Brooklyn, New York
August 28, 2004
Robert Tinker was a prominent Rockford industrialist, philanthropist and artist. While taking a 9-month tour around the world in 1862 he was deeply impressed with Swiss chalets and architecture. He decided to create his own cottage to bring some notoriety to Rockford. In 1865 he started work on his 20-room cottage on a limestone bluff and was completed in 1870. The home melds stone and wood to create flowing architecture with beautiful woodwork and eaves and painted murals.
After his and his wife's death, the cottage was donated to the city. There were various debates regarding its future. Some wanted it torn down, some wanted it moved. Dedicated citizens (with then Mayor C. Henry Bloom's support) took charge and opened the doors to a new museum in 1943.
The cottage contains the Tinker family's original furnishings, artwork and household belongings and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
I really enjoyed this place. I think its really fun and curious to walk around someone's home that's been left in tact for over 60 years. It's a rather elegant house and there's a lot of little things inside it - Tinker was a curious man. There's a revolving bookcase that hides secret tunnels. I also love the Tinker library that's in the shape of an octagon, with a walnut spiral staircase and 7 types of wood.
Tuesday - Sunday 1, 2, and 3 p.m.
Kids are free in December
Kids 17 and under: $1.00
From journal Highlights from My Childhood Town