Van Koert-Winters House
Built 1710 
615 Franklin Avenue, Block 2408, Lot 2
Franklin Lakes, NJ 07417
The Van Koert-Winters House is important, in spite of its alterations, as it is one of Bergen County’s few extant pre-Revolutionary War stone houses. Its stone walls are intact and visible on the exterior on the front and back. The plan of the stone section is unchanged except for the addition of a 19th century stairway to the cellar which came about when the hatchways were closed up. The ceilings are open with added rough intermediate beams, probably for extra strength when the second story was raised in the late 19th century. The interior of the stone sections has solid door frames of one-piece construction, early wide floor boards and an early fireplace with a fine mantel of the circa 1810 period. The frame wing connected to the west side appears to be of the 1830’ period.

This house, while having been altered through the years, still retains a sufficient amount of its original fabric that it should be recognized and retained. Therefore, for its architectural significance, for its association with the exploration and settlement of the Bergen County area, and for its remaining historic fabric it is included in the Thematic Nomination to the National Register of Historic Places for the Early Stone Houses of Bergen County, New Jersey.
The structure remains in good condition, is privately owned and occupied.
We know that as early as 1861, Daniel C. Winters owned the house which is now the residence of the Schwartz family. But, according to the Erkshire map, architectural evidence puts the house into pre-Revolutionary era of c. 1820, and its builder probably was Van Koert.
It is believed that the stone half was built in the Revolutionary period. The frame upper story is believed to be added after the Civil War. The type of nails, wood and molding used in the construction of the building confirm this.
Mr. & Mrs. Schwartz have done meticulously accurate work in restoring the old home to its early American charm and flavor. The ceilings were removed and the beams were scraped of their numerous coats of paint. The worn flooring was replaced with old wide pine flooring.
Many of the beautiful antiques would be the envy of museums. The dining room furniture was discovered by Mrs. Schwartz’ s mother in Canada. The fine wood was hidden by many coats of paint. A Hackensack cupboard holds the Hi-Fi set. Another outstanding piece of furniture is a three-legged cricket table. The Bergen County ladder back chairs have elongated, rather than round, finials.
In the hall hangs a framed map of Franklin Township as it was in 1861. This is one of the few now in existence, and shows the many families whose names are still carried by residents of this area.
The following map references list the Van Koert-Winters house:
1. Erkshine (1778-80) Arie Van Koert
2. Hopkins-Corey (1861) D.C. Winters
3. Walker’s Atlas (1876) Abm. P. Winters
4. Bromly (1912) J. Yeomans
5. HABS I-1966
National Registry #84002593