custom of the English people. There are some ex-
ceptions, as in the case of private grounds selected for
burial in neighborhoods where no churches existed
or were remote from the settlements. The Allen
burying-ground, in Washington Valley, one of the
oldest in the township, is of this sort, and there rest
the remains of several generations of that name, and
kinsfolk and neighbors mingle in common dust.
Probably the oldest burying-ground in Warren is
that of the Baptist Church in Mount Bethel.*
VILLAGES AND HAMLETS.
Warrenville, in Washington Valley, contains a
post-office, — the only one in the township, — one store,
school -house, fifteen or twenty houses, one black-
smith's shop, and one wheelwright's shop. Daniel
* By a deed of date Oct. 9, 1780, George Cooper, Jr., William Alward,
and Benjamin Knyart, " for and in consideration of our good wishes to-
u-iu.'h tin- propagation of the gospel of Jesus Christ, in tlio township of
Bernard, and at a place known by the name of Stony Hill, and where
the meeting-houso ""><> stands ,"dld nult-clulm unto the trustees of Mount
Dethel church, 'he church lot, fur use of said congregation "for a liouso
or houses of woi-sliip and a burylng-placo, without any let, trouble, or
Bornman is postmaster and keeper of the store. He
has occupied the premises about twenty-eight years.
Near this place is a copper mine, owned by Richard
Field, of Bound Brook, and in the rock there are in-
dications of gold and silver in small quantities.
Mount Bethel has two stores, blacksmith-shop, a
hotel, kept by Jacob Blimm, also proprietor of one of
the stores ; the other being kept by Jacob J. Laing.
There are about a dozen residences, a school-house,
and a Baptist church.
Union Village, near the east part of the town-
ship, is a small hamlet, containing one store, kept by
J. F. Schwalb, a blacksmith- and wheelwright-shop,
and a Methodist Episcopal church, supplied from
New Providence, by the minister in charge, Rev. J. B.
Smalleytown contains a school-house and sev-
Mount Tabor is a little cluster of residences,
shops, etc., on a slight elevation in the extreme
western part of the township. The first farmhouse
in the vicinity is that of John Nelson, a native of
Sweden. It is on the Reuben Coddington place, the
old estate of John Coddington, a soldier in the Revo-
lution. There are here a fine Methodist Episcopal
church and convenient parsonage, the history of
which is given elsewhere.
Coontown, though anciently the centre of consid-
erable business, contains nothing now to distin-
guish it from the common farming country of the
township. On the corner there used to be a distillery
and cider-mill, owned by Isaac Smalley and Joel
Coddington; they discontinued it about twenty-five
years ago. Near it were two blacksmith-shops, owned
respectively by Nathan Coon and Jesse Moore. A
hat-shop also stood near by, carried on by Isaac
Harris. There were also two stores in the place, —
one by Laning Blue, and _ afterwards by Joseph
Keiney ; the other by Martin Miller. All these have
long since gone, and the land is converted into farms.
The old distillery is now used as a barn.
The industries of the township are chiefly agricul-
tural, including stock- and grain-raising and dairying.
Dairy-farmers mostly sell their milk to supply the
There are two saw-mills, — one owned by the estate
of Elias Baird, and operated by Peter D. Baldwin ; the
other is owned by Aaron A. Stites. Mr. Baldwin also
manufactures brush-blocks, whitewash-brush handles,
belaying-pins, and pumps for water casks on ship-
board. A great many hoop-poles are cut in the
township and taken to market. Cord-wood is mar-
keted to a considerable extent, and also charcoal.
Annual report of the receipts and expeditures of
the township of Warren for the year ending Feb. 18,
Amount of duplicate 84248.98
Dog tax 94.34
Tow nihil- school money in ...]!• tor's Imuds 1474.15
Two-mill xshool lux. II 17 H
Surplus revenue 170 82
Slaty appropriation 146.74
Surplus revenue, June, \i~'J 171.11
■ ury 1IXJ9.22
Paid county collector •
l."..'l bills 802J86
School money 2929.85
Onicers' fees for year ending February, 1870
8iip|K>rt of poor for year ondlng February, 1878 133.00
Bheep bills 38.no
Township election bills 24.00
Amount of school money In collector's hands up to
Oct 1. 1879
Taxes not coll. Ill''
Money in overseer of poor's hands t.. date
Money in treasurer's bands to dais
Amount of tax levied 1879:
SupiH.rt of poor
Rate of taxation, 83 cents per $100.
