Cornelius Low House

Cornelius Low House

The Cornelius Low House on River Road in Piscataway is the Middlesex County Museum and listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Cornelius Low House was built in 1741 and belonged to Cornelius Low, a merchant who lived at Raritan Landing. In a notation in the family Bible from October 1741, Low states his son William was born “in my new house on the mountain.” The Low House is a classic example of Georgian architecture, a style guided by balance, proportion and symmetry. It is constructed of more than 350 tons of local sandstone. The side facing River Road features more finely cut stone while the sides and rear are built in far less expensive rubble stone. There was originally a one-and-one-half story kitchen wing attached to the left side of the structure. Low and his wife, Johanna, had eleven children. Sadly only four of the children lived past the age of 36: Isaac, Nicholas, Gertrude and Sarah. Isaac Low, a former member of the Continental Congress, and his brothers-in-law Hugh Wallace and Alexander Wallace were Loyalists; Nicholas was a Patriot. Cornelius Low died early in the Revolutionary War in April 1777. It is believed he was a Loyalist, and this is why his house remained untouched by British soldiers, who were encamped in the area. Archaeological excavations revealed proof of British soldiers being on the property. After the American Revolution, the house was sold to the Pool family, which lived in the house until the mid-nineteenth century. The house was purchased by Middlesex County in 1979 and today offers award-winning exhibits about New Jersey history.

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