA

Created by: pbfries
Record added: Jan 24, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 47042807

November 23, 2001 New York Times

ART REVIEW; If Some Say Glory, Others Cry Hubris
Published: November 23, 2001

MONTCLAIR, N.J.– Was Albert Bierstadt, the 19th-century American painter of visionary Western landscapes, an unconscious racist? Did he take for granted the supremacy of white European settlers over native peoples?

Of course. Although he considered himself a friend of American Indians and collected their artifacts, like most Americans of his day, Bierstadt (1830-1902) did not question the doctrine of Manifest Destiny, the imperative of continuous territorial expansion, which meant a push to the West by European settlers regardless of existing populations. So ingrained was the 19th-century conviction that Europe should inherit America that it stood without examination.

And so an ambiguity permeates ''Primal Visions: Albert Bierstadt 'Discovers' America,'' the politically conscious show that inaugurates the handsome new special exhibition galleries at the Montclair Art Museum. Organized by Diane P. Fischer, associate curator at the museum, the show ranges over Bierstadt's entire career and includes some 50 paintings and objects, among them examples from Montclair's noted collection of Indian jewelry and artifacts. There are 33 works by Bierstadt, along with paintings, photographs and prints by other artists, including Sanford Gifford, Thomas Cole, Emmanuel Leutze, Eadweard Muybridge, Carlton E. Watkins and Kay WalkingStick, a present-day painter with Cherokee roots.

But the emphasis is on two massive Bierstadt works that have long been part of the local heritage: ''Autumn in the Sierras'' (1873) and ''The Landing of Columbus at San Salvador'' (1893), both owned by the City of Plainfield, N.J. They share the theme of New World discovery, exhibiting in one case the artist's gift for landscape and in the other his approach to history painting.

For years, the paintings have hung in Plainfield's Municipal Courthouse, where public access to them is generally limited to court sessions. But for a while, beginning in 1975 with the raising of American Indian consciousness, ''The Landing of Columbus'' – depicting Indians worshipfully kneeling on a beach at the arrival of a glorified Columbus and his men – was actually covered with draperies during court meetings and public sessions. Some citizens actually called for its removal. To offset its impact now, the museum has commissioned a contemporary response to it, a painting by Peter Edlund called ''Another America: From Columbus to Wounded Knee – 400 Years of Colonial Genocide'' (2001), which hangs nearby.

In his revision of the original, Mr. Edlund has reduced the Indians to nothingness, evoking deaths said to be brought about by Columbus's visit, and has changed the discoverers' ships – on which native peoples had been impressed for service – into ghost vessels; the whole picture is cast in an eerie blood red. The emptiness of the scene symbolizes the destruction wrought by the Europeans as they moved on to the rest of the continent.

Technically, ''Another America'' is by no means as good a painting as the original, but then, the subject matter of the original is a typical 19th-century folly, wallowing in adulation of the European discoverers. It is done in by its own staginess and insincerity, so Mr. Edlund's painting does not count for much in the way of a coup de grβce. But it does call attention to the current strong revisionist take on earlier American art.

The two Bierstadt paintings were given to the city in 1919 by Jonathan Ackerman Coles, a physician, collector and philanthropist who presumably bought them after an 1895 bankruptcy sale at Bierstadt's studio. Bierstadt had mounted a heavy campaign directed at federal purchase of ''Autumn in the Sierras,'' a theatrical canvas depicting majestic mountain peaks in the remote South Sierra and imbuing them with an Olympian grandeur. But after dallying with him, the government didn't bite.

As for ''The Landing of Columbus,'' it was painted for the Chicago Columbian Exposition of 1893, which commemorated Columbus's first encounter with the Americas. And it was a failure from the get-go. Bierstadt was out of fashion by then, and the grandiosity of his work was beginning to wear thin. He withdrew the painting before it could be officially rejected, three months before the opening of the fair.

In creating his glorified views of the Great American West, Bierstadt was not the most infallible of reporters. His theatrical compositions of wind-swept summits, steep escarpments, rushing rivers, verdant valleys and glistening gorges were pieced together in the studio from on-the-spot sketches, a not-uncommon practice for grand panoramists of his era. Putting these fragments together, he often distorted the elements of a real site to give his views more drama.

What's more, although he made no discoveries on his own, some of his spectaculars were intended to give the impression that his was a ''primal vision,'' a view of a place before anyone else had seen it; of course, that was not the case.

For ''Sierras,'' Bierstadt used live sketches made in 1872, when he accompanied the federally sponsored Clarence King survey into the region. But the work itself is a composite, a tightening of foreground space, a merging of peaks and an exaggeration of their ruggedness, to give the scene more punch.

All this is not to say, however, that this Prussian-born, American-reared artist wasn't a superb talent, a well-schooled painter who knew how to make landscape come alive with meticulously rendered detail, a strong gift for color effects and skilled handling of light and atmosphere, along with a firm grasp of geological matters.

That talent is abundantly evident, not only in the ''Sierras'' painting but also in others, like the earlier ''View From the Wind River Mountains'' (1860), another studio-created composite in which the scene is amplified and prettied up. But its panoramic view, over a rocky outcropping in the foreground to a distant plateau and serene horizon, seems a vision of present harmony and future promise for the still-young nation.

