Solitude House

Solitude House (HMOR8)

Location: High Bridge, NJ 08829 Hunterdon County
Country: United States of America

N 40° 40.263', W 74° 53.178'

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Taylor Steelworkers Historic Greenway

The Union Forge Heritage Association welcomes you to Solitude House

Solitude House started life as a classic Germanic style stone home in 1712 and was part of a 10,000 acre parcel of land that came to be part of the Union Iron Works. The adjacent stone annex structure, slaves' quarters and vegetable cave were all part of the original Solitude structures that remain to this day. The homes earliest existence predates the arrival of the Union Iron Works and the establishment of High Bridge.

The home's first recorded resident was Col. John Hackett who became the superintendent of the adjacent Iron (Works) established here in 1742 by William Allen and Joseph Turner. Solitude House became the primary residence of the manager of the Iron Works.

The first of five generations of Taylors came to reside at Solitude with the arrival of Robert Taylor from Ireland in 1755, who was first a book keeper at the Iron Works and soon became manager with the death of Hackett and took residence at Solitude. The Taylor Family who managed and operated the adjacent ironworks resided at Solitude from Robert Taylor in 1742 through Knox Taylor in 1914. The early Taylors were all patriots during the Revolutionary War.

Solitude House was substantially remodeled and expanded over the years as the iron works became more wealthy and prosperous. The home doubled in size in 1775, and again expanded and substantially remodeled in the 1850's which gave the home an early Victorian appearance. Solitude became to be known as the centerpiece of the Taylor Iron and Steel Company for over 200 years. Some of Solitude's most famous visitors and occupants include George and Martha Washington, as well as General Lafayette, Col. Charles Stewart, Aaron Burr, and the last royal governor John Penn and his Chief Justice Benjamin Chew who were imprisoned here for 7 months during the Revolutionary War. Civil War Brigadier General George W. Taylor was born at Solitude House and was an ironworker at the company.

Solitude was nearly lost to demolition before the Borough of High Bridge took possession of Solitude in early 2000. The Union Forge Heritage Association opened Solitude House Museum in 2002 with the mission to preserve and protect High Bridge's history and culture. Solitude House and associated structures are state and nationally recognized historic structures. Solitude House stands as a testament to our collective history as a new nation, as well as a testament to all those who persevered in the face of overwhelming odds to succeed.

HM NumberHMOR8
Placed ByThe Union Forge Heritage Association
Marker ConditionNo reports yet
Date Added Saturday, October 18th, 2014 at 12:01pm PDT -07:00
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Locationbig map
UTM (WGS84 Datum)18T E 509609 N 4502247
Decimal Degrees40.67105000, -74.88630000
Degrees and Decimal MinutesN 40° 40.263', W 74° 53.178'
Degrees, Minutes and Seconds40° 40' 15.78" N, 74° 53' 10.68" W
Driving DirectionsGoogle Maps
Area Code(s)908
Closest Postal AddressAt or near 13-95 County Rte 639, High Bridge NJ 08829, US
Alternative Maps Google Maps, MapQuest, Bing Maps, Yahoo Maps, MSR Maps, OpenCycleMap, MyTopo Maps, OpenStreetMap

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