William Packer House
Built 1789
600 Ewing Avenue, Block 2304, Lot 1A
Franklin Lakes, NJ 07417 

All the stonework on the William Packer House – except the quoins on the façade – has been stuccoed. A full shed dormer, a modern wing and kitchen in what was an added breezeway have been added, giving the house a reproduction look. The original kitchen wing fireplace has been rebuilt and exterior chimneys have been added on the north and south side. Two partitions have been moved, so that the stairway is now open to the living room, which is full depth.

The early titles to a large part of northwestern Bergen County were involved and dubious; possibly an attempt to rectified this Stevens and Company obtained a grant in 1789 of 5000 acres consisting of tracts in various localities in western Bergen County. They sold to many settlers, including the Packer. The sale may refer to this property as the first Packer arrived at about this time.

The house was probably built at different periods. While Erskine did not survey this road during the Revolution, the method of construction shows that the house belongs to an earlier period than the war. There have been reports that the kitchen wing was first built about 1730, but that is very unlikely. However, the first story of the kitchen wing is built of stone laid with a clay and straw mortar and the diminutive size of the window opening was typical of an earlier period. The main house may have been built by the first Packer shortly after the Revolution because of the stone quoins and the stone lintels left in their natural color in patterned contrast to the white-washed stone front of the building a characteristic of the late eighteens century. Yet, the size of the windows is more typical of the pre-Revolutionary era. The frame half-story was doubtless added to the wing by William Packer.


It is suspected that the nameless progenitor of the Packer family could have been Coenradt Henselpacker who bought Lot 44 of the Ramapo Tract on January 30, 1787. The progenitor of the Packer family in this region came to Wyckoff from a place unknown; he died still a young man and lies buried at Wyckoff; his first name is unknown but may have been John, since his son William’s eldest son was named John. He is supposed to have had but one child, William J. Packer, born January 10, 1795. He married Peggy Micklor on September 27, 1817 (born March 13, 1799).  They had six sons and five daughters. William J. Packer died on January 26, 1863, and his wife Peggy died about 1875 – taken from the family Bible.

William Packer must have been well-to-do and had a full complement of land for he gave farms to every one of his six sons. The homestead was inherited by the son Henry W. Packer, born on January 29, 1837; he married Jane Cole and died in 1918 – taken from the family Bible. He sold the place about 1910 to the Newman’s of New York City, and they sold to Henry Barrett Crosby, the present owner at the time of Rosalie Fellows Bailey’s  Pre-Revolutionary Dutch Houses and Families in Northern New Jersey and Southern New York writing - published 1968. Presently the home is privately owned and occupied.

The following map references list the William Packer house:

  1. Hopkins-Corey (1861) W.I. Packer
  2. Walker’s Atlas (1876) Henry W. Packer
  3. Bromley (1912) W.C. Newman
  4. Erskine (1778-80) road not surveyed

National Registry #83001540