High Bridge, New Jersey

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High Bridge, New Jersey
Borough
Borough of High Bridge
High Bridge Reformed Church
High Bridge Reformed Church
Map of High Bridge in Hunterdon County. Inset: Location of Hunterdon County highlighted in the State of New Jersey.
Map of High Bridge in Hunterdon County. Inset: Location of Hunterdon County highlighted in the State of New Jersey.
Census Bureau map of High Bridge, New Jersey
Census Bureau map of High Bridge, New Jersey
Coordinates: 40°40′11″N 74°53′26″W / 40.669591°N 74.890548°W / 40.669591; -74.890548Coordinates: 40°40′11″N 74°53′26″W / 40.669591°N 74.890548°W / 40.669591; -74.890548[1][2]
Country  United States
State  New Jersey
County Hunterdon
Incorporated March 29, 1871 (as township)
Reincorporated February 19, 1898 (as borough)
Government[3][4]
 • Type Borough
 • Mayor Mark Desire (R, term ends December 31, 2018)[5]
 • Administrator Doug Walker[4]
 • Clerk Diane Seals[4]
Area[1]
 • Total 2.431 sq mi (6.297 km2)
 • Land 2.389 sq mi (6.188 km2)
 • Water 0.042 sq mi (0.109 km2)  1.74%
Area rank 377th of 566 in state
15th of 26 in county[1]
Elevation[6] 295 ft (90 m)
Population (2010 Census)[7][8][9]
 • Total 3,648
 • Estimate (2014)[10] 3,588
 • Rank 426th of 566 in state
16th of 26 in county[11]
 • Density 1,526.9/sq mi (589.5/km2)
 • Density rank 334th of 566 in state
5th of 26 in county[11]
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) Eastern (EDT) (UTC-4)
ZIP code 08829[12][13]
Area code(s) 908 Exchanges: 617, 638[14]
FIPS code 3401931320[1][15][16]
GNIS feature ID 0885251[1][17]
Website www.highbridge.org

High Bridge is a borough in Hunterdon County, New Jersey, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, the borough's population was 3,648,[7][8][9] reflecting a decline of 128 (-3.4%) from the 3,776 counted in the 2000 Census, which had in turn declined by 110 (-2.8%) from the 3,886 counted in the 1990 Census.[18]

History[edit]

Main Street, 2012

High Bridge was originally incorporated as a township by an Act of the New Jersey Legislature on March 29, 1871, from portions of Clinton Township and Lebanon Township. On February 19, 1898, the borough of High Bridge was incorporated from portions of the township, with the remainder returned to Clinton and Lebanon Townships five days later.[19]

The borough is located on the South Branch of the Raritan River in the north central part of Hunterdon County. Water from the South Branch was a valuable power source for one of the first ironworks in the United States, established by William Allen and Joseph Turner of Philadelphia. Allen was the mayor of Philadelphia, a Chief Justice of Pennsylvania, and a prominent landowner in New Jersey. The Central Railroad of New Jersey built a high bridge across the river from which structure the locality ultimately took its name.[20][21]

Geography[edit]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the borough had a total area of 2.431 square miles (6.297 km2), including 2.389 square miles (6.188 km2) of land and 0.042 square miles (0.109 km2) of water (1.74%).[1][2] It is drained by the South Branch of the Raritan River.

High Bridge borders Clinton Township and Lebanon Township.[22]

Unincorporated communities, localities and place names located partially or completely within the township include Jericho Hill, Pierce Heights[citation needed] and Silverthorn.[23]

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
1880 2,209
1890 1,935 −12.4%
1900 1,377 −28.8%
1910 1,545 12.2%
1920 1,795 16.2%
1930 1,860 3.6%
1940 1,781 −4.2%
1950 1,854 4.1%
1960 2,148 15.9%
1970 2,606 21.3%
1980 3,435 31.8%
1990 3,886 13.1%
2000 3,776 −2.8%
2010 3,648 −3.4%
Est. 2014 3,588 [10][24] −1.6%
Population sources: 1880-1920[25]
1880-1890[26] 1890-1910[27]
1910-1930[28] 1930-1990[29]
2000[30][31] 2010[7][8][9]

