Updated: Jul 26, 2020
The quintessentially ornate Victorian-era Krueger-Scott Mansion, rising above Newark NJ on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard is a long-neglected remnant of the city’s powerful industrial era.
The 40 room mansion was built in 1888 by Gottfried Krueger (1837–1926), founder of Newark's Gottfried Krueger Brewing Company and owner of several other breweries. The construction cost at the time was $250,000. The mansion was sold to the Valley of Newark Scottish Rite Freemasons in 1926 for $100,000. A 700-seat auditorium was added to the mansion to accommodate for various meetings. The mansion was purchased in 1958 by Louise Scott for $85,000. Scott operated a beauty school out of the first floor of the mansion while keeping the upper levels as her private residence. The mansion was added to the New Jersey Register of Historic Places and the National Register of Historic places in 1972.
Original grand interior
Scott died in 1982 and ownership of the mansion passed to the city of Newark. In 1991, the New Jersey Historic Trust funded a bond for $625,812 to stabilize the exterior of the building. The city of Newark matched that amount, and over the years devoted more than $4 million to turning the home into a center focusing on the black contribution to Newark's development. The federal government contributed an additional $1.5 million., but after a decade of work, plans to turn the house into an African-American cultural center were frozen by the city's Municipal Council, which refused to allocate any more money for the project
Roof and brickwork after restoration
The interior, however, still suffers major neglect
Dome, originally stained glass filled, above the grand staircase. The original glass dome top can be seen in the original exterior photo above
In 2017 A redevelopment strategy was announced for the Krueger-Scott Mansion. Seaview Development is planning rehabilitate the mansion “in a historically respectful and accurate manner,…and a new neighborhood, called a ‘Makerhood,’ would be constructed behind the building that would feature an urban farm, a plaza, 16 affordable apartments, 50 market-rate apartments, 36 parking spaces, and 16 to 20 shops, including restaurants, a dining facility possibly created in partnership with the Rutgers Food Innovation Center, artist spaces, and possibly a pub called Krueger NanoBrew. This community would include a five-story building, a seven-story building, and a ten-story building.”
As of July 2020, work has started according to Makerhoods Instagram account. Follow along on their page!
Rendering of future site via Makerhoods