Originally known as the “Sanford Castle”, the castle was constructed in 1897 to serve as a summer home for noted photographer E. Starr Sanford. Sanford hired New York architect Earnest George Washington Dietrich (1857-1924) to design his castle. Dietrich brought Sanford’s romantic vision to life, creating a three-story fairy tale castle consisting of seventeen rooms, including nine bedrooms, kitchen, library and a billiards room. Accessory structures included a large carriage house, caretaker’s cottage, pump house, water tower and machine shop.
The exterior grounds were meticulously landscaped, including garden areas and a goldfish pond. An extensive veranda structure was designed to take full advantage of the panoramic views of Danbury afforded by the castle’s location at the summit of a commanding hill. The stone used for the exterior castle walls was quarried on site, along with the stone for the eight magnificent fireplaces that warmed the castle on Autumn and Winter evenings when the family was in residence. The interior featured magnificent imported wood flooring, paneling, trim and cabinetry. Fine light fixtures and chandeliers manufactured by Danbury artisans created the romantic ambience suitable for a fairy tale castle.