Plainfield Garden Club








Member: Rushmore, Mrs. Murray (Helen Joy)

It is not clear if Mrs. Murray (Helen Joy) Rushmore was a member of the PGC – more research needs to be conducted Nov. 16, 2011

Plainfield Garden Club member Mrs. James R. Joy '33 daughter, Miss Helen Joy, married Mrs. Townsend (Jean Murray) Rushmore's '20 son, Murray, in 1921

Plainfield Garden Club member Mrs. Murray J. (Virginia) Rushmore '71, 524 Stelle Avenue married Mrs. Townsend Rushmore's grandson, Murray Jr.

Mrs. Townsend (Jean Murray) Rushmore '20 is related to the following PGC members:

Mrs. Henry Augustus (Emma Louise Whiting) McGee
Mrs. Walter Miller (Mary Alice Yerkes) McGee
Mrs. James R. (Emma Prentice McGee) Joy
Mrs. Wandell (Alice Joy) Mooney
Mrs. Ernest Ackerman
Mrs. M. S. Ackerman
Joost, Mrs. Sherman Brownell (Marie Murray) '19
Murray, Mrs. J. Everett '20
Roome, Mrs. John Stanton (Dolores Murray or "Dody") '5
Rushmore, Mrs. Townsend (Jean Murray) '20

March 13, 1921 New York Times wedding announcement

RUSHMORE - JOY

Miss Helen Joy, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. R. Joy, and Murray Rushmore, son of Mr. and Mrs. Townsend Rushmore, all of Plainfield, NJ, were married yesteday afternoon in the First Methodist Church in Plainfield by the Rev. Bishop Charles Bayard Mitchell who officiated a tthe wedding of the bride's parents.

The bride is a graduate of Wellesley College, class of '13, and served two years overseas with the YWCA. Mr. Rushmore graduated from Yale, class of '13 and was a First Lieutenant in the 314th Field Artillery overseas, serving through the Meuse-Argonne operations.

Merklee Family

Merklee Family Geneology
http://www.merklee.com/genealogy/CM/rr01_013.html#P5618

Fourth Generation (Continued)


Family of Elizabeth Ann MERKLEE (15) & James McGEE


35. Henry Augustus McGEE. Born on 27 Dec 1850 in New York, NY. Died on 17 Oct 1914 in Plainfield, NJ.

He married Emma Louise WHITING. Born in 1853 in Brooklyn, Kings, NY. Died on 26 Oct 1930 in North Plainfield, NJ.

They had the following children:
53 i. Clifford Whiting (1873-1958)
ii. Harry Livingston. Born on 13 Feb 1876 in Plainfield, NJ. Died on 26 Nov 1960.

iii. Raymond. Born on 11 Nov 1879 in Plainfield, NJ.

54 iv. Donald Ashbrook (1883-1937)

36. Caroline "Carrie" Leake McGEE. Born on 12 May 1853 in Brooklyn, Kings, NY.

She married Charles E. HORNE. Died on 2 Oct 1922 in Plainfield, NJ.

They had the following children:
i. Elsie Rutherford. Born on 16 Sep 1876 in Plainfield, NJ.

55 ii. George Augustus (1877-)
iii. Arthur Whiting. Born on 5 Feb 1881 in Plainfield, NJ. Died on 26 Aug 1882 in Plainfield, NJ.

56 iv. Frederick Roland (1884-)

37. Gertrude Anne McGEE. Born on 20 Jul 1855 in Brooklyn, Kings, NY. Died abt 1955.

She married Edward Graham ASHBROOK. Died on 16 Mar 1901 in Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA.

They had the following children:
i. Myron G.. Born on 29 May 1883 in Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA. Died on 29 May 1883 in Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA.

57 ii. Charlotte Garwood (1885-)
58 iii. Margaret Garwood (1891-1990)

38. Walter Miller McGEE. Born on 27 Jan 1860 in Brooklyn, Kings, NY. Died on 30 May 1952 in North Plainfield, NJ. Occupation: Standard Oil Company.

He married Mary Alice YERKES, daughter of Rev. David John YERKES & Sarah E. TAYLOR. Born on 13 May 1861 in Brooklyn, Kings, NY. Died on 11 Jun 1949 in North Plainfield, NJ.

