First settled along a tributary of the Raritan River in 1720, South River was known as Willettstown and later as Washington. Part of East Brunswick until 1898, it emerged as an independent borough in Middlesex County with the passage of the state law to incorporate it. Although comprising fewer than three square miles, South River once served as a shipping and transportation link between New York and Philadelphia and has been home to industry since the first brickyard was established in the mid-1800s. Sand and clay mining, brick and tile manufacturing, shipbuilding, and textile and clothing manufacture have played significant roles in the development of the borough, as have the numerous ethnic groups in the community. Spanning the years from 1891 to 1906, the images included in this book document a time when hotels, embroidery factories, brickyards, and small businesses flourished while the population doubled and a trolley line simplified connections with nearby communities.
About the Author
Stephanie Bartz, Brian Armstrong, and Nan Whitehead each have a family connection to South River that dates back to the 1800s, and each is actively involved in the work of the South River Historical & Preservation Society, Inc....