The Schoolhouse Museum
Historic homes tour offers glimpses of Bergen County’s past
Last updated: Saturday May 18, 2013, 11:45 PM
BY LESLIE BRODY
A stroll through historic homes in northwest Bergen County on Saturday offered a vivid glimpse into just how laborious, painful and perilous it could be to raise a family before the advent of electricity, antibiotics and other modern blessings.
At the Zabriskie House in Wyckoff, built around 1730, one wall bears portraits of two somber-looking children believed to have lived there around the time of the Civil War. In 1865, Corines Quackenbush died of illness at age 9 within a week of his 7-year-old sister, Catherine Ann.
At The Hermitage, a mid-18th-century stone house in Ho-Ho-Kus, a picture shows Killie Rosencrantz, who died at 35 of tuberculosis, leaving behind four children, including an infant.
And at the Van Allen House in Oakland, a cabinet holds a Civil War-era lancet used to “bleed” patients, in hopes that cutting a vein to let out bad blood would cure them.