Oechsner's Dream Island (a.k.a the Williamsville Castle or Cambria Castle) is located on a two acre island in Ellicott Creek. The limestone structures were built by hand by Ignatz Oechsner between 1917 and 1945 in homage to his Bavarian homeland. Oechsner also created extensive gardens, paths, stone walls, steps, art, fountains, bridges and even a moat. After a fire destroyed the inside in 1956, the castle was refurnished to accommodate the new family that was living there at the time. In the many years since the island has fallen into disrepair, with many of Oechsner's original structures beginning to become overgrown and fail.
Due to the overwhelming need to preserve the castle grounds, the island and the buildings on it are being restored to match its original purpose of being a sanctuary. The gardens are being replanted with native plants and the stone structures are being restored to match this original vision of Ignatz Oechsner. This site is extremely historically significant to the Village of Williamsville and the renovation of the castle grounds is being undertaken with the upmost care. Progress can be followed from the Restoration Blog where significant
achievements and undertakings will be documented. Check the FAQs to learn more about what you can do to aid in the restoration process.
How can I visit the island?Unfortunately, the island is not currently open to the public due to ongoing restoration efforts
I am a Filmer/Photographer interested in the castle, can I come take pictures/film there?"Although we appreciate your interest, outside filmers or photographers are not allowed to film or take pictures on the island at this time.
Is there a place I can view the island?The only places to view the island currently are on public roads, there are clearings on Oakgrove Drive to view the castle gatehouse that are accesible to the public, other places on the island cannot currently be seen from public land
I am interested in the ecological restoration on the island, how can I learn more?"If you are interested in the restoration efforts, please visit the Restoration Blog, lizardtaildesign.com, or contact firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more
Will the island ever be open to the public?While there is no set date, during late stages of the restoration and after the renovations are complete, our goal is to utilize the island as a resource for community education in the future.