History & Timeline

1863
Approximately 30 acres of land purchased by LeGrand Lockwood

The Mansion in 1915Click the image for a slideshow of historic images of the Lockwood-Mathews Mansion


1864
Construction of Elm Park Estate begins; architect: Detlef Lienau

1868
The Lockwood Family moves into Mansion

1869
Black Friday: property mortgaged, garden staff relinquished

1871
Mansion and outbuildings completed

1872
Death of LeGrand Lockwood (February 24, New York City)
Auction of painting collection (April)

1873
Property put up for sale
Auction of furniture (April)

1874
Foreclosure by Lake Shore and Michigan Railroad (December)

1876
Property purchased by Charles D. Mathews (April)
Mathews Family moves into Mansion (July)

1879
Death of Charles D. Mathews (May 23, Norwalk)

1909
Death of Lillie Mathews Martin (June 24, Norwalk)

1934
Death of Charles T. Mathews (January 11, New York City)

1938
Death of Florence Mathews (August 16, Norwalk)

1939
Mathews Estate leased to City of Norwalk as a public park

1941
Property purchased by City of Norwalk for $170,000
Used as emergency war-time offices
Storage of heavy equipment

1944
Hastily called auction of Mansion furnishings by City of Norwalk (October)

1950
Building closed to public

1954
Estate barn demolished

1955
State of Connecticut purchases 8 acres of Estate for construction of I-95

1958
Police Court Building built on Estate; replacing what had remained of formal rock gardens, bowling green and ice house

1961
City of Norwalk announces plans to demolish Mansion
Common Interest Group (CIG) formed

1962
Estate blacksmith's shop demolished; greenhouse destroyed

1963
Supreme Court of Errors upholds decision to prohibit demolition (Baker v. City of Norwalk, December)

1964
Junior League of Stamford/Norwalk enters 30-year lease of Mansion

1966
Lockwood-Mathews Mansion Museum of Norwalk, Inc. formed
Fundraising & Restoration begins

1967
Mansion permanently opened to the public

1971
Designated National Historic Landmark

1981
City of Norwalk grants 75-year lease to Mansion Corporation