Some of the other paintings in the show were brought in presumably to emphasize that artists other than Bierstadt also had a considerable stake in American landscape and shared his philosophy. Among them are two owned by the Montclair Art Museum: ''Scene on the Snake River'' (circa 1879) by Thomas Moran, a Bierstadt rival, depicting a brace of steep escarpments on the brink of a quiet backwater, and ''A View of the Hudson'' (circa 1835) by Thomas Cole, a pioneer of the Edenic American vision that affected Bierstadt.

This show is by no means the definitive Bierstadt exhibition. But the issues it raises give it added dimension.

''Primal Visions: Albert Bierstadt 'Discovers' America'' is at the Montclair Art Museum, 3 South Mountain Avenue, Montclair, N.J., (973) 746-5555, through Feb. 3.

Photos: A detail from Albert Bierstadt's ''Landing of Columbus at San Salvador'' (1893) shows crouching American Indians and glorified white men. ''Primal Visions,'' the show of his work at the Montclair Art Museum, includes a riposte by a contemporary artist.; A detail from Bierstadt's ''Autumn in the Sierras'' (1873) takes liberties with geography to imbue the mountains with an idealized grandeur. (Photographs from the Montclair Art Museum)

October 12, 2014 Plainfield's Columbus Link

During my time as a reporter, I wrote about both the prestige and the controversy connected to Plainfield's ownership of Albert Bierstadt's 1893 painting, "The Landing of Columbus at San Salvador."

The prestige came partly in having the painting on loan at major museums. The controversy came from its depiction of indigenous people kneeling to Columbus and his men. As reported in this 2001 New York Times article, the image once became so objectionable as to be covered during meetings in the Plainfield courthouse, where it still hangs today.

For several years, the painting brought forth paeans from the late Kay Cotignola and pans from Rasheed Abdul-Haqq. To Kay, it represented Italian pride. Rasheed deplored it and wanted it sold to finance a youth center.

Although it was moved to a side wall after one museum loan, the painting regained prominence when the city began televising meetings. It was behind the table where City Clerk Abubakar Jalloh sat during council meetings, but since the seating was changed recently, it is now the backdrop for Corporation Counsel Vernita Sias-Hill, Mayor Adrian O. Mapp and City Administrator Rick Smiley.

As Columbus Day, it is a federal holiday, but if you want to celebrate Indigenous People's Day instead, go for it.

–Bernice Paglia

Detwiller blueprints 313 Franklin Place Catherine Webster Home

August 8, 2015

Library offers trove of vintage Plainfield home blueprints for sale

Plainfield homeowners and history buffs are getting a one-of-a-kind opportunity as the Plainfield Public Library prepares to offer upwards of 3,000 blueprint originals from its Detwiller Collection for sale to the public.

The blueprints offered for sale are part of a trove of many thousands recovered from a dumpster at City Hall by the late Plainfield architect and artist Charles Detwiller.

While many of Plainfield's grand homes and mansion are among the blueprints (though fewer than originally, owing to some 'fingering' before strict controls were put in place), the appeal of the collection will be stronger for those who live in or admire the more modest vintage homes from the turn of the 20th century to the World War II era.

These homes include many classic Tudors and other 'cottage' and 'revival' styles, as well as 'foursquares', ranches and Cape Cods and more contemporary stules.

These represent the bulk of Plainfield's building stock from its most expansive period and they were often enough improved or expanded – giving rise to the need for plans showing the original building and the proposed alterations to be filed with the City's inspections department.

It is those blueprints, which have now been cataloged and digitized, that are being offered for sale. In library parlance, they have been de-accessioned, meaning that they no longer need be kept permanently by the Library and are available for dispostion to private parties.

The Library has a portal to the Charles Detwiller Blueprint Collection on its website (see here) and has made a complete list of the blueprints for sale also available online (see here).

The list is alphabetized by street name, and then number. However, I would advise reading the Library's instructions closely so you make the proper notations for your request (see here) – easing the staff's task in finding the item(s) in which you are interested. Paying attention to the suggested time frames needed and numbers of items per request will help you avoid headaches. So, please read and follow the instructions carefully – as carpenters like to say, 'measure twice, cut once'.

The sale will run from September 1 to November 13, 2015 in a two-step process –

You check the offerings to find items that interest you, making careful notations; and

You and the Library work out a pick-up appointment, at which you will be able to view the actual items and make a final decision on your purchase.

Single-page blueprints are priced at $50 each and multiple-page sets at $100. Cash or credit cards are fine, but the Library will not accept personal checks.

Proceeds of the sale will be used to finance the further digitization of the blueprint collection – meaning that we can look forward to another offering of materials at some future point.

The Detwiller Collection is absolutely unique in its size and scope, covering decades of Plainfield history and thousands of buildings throughout the city. Plainfield residents owe Charlie Detwiller a debt of gratitude for his perspicacity that cannot be repaid.

And we owe a debt of gratitude to Library Director Joe Da Rold for the vision that saw in these rescued documents an invaluable resource for the community, and devised means and methods of ensuring these fragile records would be available to Plainfield residents permanently through having them digitized.

Mr. Detwiller is the late husband of PGC Honorary member Cath Detwiller. Mr. Detwiller's Aunt Laura was a long-time member of the PGC and a very talented botanical artist. Read about the Detwiller family here:

Detwiller, Mrs. Charles H. (Catherine or "Cath" Campbell), Jr. '57

Detwiller, Miss Laura Cecelia '29

And Mr. Detwiller's in-laws:

Campbell, Mrs. William Hall (Mabel C. Raper) '28

Davis, Mrs. F. Edgar (Dorothy or "Dottie" Campbell) '60