History of Union County, New Jersey

Prepared by a number of writers, and deriving its information from various sources, the History of Union County, with its many excellencies as well as defects, is now submitted to the reader for his criticism. The compilation covers a period of more than a century and a half, and in securing the facts, recourse has been had to divers authorities. These have been numerous, including various histories and historical collections, and implying an almost endless array of papers and documents, — public, private, social and ecclesiastical. That so much matter could be gathered from so many original sources and then sifted and assimilated for the production of one single volume without incurring a modicum of errors and inaccuracies, would be too much to expect of any corps of writers, no matter how able they might be as statisticians or skilled as compilers of such works. It is, nevertheless, believed that no in- accuracies of a serious nature can be found to impair the historical value of the book, and it is also further believed that the results of our work will supply the exigent demand which called forth the efforts of the publishers and the honored and able editor, Judge Frederick W. Ricord, whose death occurred shortly after the completion of the material for the history.

Due credit has in most instances been given for the borrowed matter. The following authorities, however, should be mentioned in particular: Dr. Hatfield's History of Elizabeth has been freely used, and has furnished much material, both for the annals of Elizabeth and for those of the county at large. Dr. Murray's Notes on Elizabeth have also been unsparingly utilized, as being exceptionally valuable. Besides this, extracts from other volumes, considered authoritative, have been made, with an eye ever single to the historical value of the matter used. Various collections have been made in this way from notes compiled by C.A. Leveridge, some years since, for the History of Union and Middlesex Counties; and from a valuable history of Elizabeth by the Journal Printing House. We are are also indebted to the generosity of this company for many views, which they have kindly furnished us to illustrate the chapters pertaining to Elizabeth. We also pay acknowledgment to the Daily Deader, of Elizabeth, for much material bearing upon the manufacturing history of that city; and also to other publications of the county that have kindly come to our aid in various ways.


Table of Contents

Indian History — Hostility Against the Dutch — Extinguishment of Claims to Lands in New Jersey I

Discovery of Achter Kol, and Attempts to Colonize by the Dutch 4

The English Settlement at Elizabeth Town 7

Government of Philip Carteret 10

The Township of Elizabeth Town — When Organized — Lost Records — Originally Part of Essex County — Township Officials — Subdivisions of the Township 15

Borough of Elizabeth Town — When Incorporated — Charter — Name — First Officers Chosen — "Great Revival" — Negro Con- spiracy — Proceedings of the Borough — Court House of the Borough 19

War of the Revolution — The Spirit Manifested by the People of Elizabeth — Provincial Convention — County Committee — Meeting of Freeholders of the Town — Denunciation of Certain Pamphlets — Action Against Inhabitants of Staten Island 22

War of the Revolution, Continued — Battle of Lexington — Elizabeth Town Rises to Arms — Aaron Burr — Ammunition — Capture of the "Blue Mountain Valley" — New Jersey Militia — British Forces in New York — General Livingston Chosen Governor — Campaign Transferred to New Jersey 25

Union County in the War of the Revolution — Military Engagements — Discouraging Outlook for Patriots — Battle of Elizabeth Town — Death of Mrs. Caldwell — The Fighting Chaplain Killed — Execution of Morgan 32

Elizabeth Town's Glorious Record — The Boudinot House — Liberty Hall — The General Scott House — Hon. Abraham Clark — General Elias Dayton — Hon. Jonathan Dayton — Governor Aaron Ogden — Colonel Francis Barber 38

Union County in the War of the Rebellion — Regiments Enlisted — General Taylor's Official Report — Fourteenth Regiment 46

Societies, Colonial and Revolutionary — Free Masonry — Sons of the American Revolution — Daughters of the American Revolution — National Society of the Colonial Dames of America — Free Masonry in Union County — Royal Arch Masons — Knights Templar 53

Representative Physicians of Union County 62

History of the Courts of Union County 149

Representative Lawyers of Union County 154

Former French Residents of Elizabeth 200

The City of Elizabeth - Postal Facilities — Fire Department — Police. Department— Public Works and Charitable Institutions — Rail- road Facilities — New York and New Jersey Telephone Company — Library Hall and Elizabeth Public Library and Reading Room — Educational Advantages — Lansley Business College — Private Schools of the Past — The Massie School — Mr. Fay's School— Mr. Foote's School— The Pingry School— St. Joseph's Academy — Parochial Schools — Financial and Statistical — Suburban Electric Company — Elizabethtown Water Company — Elizabethtown Gas Light Company — Manufacturing — Singer Manufacturing Company — Brooklyn and New York Railway - Supply Company — Ball & Wood Company — S. L. Moore & Sons Company — Henry R. Worthington — Elizabeth Ice Company — Bowker Fertilizer Company — Cooke Brothers — Eugene Munsell & Company — Crescent Ship Yards — New Jersey Dry Dock and Transportation Company — Sanford Clark Company — Miscellaneous Enterprises — Elizabeth Pottery Works — American Gas Furnace Company — Graff & Company — A. Heidritter & Sons — Borne-Scrymser Company 205

The Church History of Elizabeth — Societies Individually Considered 233

The City of Elizabeth, Continued — Newspapers, Hospitals, Asylums, etc. — Elizabeth Daily Journal — Elizabeth Daily Leader — Elizabeth General Hospital and Dispensary — Alexian Brothers' Hospital — Orphan Asylum — Home for Aged Women 283

