George Castor Martin.

The Shark River district, Monmouth County, New Jersey : and genealogies of Chambers, Corlies, Drummond, Morris, Potter, Shafto, Webley and White online

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Shark River District














Member of

Sons of the Revolution, Sons of the American Revolution

Pennsylvania German Society

National Genealogical Society, California Genealogical Society


Frankford Historical Society

Deputy Vice Commander

Order of Washington, State of New Jersey


Martin & allardyce

AsBUHY Park. N. J,



My Brother

Richard Allen Martin

Albert E. Sutphen. F'rinter
Asbury Park. N. J.




Discovery of the Land I

Purchase of the Land 2

Revolutionary Days 3

Names of Places and Streams 8

Indians 13

Hamilton 14

Webley Family 18

Shafto Family 21

White Family 29

Corlies Family 51

Potter Family 61

Potter's Cave 62

Chambers Family 66

Morris Family 69

Drummond Family 77

The Indian Maiden 81

Index 83

Corrections and Notes

The Discovery of the Land.

"This is a very good land to fall in with and
a pleasant land to see. " — From the log of the
"Half Moon."

Sir Henry Hudson, in the "Half Moon," in the
latter part of August, 1 609, left Delaware bay, and
on Sept. 2 passed Barnegat inlet, then unnamed,
and anchored for the night along the Jersey coast,
probably off the site of the present Asbury Park.

"At 5 o'clock w^e anchored, being light wind,
and rode in eight fathoms of water, the night was
fair. This night I found the land to have the com-
pass eight degrees. Far to the northward we saw
high hills; for the day before we found not above
two degrees of variation." — Log of the Half Moon,"
dated Sept. 2, 1609.

The high hills referred to were probably the High-
lands, or they might have been the sand hills behind
Asbury Park. The "Half Moon" arrived off the
Narrows the next day at 3 o'clock. There is no
doubt but that the anchorage referred to was be-
tween Asbury Park and Long Branch, and it is more
than likely that it was at or near the former place,
for, the Highlands would not be so "far to the north-
ward" from Long Branch, and they may be plainly
seen from the deck of a vessel off the beach at As-

The Purchase of the Land.

Three Indian deeds cover the section of New
Jersey embraced by old Monmouth county. They
were dated in January and April, 1665-6, and were
duly acknowledged before Governor Nichols of
New York. On April 7, 1665-6, the governor
signed the Monmouth patent.

A most curious sight the acknowledgment of
these deeds must have been. Sixteen Indians, 1 3
white men, the governor and his executives. The
Indians in their primitive dress, the whites in the dull
garb of Quakers, Puritans and Long Island Dutch,
the governor and his men in the uniforms of their

The Indians who deeded the land were: Popo-
mora or Popomera and his brother Mischacoing,
Manavendo, Emerdesolsee, Checawsen, Shenhemun,
Cramanscum, Winegermeen, Mecca, Taplawappam-
mund, Mattamaluckanick, Zawpochammund, Kack-
enham, Cattanoh, Norchon and Qurrmeck.

The white men who purchased the land were:
James Hubbard, John Bowne, John Tilton, jr.,
Richard Stout, William Goulding, Samuel Spicer,
Richard Gibbons, James Grover, Walter Clarke,
William Reape, Nathaniel Silvester, Obadiah
Holmes and Nicholas Davis, all, with the exception
of the first mentioned, in the Monmouth Patent as
the first proprietors.

Monmouth County was named and established
March 7. 1682-3.

Revolutionary Days Around Shark River.

Shrewsbury, in which township the Shark River
section lay during the struggle for independence,
harbored many who preferred the British yoke to

Britten, Briton or Britton White, Josiah White,
Ebenezer and Peter Wardell, Samuel, John and
Morford Taylor, Peter Van Note, James Mount,
Clayton Tilton, James Curies (Corlies), John and
Robert Morris, Robert Stout, John Williams, and
his son John, Christopher and Oliver Tallman, John
Warde, Michael, William and James Price, James
Pintard, Samuel Cook, James Boggs, Asael Chand-
ler, John Hankinson, Timothy Scoby, William Law-
rence, Tobias Kiker, Richard Lippincott, Benjamin
Woolley, Nathaniel Parker, John Hampton, and
Jacob Emmons, were all "fugitives and offenders,"
tories who assisted the British against their own rela-
tives and countrymen. The lands of the above
mentioned were confiscated and sold at Tinton
Falls, March 29, I 779, and on May 3, of the same
year, notice was given for all who had claims on any
of the estates sold to bring their accounts before the
Court of Common Pleas at Freehold before the
twentieth of the month that they might be settled.

