Historic Structures

Dey Mansion, Preakness New Jersey

Date added: February 9, 2018 Categories: New Jersey House Mansion

Dirck Dey, the third generation of the family in America, settled in Preakness as early as 1707. He bought the land upon which this house stands on October 9, 1717. Dirck built the present house about 1740. However it is possible that he left the completion of the residence to his son Theunis. Dirck was a freeholder of Bergen County and a member of the New Jersey Assembly from 1748 - 1752.

It is thought that the east wing of the house was the part built by Dirck Dey. He gave this building to his son Colonel Theunis Dey who added the west wing with the 12 foot hall. This place has also been called "Bloomsburg Manor". There are several letters from Esther or Hester Dey, daughter of Colonel Dey, that were thus headed.

Tbeunis Dey was born on October 29, 1726. He succeeded his father as owner of the six hundred acre estate. he was a colonel of militia, a member of the New Jersey Assembly and of the New Jersey Provincial Council.

Washington entrusted the supervision of the territoy on the west size of the Hudson above New York Bay to Colonel Dey. It is natural that the intimate relation between them should develope into a friendship and that he should consider using the Dey house when in the vicinity.

The house was used by Washington during July and also during October and November of 1780, Washington was at the Dey House when Count Rochambeau, a commander of the French fleet, with 6,000 men on board arrived at Newport. The American army moved from Preatness to Paramus and then to Kings Ferry, where the Hudson was crossed.

Washington occupied, it is thought, the four rooms of the original part of the house. His office was in the southeast room. He used the room to the rear of this for dining, except when the official family was with him, then he used the large hall.