Demarest House, New Milford (North Hackensack)
c. 1794 ; moved and renovated in 20th century

David des Marest

Built about 1794 "on the Hackensack River at New Milford, Bergen County, New Jersey, this colonial Dutch house was deteriorating through vandalism and weathering until it was moved in 1958 to a small park in North Hackensack. The land is owned by the Bergen County Historical Society, and accomodates several other historic structures, including the Zabriskie home, known as the von Steuben House.”(1)

(1) Fairleigh Dickinson University web site (see alpha.fdu link, below).

Demarest House, c.1794, remodeled in 20th c., New Milford (Bergen County). Photograph copyright Fairleigh Dickinson University (see alpha.fdu link, below).

According to one source, “Bergen Dutch settlers built one of the three regional types of New Jersey house, the one-and-one-half story house. . . [although] the ‘Dutch’ were actually a heterogeneous mix of people from several parts of Europe.”(1) The most easily identified feature of such houses is the slight curve of the roof where it flares out over the eaves.

“The typical Dutch house was small. It had a cellar for food storage, one multipurpose room on the first floor, and an unfinished attic. . . . Larger Dutch stone houses had a variety of room arrangements.”(2) The Demarest House is similar to the Steuben House, located in River Edge. Both are one-and-one-half story Dutch-type houses made of stone, although the Demarest House has a gable rather than gambrel roof. Another even larger Dutch stone house – one of the grandest in the Garden State – is the Benjamin Westervelt House in Cresskill (also Bergen County).

(1) Suzanne C. Hand, New Jersey Architecture (Trenton: New Jersey Historical Commission, Department of State, 1995), p.24.

(2) Hand, p.25.

About the Authors | Essential Bibliography | NJ Museums & Collections | Acknowledgments