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[graphic header] A National Register of Historic Places Travel Itinerary Delaware and Lehigh National Heritage Corridor
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[graphic] Asa Packer Mansion


[photo] Exterior and Interior photographs of the mansion
Photographs by Sue Pridemore and the Asa Packer Mansion Museum

[photo]
Portrait of Asa Packer
Photograph courtesy of the Asa Packer Mansion Museum

The Asa Packer Mansion, built in 1860, sits high above the town of Jim Thorpe. The mansion was the home of Asa Packer (1805-1879), a prominent Pennsylvania industrialist, philanthropist and public servant, who began his career making canal boats. Asa Packer came to town as an apprentice boatbuilder. He died 57 years later as a millionaire, after founding boatyards, construction and mining companies, the Lehigh Valley Railroad, and Lehigh University. His three-story Victorian Italianate building has a center hall plan, though at each end of the house is a one-room extension with a bowed end. Several stylistic details ornament mark the exterior, including an Italianate roof and elaborate wooden brackets, Gothic window arches, and Gothic gingerbread trefoil motifs trimming the verandah. Interior detailing and furnishings reflect the wealth and influence of the owners. The Main Hallway features fine woodcarvings by European artisans. The Gothic motif is used throughout, and is particularly dramatic in the woodcarvings in the Main Hall and stairs and the bracketed ceiling and stained-glass windows in the dining room. The Asa Packer Mansion has been preserved, complete with original furnishings, and is open to the public.

Asa Packer built another Victorian mansion next to his own home as a Lehigh Valley Railroad company owned home. This home was later lived in by his railroad enginer son, Harry Packer, and the Harry Packer Mansion is now used as an inn. Following the death of his daughter, Mary Packer Cummings in 1912, the Asa Packer Mansion and furnishings were given to the borough of Mauch Chunk. The Packer family lived in the home from 1861-1912. In 1985 the Asa Packer Mansion was designated a National Historic Landmark. The Asa Packer Mansion is open to the public.

The Asa Packer Mansion Museum is located at 30 Elk St., in Jim Thorpe, and is open weekends during April, May, November and the first 3 weekends in December. The Mansion is open 7 days a week from Memorial Day to October 31, 11:00am to 4:15pm. For group reservations, please call 570-325-3229, or visit www.asapackermansionmuseum.com.


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