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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Morristown in Morris County, New Jersey — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Moses Estey House

Birthplace of the Telegraph

 

—Historic Speedwell —

 
Moses Estey House Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, July 5, 2010
1. Moses Estey House Marker
Inscription. Captain Moses Estey, a veteran of the American Revolution, moved to Morristown in 1783. A successful merchant and manufacturer, he purchased a home on a knoll overlooking the Whippany River at the corner of Water and Spring Streets. When the house was destroyed by fire in 1786, Estey replaced it with a grand Georgian style house that occupied the site until it was moved to Historic Speedwell in 1969.

A fine example of 18th century American architecture, the Moses Estey House rivaled the Ford Mansion (Washington’s Morristown headquarters 1770-1780) in size and styling. The two-and-a-half story building has eight large rooms, each with its own fireplace. Massive chimney bases visible at each end of the building, rise to the attic where they join to form a single chimney stack. The front porch addition has been removed to reveal the original doorway with decorative molding and sidelight windows.

NOTE:     Gen. Washington actually made his headquarters in the Ford Mansion during the winter of 1779-1780, not 1770-1780 as indicated on the marker.

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In the 1960’s a Morristown redevelopment project called for the construction of a three building complex to be called Headquarters Plaza on the block between Speedwell Avenue and Spring Street. Water Street would be realigned, and a section
Marker at Historic Speedwell image. Click for full size.
By Bill Coughlin, July 5, 2010
2. Marker at Historic Speedwell
of the oldest part of the town including a pond, mill site and many historic buildings were slated for demolition (see map below). The town donated the Estey House, which stood on the corner of Spring and Water Streets from 1786 to 1969, to Historic Speedwell. Federal funding was provided to move the building one mile to the site, and set it on a new foundation. The L’Hommedieu House, located just to your left, also originally stood on Spring Street, across from the Estey House.
 
Location. 40° 48.878′ N, 74° 28.8′ W. Marker is in Morristown, New Jersey, in Morris County. Marker can be reached from Speedwell Avenue (U.S. 202), on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is located at Historic Speedwell. Marker is at or near this postal address: 333 Speedwell Avenue, Morristown NJ 07960, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. L’Hommedieu House (a few steps from this marker); The Granary (within shouting distance of this marker); The Homestead Farm (within shouting distance of this marker); Water Power at Speedwell (within shouting distance of this marker); 1849 Carriage House (within shouting distance of this marker); Wheel House (within shouting distance of this marker); Ford Cottage (within shouting distance of this marker); Homestead Carriage House (within shouting distance of this marker). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Morristown.
 
More about this marker. The bottom left of the marker contains the painting “View of Morristown From the Hill Behind the First Presbyterian Church, By Edward Kranich, c. 1855, courtesy of Morristown National Historical Park.” The Moses Estey House and L’Hommedieu House are identified in the picture. Next to this is a map of Historic Speedwell. Also on the marker are a portrait of Moses Estey (1752 - 1836) and a sketch of the front of the Estey House. The sidebar on the marker’s right shows several photos of the Moses Estey House. One has a caption of “Except for the addition of a front porch, the Estey House retained much of its classic styling when it was photographed by the Historic American Buildings Survey in the 1930’s.” Another shows the house in the process of being moved and has the caption “In 1969 the house was prepared for the move to Historic Speedwell.” Below this is a map of downtown Morristown showing the original locations of the Moses Estey House and L’Hommedieu House.
 
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related to this marker. Take a tour of the markers found at Historic Speedwell.
 
Also see . . .  Historic Speedwell - "Birthplace of the Telegraph". (Submitted on July 11, 2010, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.)
 
Categories. Notable Buildings
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on July 11, 2010, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 541 times since then and 15 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on July 11, 2010, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.
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