These frail old homes, forgotten in the forest, are all that remains of the Rutherfurd Stuyvesant estate in Allumuchy, NJ. Today the land is part of Allamuchy Mountain State Park, but long before it was parkland the vast tract belonging to one of the country’s oldest and wealthiest families. The Rutherurd-Stuyvesants were direct descendants of Peter Stuyvesant, or more accurately, Pieter or Petrus Stuyvesant (1592-1672), who was the last Dutch colonial Director-General of New Netherland, the Dutch territory between the Delaware Bay and the Connecticut River (including what is now New Jersey) until it was ceded provisionally to the English in 1664.
Rutherford Stuyvesant expanded the family’s New Jersey estate, called Tranquility Farms, to include 5,000 acres of land, including a 1,000 acre private game preserve. At the center of the operation was a 65-room mansion, which burned to the ground in 1959. In the 1960s land was purchased by the state for highway construction, and later the expansion of Allamuchy State Park. Tranquility Farm’s remaining structures have been slowly settling into the wilderness ever since.
As with most places that become abandoned; once left alone, these Rutherfurd Stuyvesant Estate houses can become something else entirely. Gone are the pristine lawns and manicured pathways; replaced with tall grass, weeds, and thorns. The bright washes of the house’s exterior, faded, stained, and ensnared by the growth of the forest.
For well over a decade now Rutherfurd Stuyvesant property has become a home of sorts for an unknown person we have come to call the “Profane Poet”. This is not just any form of graffiti however, what is found here would better be described as various forms of madness, and it is heavily poured upon the walls, ceilings, floors, and literally everywhere in between. Vulgar writings, primarily directed at a few choice people, namely Palmer and a Mark. Adding further to the eeriness of the unhinged writing is the fact that the poet returns periodically to write over any text that has faded with age. This would suggest that not only is the person behind these writings very angry, but also obsessive to a severe degree about keeping his or her messages legible.