Census 2010[edit]

At the 2010 United States Census, there were 3,648 people, 1,418 households, and 1,004 families residing in the borough. The population density was 1,526.9 per square mile (589.5/km2). There were 1,481 housing units at an average density of 619.9 per square mile (239.3/km2). The racial makeup of the borough was 93.17% (3,399) White, 1.32% (48) Black or African American, 0.22% (8) Native American, 3.18% (116) Asian, 0.00% (0) Pacific Islander, 0.74% (27) from other races, and 1.37% (50) from two or more races. Hispanics or Latinos of any race were 6.00% (219) of the population.[7]

There were 1,418 households, of which 33.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.3% were married couples living together, 9.0% had a female householder with no husband present, and 29.2% were non-families. 22.9% of all households were made up of individuals, and 5.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.57 and the average family size was 3.06.[7]

In the borough, 24.3% of the population were under the age of 18, 6.9% from 18 to 24, 28.0% from 25 to 44, 32.3% from 45 to 64, and 8.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 39.9 years. For every 100 females there were 101.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 101.4 males.[7]

The Census Bureau's 2006-2010 American Community Survey showed that (in 2010 inflation-adjusted dollars) median household income was $90,037 (with a margin of error of +/- $10,054) and the median family income was $108,148 (+/- $6,913). Males had a median income of $77,500 (+/- $10,021) versus $47,936 (+/- $5,291) for females. The per capita income for the borough was $40,866 (+/- $4,587). About 0.0% of families and 0.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 0.0% of those under age 18 and 0.0% of those age 65 or over.[32]

Census 2000[edit]

As of the 2000 United States Census[15] there were 3,776 people, 1,428 households, and 1,051 families residing in the borough. The population density was 1,566.0 people per square mile (604.9/km2). There were 1,478 housing units at an average density of 613.0 per square mile (236.8/km2). The racial makeup of the borough was 96.24% White, 0.79% African American, 0.34% Native American, 1.43% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 0.45% from other races, and 0.72% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.12% of the population.[30][31]

There were 1,428 households out of which 39.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 62.3% were married couples living together, 8.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.4% were non-families. 20.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 4.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.64 and the average family size was 3.10.[30][31]

In the borough the population was spread out with 27.6% under the age of 18, 5.3% from 18 to 24, 36.4% from 25 to 44, 24.2% from 45 to 64, and 6.5% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 94.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 92.7 males.[30][31]

The median income for a household in the borough was $68,719, and the median income for a family was $75,357. Males had a median income of $56,607 versus $35,450 for females. The per capita income for the borough was $29,276. About 1.9% of families and 3.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 1.9% of those under age 18 and 9.2% of those age 65 or over.[30][31]

Parks and recreation[edit]

Union Forge building
Solitude House

High Bridge serves as the southern terminus of a rail trail that was created out of the former Central Railroad of New Jersey High Bridge Branch. The trail is maintained by Hunterdon County Parks and Recreation and is called the Columbia Trail. The trail runs northeastward from the center of the borough (at the junction of Main Street and Church Street) towards Califon, through a scenic area outside the borough limits, known as the Ken Lockwood Gorge.[33]

Union Forge Park is High Bridge's main public park, located across the Raritan River from Taylor Wharton. Another park is the Borough Commons, situated at the start of the Columbia Trail. A grant received by the Union Forge Heritage Association in 2008 provided for the creation of the Taylor Steelworkers Historical Greenway, which stretches 5 14 miles (8.4 km) around the borough, starting at Columbia Trail and connecting the borough's parks and other historic sites.[34]

The High Bridge Hills golf course, located near Route 31, provides another means of recreation in the small town.[35]

Government[edit]

Local government[edit]

