Wychwood Manor is neighborhood in the northeastern portion of Westfield, bordered by beautiful Echo Lake Park, just west of Cranford. It came into existence during the 1920’s, right on the heels of Stoneleigh Park (which exists just to the south of Wychwood), as Westfield began to grow and expand as a haven for NYC commuters. The convenient railroad line was basically a magnet for developers at the time.
Arthur Rule, at the time, was a businessman, working primarily in fruit distribution. He had a vision for this area, and set out to design a cluster of homes in this picturesque section of the growing town, perfectly located alongside the railroad, and close to the downtown area of Westfield.
Have you ever known a woman, or BEEN a woman, to purchase an entire outfit to compliment a single favorite piece of jewelry? Well, that’s not unlike what Arthur Rule ended up doing. While he already had the vision for the community of upscale homes, it was Sip Manor that ended up being the core of his creation, and around which the rest of the Wychwood Manor neighborhood was created.
In 1926, in Jersey City, New Jersey, a 1666 Dutch colonial house sat on the corner of Academy Street and Bergen Avenue in Jersey City. It was the second oldest house in the state, second behind only a log cabin in Gibbstown, Gloucester County, and it was in danger of demolition in the rapidly expanding urban zone of Hudson County.
When Rule heard about the imminent demolition of the historical home, he made it his mission to save and relocate the building to Wychwood. He felt it would be a most welcome treasure in the community, and a huge attraction for buyers in the area. Rule ultimately found workers to painstakingly take the house apart, section by section, piece by piece, and then reassemble it in its new location at 5 Cherry Lane . . . . the treasured jewel of the Wychwood Manor ensemble.
Today, Wychwood Manor remains a highly desirable area of the equally highly desirable town of Westfield. The houses, many featuring traditional columns and porches, slate and shake roofs, finely wrought porticos, reflect the ideals of the past, and represent period classical architectural traditions of Georgian, Dutch Colonial, Tudor, and Mission. It maintains the beauty and grandeur of the past, while simultaeously boasting modern touches and impeccable upkeep. It is now, as it was then, a neighborhood filled with homeownership pride!