Connolly & Hickey 

Drumthwacket
Princeton, New Jersey
Client: State of New Jersey
   

Front elevation of Drumthwacket.
Credit: Memories TTL, LLC

Drumthwacket Drumthwacket Drumthwacket Drumthwacket
Drumthwacket      
(click on image for larger view)
Brief Historical Overview:
Drumthwacket was constructed in 1835 by New Jersey-native Charles Smith Olden, a businessman who achieved his wealth in New Orleans. After living in New Orleans for a number of years, Olden returned to New Jersey in 1834 and constructed Drumthwacket, which means, "wooded hill" in Scottish Gaelic. Olden was a gentleman farmer, businessman, president of Princeton University, and state senator while living in New Jersey. He was elected as New Jersey Governor in 1860, serving during the turbulent years of the Civil War. Moses Taylor Pyne purchased the property in 1893. Pyne was a financier and philanthropist whose wealth came from his father, Moses Taylor who was successful in business during one of America's greatest periods of expansion, the Industrial Revolution. Following in his father's footstep, Pyne was the director of numerous banks, industrial and mercantile companies, railroads, etc., but his greatest philanthropic endeavor was at Princeton University where he made significant financial contributions and influenced the expansion of the University in the late-nineteenth and early-twentieth centuries.

Pyne was primarily responsible for the appearance of Drumthwacket today. He expanded the original residence through the construction of the two wings, as well as added hundreds of acres to include park-like landscaping, greenhouses, bridle paths, a dairy farm, and formal Italian gardens. The State of New Jersey purchased the property consisting of approximately 11 acres in 1966 for the intent that it be used as the official residence of the Governor, but it did not begin to serve this purpose until the mid-1980s. Since that time, the building has been used as the official residence by various Governors, but is also used for special events, school tours, and is open to the public for guided tours one day a week.

Scope of Services:
Connolly & Hickey completed the design of new barrier-free upgrades, which included bridging the gap in the accessible route at the first floor between the west wing and the original center section of the building in 2012. Currently, Connolly & Hickey is providing contract administration services during construction.

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Connolly & Hickey  l   P.O. Box 1726  l   Cranford, New Jersey 07016  l   info@chhistoricalarchitects.com  l   973-746-4911   facebook