Some of the tories regained their lands and their
descendants are still among us, but many escaped
to New York and went to England and Canada.
Britton White, Josiah White, John Morris, Robert
Morris, James Corlies and Benjamin Woolley all


have descendants now living between Deal and the

During the Revolution, the Continental govern-
ment established many salt works along the New
Jersey coast. One was located on the south bank
of Squan Inlet, one on the south bank of Shark
River Inlet, another on the south bank of Shark
River about w^here the bridge now enters Belmar.

Salt was necessary for the use of the Continental
army, and the rebel salt works were made the object
of special attention by the British army. In April,
1 778, on Sunday, the fifth, to be exact, a large party
of British, mostly "Greens" and Highlanders, land-
ed on the south side of Squan Inlet and destroyed
the salt works, broke the massive iron kettles used
to boil the sea water, and burned all the houses
within easy reach. They recognized none among
the inhabitants as friends, and greatly to the rejoic-
ing of the rebels, it was the Tories that suffered the
greatest loss. The troops later crossed the inlet
and burned every house to the northward with the
exception of that owned by Derric Longstreet, a

The next day, April 6, 1 778, the same party
landed on the south side of Shark River Inlet and
destroyed both salt works there. The troops were
reported to have been 1 35 in number, and while
at work on the second building were surprised by a
body of 1 5 mounted militia men, who routed them
so badly that in reembarking the British sank two of
their flat-bottomed boats.

About the time of the destruction of the salt
works on Shark River, a farmer, one John Davis,

lived on its banks. He owned a highly prized bay
mare, which was stolen on Aug. 3, 1778, presum-
ably by the Pine Robbers.

Duck Creek, now a muddy, silt-filled brook,
then open to the sea with an ebbing and flowing tide,
and water enough to float a schooner of large size,
played its part in the exciting events of the times.
Supplies were carried from the farms surrounding
and shipped aboard schooners and sloops for Phila-
delphia and New York.

The Diamond, a British ship, on or about April
I, 1778, sighted the masts of a schooner lying in
Duck Creek. She sailed to the inlet, landed troops,
and after a brisk skirmish, landed the prize with 20
prisoners, among whom were two famous New Jer-
sey pilots, Henry Tudor and James Bruce. The
prize was taken to New York and sold.

News reached New York, July 28, 1777, of a
brig which had been captured south of Deal and had
been beached at that place. The rebels were re-
ported to be busily engaged in removing her cargo
inland and in stripping the hull. This brig was a
prize of the British frigates Milford and Thames.
She was first taken on her voyage from Oporto to
Petersburgh by a rebel privateer and was sent to
Boston, but was retaken by the Milford and Thames

With a prize-master aboard she was ordered to
New York, but, to secure fresh water, or for some
other reason unknown, the officer in charge saw fit
to call on the coast at the foot of Deal Lake, or Long
Pond, as it w^as then called, then a safe and good
harbor, where she was promptly captured by the

New Jersey militia, and her cargo of "oyl, lemons,
wine and Brasil (Brazil) sugar" was immediately
carried up country by the Jerseymen, the ship dis-
mantled, and the hull left to go to pieces on the

Long Branch was the scene of another looting.
The brigantine Mary and Anne, commanded by
Captain Jacobs, was captured in June or July, 1777,
by Captain James Morgan and his company of mil-
itia, to the southward of Long Branch, to which
place she was taken and dismantled on the beach.
Her contents were sold Aug. 5, I 77 7, at the court
house, Freehold, and doubtless the farmers lived
w^ell for some time after the sale, as the cargo con-
sisted of "fine white sugar in boxes and casks, sweet
oil in barrels, lemons in boxes, ground sumac in
sacks, figs in baskets, corks cut and uncut, casks of
almonds, lees of wine for clothiers" etc. Anchors,
sails, rigging and the hull (that at that time lay on
the beach at Long Branch) were also sold at Free-

Deal Lake saw its days of excitement, and,
could it repeat its own history, would fill many
pages. "Uncle Billy White," who died recently, a
fine old man of New Jersey colonial stock, often re-
peated tales told by his grandfather. No dates
were mentioned, but they probably come within the
scope of this article.

All travel from Long Branch to Manasquan was
made over a trail or road which touched both sides
of Deal Lake about where the Park Avenue bridge
now stands. Travelers either swam their horses
over the lake, then wider with a deep flowing chan-

nel, or were ferried across in a small boat, leading
the horses from the stern. The spot was favored
by a band of highwaymen, who usually waited for
part of the party to cross, then held up the remaind-
er in full sight of those who had passed over, reliev-
ed them of their valuables and disappeared. After
many fruitless attempts to capture them, they were
surrounded w^hile in the act of robbery by tw^o part-
ies of British horsemen who drove them into the
channel where all were shot or drowned.