High Bridge is governed under the Borough form of New Jersey municipal government. The governing body consists of a Mayor and a Borough Council comprising six council members, with all positions elected at-large on a partisan basis as part of the November general election. A Mayor is elected directly by the voters to a four-year term of office. The Borough Council consists of six members elected to serve three-year terms on a staggered basis, with two seats coming up for election each year in a three-year cycle.[3] The Borough form of government used by High Bridge, the most common system used in the state, is a "weak mayor / strong council" government in which council members act as the legislative body with the mayor presiding at meetings and voting only in the event of a tie. The mayor can veto ordinances subject to an override by a two-thirds majority vote of the council. The mayor makes committee and liaison assignments for council members, and most appointments are made by the mayor with the advice and consent of the council.[36][37][38]

As of 2015, the Mayor of High Bridge Borough is Republican Mark Desire, whose term of office ends December 31, 2018. Members of the Borough Council are Lynn Hughes (2016), Karen Scarcia (2015), Adrienne Shipps (R, 2017), Stephen Strange (appointed on an interim basis to serve an unexpired term ending in 2016), Mike Stemple (2015) and Chris Zappa (R, 2017).[4][39]

In November 2014, the Borough council selected Stephen Strange to fill the vacant seat expiring in 2016 of Victoria Miller, who had resigned from office in the previous month.[40]

Federal, state and county representation[edit]

High Bridge is located in the 7th Congressional District[41] and is part of New Jersey's 18th state legislative district.[8][42][43] Prior to the 2011 reapportionment following the 2010 Census, High Bridge had been in the 23rd state legislative district.[44]

New Jersey's Seventh Congressional District is represented by Leonard Lance (R, Clinton Township).[45] New Jersey is represented in the United States Senate by Cory Booker (D, Newark, term ends 2021)[46] and Bob Menendez (D, Paramus, 2019).[47][48]

For the 2014-15 Session, the 18th District of the New Jersey Legislature is represented in the State Senate by Peter J. Barnes III (D, Edison) and in the General Assembly by Patrick J. Diegnan (D, South Plainfield) and Nancy Pinkin (D, East Brunswick).[49][50] The Governor of New Jersey is Chris Christie (R, Mendham Township).[51] The Lieutenant Governor of New Jersey is Kim Guadagno (R, Monmouth Beach).[52]

Hunterdon County is governed by a five-member Board of Chosen Freeholders, who serve three-year terms of office at-large on a staggered basis, with either one or two seats up for election each year on a partisan basis as part of the November general election. At an annual reorganization meeting held each January, the freeholders select one member to serve as the board's Director and another to serve as Deputy Director.[53] As of 2015, Hunterdon County's Freeholders are Freeholder Director John King (R; Raritan Township, 2015),[54] Freeholder Deputy Director Suzanne Lagay (R; Holland Township, 2016),[55] J. Matthew Holt (R; Clinton Town, 2015),[56] John E. Lanza (R; Flemington, 2016)[57] and Robert G. Walton (R; Hampton, 2017).[58][59] Constitutional officers elected on a countywide basis are County Clerk Mary H. Melfi (R; Flemington, 2017),[60] Sheriff Fredrick W. Brown (R; Alexandria Township, 2016)[61] and Surrogate Susan J. Hoffman (R; Kingwood Township, 2018).[62][63][64]

Politics[edit]

As of March 23, 2011, there were a total of 2,414 registered voters in High Bridge, of which 502 (20.8%) were registered as Democrats, 971 (40.2%) were registered as Republicans and 934 (38.7%) were registered as Unaffiliated. There were 7 voters registered to other parties.[65]

