River Ridge is now privately owned by a religious group. We contacted them and they kindly spent an afternoon showing us around the impressive main house. The main house, of course, wasn't where Bob's grandfather grew up. He lived with his family in a small stone house on the property.
This, picture doesn't do the house justice. My lens wasn't nearly wide enough to capture the entire house. This website has fabulous pictures and a complete history of River Ridge.
The entire house was built in just nine months by hundreds of Italian stone masons. It is remarkably solid even today.
Joseph Sibley was an incredibly generous man, and the farm, by all accounts, was a wonderful place to group up. Many families lived and worked on the farm. Each Christmas, Sibley gave each child living on the farm a gift. During the Great Depression, he offered workers' families steep discounts on food and allowed them to grow their own plots of vegetables, thus softening the blow of the Depression to these families.
I'll save the interior shots for another post.