A privateer sloop was built on the south branch
of Deal Lake, but before her masts were raised in-
formation was sent to the British who came in force
to demolish it. The owners received notice of the
approach of the enemy and after boring holes in her
bottom and weighting her with sacks of gravel, sank
her in the channel. The British, finding only the
remains of the building, believed that she had been
finished and taken to sea, so departed. The sloop
was later raised and manned by patriots, pursued
a glorious career among the supply boats of the Brit-

The dress of the Jerseymen of Revolutionary
times must have been rather curious. The follow-
ing items are found mentioned in contemporary

White sw^anskin breeches, coats and vests.
Everlasting breeches were common, and if the se-
cret of making such an article remained with us, it
would prove a great saving. Superfine coats, dress-
es, etc., are mentioned so often that it would almost
lead one to believe "superfine" a kind of cloth.
Tow^ shirts, trousers and coats were frequently worn,

and one man was described as being clad in tow
shirt and trousers with silk stockings. Red hair-
plush jacket, green calimancoe trousers, red silk
stockings, a cocked hat with a gold button and loop
were worn in combination. An escaped prisoner
"wears his own hair," so w^igs w^ere commonly used.

Thomas and John , who will be nameless,

were men addicted to drink, who had the very bad
habit of enlisting in a militia company, receiving the
bounty, deserting a few hours later and then reen-
listing in another company, again receiving the
bounty. One wore an old regimental coat faced
with red, leather breeches and a wilton jacket
(vest? ). The other wore a cocked beaver hat with
a gold button and carried a sv/ord or hanger. White
slavery was still in existence in I 776, for a slave that
ran away in that year was described as "knock-
kneed, wore blue cloth jacket without sleeves, old
buckskin breeches, broken before, thread stockings,
a beaver hat scolloped and cocked up, v/ith an iron
collar around his neck."

Ancient Names of Places and Streams in and Near
the Shark River District.

Shark River was the name given by the colonists
to the stream called by the Indians Nolletquesset.
The aboriginal appellation is mentioned in the deed,
July 25, 1689, from Houghame, Wayweenotan and
Auspeakan to Nicholas Broun, of Shrewsbury, for
land westward of Pequodlenoyock Hill, between
the Pine Bridge and Shark River. Pequodlenoyock
Hill is the eminence on County Neck between the
two arms of the stream. Shrewsbury, at that time


included the greater part of the present Monmouth
County and the greater part of the present Ocean
County, and as Nicholas Broun was styled "of
Shroesbery" as early as 1675, it is possible that he
occupied land on Shark River previous to the date
of the Indian deed.

Thomas Webley, Jan. 10, 1698-9. in his will,
described his land as "at the head of Shark River or
Squancum." Thomas Chambers, Nov. 26, 172 7,
mentioned his "home farm on Shark River." Nich-
olas Havens, Sept. 2, 1 723, styled himself "of Shark
River," and mentioned Jonathan Allen of the same

The main branch of the stream was called Shark
River and Shark River Brook. Before I 700, the
first was the only name applied to it, and it is possi-
ble that at that time there was sufficient volume of
water to warrant the title of river, as the undisturb-
ed banks five miles from the sea indicate that a deep
stream not less than one hundred yards in breadth
once made its way to the sea through the channel of
the present small stream, into the larger body of the
present river.

A brook flows into Shark River Brook about a
mile from the head of the main body of the river,
through the farm of Dr. Peter Davison. This is
called Sarah Green Brook, and if the tradition rela-
tive to the origin of its name is true. Shark River
Brook was a much larger stream as late as the close
of the Eighteenth Century. About 1 790, one Sarah
Green, travelling the old post road, between Trap,
Shark River Village or Hamilton and the present
village of Glendola, once Hopeville, while fording

the brook on horseback was drawn under the water
by quicksands and both horse and rider were drown-
ed. The stream has since that date taken the name
of its victim.

Jumping Brook feeds Shark River, crossing
Corlies Avenue at the the water works.

The first body of water north of Shark River
was designated "Duk Creek" before 1 700, and is
now known as Duck Creek and Sylvan Lake, the
latter appelation seldom being used.

North of Duck Creek is Fletcher Lake, mention-
ed in a deed, 1 700, as Goose Pond, by which name
it is still known to many.

Wesley Lake was called Long Pond before
1 700, and is depicted on the map of the United
States Geological Survey as Camp Meeting Lake.

