taken July 4th, 2009. My daughters and I were walking from the manor house, to go down the steps to go to the blacksmith shop. I saw this beautiful reflection of the barn in the pond, and loved the way the barn was more visible in the reflection than in real life – covered by the trees!
The architecture of Ringwood Manor is truly unique. Unlike the next-door Skylands Manor in the New Jersey State Botanical Gardens, it is an organic house that grew and expanded naturally throughout several important periods in American history, reflecting the characteristics of its inhabitants.
Initially the grounds would have housed Indian Villages and celebrations. Later Cornelius Ogden, Joseph Board, and Peter Hasenclever began the house that Robert, Elizabeth and Ebenezer Erskine lived in during the Revolutionary War. That house was most likely burnt down.
The existing mansion was started in 1807 by the Ryersons and added to by the Hewitts for a period of over 100 years. Thus, the present Ringwood Manor displays architecture from the Federal through the Victorian and Edwardian periods. Each addition is interesting and significant.
The other important factor about Ringwood Manor is that it was left by the Hewitt family as it was: it has their furniture, their books, their clothing. It shows how this family lived during the 19th and 20th centuries.
It is not a magnificent mansion. Its architecture is not a grand display of one period or one architect’s ego. It is a story of history, of people, and of life, because the Hewitt family loved this house while they lived in it.
to learn more about the Manor and property, go to http://www.ringwoodmanor.com/tour/tour.htm