They had the following children:
i. Walter Vaughan. Born on 23 Jul 1884 in Plainfield, NJ. Died bef 30 May 1952. He married Florence WILDEY. Died in 1912.

ii. Alice Elizabeth. Born on 14 Feb 1891 in Plainfield, NJ. She married Herbert Sperry DUCRET.


39. Emma Prentice McGEE. Born on 9 Jul 1864 in Brooklyn, Kings, NY. Died on 5 Apr 1934 in Plainfield, NJ.

She married James R. JOY.

They had the following children:
i. Alice. She married Wandell MOONEY.

ii. Helen. She married Murray RUSHMORE.


40. Adelaide Frances McGEE. Born on 10 Aug 1866 in Brooklyn, Kings, NY. Died on 16 Sep 1958.

She married Herbert WELCH, son of Peter WELCH & Mary Louisa LOVELAND. Buried in Woodlawn Cemetery, Bronx, NY.

They had the following children:
59 i. Dorothy McGee (1891-)
ii. Eleanor Loveland. Born on 3 Sep 1900 in Middletown, CT

Denver Public Library

Edward Hobbs Hilliard, Jr. was born in Louisville, Kentucky, on October 16, 1922. As a boy, he developed an appreciation for the Western outdoors by spending summers with his family in Montana. During World War II, he served as an Infantry Lieutenant in Europe. He completed his college education at Yale University in 1948 with a B.S. in Applied Economics. He moved to Colorado in 1949 where he worked for J. J. B. Hilliard and Son, a Louisville brokerage firm. From 1950-1956 he worked for Westric Battery Company, and in 1956, became a general partner and principal of Redfield Gun Sight Company.

On October 20, 1951, Ed Hilliard married Joy Rushmore of Plainfield, New Jersey, a fellow Colorado Mountain Club Member. They had three children: Byron R. Hilliard, M. Hobbs Hilliard, and Helen J. Hilliard.

Ed Hilliard became a member of the Colorado Mountain Club in 1949, the year he moved to Colorado. During the 1950s he joined several organizations with an interest in Western history, including the Denver Posse of the Westerners and the Rocky Mountain Railroad Club. Gradually Hilliard's focus shifted from recreational travel and amateur history to a career as a grassroots activist for environmental conservation. He joined the Denver Chamber of Commerce Game and Fish Committee and proposed plans to integrate conservation and business interests. He also worked with the Colorado State Game, Fish and Parks Commission to create Operation Respect, a program to bring hunters and landowners together.

Hilliard served as president of the Conservation Council of Colorado and was instrumental in the creation of the Colorado Open Space Coalition (COSC) and the Rocky Mountain Center on Environment (ROMCOE). With the encouragement of Howard Zahniser, Stuart Brandborg, and Mardy Murie of the Wilderness Society, he helped to organize the Colorado Wilderness Committee, later known as the Wilderness Committee of Colorado, which solicited support from Colorado ranchers and others for the legislation that became the federal Wilderness Act of 1964.

Ed Hilliard received an American Motors Conservation Award in 1963. In 1964 he was elected a member of the governing council of the national Wilderness Society, becoming its vice-president in 1968, and joining the Council's executive committee in 1969. The Colorado Mountain Club named him 1969 Conservationist of the Year.

On August 15, 1970, Ed Hilliard died in a mountain climbing accident in the Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness in Western Colorado. Following his death, Edward H. Hilliard, Jr. Fellowship was established to support scholarly study in Environmental Conservation, and in 1975 a mountain pass in the Maroon Bells-Snowmass area was named Hilliard Pass. The Edward Hilliard room was established at the Denver Public Library to house the Conservation Library Collection.

http://eadsrv.denverlibrary.org/sdx/pl/doc-tdm.xsp?id=CONS119_d0e38&fmt=text&base=fa

Denver Public Library

BIOGRAPHICAL NOTE :

Joy Hilliard was born in 1924 in Plainfield, Union County, New Jersey, the daughter of Murray and Helen Rushmore. She attended Westover School in Middlebury, Connecticut, and Wellesley College in Wellesley, Massachusetts. On October 20, 1951, she married Edward Hobbs Hilliard, Jr., a Denver industrialist, outdoorsman, and devoted conservationist. They had three children, Byron, M. Hobbs, and Helen.