Sunset Lake, next toward the north was desig-
nated "Litle (Little) Pond" in 1 700.

Deal Lake was originally described in 1687 as
a "great pone," and was called later Qreat Pond.
This stream has borne many names, among them,
Corlies' Pond, White's Great Pond and White
Creek, the latter given on Giberson's "Map of New
Jersey," 1812. The Indian deed for Wanamassa
stated that the lake was "called by the Indians
Ulikaquecks." This name was derived from the
Lenape words wulaku and papeek, meaning Even-
ing Pond. Tradition gives another Indian name,
Wickapecko, either a corruption of Ulikaquecks, or
derived from wikiat and papeek, meaning Pond of
Abundance or Pond of Plenty.

The branches of Deal Lake have been named.


The north branch was Hogswamp Creek as early as
1 692, later Marl Creek, so called from the abund-
ance of marl showing in its banks; the branch be-
tween Interlaken and West Allenhurst (late Edge-
mere) was Ironwell Creek, so called from the oily
ooze on the surface supposed to seep up through its
bottom from oil springs below; the south branch
New Bridge Creek; the branch between Wana-
massa and Interlaken was Romaine's Creek. These
names are no longer used.

Wanamassa was named for Wanamasoa, one of
the sachems or chiefs who deeded that tract to Gav-
in Drummond in 1 687.

Hockhockson, the name of a swamp bordering
on the Shark River district, is a corruption of hocke-
hocken (Indian Interpreter, written 1684) or haki-
hakan (Zeisberger), pronounced hawk-ee-hawk-
ann, meaning a field, clearing or plantation.

Wreck Pond, written Rackpond in 1715 and
Wrack Pond in earlier and later records, lies north
of the Manasquan.

Manasquan, Manisquan or Manasquam is men-
tioned in various old records, among them a deed
dated 1685-6. The name is said to mean "an is-
land with an enclosure for squaws." Menatey, pro-
nounced may-naw-tay, was the Lenni Lenape word
for island. Squaw is given in the Indian Interpreter
as wife. Menateysquaw, pronounced may-naw-tay-
squaw, would then mean Squaw Island. Hanne,
usually han, was the word for stream. Menatey-
squawhan, pronounced may-naw-tay-squa-han, then,
would then mean — Stream of the Island of Squaws,
referring to the stream in which there was an island


relegated to the use of the women.

The settlers called the land around the Mana-
squan by the name of river and neglected the vari-
ous cognomens of tracts already named. The deed
for the land near the site of the present town of
Manasquan reads — "a tract of land called by the
Indians Menachipanis," and "on a run going into
the Manasquan." This run or stream was called
Matuekackson. Meteu or Ma3rtayou meant a tur-
key cock. The word is derived from meteohet,
meaning — to drum on a hollow body. The turkey
cock makes a drumming sound with its wings, hence
meteu. Kaak was the word for wild goose. Onk,
unk, ong, cong, conk, cunk, ung and sunk were loca-
tive suffixes. Matuekackson may therefore be
translated — Place of Turkeys and Wild Geese, or
Place of the Drumming Wild Goose.

Squankum Brook flows into the Manasquan.
The common ancient spellings were Squancum and
Squamcunk. The name might be translated —
Place of Squaws, but it is more probable that it is
derived from esquande — place of entrance or
threshold, Esquandecunk — Place of Entrance, re-
ferring to the land around the spot where the brook
empties into the river. This seems probable when
taking into consideration the fact that the stream,
where it flows near Freehold, was known in 1 696 as
Passequenecqua or Passe-qua-nork-qua, and the
tract around it south of Freehold by the same name.
It appears from old records that the land from the
Manasquan north to Shark River was called by both
titles, Squankum and Shark River. Going back to
Shark River. the pond at the end of the south


branch, now Tucker's Cove, was called in early
deeds. Shark River Pond. Hogpond Neck was a
point in the same vicinity.

Indians of the Shark River District.

The Indians inhabiting and claiming ownership
of the land from the Raritan to Barnegat were call-
ed the Newesinghs, Na-ussins, Newasons, Never-
sinks or Navesinks. They were of the Unami,
Wanami or Wonamey clan, of the Lenni Lenape or
Delaware tribe, of the Algonquin or Algonkin race.
The Unamis were called the "Turtle clan" from
heraldic device, a tortoise, called by them tulpe.
Unami means — People down the River. Lenni
Lenape means — First or Original People.

William Nelson, Esq., of Paterson, has written
an excellent history of the New Jersey Indians, and
much matter of interest concerning them is contain-
ed in Bulletin 9, Archaelogical Survey, published
under the direction of Henry B. Kummel, Esq., of
Trenton, State Geologist.

