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423 Centre Street Owners Talk About Loving & Learning From Historic South Orange Home

Getting to talk to the current owners of the historic 423 Centre Street home was truly an honor. As the owners of such a stately and stunning Tudor Revival home, they have deep knowledge about the history as well as what it is like to live and care for a home as exceptional as this. It is an incredible honor to have our team at Pollock Properties Group take over the listing of their home.  We are so grateful to have this opportunity to serve them through this process! We hope you enjoy this chat!

Elisabeth: What made you fall in love with this house?

Amy: I loved the elegant curb appeal from the street, the windows and the great yard. Everybody always had plenty of space to play. There is quite a bit of space to play lacrosse or soccer or baseball or even if you wanted to play golf, you could hit a few golf balls in the backyard.

Elisabeth: What was it like raising a family here with such a large sized yard and a house with so many nooks and crannies to play hide and seek?

Brendan: I think all the kids had a strong bond with the house. Now that they’re all gone, they all remember growing up here fondly.  They read all seven Harry Potter books here. We had a lot of birthday parties here as well. The yard and house are perfect for that. We’ve had a lot of parties and spent nights entertaining here. We have had the Montrose Historical Society, school events, and even a dance troupe here.  

Elisabeth: What is it like living in such an historic home?

Amy: This house in particular affords a lot of privacy.  It is somewhat of a pastoral setting, though it is close to town.  The house is beautiful and that beauty is to be enjoyed. The proportions are a reminder of the time in which it was built, but also phenomenal to live in today. It really does have the feeling of home and we feel we just live here normally as in any other house in that regard.

Elisabeth: Amy, as an artist, what do you find most inspiring for you as you create?

Amy: The house really follows the light around. I move from room to room through the house. I sort of find myself living in the house just like my cat.  She sits in one particular chair in a room and then you will see her there as she’s picked another place. I do the same thing.

Elisabeth: What is it like entertaining in such as spectacular space as this?

Brendan: It’s a good house for entertaining and I think it was designed for that. We have had a lot of parties and spent nights entertaining here.  We have had the Montrose Historical Society, school events, and even a dance troupe perform here.  

Elisabeth: What is your favorite room in the house?

Amy: I would say for me it’s the dining room. I just love the paneling and the William Morris wallpaper.

The stunning William Morris Wallpaper in the “Fruit” pattern is infamous and a truly classic pattern that pairs perfectly with the scale of the moulding. Its foil background playfully bounces the light around in the elegant dining room.

Brendan: My favorite room would be most likely the third floor studio.

It’s very quiet. I just love to go up there either for meditation or for playing music and sometimes just for reading.

Elisabeth: What brings you the most joy about this house?

Amy: I love the staircase. It’s fun to be on it. It’s the one thing I’m going to miss the most when we leave. And you sort of just take it for granted when you are going up and down. They are really beautiful.

Brendan: Any room near the fireplaces. It was always on for our Christmas and Thanksgiving’s. When I think back at living here, it is the family time around the fireplaces.

Elisabeth: What do you know about the original owner and builder of 423 Centre, Mary Norsworthy Shepard?

Amy: She was born in 1815. She had her own money and enough to do with what she wanted. She ended up coming out here individually and doing her own projects. She felt that she needed to do something of value. So, she picked living here and became involved in the community and involved in building a community here. She is truly an important cornerstone of this neighborhood.

Mary Norsworthy Shepard (the original owner and builder of 423 Centre) was a pre-Gertrude Stein poet. She followed in the style of the Parnassians. Her influential work can be found in the collections of The New York Public Library. Read her poems in Harper’s Magazine here

Didn’t see our short film about this incredible home? Click here to view!

The Pollock Properties Group | Keller Williams Premier Properties
518 Millburn Avenue
Short Hills, NJ 07078
Direct: (973) 544-8484
Office: (973) 376-0033

About Pollock Properties Group:

Why we do what we do:

As a real estate team, we strive to put our clients’ interests first and let our actions facilitate and inspire generosity in our communities. At our staff meetings, our conversations are often about what is the most innovative way we can market our properties, negotiate on our clients’ behalf and impact lives for good. It’s how we’re wired and a reflection of the culture Pollock Properties Group has created.

Our motto: #CareServeGive

CARE for our clients and community. SERVE with the best service in the real estate industry. GIVE back to the client’s charity of choice and the communities we serve.

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