By JAIMIE JULIA WINTERS
The historic Edmund Burke Osborne Estate on three acres in Montclair will be up for sale at $3,995,000. According to real estate agent Roberta Baldwin with Keller Williams New Jersey Metro Group, which is handling the sale, it’s the most expensive multiple-listed home in Montclair so far this year — and for some time before.
“The property is like a mini-park — lush, private, beautifully maintained; while the main residence, in an era where many historic homes are being architecturally repurposed, gutted and sometimes even torn down, has been restored with its sense of history intact,” Baldwin said in a press release about the property at 4-4A Stonebridge Road.
It will be the first time the home has been available for sale in 13 years.
Osborne had run for governor and was elected a New Jersey state senator in 1916. He was also the president of American Colortype, which created postcards, greeting cards and lithograph type stereoviews. He was president of Osborne Co., which also created postcards of local streetscapes popular in the day. He died in April 1917, in Montclair, at the age of 51.
The house was designed and built in 1908 by Joseph Van Vleck and Goldwin Goldsmith, who also built the Van Vleck Estate, the First Methodist Church, the Madison Building, the Young Men’s Christian Association and Grove and Mt. Hebron schools in Montclair. It was landscaped by the Olmsted Brothers Firm.
In a March 1913 article in American Homes & Gardens, the home is described at a “modern English country house, adapted to American conditions and requirements.” The article noted it is built from hollow tile, with the walls covered by stucco “making it virtually fireproof.” A Montclair Historic Survey written in 1981 noted the home’s open porch with fireplace that “transforms the space to a winter garden in the colder weather.”
Baldwin called the home “a prime American example of the classic-modern English country house with Gothic elements.” She said the 9,933 square foot Tudor holds 24 rooms — 9 bedrooms and 6.3 baths.
“Updates have respectfully embellished rather than replaced original architectural intentions,” Baldwin said. “There are unique, restored casement windows, built-in bookcases, brass and wrought-iron railings, timeless plaster moldings and six upgraded gas fireplaces. There are several formal entries to the first-floor array — including the original carriage-stop portico.”
The garden’s designers, the Olmsted Brothers, were famous landscape designers and architects who were responsible for the design of hundreds of parks through the U.S., including Central Park in New York City and Brookdale Park in Essex County in the late 1800s and early 1900s. The Osborne gardens still hold the character of the garden’s original design, Baldwin said.
“The cloistered, natural beauty of that defining time and place has been preserved today — two living structures built upon nearly three lush acres, pastoral, tree-embraced lawns — restored Arcadian vistas from the imagination of the legendary Olmsted Brothers Firm — astound the visitor, melding sheltered, park-like privacy with meticulous plantings, dozens of perennials, rose garden, more than 30 new trees — protected by expanded irrigation — and complimented by a backyard in-ground salt-system pool, hot tub, pavilion with fireplace, fountains, patios, summer kitchen and leafy outdoor dining area,” Baldwin said in her press release.
The combined 3-acre property is actually on two lots — one on 2.032 acres and the other with a lot size of 100 by 342 feet or 0.79 acres. According to tax records the taxes are $84,208. and $17,029 respectively.
Showings, by appointment only, will begin Friday, April 16. It will appear on Garden State Multiple Listing Service April 8 or 9.