In the 2012 presidential election, Democrat Barack Obama received 50.4% of the vote (893 cast), ahead of Republican Mitt Romney with 47.8% (846 votes), and other candidates with 1.8% (32 votes), among the 1,788 ballots cast by the borough's 2,497 registered voters (17 ballots were spoiled), for a turnout of 71.6%.[66][67] In the 2008 presidential election, Democrat Barack Obama received 48.6% of the vote (938 cast), ahead of Republican John McCain with 48.4% (936 votes) and other candidates with 2.1% (41 votes), among the 1,932 ballots cast by the borough's 2,487 registered voters, for a turnout of 77.7%.[68] In the 2004 presidential election, Republican George W. Bush received 55.9% of the vote (1,012 ballots cast), outpolling Democrat John Kerry with 43.0% (778 votes) and other candidates with 1.1% (25 votes), among the 1,811 ballots cast by the borough's 2,315 registered voters, for a turnout percentage of 78.2.[69]

In the 2013 gubernatorial election, Republican Chris Christie received 69.3% of the vote (778 cast), ahead of Democrat Barbara Buono with 28.5% (320 votes), and other candidates with 2.1% (24 votes), among the 1,136 ballots cast by the borough's 2,469 registered voters (14 ballots were spoiled), for a turnout of 46.0%.[70][71] In the 2009 gubernatorial election, Republican Chris Christie received 60.6% of the vote (819 ballots cast), ahead of Democrat Jon Corzine with 27.1% (367 votes), Independent Chris Daggett with 10.3% (139 votes) and other candidates with 1.1% (15 votes), among the 1,352 ballots cast by the borough's 2,433 registered voters, yielding a 55.6% turnout.[72]

Education[edit]

The High Bridge School District serves students in pre-Kindergarten through eighth grade. As of the 2011-12 school year, the district's two schools had an enrollment of 395 students and 42.5 classroom teachers (on an FTE basis), for a student–teacher ratio of 9.29:1.[73] Schools in the districts (with 2011-12 enrollment data from the National Center for Education Statistics[74]) are High Bridge Elementary School[75] for grades Pre-K - 5 (258 students) and High Bridge Middle School[76] for grades 6 - 8 (137 students).[77][78]

Public school students in ninth through twelfth grades attend Voorhees High School, which also serves students from Califon, Glen Gardner, Hampton, Lebanon Township and Tewksbury Township, who attend Voorhees High School in Lebanon Township.[79] The school is part of the North Hunterdon-Voorhees Regional High School District, which also includes students from Bethlehem Township, Clinton Town, Clinton Township, Franklin Township, Lebanon Borough and Union Township who attend North Hunterdon High School in Annandale.[80][81][82]

Transportation[edit]

Roads and highways[edit]

As of May 2010, the borough had a total of 21.00 miles (33.80 km) of roadways, of which 18.99 miles (30.56 km) were maintained by the municipality and 2.01 miles (3.23 km) by Hunterdon County.[83]

CR 513 is the main road that passes through and connects to Route 31 to the west.

Interstate 78 is accessible via Routes 513 and 31 in neighboring Clinton Township.

Public transportation[edit]

Originally a vital junction for the Central Railroad of New Jersey in hauling iron ore from northern New Jersey via its High Bridge Branch which headed north toward Wharton, High Bridge[84] now serves as the westernmost station on New Jersey Transit's Raritan Valley Line.[85][86] It is located at the southern end of the station. The parking lot for the station is located one block to the west. The station only uses the southern track for inbound and outbound trains. There is a station building that is no longer used and there are two small shelters. This station has limited weekday service and no weekend service. The station has been the western terminus of the line since 1983, the year NJT commenced operations. Between 1983 and 1989, NJT reached Phillipsburg, New Jersey on the former Central Railroad of New Jersey mainline. Since that time, the route between High Bridge and Phillipsburg has been inactive. NJT considers making plans for bringing service back to Phillipsburg again in the future.