Joy Hilliard and her husband played a leading role in preserving Colorado open space until Ed Hilliard's death in a mountain climbing accident on August 15, 1970. After his death, Joy Hilliard continued to work as a conservationist and philanthropist, playing an important role in the preservation of Phantom Canyon on the North Fork of the Cache La Poudre River. Joy also established the Hilliard Room for the Conservation Library at the Denver Public Library. She has served as a board member and trustee for Trout Unlimited, the Silver Trout Foundation, Planned Parenthood, and Colorado Outward Bound. She enjoys fly-fishing and has climbed all 54 of Colorado's Fourteeners (mountain peaks over 14,000 feet high). As a result of her preservation work, she received the Ed Hilliard Memorial Award in 1995 and the Colorado Open Lands Cranmer Award in 1999.

Joy Rushmore Hilliard

Joy Rushmore Hilliard, 86, passed peacefully in her sleep on August 30, 2010. Joy was born in Plainfield, N.J. December 31, 1923. She married her husband Edward Hobbs Hilliard and moved to Denver in 1951. Joy was preceded in death by her husband in 1970. Joy admired the great outdoors and regularly enjoyed hiking, climbing, skiing, tennis, and her most favorite, fly-fishing. Joy further adored traveling home and abroad. Joy was part of the 1963 Everest Expedition and hiked from Katmandu to the base camp of Everest. She climbed all 54 of the 14,000-foot peaks long before it became a popular Colorado pastime. Joy was a philanthropist that donated to many causes related to population control and environmental causes. Joy participated as a board member on several organizations including the President of Rocky Mountain Planned Parenthood, President of Outward Bound, Trout Unlimited, Silver Trout foundation, and Colorado Open Lands. Joy has received several recognitions for her work such as a Lifetime achievement award for the Colorado Environmental Coalition, the George E. Cranmer Award from Colorado Open Lands, and the Margaret Sanger Award from Planned Parenthood. Joy helped establish the conservation wing of the Denver Public Library and a Tenth Mountain Division Hut in memory of her late husband, Ed, partner of the Redfield gun sight company. Her three children, Byron Rushmore Hilliard, Helen Hilliard Freemyer and Hobbs Hilliard as well as five grandchildren, Jennifer, Jamie, Edward, Elizabeth, and Christopher survive her. Joy was larger than life and touched so many lives. Joy was an inspiration to us all; she persevered and triumphed under circumstances that might have daunted lesser people. Joy's wishes include not a service, but rather a celebration of her life. Please join us at the Denver Country Club Thursday September 2, from 5:30pm - 7:30pm. Joy requested any memorial gifts in her memory should be given to Rocky Mountain Planned Parenthood or the Nature Conservancy of Boulder Colorado.

New York Times May 12, 1912

http://query.nytimes.com/mem/archive-free/pdf?res=FA0B1FFA3B5E13738DDDAB0994DD405B828DF1D3

Wellesley Officers
four of the Six College Societies Hold Elections

WELLESLEY, Mass., May 11 – Four of the six societies at Wellesley hav elected their officers for next year. The Azora Society President next year is to be Miss Katharine Duffield of New York City, Vice President, Miss Marian Rider of Kansas City. Society Alpha Kappa Chi elected President Miss Ruther Reed of Gardiner, Maine; Vice President, Miss Helen Besler of Plainfield, N. J. Shakespeare Society elected President Miss Helen Joy of Plainfield, N. J.; Vice President Miss Josephine Bryant . . . continues