Biographical and Genealogical Records 292

A brief History of Rahway 44

City of Rahway — Manufacturing — Houseman & McManus — Ayers & Lufbery — Regina Music Box Company — Gordon Printing Press Works — Hetfield & Jackson — Miscellaneous Industries — Rahway Fire Department — Rahway Savings Institution — Rahway Gas Light Company — Friends' Meeting— Churches — Schools — Rahway Library — Young Men's Christian Association — Children's Home — Woman's Christian Temperance Union — Cemeteries — Biography 352

The Township and City of Plainfield — Schools — History of Post Office — Netherwood Heights — The Daily Press and Weekly Constitutionalist — Church History 395

The Township and City of Plainfield, Continued — Churches - Young Men's Christian Association — Educational Advantages — Mr. Teal's School — Plainfield Seminary — Miss Scribner and Miss Newton's School for Girls — Plainfield Manual Training and Grammar School— Plainfield Latin School — P. Ludwig Conde— Public library — Muhlenberg Hospital — Opera House — Hotels— Street Railway — Electricity and Gas — Railroad Facilities — Water Supply 410

Biographical and Genealogical Records 26

Springfield — Civil Organization — Springfield's Big Day; Elaborate Ceremonies in Two Places — Springfield Cemetery — First Presbyterian Church — Biography 481

Brief History of Westfield — Westfield Prior to 1720 — Name and Settlement — Westfield in Revolutionary Days — Battle of Lexington — Brush with the Enemy and Pursuit to Westfield — Retreat of the British from Westfield — Hard Winter of 1780 — Predatory Raids — Powder — Rev. James Caldwell — Trial of Morgan at Westfield — Further Revolutionary Data — The Jersey Blues — General Washington in Westfield — Famous Old " One Horn " — Captain John Scudder and Lord Stirling — Indians in the Township — Slaves in Westfield — Where They Lived Over a Century Ago — Old Revolutionary Bell — Westfield Township, 1794 — Westfield Centennial Banquet — How Setting Off of Westfield was Greeted — Centennial Fourth of July — Historical Exhibition — Westfield Schools — Teachers — Taverns — Postmasters — Physicians — Commuting in 1679 and 1897 — Old-time Modes of Punishment — Old Township Records — Rev. Edwin Downer — Rev. David R. Downer — Rev. Philemon E. Coe — Westfield Volunteers — Old Churchyard — Fairview Cemetery — Addison S. Clark — Town Officers — Newspapers — Public Library — Free Masons — Royal Arcanum — Ancient Order of United Workmen — Junior Order of United American Mechanics — Woman's Christian Temperance Union — Children's Country Home — Camp Woolfe — Independent Order of Stars — Westfield Club — Water Supply — Sewer Question — Electric Light — Borough of Mountainside — Westfield Curios — Notes — Churches Organized — Townships Set Off — Natural Features — Westfield's Chronology — Biography 504

New Providence — Presbyterian Church — Methodist Episcopal Church — St. Luke's Church, Murray Hill — Biography 578

Summit — Early Settlement — Civil Organization — Villages and Hamlets — Social and Athletic Clubs — Churches — Calvary Church — St. Teresa's Church — Methodist Episcopal Church — Central Presbyterian Church — First Baptist Church — Young Men's Christian Association — Real Estate — Charities — Newspapers — Township Officers — Florists — Fire Department — High School — Free Library — Summit Bank — Early History — Biography 587

Fanwood Township — Early Settlers — Baptist Church — Burial Ground — Methodist Episcopal Church — All Saints' Church — Inns and Inn-keepers — Seeley Paper Mills — Biography 613

Union Township — Lyons Farm — Evergreen Cemetery — Connecticut Farms — Presbyterian Church 630

Linden Township — Early Settlers — Old Wheat Sheaf Inn — Schools — Linden Village — Reformed Church — Methodist Episcopal Church — Grace Church, Protestant Episcopal — St. Luke's Church, Protestant Episcopal — Presbyterian Church — Baptist Church — Biography 636

Township of Cranford — Early Settlements — Craneville— Post Offices — Cranford — A Vine of the Lord's Planting — Methodist Episcopal Church — Trinity Church, Protestant Episcopal — St. Michael's Roman Catholic Church — Schools 644


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The history of Union county includes that of the Indians as well as that of the whites; but whence these savage tribes came or how long they had dwelt on these shores neither history nor tradition can tell. It does not appear that the Indians inhabiting New Jersey were very numerous. In an old publication entitled "A Description of New Albion," and dated A. D. 1648, it is found stated that the Indians inhabiting New Jersey were governed by about twenty kings, but the insignificance of the power of these kings may be inferred from the fact that only twelve hundred Indians were under the two Raritan kings on the north side next the Hudson river. Whitehead, in his "East Jersey Under the Proprietary Government," says there were not more than two thousand Indians within the province while it was under the Dutch. The Indians inhabiting the lower Hudson and East Jersey country are considered by most writers as belonging to the Delaware or Lenni-Lnape nation, and the Minsies — a branch of the Delaware nation — occupied the country from the Minisink to Staten Island and from the Hudson to the Raritan valley. In this section of New Jersey they were called Raritans, Hackensacks, Pomptons and Tappeans. On the island of Manhattan dwelt the fierce Manhattans. DeLaet calls them "a wicked nation" and enemies of the Dutch.