Points of interest[edit]

Solitude House, built circa 1710-1725, became the centerpiece of the iron plantation that became Union Forge Ironworks. Later called Taylor Iron and Steel Company, it eventually became known as Taylor-Wharton. John Penn, the last royal governor of Pennsylvania, and Benjamin Chew, the last Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, were political prisoners at Solitude House during the American Revolutionary War. Five generations of the Taylor family managed the business and continued to live in the house, until 1938. Acquired by the Borough in 2001, and previously operated as a museum, the house is currently closed due to a lease dispute. The Union Forge Heritage Association operated Solitude House Museum from 2002 to 2012.[87]

The Taylor Steel Workers Historical Greenway, created by the Union Forge Heritage Association, connects to the Columbia Trail.[88]

The TISCO Headquarters, constructed in 1742 for the Union Iron Works, is the oldest office building in New Jersey.[89]

Lake Solitude dam, replacing the crib dam of 1858, replaced in 1909, is the last remaining example of a buttress dam in New Jersey, built by master engineer Frank S. Tainter.[90]

Springside Farm, was established in 1803, by Archibald S. Taylor, as the agricultural farm of the Taylor Iron and Steel Company.

The Paul Robinson Observatory is an astronomical observatory owned and operated by Edwin E. Aldrin Astronomical Center.[91]

Business[edit]

High Bridge has a downtown (Main Street) that is home to eateries, services and professionals. Circa Restaurant, at the center of Main Street, has received acclaim from a variety of sources including a food editor from The New York Times who proclaimed, "Circa is the kind of place I wish were in my town."[92]

The businesses are collectively marketed by the High Bridge Business Association, which assists its member businesses through co-operative advertising, press releases, goodwill and other benefits.[93]

Notable people[edit]

People who were born in, residents of, or otherwise closely associated with High Bridge include:

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f 2010 Census Gazetteer Files: New Jersey County Subdivisions, United States Census Bureau. Accessed May 21, 2015.
  2. ^ a b US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990, United States Census Bureau. Accessed September 4, 2014.
  3. ^ a b 2012 New Jersey Legislative District Data Book, Rutgers University Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy, March 2013, p. 103.
  4. ^ a b c d Council, High Bridge Borough. Accessed January 5, 2015.
  5. ^ 2014 New Jersey Mayors Directory, New Jersey Department of Community Affairs, as of December 15, 2014. Accessed April 20, 2015. As of date accessed, Desire was listed as mayor with a term-end year of 2014.
  6. ^ U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Borough of High Bridge, Geographic Names Information System. Accessed March 5, 2013.
  7. ^ a b c d e f DP-1 - Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 for High Bridge borough, Hunterdon County, New Jersey, United States Census Bureau. Accessed November 14, 2012.
  8. ^ a b c d Municipalities Grouped by 2011-2020 Legislative Districts, New Jersey Department of State, p. ???. Accessed January 6, 2013.
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  12. ^ Look Up a ZIP Code for High Bridge, NJ, United States Postal Service. Accessed November 14, 2012.
  13. ^ Zip Codes, State of New Jersey. Accessed August 28, 2013.
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  34. ^ Brickman, Rachael S. "New trail will trace High Bridge's history", and ending as Amesbury Furnace circa 1753 in Clinton Township Hunterdon County Democrat, October 5, 2008. Accessed October 15, 2013. "The Union Forge Heritage Association has received a $24,500 Recreational Trails Program grant from the state in order to create a 5.25-mile trail around the borough.The project, which will be known at the Taylor Steelworkers Historical Greenway, will begin at the Columbia Trail and will pass a number of local landmarks including Lake Solitude, the Solitude House museum and the Union Forge before ending up at Springside Farm."
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  76. ^ High Bridge Middle School, High Bridge School District. Accessed January 4, 2015.
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  79. ^ Voorhees High School 2014 Report Card Narrative, New Jersey Department of Education. Accessed April 21, 2015. "Voorhees High School has consistently ranked among the top high schools in New Jersey. With an enrollment of 1,097 students in grades 9-12, the school serves the communities of Califon, Glen Gardner, Hampton, High Bridge, Lebanon Township, and Tewksbury Township."
  80. ^ About the North Hunterdon-Voorhees Regional High School District, North Hunterdon-Voorhees Regional High School District. Accessed January 4, 2015. "North Hunterdon High School educates students from: Bethlehem Township, Clinton Town, Clinton Township, Franklin Township, Lebanon Borough, Union Township; Voorhees High School educates students from: Califon, Glen Gardner, Hampton, High Bridge, Lebanon Township, Tewksbury Township"
  81. ^ Information Regarding Choice of District School, North Hunterdon-Voorhees Regional High School District. Accessed January 4, 2015. "In the past, parents and students of the North Hunterdon High School sending districts were able to select either North Hunterdon High School or Voorhees High School as their school of choice.... As our student population continued to grow and our two high schools reached, and exceeded, 90% capacity, the option of choosing Voorhees was eliminated in the 2005-2006 school year for the North Hunterdon sending districts (Bethlehem Township, Clinton Township, Franklin Township, Lebanon Borough and Union Township – Clinton Town students still have choice as they are classmates at Clinton Public School with Glen Gardner students, who attend Voorhees)."
  82. ^ About the District North Hunterdoon-Voorhees Regional High School District. Accessed January 4, 2015. "North Hunterdon High School educates students from: Bethlehem Township, Clinton Town, Clinton Township, Franklin Township, Lebanon Borough, Union Township; Voorhees High School educates students from: Califon, Glen Gardner, Hampton, High Bridge, Lebanon Township, Tewksbury Township"
  83. ^ Hunterdon County Mileage by Municipality and Jurisdiction, New Jersey Department of Transportation, May 2010. Accessed July 18, 2014.
  84. ^ High Bridge station, New Jersey Transit. Accessed October 15, 2013.
  85. ^ Raritan Valley Line, New Jersey Transit. Accessed October 15, 2013.
  86. ^ Hunterdon County Bus / Rail Connections, New Jersey Transit, backed up by the Internet Archive as of July 26, 2010. Accessed November 14, 2012.
  87. ^ Tyrrell, Joe. "The Battle for Solitude House", NJSpotlight, July 30, 2012. Accessed October 15, 2013.
  88. ^ Taylor Steel Workers Historical Greenway, Union Forge Heritage Association Solitude House Museum. Accessed November 14, 2012.
  89. ^ TISCO Building, New Jersey Historic Trust. Accessed February 20, 2011.
  90. ^ O'Brien, Walter. "Historic Solitude House shares birthday party with nation", Home News Tribune, July 1, 2008. Accessed February 20, 2011. "Tour Lake Solitude Dam recently named to Preservation New Jersey's 2008 10 Most Endangered List and the last remaining buttress dam in the state."
  91. ^ About Us, New Jersey Astronomical Association. Accessed January 4, 2015.
  92. ^ Cook, Karla. "DINING/HIGH BRIDGE; Having Fun, With Mussels and More", The New York Times, October 15, 2006. Accessed September 28, 2008. "Yet Circa is the kind of place I wish were in my town. The space is magical; only the steak breaks the $30 mark in the dinner category; and Mr. Coury, who graduated from the French Culinary Institute and worked at the Ryland Inn in Whitehouse, the Frenchtown Inn and Nodo in Princeton, is having fun."
  93. ^ Our Mission, High Bridge Business Association. Accessed October 15, 2013.
  94. ^ Frank Baldwin, Baseball-Reference.com. Accessed January 4, 2015.
  95. ^ Dey, Jim. "Naomi Jakobsson", The News-Gazette, May 11, 2014. Accessed January 4, 2015. "The Jakobssons met in the early 1960s in High Bridge, N.J., a city were Naomi grew up and where Eric was working at a cryogenics laboratory."
  96. ^ Bolton, Whitney. "New York Day by Day", Reading Eagle, May 17, 1957. Accessed February 20, 2011.
  97. ^ Dan Smith player profile, The Baseball Cube. Accessed July 29, 2007.
  98. ^ Historic Clinton, Clinton, New Jersey. Accessed February 20, 2011. "George W. Taylor, son of Archibald Taylor, was raised at 'Solitude', a special elitist residential area that became High Bridge."

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