Directory of the living graduates of Yale university: issue of 1914

Murray Rushmore, 524 Stelle Ave., Plainfield, NJ

BATTERY "D" - 314th Field Artillery OFFICERS

Rushmore, Murray, 1st Lt, Plainfield, NJ

Henrietta "Nettie" M. HETFIELD

Mrs. Murray lived at 901 Madison Ave., Plainfield, NJ in 1915.
"Mrs. Roger F. Murray - Plainfield, N.J. Feb. 6 - Mrs. Henrietta M. Hetfield Murray, wife of former Assemblyman Roger F. Murray, died last night at her home at 901 Madison Avenue after a long illness. She was born in Flemington, N.J. 78 years ago, the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Augustus P. Hetfield. Her husband, her only survivor, served in the Assembly 1898-99 and formerly was a member of the city and Union County Republican Committee." [New York Times, 7 February 1947, p.23, column 3]
*****
"Mrs. R. F. Murray Passes Away Here - Mrs. Roger F. Murrey of 901 Madison Ave., died last night (Feb. 5, 1947) in her home, after a lingering illness. Mrs. Murray and her husband, who has been active in civic and political affairs of the city, county and state, had resided at the Madison Ave. address since 1889.
Born in Flemington, Mrs. Murray was the former Henrietta M. Hetfield, daughter of the late Augustus P. Hetfield and Isabella Frazee Hetfield. Her father was born in what is now Westfield, and her mother was a native of Scotch Plains.
Mrs. Murray and her husband were married Oct. 2, 1888, in the home of the bride's parents in Dunellen. The couple celebrated their golden wedding anniversary in 1938, with a reception in their home. They would have marked the 59th anniversary of their union next fall.
Mrs. Murray had long been a member of the Crescent Avenue Presbyterian Church. Her husband is the only survivor.
This was the third death in the local family sonce the end of 1946. Roger F. Murray's sister-in-law, Mrs. Amelia Murray of 315 W. Fourth St., widow of John W. Murray, Jr., died on New Year's Eve, and his sister, Mrs. Townsend Rushmore, the former Jean Murray, doed jan. 22 in her home at 524 Stelle Ave.
Funeral services will be held in the Murray residence at 3 p.m. Saturday, with Dr. John J. Moment, minister of the Crescent Avenue Presbyterian Church, officiating. Interment will be in the family plot in Hillside Cemetery." [Plainfield NJ Courier-News, Thursday, 6 February, 1947]
*****
http://www.westfieldnjhistory.com/jtclark/nti01974.htm

996 Hillside Avenue

Plainfield Public Library
Detwiller Archives

http://collections.plainfieldlibrary.info/collections
_browser/search;collection=blueprints/search_
results;architect=detwiller;collection=blueprints;
_page=9/blueprint;num=203;id=12424;_page=1/

Collection Detwiller
Title Alteration to Residence for Mr. & Mrs. Murray Rushmore 996 Hillside Ave. Plainfield N.J.
Description Plans, plot plan, and elevations for alterations to residence, including addition of attached garage and alteration to kitchen.
Building Type Residence
Work Type Alteration and/or Addition
Condition Acceptable
Blueprint ID D-12424
Permit NOP1137
Year of Permit 1954
Microfilm Roll 0247
Microfilm Frame 0260
Condition 1003
Address 996 Hillside Avenue
Historic District Hillside Avenue
City Plainfield
Architect Charles H. Detwiller, Jr.
Architect Firm
Owner Murray Rushmore
Business Owner
City of Plainfield
Planning Department
Historic District Addresses
Address 990-998 Hillside Avenue
Block 821
Lot 9
Year Built 1909
Architectural Style Colonial Revival
Historic District Hillside Avenue

996 Hillside Avenue

996 Hillside Avenue

996 Hillside Avenue

996 Hillside Avenue

996 Hillside Avenue

996 Hillside Avenue

996 Hillside Avenue

996 Hillside Avenue

Was also the home of founding member Mrs. Frederick W. (Grace Seccomb) Wallace '15

May 9, 1974 Spring Potpourri Guestbook

Residence of Mrs. M. L. Rushmore, 732 West Eighth Street

In this illustrated book, the Courier-News has sought to present some of the representative homes of The Plainfields and adjoining territory, together with such other buildings of interest and importance as would serve to convey an idea of the physical attractioins of one of the most beautiful and healthful cities in the Metropolitan District. The homes reflect the desirability of this community as a place of residence.

The churches, schools, clubs and public buildings pictured serve to give the stranger some conceptions of the beauty of the city and its right to be termed the "Queen City" of New Jersey.

With picturesque Watchung Hills as a background, this section with all its natural advantages, plus a progressive spirit, coupled with high class local governing bodies and a live Chamber of Commerce, is pecularily adapted for home sites and, as a result, it has enjoyed a steady and healthy growth for many years.


publication circa 1917

November 2, 1894 New York Times

Sanford - Murray

PLAINFIELD, N.J., Nov. 1 – There was a brilliant wedding in the Crescent Avenue Presbyterian Church at 7:30 o'clock this evening, when Miss Minnie Breckinridge Murray, daughter of John W. Murray of the German Insurance Company of New York, was married to Joseph Webster Sandford, Jr., son of Joseph W. Sanford of Westervelt Avenue. A large assemblage of society people witnessed the event. The Rev. Dr. William R. Richards, pastor of the church, performed the ceremony. The church was elaborately decorated with palms and chyrsanthemums.

