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- Recollections of Our Past
- Meadow Brook
1416 State Road
Phoenixville, PA 19460
Meadow Brook is a Class I Historic Resource.
Per Schuylkill Township Zoning Ordinance:
- A Class I Historic Resource in Schuylkill Township includes buildings or structures or districts, listed in or determined eligible to the National Register of Historic Places.
At the time of the Revolutionary War, the farmhouse on the former Meadow Brook Golf Club was occupied by the family of Moses Coates, Jr. He lived on this 350-acre farm with his wife the former Elizabeth Avery Evans and their eight children plus two children from his first marriage to Priscilla Hutchinson. It is assumed that Moses Jr. built the house soon after his father Moses partitioned the property in 1754. Coates Sr. was one of the first settlers in the Manavon Tract, now known as Phoenixville and Schuylkill Township. His name first appears in the tax rolls in 1729 in Charlestown Township of which this land was a part until 1826. The land was passed down through the Coates family until 1867 when Henry Dyer bought it. It was later sold to Hettie Hallowell and has been passed on to other family members from 1896 until the present time.
Through the Revolution, Meadow Brook Farm was visited by both the British and American armies. When the British and Hessians passed through the area the Coates house was raided of potatoes, fowl, hay, and all that could be put to use including a flock of geese.
During the encampment of the Continental Army at Valley Forge, Colonels Davis and Ballard and Generals Gates and Mifflin stayed at the Coates home. General Benedict Arnold was also a resident for a brief time before moving to Philadelphia as military commander for the city. To celebrate his appointment he held a feast in the cherry grove next to the farmhouse with all the important officers of the army. General George Washington chose to stay at Valley Forge where his men were suffering. Noted artist Charles Willson Peale came to the Coates house and painted a miniature portrait of Arnold.
The entire Coates family has been commended for their service during the fight for freedom by caring for the wounded and sick, providing provisions for the needy at Valley Forge, plus free hospitality for Washington’s officers.
This property had been continuously farmed until 1928 when it was sold to Theodore and Leon Campbell. After 1928, a miniature golf course, chip, and putt course, and full-size nine-hole golf course were built on the fifty remaining acres after lots had been sold for residences. The property remains in the Campbell family who continued the golf course.
Early Colonial Architecture
The core of this early colonial farmhouse at the left or west side was built about 1754 with construction being stone covered with plaster resulting in a thickness of 18 inches. It consisted of a rectangular eight-room building with two rooms side by side: in the basement, the first floor, the second floor, and the attic. The basement level at the rear is at ground level. The first stone addition was added to the east wall with a second frame addition in 1896 added to the north wall.
The appearance today is of a nine-bay façade with a rhythmical placing of window-door-window. The second floor repeats the pattern with nine windows. The three recessed front doors are capped with transoms, two of which hold Victorian ruby glass etched in a tulip design. Cupboards flank all the fireplaces with raised panel doors. Three fireplaces have 19th-century mantels with shells and reeding. The original roof was tin. In 1930 a golf shop was added to the west end of the house.
Close to the house is a spring house of fieldstone construction covered with plaster.