Annandale, New Jersey History

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VILLAGE OF ANNANDALE excerpt from History of Hunterdon and Somerset Counties, New Jersey, with illustrations and biographical sketches of it's prominent men and pioneers (1881). (Cornell University Library) Click link to view full text


Annandale, containing in July, 1880, a population of 380, is a station on the New Jersey Central Railroad, and consequently a place of more or less activity. Eighteen passenger-trains stop each twenty-four hours, while the freight- and coal-trains are innumerable. Lime-kilns in the vicinity supply the country round about and furnish annually 200 cars of lime. The railway shipments of milk average annually eighty cans per day, while the receipts by rail of lumber, coal, and malt amount to a handsome exhibit. The village took its rise simultaneously with the completion of the New Jersey Central Railroad, June 20, 1852. N. N. Boeman, a tavern-keeper at White House, George M. Frech, the station-agent at that point, Jacob Young, a merchant, and James Kenna and Thomas Kinney, railway employees, moved from White House to occupy Clinton Station (as Annandale was called). Frech was transferred to that point to be the station-agent, Boeman went there to put up a tavern, Young to build a store and begin trading, Kinney and Kenna to work for the railway company. Upon their arrival they found the present site occupied by the farms of the widow of Peter Young, the widow Jane Huffman, and John H. Cregar. Boeman purchased the first village lot, and built thereon the present village tavern, of which he was the landlord from 1852 to 1879. Frech, the railroad agent, lived in the station-building erected in 1852, and Jacob Young, losing no time, built a store and grain warehouse. July 4, 1852, the first through-train for passengers from New York to Easton passed Clinton Station. The village bore the name of Clinton Station until 1873, when the then president of the Central Railroad, John T. Johnston, suggested the present name upon being requested to rechristen the place. The presumption seems to be that he called it after a town in his own native Scotland. The only resident physician the town ever had was William Knight, now of Clinton, who practiced from 1872 to 1878. Theodore Risler was the first village postmaster, and was succeeded in turn by Josiah Cole and John Lair. Besides the ordinary village enterprises, Annandale has a sash and blind factory, whose proprietors, B. E. Young & Co., carry on also a large lumber trade.