Strawberries & Classic Cars at the Onderdonk House

Onderdonk House Ridgewood QueensWe are lucky to live just a few blocks away from the oldest Dutch colonial stone house in New York City – the Vander Ende-Onderdonk House, at 1820 Flushing Avenue. (Our home, built in 1908, actually sits on land that was once part of the Onderdonk farm.)

View from from Troutman St. onto the Onderdonk HouseIt’s an incredible little spot – made even more so by the juxtaposition of an early 18th century building next to the gritty backdrop of factories and warehouses that line Flushing.

Onderdonk House Flushing Avenue If you can ignore the sounds of traffic whizzing by, you would think you had stepped right back into the 1700’s.

Onderdonk House Strawberry and Vintage Car Festival Today, the Greater Ridgewood Historical Society, which owns and operates the house, hosted a Strawberry Shortcake and Vintage Car Festival. Not an obvious combo, but it was a lot of fun (at least, for me, the strawberry part.)

Onderdonk House GardensWhile my boyfriend looked at the autos, I wandered into the gardens that border the house.

Onderdonk House Chicken CoopThe Chicken Coop

Onderdonk House Bird's NestA bird’s nest.

Arbitration Rock Arbitration Rock – the stone that was used to mark the Brooklyn/Queens border in 1769, ending a bitter boundary dispute between the townships of Bushwick and Newtown that extended back to the 1600’s.  (Though whether this rock is actually the REAL “Arbitration Rock” is also a matter of debate.)

Onderdonk House Gardens
More gardens…

Onderdonk House Fence
After the last Onderdonk moved out in the late 1800’s and the adjacent farmland was sold off to developers, the house was purchased by Louise Gmelin, who used the remaining property for a number of different businesses, one of which was a scrap glass repository. To this day, remnants of glass bottles and discarded glass refuse from an old Tiffany Lamp factory in Corona still litter the grounds.

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