Intriguing Brick Gate House on Main Line of Philadelphia-Circa 1902

I drive by this head-turning, well-preserved brick gate house regularly and I have always wondered about the history of this Dutch-inspired building.

It’s obvious the main estate is long gone. A modern church is set back from the road not far from the gate house, which is located just a few feet off the road.

The gate house was one of several buildings on a 100-acre estate in Wayne, PA.  Roberts and Minnie LeBoutillier built a brick mansion called Panhurst in 1902. It featured a 17th century Dutch-style design with cement decorations including carved faces and ornate spires at the tops of gables.

Like many of the estates during the turn of the 20th century, it was also a working farm. The dairy cows supplied bottled milk to Wayne residents and the greenhouses were exclusively used for the production of grapes.

Along with the gate house, there was a guest house constructed in the same manner and shelters for farm animals. The estate also had elaborate blooming Japanese gardens, a pond, an amphitheater and a small Japanese-style pagoda.

The LeBoutillier’s son, Henry, and his wife, Dorothy, took over estate ownership in the early 1930s. They sold their home-grown vegetables at a produce stand down the road and delivered vegetables to nearby businesses via truck and bicycle.

So what happened to the estate? Unfortunately, a fire destroyed the mansion in the 1960s. The farm property was sold in 1975. Fortunately, the gate house survived.

 

7 thoughts on “Intriguing Brick Gate House on Main Line of Philadelphia-Circa 1902

  1. I love your posts about the history of houses in your neighborhood and about the historical landmarks in your state. Of course I love your blog in general but also like your book recommendations! Thanks!

  2. I as well truly enjoy the time you take to bring a piece of history into your blogs. I live in CA and little is left of history (mostly wood frame construction) due to earthquakes, fires or abandonment. However, our wine estates are marvelous with very imposing masonry buildings and very visible with low vegetation of extraordinary beauty that surrounds them.

    Keep sharing!

  3. What a shame it was lost.

    But at least the gate house survives.

    Looks like it might even be inhabited. How lucky those people are.

    1. Thank you, Joan! I found the same link yesterday in my search to find facts out about the property. I embedded the link in the post (the text is highlighted green to click through). Wow! You must have heard some really neat stories about the estate while growing up. 🙂

  4. I have some pictures, but not many stories. I think you can still find the milk bottles, occasionally. My Grandfather built the house across from the house in the late 20’s, early 30’s, Havelet. They lived there through the early 60’s. 😊

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