SITUATION* AND BOUNDARIES.
The township of North Plainfield lies in the ex-
treme east part of Somerset County. It is bounded
north by New Providence, in Union County; cast
and smith by (Ireen Brook, which separates it from
the city of Plainfield and township of Piscataway, in
Middlesex County ; west by the townships of Bridge-
water ami Warren, from the latter of which it was set
off by act of the Legislature approved April 2, 1872.
I'll, act gives the following description:
"All that partloD of the township of Warren, In the county of Somer-
set, lying within the boundaries and descriptions following, — to wil : Be-
ginning at a point in the ■ 'Mitre of Green ltr.->k, near Searing's grist-
mill, ..nd corner of Warren aud Brldgewater townships; from thenco
iratec Uno and Warren to the centre of the public road
leading from Bonn I Bi k to Washington Vallej ; from thenco a straight
to ii point in the Uneof Union County
i lb K '^ers, and Is tho corner of New Trovidonco
a th ' mg tho lino of New Provldenco and Warren
to a i-oint in the line of Westflold township; thence along
that line and the Ii i rinlnflold township h> tho lluo of Piscataway
township, in the connty of Uiddlesei ; thence along the line ol
catawa township to the aibresald point In the centre of Green
of beginnings— be, and the same is herehjtSotofl fromlbesnld
township of Warren, and erected Into ■ new township, bo be called and
known by the name of ' The Township ul North Plainfield.' "•
PHYSICAL Ii:\n RES.
This township is an oblong piece of territory, about
8 miles in Length and of an average width of - miles.
It contains, therefore, an area of about 16 square
mile-. Its surface is divided between the plain lands
of the red sandstone formation and the outer slope
and declivities of the first Mountain, along the ridge
of which is the dividing line between it and Warren
township. This mountain, on the North Plainfield
side, within the limits of the township, is composed
Of shale and trap rock, and is in many places rough
• Special Public and Private Laws, chap. 455.
and precipitous. The outer slope differs essentially
from the inner, being much more abrupt and precipi-
tous, and presenting wild and picturesque scenery.
This is especially the case at Washington Rock and
in the gorge of Stony Brook, near Washingtonville*
This brook forms the principal depression in tin-
First Mountain within the township of North Plain-
field, and through its rugged and picturesque gap
passes the road from Plainfield to Warrensville. It
rises in Washington Valley, runs eastward to Wash-
ingtonville, at the head of the gorge, and, bending
almost at a right angle, Hows southward and then
westward till it forms a confluence with Green Brook,
on the southwestern township line, below Washington
The area of the red sandstone within this township
is included between I Ireen Brook and the base of the
Firs! Mountain, and follow - tin' lit..' of into re
with the trap and shale. It underlies the entire plain
region, the soil being sandy or sandy loam. This
portion of North Plainfield, especially in the western
part, contains the finest farms, the land being easily
worked, and, when properly cultivated and fertilized,
productive. It is good land fori
and vegetables generally.
At the Washington Valley quarry. North Plainfield,
a line quality "f freestone ha- b ■ :i quarried. It i~ of
a light-gray or bull' color and easily worked. The
quarry was first, opened by Wallace Vail in 1864,
about the first stone taken out being for the l'ii-t
Baptist church of Plainfield, which is constructed
entirely of this material: also, largely, St. Mary'-
(Catholic] church, the Natherwood Hotel, and a
large number of foundations and bridges in different
parts of the State, Some stone from this (piarry has
been sent to New York. It is now owned by Alfred
SOMERSET COUNTY, NEW JERSEY.
