83 Wayne Street, Jersey City NJ 07302
The Barrow Mansion has an eclectic, storied history, one that has evolved and remains current in Jersey City’s cultural landscape. Named for its first owner, Dr. William Barrow, who lived here with his wife, Eliza Brower, the Mansion has undergone several transformations throughout the years. Eliza’s brother-in-law, Cornelius Van Vorst, owned much of Jersey City, then largely tidal marsh, and decided to build twin mansions on the higher ground in 1837. Van Vorst aspired to develop a fashionable Manhattan suburb, and reserved one lot to build beautiful Van Vorst Park, which retains its splendor to this day.
The Paulmier family, wealthy merchants who later purchased the Mansion, made a number of modern changes to its interior. Like Cornelius Van Vorst, Jesse Paulmier was also engaged in real estate development, but on a smaller scale. In 1879, while Paulmier was building Hampton Court Terrace, next door to the Barrow Mansion, he died suddenly, and his widow and daughters soon moved.
The Barrow Mansion then became the home of a YMCA from 1890-1897; the organization provided housing and recreation for migrant railroad workers, adding a bowling alley, gymnasium and even a rifle range. St. Matthew’s Church was built on the large garden between the twin houses, and they bought the Mansion in 1897 from the YMCA.
The mansion where the Van Vorst family lived was torn down in the 1920s. An important reminder of the early developments of this part of Jersey City, the aspirations of its builders, and the changing demographic patterns of the city since its creation, The Barrow Mansion is listed in the National and New Jersey Register of Historic Places.
-Available for tours, local Jersey City events, and private parties
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