Oldest Home in West Chester Remains a Symbol of History Throughout Region


the dower house
Image via Zillow.
The Dower House, the first home built in West Chester, has been a symbol of the region’s history through the decades.

The Dower House, located at the Goshen Road intersection, is the oldest, continuously occupied home in West Chester, writes Malcolm Johnstone for County Lines Magazine

Early records tell us that John and Mary Wall bought 150 acres of land in 1712, in what’s now West Chester Borough. Some historians believe that Dower House was built in 1715, while others claim it was built in 1721. Regardless, it was at the center of a budding community.  

The Dower House provided a strong model for future expansion and renovation. In the 1920s, Joseph and Dorothy Hergesheimer purchased the home, along with their friend and famous architect R. Brognard Okie. The pair went on to modernize the home to make it more livable while keeping the beautiful and historic charm of the original architecture. 

The current owners, Tait and Lisa Norden, purchased it seven years ago. They too have made renovations to the house, working with Archer & Buchanan Architecture in West Chester and Rittenhouse Builders in Coatesville. Historical preservation throughout these renovations is a number one for the Nordens.  

The Dower House has continued to be a proud symbol of West Chester’s history through the decades. 

Read more about the history of the Dower House in West Chester at County Lines Magazine


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