Standing atop the hill where South Middlebush and Blackwells Mills Roads meet, with a spectacular view of the Franklin countryside, fields and woods, of the Six Mile Run Valley, the sunsets may have been one reason Peter Van Liew settled on this site back in the 1700s, and why Joseph Suydam later built part of the house that is seen today. The newest and largest portion of the house was built in 1875. Although the most recent long-term owner of the house was named French, the house has been named after its two early owners, the Van Liews and the Suydams. The ornate woodworking on the porch and walls clearly demonstrates a perfect example of the architecture of a 19th-century Victorian farmhouse.
On September 27, 1988, the State of New Jersey sold the house to Franklin Township for $100. The house and property have been leased to the Meadows Foundation, which has restored the house exterior, interior, and barn.