Online Encyclopedia

SOMERVILLE

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V25, Page 392 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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SOMERVILLE, a borough and the county-seat' of Somerset county, New Jersey, U.S.A., in the north central part of the state, on the Raritan river, about 36 m. S.W. of New York City. Pop. (189o), 3861; (1900), 4843, of whom 56o were foreign-born; (1905), 4782; (1910), 5069. It is served by the Central Railroad of New Jersey and by inter-urban electric lines. Adjoining the borough on the west is the town of Raritan (pop. in 1910, 3672). Places of interest in Somerville are the Old Parsonage of the Dutch Reformed Church, built in 1750–1751 of brick imported from Holland by the Rev. Theodorus Jacobus Frelinghuysen, the first pastor; the Wallace House, built in 1778 and occupied by General Washington as his head-quarters during the following winter, when the main army was in camp at Bound Brook; and Duke's Park (partly in Raritan), the immense private estate (laid out as a park and open to the public) of James B. Duke, president of the American Tobacco Company. Somerville has a fine county court house (1909) of Alabama white marble. Among the borough's manufactures are stoves, ranges, soil pipe, brick, woollen goods and shirts. Settlements were made within the present limits of Somerville in the last quarter of the 17th century, and the village was at first called Raritan, all that part of the Raritan Valley from Bound Brook to the junction of the north and south branches of the river, and including the present Somerville and Raritan, then being popularly called " Raritans." The present name was adopted in ,8ox. Somerville became the county-seat in 1783, after the destruction of the court-house in what is now the borough of Millstone (in Hillsborough township, about 6 m. south of Somerville) on the 27th of October 1779 by British troops under Colonel John Graves Simcoe; it was incorporated as a town in 1863, and as a borough in 1909.
End of Article: SOMERVILLE
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WILLIAM SOMERVILE (1675-1742)
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MARY SOMERVILLE (178o-1872)

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