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Glen Afton in the 1920's

1926

Mr. Teunon was a very active real estate developer during the early 20th century. His developments include Glen Afton, pictured below, and earlier the development of Hamilton Township's Lakeside Park in 1912-13.

1931

 

1977

An Architectural History of Glen Afton

 

Glen Afton: a development of unusual features...or so was titled the booklet prepared in 1926 by developer Charles G. Teunon to introduce this new community touted by the Trenton Times that year as "the latest addition to Trenton's high class residential sections…"

 

At the city's farthest north western reaches, between the river and canal, beyond which stretch the velvet links of Trenton Country Club, lies a neighborhood residents have likened to "Brigadoon", referencing the magical Scottish village of musical lore that appears for one day every 100 years. Glen Afton does in fact seem conceived as an idyllic village, laced with narrow gently winding streets reminiscent of rural cow paths, and complete with Scottish themed names such as Argyle, Abernethy, and Aberfeldy. Yet however pastoral, this carefully planned new development would contain all the conveniences of modern-day city living, including ease of access to public transportation, the curb-lined side-walked streets with extra wide margins that are still a unique feature, in addition to all the social and recreational facilities awaiting at the County Club just across the canal.

 

Of the over 200 houses in Glen Afton, most were built prior to the Second World War and fall mainly into the categories of Tudor or Colonial Revival, along with the occasional "Tudor Composite”- a blend of the two styles featuring Tudor forms such as large centrally located chimneys on prominent front end gables that are finished in colonial style clapboard or shingle. In the 1920's and 1930's Tudors were built in every scale and style from cottage to castle and adorned with stone, brick, and stucco with half-timbered and masonry detailing. 

 

While these fanciful creations tend to steal the show, they make up little more than a quarter of the housing stock while that most popular of American domestic architectural styles, the Colonial Revival, makes up over half. Ranging from stone and red brick Georgians, to shingled Dutch Colonials, and most prevalent, the Garrison Revivals identifiable by protruding second stories usually over a masonry first floor, alluding to Early American semi-fortified dwellings. The postwar era would see the end of construction for the costly and elaborate Tudors, while Colonials including Cape Cods would continue to be built alongside the mid-century ranchers and split-levels that would eventually come to dominate the 20th century American suburban landscape. 

 

Today "The Glen" remains one of the most desirable neighborhoods in the Capital City. The residents themselves are truly the neighborhoods greatest asset and are deservedly proud of the Glen Afton Community Association, one of the city’s oldest civic associations, and still an active presence in the community. We thank you for visiting our own private Brigadoon and hope you enjoyed your time in this "development of unusual features".