Date of Construction: 1900? Or 1957?
Original Owner: J. Kearsley Mitchell
Description of the Resource: Frederick Phillips converted the farmhouse on the property to the Red Rose Inn, another tribute to Penn who received a red rose as a yearly tradition from his tenants. It was only open for a short time but was always busy, becoming an exclusive tearoom for the Main Line and Philadelphia elite. Phillips had also planned it as a community for artists and craftsmen to work in their studios during the day and then to come together at night to dine, drink and socialize, and his wishes were carried out until the property fully became a private residence for the Mitchell family. During this time, the over-200-acre property was owned by H.S. Kerbaugh who founded his own estate at the southwest corner of the property. Later, a 194-acre parcel was purchased by financier J. Kearsley Mitchell and his wife, the daughter of one of Philadelphias richest men, Edward Stotesbury. It included the old Red Rose Inn, farm buildings, stables and studios. The Mitchells re-named the property “Red Rose Farm” with the “upper house” called “Red Rose Manor.” Terraced gardens were designed by well-known landscape architect Beatrix Farrand. They included formal gardens near the house which flowed out to the farmscape of old buildings and rolling pasture. Between 1900 and 1908 a large H-plan group of greenhouses and a large U-plan carriage house/stables were constructed to the northwest of Red Rose Farm. Conflicting research shows that the one-and-a-half story stone gable building at the front of the property was either an original c.1900-1908 Red Rose Farm building that was located on the site of the greenhouses and not documented in atlases (this was not uncommon for outbuildings on some atlases) or constructed in 1957. The building constructed in 1957 on this property may also be part of the current residence which has been added to over the years. Alterations and additions took place in 1950, 1976, 1980 and 1987. Either way, the greater part of what exists today is post-1961. (10/2012)
Street Classification: Minor
Name of Local Historic District: Not in a local district
Name of National Historic District: Not applicable
Reviewed By: Historical Commission
Inventory Index Number: VI037