The only permanent village site in the Shark
River District, so far as is known today, was on the
Hurley farm on Shark River. This was the home
of Indian Will, who died about 1 800, though men-
tioned in Mr. Salter's "Monmouth and Ocean Coun-
ties," as belonging to a century previous. Tempo-
rary village and camp sites were located in North
Asbury Park; Loch Arbour, south of the power
house; Whitesville, on the Brook's property; Wana-
massa, where the Y. M. C. A. auditorium stood;
Belmar, along the river; near Poplar; and several
places on the Manasquan.


Hamilton, Shark River Village or Trap.

Hamilton, before 1 800, was the one group of
houses in the section known as Shark River. The
community was then called by two names. Shark
River Village and Trap. The first is applied to it
on Giberson's "Map of New Jersey," printed in
1812. A tradition exists concerning the origin of
the second name.

There was an old tavern in the village with a
host named West. The wife of West, Betty by
name, either with malicious intent or with an eye to-
ward the improvement of business, induced a hither-
to sober gentleman of the community to imbibe
more "apple juice" than was his usual portion, the
result being a three day debauch. When fully re-
covered, the victim stated it was the first time that
he had been caught in the trap, and that it would be
the last time. The name Trap was thenceforth ap-
plied to the tavern and to the village as well.

The old cemetery is the one item of interest in
the village today. Here lie the bodies of members
of the families of Shafto, White, Youmans, Tilton,
Howland, Ely, Garrabrant, Woolley, Bennett and
others of the early settlers. Tradition has it that
Martha Jane Morris, grandchild of Jonathan You-
mans, builder of the original church, was the first
to be interred in the cemetery. Martha Jane died
in 1836. The building of the church was begun in
1833, and was finished in 1835. In the cemetery
is a stone bearing the following inscription: —



DIED 1813




DIED 1830


It is possible that Martha Jane Morris* body was
the first interred after the erection of the building,
or that the bodies and stone were moved from an-
other site, but it is also possible that a private place
of burial existed on the spot before the conception
of the church.

According to the church records, which are in-
scribed "The Shark River Church," previous to
1833 religious services were held at the homes of
church members. Finding this inconvenient, Jona-
than Youmans conceived the idea of a building in
which to worship. Taking the burden upon himself,
Jonathan, with timber donated by John Ely and an
acre of land purchased from Asher Howland and
Garret White, cut the timber, sawed and carted the
lumber, and built with his own hands the edifice
known for many years as Youmans' Chapel and
Shark River Church. The original building stood
from 1833 to 1889 on the site of the present ceme-
tery, across Corlies Avenue from, and facing the site
of the present building.

The first board of trustees was elected in 1833.
Its members were Jonathan Youmans, Henry You-
mans, John Shafto, Jeremiah B. Morris, Joseph
Newman, Curtis White, and Abraham Garrabrant,


the latter the only member still living in 1883.

A history of Hamilton which was published in a
newspaper some years ago stated that the land was
donated by Asher Howland and Garret White.
The church records to the contrary, however, as
they mention the purchase, the deed being dated
February, 1833.

On January 4, 1851, John P. L. Tilton and
Jacob Garrabrants sold to the church, for fifty dol-
lars, one more acre, and on May 9, I 864, four more
acres, at a cost of nine hundred dollars were added,
the tract to be used to enlarge the cemetery and as a
site for a parsonage. In I 882 the church received
from Cook Howland, consideration nine hundred
and seventy one dollars, a quit claim deed "for
lands purchased at various times, over four acres."

The new church w^as dedicated Wednesday,
November 9, I 890, the old building being sold that
year for one hundred dollars. The cost of the new
structure was five thousand, three hundred dollars;
the parsonage one thousand, two hundred dollars.
At that time eight hundred dollars worth of burial
plots remained unsold, and the pastor reckoned the
church property worth seven thousand, three hun-
dred dollars.

The first volume of the records being missing,
no complete list of the various parsons is obtainable.
The two most prominent were Corbet alias "The
Pine Boy," whose first circuit included the Shark
River Church, and Samuel H. Morrell, who is inter-
red in the church cemetery.

John Ely, who was born in 1773 and died in

1 840, built and ran a grist mill on Shark River
Brook, south of Hamilton.

John Fields built and managed a mill on Jump-

1 3 4 5

Online LibraryGeorge Castor MartinThe Shark River district, Monmouth County, New Jersey : and genealogies of Chambers, Corlies, Drummond, Morris, Potter, Shafto, Webley and White → online text (page 1 of 5)