George Ege Mansion, Robesonia Pennsylvania
The Ege Mansion is a large, two-story, stone house with fine Georgian details. The house has been enlarged by an open porch on the west side and a large kitchen and service wing on the east. The south (front) and north (or garden) facades have not been changed. The house is in excellent condition and is well maintained by the present owners.
The walls and foundation are of stone, the porch on the west side is frame. Two interior chimneys rise above the gable roof, marking the center of the rooms that flank the central hall.
The central door of the south front is a finely detailed Georgian type with the arch above the recessed entry projecting into the classic pediment. The windows are large double-hung sash with twelve panes in each sash. There are large stone lintels with projecting keystones. The shutters follow the traditional form with three-panel solid ones on the first floor and lowered ones on the second.
The house has a central-hall type plan with two rooms on either side. There is a spiral stair at the back of the central hall with a Palladian window between the first and second floors. Modern lighting and heating equipment have been installed, and some alterations made to the interior. However, the major portion of the woodwork remains intact.
The house faces south and is situated in a large tree-lined yard. A driveway circles in front of the house, and there is extensive landscaping on all sides.
George Ege, for whom this house was built, was born March 9, 1748. He was known during his time as the largest landowner in Berks County and was identified with the iron interests. Besides four large farms in Tulpehocken and Heidelberg Townships, he owned Charming Forge with 4,000 acres, Schuylkill Forge with 6,000 acres, and Reading Furnace with 6,000 acres.
This house was built near the site of the Reading Furnace which Ege had started in 1794. Operation of the Reading Furnace was suspended during the depression of 1824.. It later passed to Robeson and Brooke and became known as the Robesonia Furnace.
Ege was a patriot during the Revolution, and in 1783 was elected a member of the General Assembly of Pennsylvania. He was also one of the first Associate Judges of Berks County under the Constitution of 1790. He served as Associate Judge from 1791 to 1818, Ege died December 14, 1829, at his home at Charming Forge and was buried at Womelsdorf.