Berry, of the firm of Berry & Thorn, Plainfield, and
is operated by J. J. Collins, of New York.
The Elizabethtown bill in chancery — good author-
ity for titles in this portion of New Jersey — shows
the following for this township :
The lower southern portion of the township, along
Green Brook and below the base of the mountain, is
composed of large tracts that extend southerly to the
south branch of Green Brook.
The west tract, No. 56, was taken by Sir Ev. Cam-
eron, May 24, 1690, " 2000 acres at Blew Hills ;" No.
39, to same, "1300 acres on south side of Bound
Brook;" No. 10, Peter Sonmans, Oct. 9, 1685, 2500
acres, Green River; No. 34, J. and G. Alexander,
June 15, 1686, " 462 acres at Blew Hills ;" No. 35,
Robt. Fullerton, June 4, 1686, 300 acres; No. 38,
James Cole, Sr., April 23, 1688, 125 acres.
On the top of First Mountain and along its crest is
a tier of lots that are termed as behind the south tier
of lots; 113, James Alexander, Jan. 12, 1727, 1161
acres, northwest corner of LockielPs, 2000 acres on
Bound Brook ; 94, to same, Feb. 12, 1727, 1181 acres,
beginning at northeast corner of Sir. Ev. Cameron's
2000 acres at Blew Hills ; 95, to same, and same date,
493 acres joining Peter Sonmans', Blew Hills ; 114,
to the same, Jan. 12, 1727, 1181 and 493^ acres, be-
hind Sonmans' ; 115, Elisha Smalley, March 17, 1736,
22 acres at Blew Hills, on Stony Brook ; 139, Alex-
der and Dunstar, Oct. 25, 1743, 1633 acres, each one-
half between the First and Second Mountain ; 101,
Joseph Jennings, Dec. 28, 1727, 4 acres on the First
Mountain, at the falls of Stony Brook.
In the Green Brook valley, extending from the
western boundary of the township northeastward, was
a succession of early land owners who had large farms,
reaching across the plains from the brook to the First
Mountain. Many of these occupied their lands be-
fore the Bevolution. Beginning with the western-
most, we shall name these in the order of their farms.
The Vails were among the earliest settlers. John
and Stephen, the ancestors, came from Long Island
at an early time. Their father's name was Samuel ;
they were members of the Society of Friends. John
Vail settled on the place where the late Jonah Vail
lived, on Green Brook, and Stephen on the next farm,
now owned by Mr. Palmer. Stephen Vail was great-
grandfather of Mrs. Ephraim Vail, now living on the
estate at the advanced age of ninety. Her husband,
Ephraim, was a grandson of John, one of the first
settlers, who had nine sons, — viz., Samuel, born Aug.
24, 1732 ; John, June 29, 1734; Daniel, Jan. 7, 1735
-36; Isaac, Nov. 27, 1737; David, April 5, 1740;
Jacob, July 3, 1742; Abram, July 22, 1744; Benja-
min, Aug. 3, 1750; Joseph, June 12, 1752; Christiana,
Dec. 10, 1753. Four of these sons — John, David,
Abram, and Joseph — settled, respectively, on the
Jonah Vail place, where Charles Sanford now lives,
and on the Ephraim Vail place, where Samuel
Smalley now lives, — places adjoining. Samuel Vail
died when a young man, and Daniel, Isaac, Jacob,
and Benjamin settled at Basking Ridge.
John Vail (2d), who settled on Green Brook, had
children, — Margaret, Edward, Ann, Isaac, Phebe,
Nathan, and Joel. Amos, of this family, was the
father of Ann, Abram, Jonah, and Phebe. Jonah
died June 7, 1880, aged eighty-one ; his widow is
now over eighty. Jonah left sons, — Theodore, Adel-
bert, and Amos, the second of whom resides on the
old estate at Green Brook.
The grandchildren of Stephen Vail, and children
of Stephen (2d), were Samuel, Moses, Shubal, Re-
becca, Aaron, Sarah, Randal, Mary, Hugh, and Cath-
arine. Of the children of Samuel, the only one now
living is Rebecca, widow of Ephraim, aged ninety.