The bride wore a handsome gown of white corded silk and carried a bouquet of beautiful roses. The maid of honor was Miss Augusta Knox Murray. The bridesmaids were Miss Stella Place, Miss May Sanford, and Miss May Grace Brewster of New York. Albert Tilney was best man. The ushers were Percy H. Stewart, George S. Beebe, Howard W. Beebe, Fred W. Walz, Walter F. Murray, and James E. Murray. A reception followed at the home of the bride's parents.

1918 Meeting Minutes

The Wellesley Alumnae Quarterly 1920

Helen Joy is back again in Plainfield having spent two years in France as a war worker for the Y. W. C. A.

Class of 1913

From the Netherwood Neighborhood Association

Rushmore-Coffin House

2013-08-16 www.netherwoodheights.com

The Netherwood Heights Historic District is named for the Netherwood Hotel which stood at what is now the blocks bordered by Denmark Road, Park Terrace, Belvidere Avenue, Berkeley Avenue. It encompasses 99 homes located throughout the winding roads believed to be the original horse paths of the hoteli, which was built in 1878 when Plainfield was the last stop on the railroadii.

The original retaining walls of the hotel's property still stand in front of 601 Belvidere and 755 Berkeley Avenues. The district's oldest homes date from the 1880's to 1900's, being located the closest to the hotel's site and train station. The horse path to the hotel is still located behind 701 Belvidere, along with the carriage house on 633 Berkeley Avenueiii. The bulk of the district's homes date from the 1920's, including those built on the hotel's property after its demise in 1918iv.


The Netherwood Hotel

Among the stately homes along winding Belvidere Avenue was the residence of Samuel Rushmore. For years, he lived at 777 Belvidere. Rushmore was the inventor of the automobile self-starter, headlights, searchlights for ships, plus many other inventions which did not come into use until after his patents had expired.

This location is also known as the Rushmore-Coffin House because during the reign of Jersey City Mayor Hague in the 1930's and 1940's, a coffin was placed on the roof to protest the mayor's alleged corruption. This home also has a carriage house on Ravine Road to which a tunnel is connected to the main house.

Also of note is 556 Belvidere, once home to the family of the Japanese Ambassador to the United Statesv. The interior features Japanese-style carvings on the coffered ceilings and mantel. The family imported Japanese Maples which can be seen on the property today.

Netherwood is the only location within the Plainfield City limits having its own zip code: 07062. The "town" of Netherwood extends east to west from Woodland Avenue to Terrill, and north to south from the North Plainfield town line to Watchung Avenue. The historic train station of Netherwood was originally built in 1894vi, and then renovated in 1998. Located on South Avenue, the station is designed in the Richardsonian Romanesque-Queen Anne style.

Authors: Louise Colodne, Victor Quinn, William Michaelson and Greg Myers


Footnotes:

iIt is believed it may be that the bridal paths, upon which certain roads are based, predate the hotel itself. Besides that the wooded hills were probably used by residents for a long time, maps that feature the hotel include the streets themselves. (Source: Plainfield Library Database)

iiPlainfield was the last stop on the railroad when it was extended there in 1839, and for one year only: by 1840, the railroad was extended to Dunellen. (Sources: NY Times; Central RR of NJ Historical Society)

iiiAccording to a 1926 photo, 653 Ravine Road was the "Netherwood Hotel Carriage House." (Source: Plainfield Library Database)

ivMr. Louis Nadel was manager of the hotel in 1920 and the hotel appears on a 1923 map. Actual destruction unknown. (Sources: American Newspaper Publishers Assn Bulletin; Plainfield Library Database)

vHarry Kuniichi Tetsuka was a Japanese pottery importer who lived here. A cross-reference of available archives between Plainfield or Netherwood with all Japanese Ambassadors to the US does not yield any results. (Source: Plainfield Library Database; NY Times; other unrecalled)

viThe current Netherwood station house was built in 1894. The original Netherwood station house was probably built in 1877 (the train schedule lists a Netherwood "station", which does not require an actual building) and burned down in 1892. (Sources: Central Railroad of NJ Timetables; NY Times)

MISSION STATEMENT: To enhance and grow local community involvement in the area defined as "Netherwood Heights" by elevating community safety, beautifying areas as well as provides a social outlet for our neighborhood.

