Bettering Plainfield with the facts since 2005

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Hidden Plainfield: What a setback for Plainfield!

Today's mystery house is far, far from the side of the road.
Today's Hidden Plainfield home is a real setback for Plainfield!

From the street, that is.

It's easy to forget that Plainfield was originally settled over three hundred years ago (1685, despite what the current administration says on the city's website), but occasionally one runs across a house whose apparently odd placement reminds us that the area was once wide open territory and early settlers used their own best judgment about where to situate a house on their property.

Sometimes the house eventually ends up being literally 'beside' the road -- as in the Lampkin House on Terrill Road (see here), one corner of which is mere inches from the roadway.

Sometime the roadway literally goes around the house, as with the Cedar Brook Farmhouse at Cedar Brook Road and Brook Lane.

At other times -- as in today's mystery home, possibly a late 18th-century farmhouse -- roads laid out as the city developed leave the original home far from the roadway and the much later neighbors' standard urban setback.

The kitchen stoop practically dumps people against the rear neighbor's fence,
as can be seen here from the neighbor's front yard.

In the case of today's house, the kitchen stoop is practically against the rear property line, as can be glimpsed in the photo above.

Do you know where this home is?

Answer tomorrow.

-- Dan Damon [follow]

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Anonymous said...

It's on Bellview Ave, between Park AVe and Woodland Ave.


Bernice said...

I used to live on Long Hill Road in Millington, where the oldest homes were very close to the roadway, a pre-Revolutionary route over a basalt ridge overlooking the valley below. Old-timers said the proximity was necessary for access to the homes in the days before driveways and such.

Michael Townley said...

Belleview Avenue, third or fourth house on the left (north) side from Park Avenue. I grew up on Belleview but east of Florence. My brothers and I delivered Courier News to Belleview, South End Parkway, and Park Avenue. We had school-age friends who lived at the house next to your "hidden" location, as well as other friends in several of the houses across the street. The old Plainfield Transit #22 bus used to run up/down Belleview; Ralph the bus driver was a real card. Back then there was no 7-Eleven; our convenience store was "Lou's" at the corner of Park and Sprague in South Plainfield (where the medical office building is now, across from Burger King, which used to be the location of Herm's Restaurant before it burned down.) Ah, the good old days...