Photo of Weehawken via Michel G’s Flickr
Lin Manuel Miranda, the creator of the musical phenom Hamilton, tweeted in January that he changed three lyrics for the show’s London opening: John Adams, the Potomac River and Weehawken. According to Miranda, those words were too specific to America. According to Broadway Buzz, “Burr’s proposal of a duel in ‘Your Obedient Servant’ now specifically points to New Jersey rather than the town of Weehawken. The Broadway lyric “Weehawken, dawn, guns drawn” has become ‘New Jersey, dawn, guns drawn.’”
In July 1804, Alexander Hamilton was mortally wounded during a duel with Aaron Burr in Weehawken and died the following day in New York City. Tragically, Hamilton’s son was killed on the same spot three years earlier. One of the plaques in Alexander Hamilton Park describes many of the other unknown “duelists” who “all came to Weehawken to defend their honor according to the custom of the day. Located on the Hudson River, Weehawken does have a very “American” history but it should be highlighted, not diminished. Ahead, learn the ins and outs of Weehawken, from its historic waterfront parks and duel grounds to its burgeoning real estate scene.
Eli Manning’s patience trying to offload his Hoboken condo certainly paid off, as the Post reports that it’s sold for $3.55 million–the biggest condo sale in the city’s history. The Giants quarterback first listed the waterfront spread at the Hudson Tea Building three years ago for $5.2 million, but after failing to find any takers, he put it up as an $18,000/month rental the following spring. Manning currently lives with his wife, Abby McGrew, and their three daughters in the more suburban Summit, NJ. He also dropped $8.5 million on a beachfront Hamptons mansion last year.
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Via ORG Permanent Modernity/Regional Plan Association
Released last fall, the Regional Plan Association’s (RPA) Fourth Plan includes 61 recommendations focused on improving and expanding the area’s deteriorating infrastructure, transportation, and affordability, much of which revolves around climate change and its transformation of the region. According to the report, more than one million people and 650,000 jobs are at risk of flooding due to rising sea levels. In the plan, the RPA ambitiously recommends that the New Jersey Meadowlands, 21,000 acres of low-lying wetlands, becomes a national park as a way to mitigate impacts of climate change (h/t Curbed). Designating the region’s largest wetland as a national park would restore the natural habits, protect nearby communities, and create a recreational space, becoming, the report says, a “Climate Change National Park.” The Meadowlands National Park would adapt and grow with climate change by drawing and redrawing the boundaries of the park as coastlines change.
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One of the most expensive residential listings in New Jersey recently hit the market at an asking price of $48 million. The 100-year-old, nearly 50,000-square-foot mansion sits on 12.5 acres in Mahwah with views of the Ramapo Mountains (h/t Wall Street Journal). The enormous house, originally built in 1907 by George Crocker, son of railroad tycoon Charles Crocker, was modeled after a Jacobean-style English castle and today boasts a 45-foot-tall organ, 29 bathrooms, 21 bedrooms, and two full kitchens, one equipped to serve an impressive 250 meals at a time.
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, Fri, September 30, 2016
This unique listing should definitely get the attention of modern house lovers and math geeks. One of three remaining New Jersey homes (a fourth was moved to Arkansas in 2014) designed by Frank Lloyd Wright is up for sale for $995,000. The home was purchased by the current owners in 1996 and restored to “purists’ standards” in 2006. The house follows the architect’s “Usonian” plan which incorporates native materials and strong visual connections between interiors and the exterior landscape.
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New York City is full of incredible properties, but it’s not known for its castles. You have to go to New Jersey for that. Over near Bernardsville Mountain, in northern New Jersey, is the Stronghold Castle—probably one of the most impressive homes in the entire state. It’s the work of the architect George B. Post, who purchased 104 acres around the mountain in 1871. Soon after, in 1886, Post was commissioned to design a house for James Coleman Drayton, a New York banker and the son-in-law of William Backhouse Astor on one of the highest points in the area. The result? A two-story, stone villa with a tower commanding views of the estate’s 128 acres. Over the years, different owners added to the home and it evolved into this modern-day castle. Between 1940 and 1995, it served as a private girl’s school. The latest owner, who bought in 2004, restored the castle in all its grandeur while adding modern additions to make it a cozy home. (Or, as cozy as a castle can be.)
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During his prolific career, Frank Lloyd Wright built four houses in the Garden State, the first and largest being the 2,000-square-foot James B. Christie House in Bernardsville, which dates to 1940. At the time, Wright, who coined the term “organic architecture,” told his client to find a site with “as much individuality as to topography and features—stream, trees, etc. and as much freedom from adjacent buildings as is possible.” Christie obliged, and the resulting home sits on seven acres of secluded woodland. For the physical architecture, Wright employed his Usonian principles of simplicity, practicality, and a connection to nature.
As Curbed reports, after selling in 2014 to a private buyer for $1,700,000, the Christie House is now on the market for $2.2 million after receiving a new roof and heating system.
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Just as his conviction for draft evasion was overturned and he was able to return to the ring, Muhammad Ali took up residency in Cherry Hill, New Jersey. The three-time world heavyweight champion lived from 1971-1974 in this five-bedroom “Tuscan-style villa” that spans over 10,000 square feet and 1.5 acres. After Ali moved out, McDonald’s franchiser Tony Micale bought the ranch and added amenities like a tennis court, glass-enclosed hot tub room, and catering kitchen. To boot, there’s a stunning central atrium, a huge glass chandelier from Ali’s days, marble heated flooring, a 45-foot bar, a volleyball/ basketball/ shuffleboard court, and an in-law suite. Good news if you want to get in on a piece of boxing history; Curbed reports that the sprawling estate is listed for just $750,000.
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