Caspar Westervelt House, 1763
20 Sherwood Avenue
Two datestones, marked with the
initials of Casparus Westervelt and his wife Wentje Westervelt, are set on each
side of the front door of this large Dutch stone house, fixing its date at 1763.
The original Dutch property lies in an area known by the Indians as "Ackensack,"
meaning a high ridge between two rivers, and once extended to the north of the
junction of Overpeck Creek and the Hackensack River for two miles. Traffic along
the route from the Hudson River westward during the Revolution was considerable,
and the house was occupied twice by hostile troops during the war.
The prominent gambrel roof and
dormers of the main block, and the impressive length of 74 feet make the
building unusual for its type. The original kitchen wing on the north was
demolished and replaced by a south wing during the 19th century. The fireplace
in the present dining room was rediscovered during the 1960's, having been
walled up with iron pots still hanging on their hooks. Originally, the main
block had four smaller rooms-, now the space is divided into two large ones. The
Westervelt House is listed on the State and National Registers of Historic