The house in which she resides was built in 1774,
and one room of it at a considerably earlier date.
Ephraim died April 26, 1878, aged ninety-four. He
had a sister Nancy, who was born and died in the
same house, at the age of ninety-eight. Of the chil-
dren of Ephraim, there are living on the old estate
Sarah, S. Line, Emmor K. Vail, and Abram M. Vail.
Mr. and Mrs. Ephraim Vail were married March 21,
1810, and had lived together in wedlock previous to
his death, in 1878, sixty-eight years, and always oc-
cupied the same house.
The Vail fulling-mill was the first cloth-dressing
establishment in this portion of the country. It was
owned, together with a saw-mill at Coontown, by
Samuel, who was a clothier. In connection with his
fulling-mill was also a carding-machine ; it was a great
convenience, as farmers then made their own cloth.
The settlers in this section went to Plainfield to
church and to get their mail after the establishment
of the first post-office, in 1806.
Enos, grandfather of E. W. and Nelson Runyon,
lawyers of Plainfield, was one of the early residents ;
also David Boice, father of Patterson and Cornelius.
Farther northeast were the families of the Mannings,
of whom John and Isaac were the principal early
settlers. They came from Bergen about the time of
the Revolution, and owned large farms extending
from the brook to the top of the mountain. None
of the family now reside in the town. Between the
Woodens and the Mannings lived the Williams fam-
ily, some of whom still remain. Next west of the
Mannings lived Andrew Cadmus, who had three sons,
— Abram, Frederick, and Cornelius, — descendants of
whom still live in the township, — Abram and Rudger.
Israel Wooden was a large land owner and farmer
in the same vicinity. His father was among the first
settlers. Mr. Wooden was born in the township,
then included in Warren.
Andrew Drake was an early settler in that part of
Warren now North Plainfield. He died more than
sixty years ago, an old man, leaving sons — Hugh and
Jonathan — who reared large families.
AUC'II I IJALD CODDIXGTON.
Archibald Coddington, the subject of this
sketcli, represents a large and well-known family
of the name in Somerset Co., N. J. He was
born near Mount Horeb, in Warren town-
ship, in January, 1810, and lived on the home-
estate till he attained his majority, lie is a son
of Archibald and Mary ( loddingtOD, and grand-
BOU of Isaac Coddington, who was the first set-
tler of the name in the township. Learning
the trade of a blacksmith of his brother Isaiah,
he worked with him in partnership for several
years, and in 183-1 purchased a farm in Bernard
township. This farm he sold in 1839, ami
bought another in Warren, where he resided till
1861, having in the mean time bought the mill
property in Green Valley, where he now re-
His large flouring-mill i> situated on Stony
Brook, near Plainfield, in a beautiful and ro-
mantic spot. A mill was built here in 1840 by
John Binge, and was purchased by Mr. Cod-
dington in 1854, who remodeled it in 1860,
putting in a new water-wheel and new and im-
proved machinery. The mill has three run of
stones, ami with its constant supply of water is
a very desirable property, including in connec-
tion with it the blacksmith- and repair-shops,
tenement-house, and residences of the proprie-
tors, father and SOU.
In l.S.'lO, .Mr. Coddington married Eliza
Moore, by whom he has hail eighl children.
They are all living, and their names in the
order of age are as follows: Moore, John W..
Harrison. Ruth \\ '., Asenath, Jane, Eunice, and
Mary. M "e, Kuih.aud Harrison are married
and have families; the rc-t are single. John
W. and Harrison are associated with their lather
in the milling interest in Green Valley.
most influential settlers on
i in. ill. ■-,— Cornelius, I'ri-'l-
l In- last was a practicing
sixty years ago. They set-
early time, and purchased
idson of Eider —Manning —
I one of the grandsons of
ies County. Fredei
offices in the township of
v I Frederick Frelinghuysen,
ick, Abraham Van Neste,
kiiiv other honored names of
■r of the Continental Con-
and Eugh — were early set-
township Dear the city of
m was a* blacksmith, and had his
li<>[> - • esidence of Alfred Berry.
