Key Dates in Maplewood History

Courtesy of Public Library in Maplewood

  1666        Settlers from Connecticut first land in Newark.

  1667        First purchase: "...backwards into the country to the foot
              of the great mountains called Watchung."

  circa 1710  Settlers first make their home in the valley.

  1780        Valley farmers (John Headley & others) join Battle of
              Springfield against the British.  Gen. George Washington
              visits the Ball farm.

  1796        Asher B. Durand born ... to become Maplewood's most famous

  1798        Name Jefferson Village given to area centering not far
              from foot of Oakland Road; is part of the town of Springfield.

  1806        Orange, created out of part of Newark, includes northern
              part of present day Maplewood.

  1820        Asher B. Durand begins career in Newark as an engraver's
              apprentice; late is a founder of the Hudson River School
              of landscape painting.

  1831        Lewis Pierson starts building his mill in Vaux Hall area.

  1834        Township of Clinton formed, including the settlement along
              Valley Street, the eastern hills, and South Orange.

  1838        Morris & Essex Railway build through town; Stone House Station
              a flagstop.

  1855        Famous inventor Seth Boyden retires to a house in Hilton given
              to him by the Newark manufacturers he had so much benefited.
              He cultivates a large strawberry, which brings prosperity to
              Hilton area farms. d.1870.

  1857        Jefferson Village included in newly formed town of Millburn.

  1860        First railway station, called Maplewood station, is built at
              Baker Street.

  1861        South Orange Township created from parts of Orange, Springfield
              & Clinton.

  1863        Jefferson Village becomes part of South Orange.

  1869        School building completed by Daniel B. Carpenter on site of
              present post office.

  late 1860's Teddy Roosevelt, future President, spends childhood summers
  early '70's here on the country estate of his aunt and uncle, Laura and
              Cornelius Roosevelt.

  1880        Name of Hilton comes into use for the area around Tuscan Road
              and Springfield Pike (formerly, from 1830 to 1880, known as

  1882        Hilton Reading Club, precursor to Hilton Library, is organized.

  1899        First volunteer fire department organized.

  1902        Railroad station built on Dunnell Road.

  1903        Village of South Orange withdraws to form a separate
              municipality, leaving the remaining 3.85 sq. miles as the
              Township of South Orange.

  1908        In first steps toward forming an athletic club, come citizens
              buy the DeGrasse farm on Baker Street and undertake to convert
              the barn to a club house.

  1913        Maplewood Library organized in the valley. Seth Boyden School

  1914        Fielding School erected.

  1920        The Field Club changes its name to Maplewood Country Club and
              undertakes to build an 18-hole golf course on newly acquired

  1920's      Building boom in underway, transforming Maplewood from rural
              to suburban. Elementary schools built were Jefferson, Tuscan
              (1925) and Clinton (1928).

  1922        Township of South Orange officially becomes Township of
              Maplewood, taking the name from the train stop.

  1922        The two libraries join and reorganize as a tax-supported
              municipal library.

  1927        Columbia High School erects new building near border with
              South Orange.

  1929        Construction of the Ward Homestead begins, under provisions
              of Marcus L. Ward, Jr.'s will to build a retirement home for

  1930        Final steam locomotive runs as rail line electrified.

  1931        Memorial Park dedicated; design by Frederick Law Olmstead's

  1932        Municipal Building built.

  1933        Adult School started - New Jersey's first.

  1956        Library construction begins at 51 Baker Street and, after
              occupancy in 1957, the former building razed to make room for
              a new Post Office.

  1958        Post Office on Maplewood Avenue dedicated.

  1959        Hilton Branch Library vacates upper floor of Hilton firehouse
              and moves to its new building on Springfield Avenue at Tuscan

  1966        Municipal Pool opens.

  1968        Columbia High School students invent Ultimate, a football-like
              field game using a Frisbee flying disc.

  1969        Main Library expanded.

  1970        South Mountain YMCA formed.

  1984        Morris & Essex rail line modernized with new cars and AC powers.

  1985        Community Center erected in DeHart Park; night lights for ball -
              playing added.

  1988        Burgdorff Cultural Center deeded to Township and becomes the
              official home of The Strollers theater group.




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