Wednesday, April 26, 2017

A Sign of Past Times

After last night's long Historic Preservation Commission meeting, I went off on a tangent regarding a sign I saw on the Titsworth-Sutphen House, the pre-Civil War structure on the PNC parking lot off West Second Street. In public comment during the hearing on the bank's plans to subdivide the parking lot, I asked about disposition of the sign. At first the bank people drew a blank, but the project manager called up an image on his smartphone and saw it.

Here's how it looked before apparently being vandalized. I looked online for Brunson S. McCutchen and found out his sister Margaret had donated her residence in North Plainfield to be a home for the elderly. Brunson donated $10,000 toward the cause, a large amount in those days. See a history of "The McCutchen." 

Brunson S. McCutchen was educated at Princeton University and lived in Princeton. He was an engineer and held several patents, one for a washing machine. His office at 209 West Front Street was for his work as an investment dealer, according to a 1967 city directory.
Sign is loose, door boarded up.
Can this sign be saved?

A fragment from the 1967 city directory

 FAMILY INVESTORS COMPANY, 266 North av cor Martine (Fanwood), Tel 322-1800 Hammond Wm J 209 W 2d Investors Diversified Services Inc 120 W 7th McCutchen Brunson S 209 W 2d Mergott Rappa & Co Inc 240 W Front

(I will be doing a blog post later on the meeting, which HPC members called the longest one ever. )



  1. His house in North Plainfield is now a Yeshiva.

    1. It was a wonderful nursing home/assisted living facility.

  2. "Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it"

    George Santayana (16 December 1863 in Madrid, Spain – 26 September 1952 in Rome, Italy) was a philosopher, essayist, poet and novelist.