|Original drawings for the two-story garage at 920 Cedar Brook Road. The door in the side elevation (top right, first row) opens into the back yard. Image reprinted courtesy of the Local History Collection of the Plainfield Public Library, NJ.|
|Detail of main garage doors. Note hinged panel at left, which is accessed by a small inset lock. Image reprinted courtesy of the Local History Collection of the Plainfield Public Library, NJ.|
Inside, the garage was just as much of an adventure. An enclosed staircase at the rear led up to the second floor, where a wood-paneled room was apparently used by the chauffeur during the day (see second floor detail of "Man's Room," below). A huge double window opened onto the garage space below, and the room itself was large enough for perhaps a bed, chairs and table. There is also a built-in closet, and as you can see from the chimney, the garage was once heated.
|Second floor garage detail. Image reprinted courtesy of the Local History Collection of the Plainfield Public Library, NJ.|
|Side porch entrance, April 2012.|
Sadly, the old garage has fallen on hard times. Garages from the early part of the 20th century era are fragile structures, and finding an original one still standing is somewhat miraculous, according to the research I've done. So while this one will need to be rebuilt, the good news is that because the blueprints exist, it can be restored faithfully. In addition, I suspect that many of the original materials inside - paneling, interior and exterior windows, steps and doors - can be salvaged and repurposed.
With a little thought and effort, I believe this little gem of automotive architectural history, designed with just as much care and attention by Messrs. Marsh and Gette as the main house itself, can be successfully recreated and shine again.