P ineas M. French now lives.
rable land along the brook,
removed from the country
of their descendants now
agistrate, and a prominent
/erdon, a prominent magis-
1 in May, INS".
as one of the most eminent
II. lived where Alfred
practiced his profession till
loath. B ie present 1 >r. Lewis Craig,
i. I'r. John W. Craig held
in his township, and by
if hi- property for building
; his whlow I scroll' 1 wife]
I >r. ( Jraig was at one time
edical Society and a State
her of Phineas M., of Plain-
r of 1 d, Jr., settled at an early
'anvil, near Union Village.
' . ninety-four years of age; his
Phineas M., was about the
his 'hath, July, 1879. Be
e miles northwest oj
rs ago, when he removed to
ill Fn di lies have been
• -. i people of the town-hip.
Theodore F. and John II. ,
illin inten - in Plainfield,
' iged in the manufacture of
i North Plainfield in 1819;
ad, northward of Plainfield
re his father settled in 1828.
:i i i\ ■• of Monmouth County,
n. 1 carried on the busini -
1 Factory from 1 S 1 :i to 1828.
.1 farm in 1870, aged eighty-
Jeremiah R. Van I 1 .. ni. r settled in the township
in 1829. He is the son of Jacob, who was the son
of Jacob, St., one of thi firsl settlers al l: .urn 1 Brook.
The family came originally from Holland, ami con-
sisted of three brothers. Mr. Van Deventer married
Cornelia Stryker, of Somerset County, and has ,,,,,-
r. He is president of the First National
Bank of Plainfield, and also of the gas company of
that city, ami has served his township in several re-
sponsible "Hire - .
In the eastern part of the township lived Henry
Lines, a Quaker, noted as a great hunter. II
over ninety when he died. He had two sons, Amos
and David. Isaac, Sr., lives on Green Brook. Eliaa
Cole, father of Jacob, was also among the early men
of the township.
Archibald Coddington, proprietor of the mills in
North Plainfield, is a son of Archibald, Sr., one of
three brothers born at Mount Horeb, in Warren town-
ship.* Mr. Coddington married Eliza, daugh
Benjamin Moore, and has had twelve children, eight
of whom are living. Two of his sons — to wit, John
W. and Harrison — are associated with him in the
John Long, father of Jacob, of North Plainfield,
was a citizen of Somerville, where he died in 1848.
Jacob was born in the township of Bridgewater,
Somerset Co., Sept. 27, 1820. Be resided in that
place and married Miss Theresa Moore, Aug. 1, 1841.
They have six children, all bom and reared in Bridge-
water. In 1876 he settled in North Plainfield, where
he now resides, His -on, William Henry, is surrogate
of the County, and resides in Somerville.
North Plainfield is a recently organized township,
having been set off from Warren by legislative enact-
ment in l s72. At the first town-meeting, held April
8, 1872, a full list of officers for the ensuing year w:ls
We give below the principal officers of each
year to the present time, under their respective heads ;
WilUun It. v.in Wlnkla; 181 i
78, Isnn. llr..kiov ; 1878-80, William A. Schatt
1S72-70, Iernci 1 1. Coon ; 1*8", Isaac Brokaw.
I li-l.u C. Van N
0VBBSE1 OS 01 Tin: P0OB.
1872-77, William W. Dnki . I -77 i ml; t - ", Hanie!
FBI lll.'I DI B&
1872, J. K. Van Ivv.nt.r; 1873-70, WUllan K. .1 ; I-
Township '.''mi I
. Anguatta Uutrna, J i -,
H Vail, John A.Thl k-t. i..: John 1 ■
M. P. French .
• Soo tketch of the Oxhllngton family. In thai ■
: Indnatriaa, J Chairman of !!.■
SOMERSET COUNTY, NEW JERSEY.
YoUDg* John H. Tan Winkle; 1S75, Jacob Miles,* Alfred Berry,
Samuel Smalley, John L. Spencer, Thomas Worth ; 1S7G, John L.