Minnie Murray Sandford

Minnie Murray Sandford's dress
c. late 1880's - 1890's
Given to Drake House November 2013 by the Sandford family

Minnie Murray Sandford

Minnie Murray Sandford's dress
c. late 1880's - 1890's
Given to Drake House November 2013 by the Sandford family

Minnie Murray Sandford

Minnie Murray Sandford's dress
c. late 1880's - 1890's
Given to Drake House November 2013 by the Sandford family

Monday Afternoon Club Membership

Monday Afternoon Club Membership

Monday Afternoon Club Membership

December 28, 2014

Local blogger Dan Damon wrote this article, Suspicious fire at historic Plainfield building, regarding a fire at the Samuel W. Rushmore building on South Avenue. Many Rushmore relatives have been members of the PGC including current Affiliate Member Ginny Rushmore.

To learn more about this prominent family, click on these member albums:

Rushmore, Mrs. Murray (Helen Joy)
Rushmore, Mrs. Townsend (Jean Betram Murray) '20
Joy, Mrs. James R. (Emma Prentice McGee) '33
Mooney, Mrs. Wandell McMaster (Alice Joy McGee) '47
Joost, Mrs. Sherman Brownell (Marie Murray) '19
Murray, Mrs. James Everett (Alice Marshall) '20
Roome, Mrs. John Stanton (Dolores or "Dody" Murray) '57
Tilney, Mrs. Albert Arthur (Augusta R. Murray) '20
McGee, Mrs. Harry Livingston (Susan M. Howell) '18
McGee, Mrs. Walter Miller (Mary Alice Yerkes) '22
Lockwood, Mrs. Frederick M. (Hazel Marshall) '52
Lockwood, Mrs. William L. (Amy M.) '25
Marshall, Mrs. Henry P. (Dorothy Burke) '30
Howell, Mrs. Josephus Halsey (Romaine Ray) '22
Chambliss, Mrs. Leopold A. (Anna Scott Yerkes) '50
Eddy, Mrs. Charles Brown (Ellen Coolidge Burke) '15

And through marriage on her husband's side, the late Mrs. Webster (Barbara Tracy) Sandford '50.

Plainfield firefighters responded early Saturday evening to a suspicious fire in a historic factory structure at South Avenue and Berckman Street.

The complex of three buildings, parts of which are over a hundred years old, most recently housed the Royal Apex Company, a manufacturer of gutters and other metal and plastic extruded products. The buildings have been vacant since 2007, when Royal Apex was bought out by Berger Building Products, Inc., and operations were moved to Pennsylvania.

Originally, the buildings housed the Rushmore Dynamo Works, owned by Plainfield entrepreneur and inventor Samuel W. Rushmore. Rushmore made his fortune in patents and manufacturing several key improvements in automobile technology.

Among his notable inventions – or improvements on those of others – are the automatic starter, cooling systems for internal combustion engines, the flared automobile headlamp, a searchlight, and locomotive headlights. At one time, half of all the automatic starters used in American automobiles were manufactured in the Plainfield location.

Rushmore sold the business in 1914 to the Bosch Magneto Company, with the proviso that the Rushmore name be used on its products for a number of years. When Bosch violated the terms of the agreement, Rushmore successfully sued (see here) for $100,000 (which would be over $2 million today).

Bosch, a German company with a U.S. branch, established a separate U.S. corporation, headquartered in New York City. Because of suspicions of its owners' loyalty, Bosch was nationalized in both the First and Second World Wars – with control returning to private hands in 1948.

Though several area fire companies responded to the blaze, it was quickly brought under control. A source told me the fire is suspected to be arson, a determination that will be made officially by arson investigators.

Detwiller blueprints 996 Central

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.

EDITOR'S NOTE:
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

December 3, 2015

December 3, 2015

Rushmore Building Will Become Self-Storage Facility

Rushmore, Virginia ("Ginny") 71, President 1979 - 1981
Rushmore, Mrs. Murray (Helen Joy)
Rushmore, Mrs. Townsend (Jean Betram Murray) '20