Thursday, October 28, 1999 Our Towns Our Towns Our Towns Our Towns Our Towns Our 2nd Annual Edition Page 13
CYAN YELLOW MAGENTA BLACK communications post. (The battle actually took place in the hills south of Scotch Plains, not
in present- day Short Hills.) In 1789, the same year as Washington was sworn in as the nation’s first President and the French Revolution began, Recompense Stanbery, 3rd, was granted a tavern license for the inn. It then became known as “Stanbery’s Corner,” “Stanbery’s Tavern” or the “Swiftsure Stage House.”
Stanbery was an important figure in the community. He served in the local militia and held political positions. In 1794, he participated in the formal secession of the Town of Westfield, which then included Scotch Plains, from Elizabeth. Stanbery was made a member of the Board of Freeholders and Tax Assessors of the new town. Mrs. Rawson described the ensuing festivities in this way: “a great gala day was held at Stanbery’s Tavern… to celebrate the formation of the new township, and rum went round and toasts were drunk to the days ahead.”
The year 1824 marked the visit of the inn’s most famous confirmed guest, General Marquis de Lafayette. The General was a friend of Captain William Piatt, a former Scotch Plains resident and bodyguard to George Washington. When Lafayette toured the colonies at the invitation of Congress, he tried to contact Piatt. Unfortunately, Piatt had been killed
in battle in 1792. The General dined at the Stage House with members of his late friend’s family.
The railroad arrived in the county in 1831, bringing competition to the stagecoaches. Swiftsure began reducing its rates to stay in business, but eventually its time passed.
The decline of the stage line, the building of a new public hall, and the temperance movement all meant change for the inn. Around 1900, with taverns now less popular, the inn became a summer resort hotel and restaurant. By the 1950s, it had become a hangout for local teens.
In 1960, architect Charles Detwiller, Jr. started a movement to restore the inn, which was in danger of being demolished and replaced by a gas station. Preserving as much of the original structure as possible, Detwiller set out to restore the landmark’s warm Colonial charm. By relocating several other historically significant local structures, Detwiller created a Colonial enclave of small shops, known as the Stage House Village, with the Stage House Inn restaurant as its centerpiece.
Owned for the past 24 years by John Ferrara, the Stage House Inn maintains an unornamented beauty. By paying homage to a simpler time, the Inn offers a pause from 20thcentury living.
Acorn Early Learning Center
Address: 1171 Terrill Road Scotch Plains Telephone: (908) 322- 4586 Age Category: 2½ through 6
The Christopher Academy
Address: 1390 Terrill Road Scotch Plains Telephone: (908) 322- 4652 Age Category: 2½ through 5
Fanwood- Scotch Plains YMCA
Address: 1340 Martine Avenue Scotch Plains Telephone: (908) 889- 5455 Age Category: 2 through 5
Fanwood- Scotch Plains YMCA Child Care Center
Address: Grand Street/ Union Avenue Scotch Plains Telephone: (908) 322- 7600 Age Category: Infants - PreKindergarten
Local Nursery Schools Jewish Community Center of Central New Jersey
Address: 1391 Martine Avenue Scotch Plains Telephone: (908) 889- 8800 Age: 2 through kindergarten
L’Academy of Montessori
Address: 1577 East 2nd Street Scotch Plains Telephone: (908) 322- 2450 Age Category: 2½ to 6
Scotch Plains Baptist Christian Nursery School
Address: 333 Park Avenue Scotch Plains Telephone: (908) 322- 9187 Age Category: 2½ to 6
Willow Grove Pre- School
Address: 1961 Raritan Road Scotch Plains Telephone: (908) 232- 7117 Age Category: 2½ to 4- plus
Theresa A. Mitchell Theresa A. Mitchell Theresa A. Mitchell Theresa A. Mitchell Theresa A. Mitchell
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1838 East Second Street, Scotch Plains • (908) 322- 1817
contemporary crafts & unique gifts jewelry • glass • pottery • woods • cards • and more
Beautiful Things has been a favorite among the discriminating shopper for over 26 years. Specializing in American contemporary crafts; the store represents over 400 craftsmen. Highlighted among the handmade jewelry, pottery, glass & wood is the unique metal work of its co- owner, Austin Goodwin. He & his wife, Nelleda, pride themselves in bringing to their customers personalized service & a comfortable atmosphere in which to choose just the perfect “beautiful things.”
Sterling and rosewood candle snuffer by E. Austin Goodwin
to Welcome Guests COME TO THE VILLAGE… The Stage House Village in Scotch Plains includes the historic Stage House Inn restaurant and several small shops. Together, the buildings which make up the Village retain the charm of a bygone era and are a reminder to area residents of their heritage.
Covering Fanwood, Mountainside, Scotch Plains and Westfield, Union County, New Jersey (NJ)