Spencer, Jacob Miles,* Alfred Berry, Samuel Smalley, Thomas
Worth ; 1S77, Jacob Miles,* John L. Spencer, J. R. Van Deventer,
M. A. Schenck, William L. Smalley; 1878, M. W. Schenclt, John L.
Spencer,* Harrison Coddington, William L. Smalley, John Becker ;
1870, F. II. Gardner, Daniel R. Weaver,* Harrison Coddington ; 18S0,
F. H. Gardner, D. R. Weaver* Abrani M. Vail.
JUSTICES OF THE PEACE.
1S72, Daniel G. Van Winkle; 1873-78, Moses H. French, James Verdonjf
1877-82, Henry P. Bronk, A. R. Stagg; 1S78-83, James Verdon,
M. H. French.
VILLAGES AND HAMLETS.
North Plainfield is a regularly laid out, though
uot an incorporated, village, and is practically a part of
the city of Plainfield, though outside and adjoining its
corporate limits on the northwest. It has therefore all
the advantages of the city without the expense of sup-
porting a city government. The place has been laid
out on the lands of the farmers, and has been largely
settled by people from New York, or those who do
business in that city. The trains so run that they can
go into the city in the morning and return in the
evening, or at almost any time during the day that
suits their convenience. In this respect it may be re-
garded as one of those suburban places where people
of moderate means seek quiet and inexpensive homes
in the pure air and ample spaces of the country. The
houses are, many of them, new, and constructed with
more or less architectural elegance, the grounds being
ornamented with flowers and shrubbery, and every-
thing presenting a neat and tasty appearance. With-
in the compass of a few miles there are some elegant
mansions embowered in beautiful groves, with exten-
sive graveled walks and drives.
The village proper, aside from the township, in
which it is included both in geographical territory
and in municipal government, contains a population
of about 3000. The business interests of the place are
mostly in the cities of New York and Plainfield.
Besides, there are five groceries, a flour- and feed-
store, a hardware-store, a bakery, two butchers, three
blacksmiths, a wheelwright, a drug-store, and a silver-
plater. The physicians are Lewis Craig, Charles
Coolcy, and Monroe B. Long; the lawyers, John H.
Van Winkle, Charles Mathews, Charles Place. The
following clergymen reside here: Rev. Edward M.
Embury, Rev. William O. Embury, Rev. T. L. Mur-
phy, Rev. David Robertson, Rev. John Car'y (colored).
There are a saw- and grist-mill combined on Green
Brook road, four miles from Plainfield, by Joshua Mar-
tin; Goad's flouring-mill, leased by Runyon, three
miles out, on the Green Brook road ; the flouring-mill
of Moses H. French, Washingtonville; and that of
Coddington Brothers, Green Valley, one and a half
miles from the city.
The mill of Moses H. French is situated on Stony
* Chairman of Ibe committee.
t James Verdon Mas acting Justice of the peace at the time of the divis-
ion of the township -,t Warren, and rctulned his commission as justice
In the township of North l'luliiftold.
Brook, has three run of stones, and grinds hot;
torn and merchant flour; capacity, 100 bush
twelve hours. Freeman Cole, father of Mrs. M. I
French, bought the mill of Capt. Allen in 182
sold it to Thomas A. Hartwell, of Somerville.
Frenlh bought it in 1840 ; it was burned dow;
Mr. French rebuilt it in 1870.
The Coddington mill is one of similar capacity to
the above, having three run of stones. It was
built in 1840 by John Binge, and sold to Jacob Man-
ning, of Plainfield, who remodeled it into a
mill. Mr. Coddington bought it in 1854, and
1860 rebuilt it and put in a new water-wjieel an
chinery. Its products are partly merchant
Washingtonville is the name given to the i
borhood of French's Mill. There is quite a,littl
ter of buildings at the head of the gorgej "where it ex
pands into Washington Valley, — the mill, resii
of the proprietors, blacksmith- ' and repair-shops
school-house, etc. Demler's Hotel, farther dov