The historic Squier farmhouse is in imminent danger of being demolished to make way for two new homes. We need $10,000 to hire historic preservation experts to perform comprehensive structural inspections. The South Orange Historical and Preservation Society, a 501(c)(3) non-profit, is asking for your support to help preserve the Squier Farmhouse.
In a unique collaboration, community stakeholders, including the South Orange Historic Preservation Commission, the Meadowland Park Conservancy, the South Orange Historical & Preservation Society, and neighbors, are working with the property owner to remove modern additions and save the original sandstone part of the farmhouse at 167 North Ridgewood Road, one of the few remaining pre-revolutionary era structures in the Village of South Orange, NJ.
An initial structural assessment is promising, but funds are needed to determine how the 247-year-old building can be repaired and renovated for use as a four-bedroom house. A comprehensive structural inspection by historic preservation experts will include probing hard-to-reach areas of the building to check for structural integrity, a termite inspection, wood fungus inspection, other possible condition inspections, and a plan for preservation-related repairs. Without this specialized preservation assessment, the house will be demolished.
Built in 1774 by Henry Squier, the farmhouse is significant not only for its architecture, but its history. A revolutionary war officer, Henry Squier was instrumental in starting the Orange Public School System. His son, Nathan, served as a High Sheriff, a judge of the Inferior Court, a Free Holder, and a Trustee and President of the Board of the South Orange Columbian School. Nathan Squier owned cider mills and distilleries, an interest in a sawmill, and built and operated the South Orange Hotel. Circa 1795, Nathan Squier is credited with naming the Village of South Orange.
The farmhouse later became part of the William Redmond estate. Redmond leased the house and outbuildings to Farmer John Flood, whose cows grazed in what is now the popular recreational area, Flood’s Hill.
As noted in the South Orange Historic Preservation Commission local landmark resolution, the Squier Farmhouse is “worthy of preservation and public recognition due to its historical, architectural, and archaeological value, in particular to the history of South Orange, but also to the State of New Jersey and even the United States.”
Help this property remain a part of our local and national heritage by making a tax-deductible contribution today! It’s going to take a village to help preserve our village history!