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A Study Of . . . Washington NJ / Joseph B. Cornish Mansion, #002

#002 cornish mansion

All the comforts of home.  This house was originally the Mattison mansion, as it was built by Dr John V (Vanderveer**) Mattison in 1860, and was of the "extreme rococo style", with a red and black color scheme. Mattison later sold the house to Senator Joseph B Cornish, founder of the Cornish Piano + Organ Company. In the year after Cornish's death on Jan 24, 1910, his son, Senator Johnston Cornish, remodelled the mansion, reportedly spending $80,000 on improvements, which, at that time, was an exorbitant amount. After Johnston's death, his son, also named Joseph B, moved in, and later sold it to the Ku Klux Klan. After several more owners, it was turned into an 8-family apartment house in 1932, and on Jan 1, 1933, it was struck by a fire of such magnitude that well over half-a-million gallons of water were thrown at the blaze. It was rebuilt and still stands today, albeit quite changed from this picture.  (Caption by Thomas Allen Kelley)   /   **thanks to Paula J Morris, J V Mattison's g-g-granddaughter, for supplying his middle name ... heretofore, EB's Postcard Museum only knew his middle initial.

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