DIRECTIONS to HNBL
From Route 4, take the exit for Hackensack Ave. North / River Edge and proceed north on Hackensack Ave through 2 traffic lights and bear right onto the jughandle to Main St., River Edge. Parking is on left by the HNBL Blue Sign. Historic buildings are located on along north side of Main St. and east of Hackensack Ave.
From S. Washington Ave / Teaneck Rd, take New Bridge Road West. After crossing the Hackensack River, make a left onto Main Street. New Bridge Landing is located on the left side of street.
By Train: Take the Pascack Valley line to "New Bridge Landing at River Edge" Train Stop. Walk aross the tracks to Hackensack Avenue. Walk one block north to traffic light. At the light walk across Hackensack Avenue, traveling east on Main Street.
|1. Steuben House |
2. New Bridge (1888-89)
3. New Bridge Landing
4. Site of Zabriskie Tidemill
5. Demarest House Museum
6. Campbell-Christie House
|7. Westervelt-Thomas Barn |
9. Brett Park
Proposed BCHS Museum
|Steuben House |
|The Steuben House, Demarest House Museum and Campbell-Christie House are open for special events. The Campbell-Christie House is often open the 2nd Sunday of the month, check EVENTS PAGE. Suggest wearing walking shoes when going between houses. The former Autoparts Yard "The Meadow" is completely remediated. |
Return to Main Page or scroll down to see more information on the above map.
1. Steuben House. Built as a five-room stone cottage in 1752 and enlarged to present size around 1767 by addition of the second story along the rear and the entire north block with its paneled parlor and bed chamber. Described in 1784 as a "Large Mansion House containing twelve rooms built with stone, with Outhouses consisting of a Bake House, Smoke House, Coach House, and two large Barns, and a Garden, Forty Acres of Land consisting of Meadow Land and two Orchards." The house was confiscated from the Zabriskies after they remained loyal to the crown. The state of NJ presented the war-damaged house to Major-General Baron von Steuben in 1783. Steuben's aide-de-camp, Captain Benjamin Walker resided here, while Steuben made regular visits and summer retreats from his Manhattan lodgings. He sold it back to the Zabriskies in 1788. For a more complete history.
2. New Bridge. A "New Bridge" with sliding draw was built here in 1744. Eye-witness Thomas Paine described this small bridge as "our first objective" in the American retreat from Fort Lee on November 20, 1776, memorializing the darkest hour in the hopes for American independence as the "times that try men's souls." The present Pratt-type Low Truss Swing Bridge, installed by the King Iron Bridge Co. of Cleveland using channel iron made by the Phoenix Iron Co. of Philadelphia, opened February 2, 1889. Joseph W. Stagg built the sandstone abutments. Closed to automobile traffic in 1956 when the 4-lane bridge just to the north was completed. Listed on NJ and National Registers as the oldest highway swing-bridge in State. Open for pedestrian use. Restored and maintained by the County of Bergen.
3. New Bridge Landing. A narrow mill landing, built of log cribbing in 1744, could accommodate 50-ton sloops. Iron was brought here from Ringwood and Long Pond for transshipment. Present bulkhead built shortly after completion of present bridge in 1889. It includes a V-shaped notch so that Captain D. A. Zabriskie could cradle his schooner when the tide ran out, its mast lashed to a tall pole set in the ground to keep it upright.
4. Zabriskie's Mills. Johannes Ackerman resided near the present intersection of Main St & Elizabeth Ct about 2 blocks west of here. He built a grist-mill, 40 ft by 20 ft, containing two pairs of grinding stones in 1714 at the outlet of Cole’s Brook. Jan Zabriskie purchased the mill in 1745. His grandson, John J. Zabriskie, died trying to free the frozen waterwheel in 1793. High tide was trapped in Cole’s Brook behind a dam, creating an artificial pond twice daily to run the waterwheel during ebb tide. The date stone lozenge set in the south end of the Zabriskie-Steuben House depicts the tide-driven waterwheel. The mill burned down in 1852..
5. Demarest House Museum. 18th-century two-room sandstone dwelling with double front doors and distinctive spring-eave on front. Removed from original site beside French Burial Ground in New Milford in 1955-56 onto BCHS land. Displays collection of Demarest family and Bergen Dutch artifacts. Open for special events and by appointment. Owned by Blauvelt-Demarest Foundation. To see a map of original location.
6. Campbell-Christie House. Jacob Campbell, a stone mason, constructed a store southeast of the intersection of River Rd and Henley Ave, in New Milford, about the time of his marriage to Altche Westervelt in 1774. It stood on land owned by his father, William, who kept tavern on the north side of the road. Private Jacob Campbell served with the Bergen militia during the American Revolution. His property was damaged during the war, but tax records for 1780 list him as a merchant. After his father’s death in 1793, Jacob sold to Abraham Brower, whose brother, John, a black- smith, operated a roadside smithy until his death a year later. Blacksmith John D. Christie purchased the house for £250 in 1795 and operated a tavern. When he died in 1836, he bequeathed his residence to son John J. Christie, a farmer. Moved to River Edge onto BCHS land in 1977 by County Freeholders. It is operated by the BCHS (volunteers recently painted interior.) Gift shop and one rest room. To see a map of original location. Now located at 1201 Main St., River Edge, NJ 07661.
7. Westervelt-Thomas Barn. Built 1889 by Peter J. Westervelt on his farm on Ridgewood Road, Washington Township. Henry Thomas purchased farm in 1906. Donated to BCHS and relocated in 1958 onto BCHS land.
8. Out-Kitchen. Authentic out-kitchen built by BCHS in 1990, using antique materials, replicating John R. Demarest Out-Kitchen in Demarest. Includes beehive oven and smoke room. These separate kitchen structures kept the heat of cooking out of the main dwelling during summer and prevented oven fires (unfortunately all too frequent) from involving the loss of the family's residence. The smoke room at the rear sheltered the beehive oven, protecting its plastered brick dome from the elements, since it was prone to cracking from repeated heating and cooling. Heat retained by the bricks, after the wood fire was raked out, did the baking. As the oven slowly cooled, it was necessary to efficiently use the heat, first baking bread, then pies, cakes, pastries and puddings.
9. Brett Park. Part of the New Bridge battlefield during the American Revolution. Site of Rekow’s Farm and Benson’s campgrounds. The park was named after former Teaneck Mayor Clarence Brett in 1971. Marked pedestrian pathway & nature trail maintained by the Friends Hackensack River Greenway Through Teaneck. Many birds and animals may be observed throughout Historic New Bridge Landing.
P. Parking Lot. For Historic New Bridge Landing.
Future Museum & Library Building. We plan an elevated building to allow for exhibits and safe storage of the BCHS collections on BCHS land. The BCHS collections have grown to over 4,000 objects. This does not include the library and document collection.
The Meadow. Land acquired by the HNBL Park Commission in 2005. The auto-parts yard is now completely remediated.