Located at 22 Crestmont Road, Kip’s Castle Park (originally known as “Kypsburg”) was constructed between 1902-1905 by Frederic Ellsworth Kip and his wife, Charlotte Bishop Williams Kip and is now a highlight of the Essex County Park System.
Frederic was a wealthy textile inventor and industrialist who also published several books related to United States tariff laws. Charlotte is credited for the design of the “Kypsburg” building and grounds, cultivating a renowned octagonal rose garden in the southwest corner of the property. After Charlotte’s passing in 1926, the estate was sold and went through several owners.
Currently, the 9,000 square-foot mansion replicates a medieval Norman castle. The interior of the castle consists of 30 distinguished rooms of varying shapes, which include vaulted ceilings and six ornate fireplaces. In addition, a 6,000 square-foot carriage house is also located on the property.
The mansion and carriage house are unique and splendid examples of the romantic, medieval-revival. The stone gates, retaining walls, serpentine drives, and gardens add to the composition, uniting it with the rugged site while allowing the natural character of the ridge to prevail. The castle is constructed of local trap rock trimmed with sandstone. Its huge corner turrets and walls are pierced with arches and deep-set windows. A large stone veranda, the roof of which is supported by round sandstone pillars, surrounds the front of the building. The massive, southeast turret can be seen from miles around. The interior woodwork of the castle is of old English quarter-sawn oak. The front hallway contains stained glass windows and a huge stone fireplace. The master bedroom suite on the second floor has eight large windows which face the New York City skyline.