Metlar-Bodine House

Metlar-Bodine House

The Metlar/Bodine House is an historical home and museum in Piscataway, New Jersey. It is also believed to be haunted. In 2003 a fire badly damaged the house. It is now closed to be repaired.

In the 1700s Raritan Landing, New Jersey had 70 homes belonging to Dutch merchants. In 1728 the wharf and storehouse owner Peter Bodine built a two story house near the Raritan River. His house included a fireplace with a built-in cabinet to the left, a sleeping loft, and a root cellar with a cold hole for food storage. In 1733 Peter Bodine sold his house to Hendrick Lane (?-1761). After Lane's death in 1761 the house was inhabited by his widow, Margaret. In 1780 she sold the property to William French, the son of a sea captain. Isaac Lawrence bought the house in 1814. In 1840 William Phillips was the owner and may have added to the house. The addition has handmade glass in a transom over the front door, and fireplaces of slate and marble. In 1853 Samuel Knapp purchased the house and 220 acres of the property. He may have named the house "Sunnyside" and added a second addition to the house. This addition was done around 1870 and reflected the older parts of the house.

In the 1890's, the house became the property of George Metlar, a wealthy New Brunswick, New Jersey entrepreneur and land baron. He used it to house his overseer, John Mason, who was a sheep expert. Metlar's son John moved to the home with his wife in 1904 and shared it with the Mason. In 1914 John Metler inherited the property. John sold some of the land and in 1955 sold the house and the remaining 0.73 acres to John P. Newton.

In 1977 the state of New Jersey purchased the property. They planned to use the property for a new bridge to cross the Raritan River. It is now owned by the New Jersey Department of Transportation.

On July 17, 2003, a fire almost destroyed the house. The Fellowship for Metlar House is working to restore the site.

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