Elizabeth, New Jersey

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View Near Elizabethtown, N. J., oil painting by Régis François Gignoux, Honolulu Museum of Art

Elizabeth is a city in Union County, New Jersey, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, the city had a total population of 124,969.[1] It is New Jersey's fourth largest city.[2] In 2008, Elizabeth was named one of "America's 50 Greenest Cities" by Popular Science magazine, the only city in New Jersey selected.[3]

History[change | change source]

Elizabeth was founded in 1665 by English settlers and originally called "Elizabethtown". It was part of the Elizabethtown Tract. The town was named for Elizabeth, wife of George Carteret.[4] The town served as the first capital of New Jersey.[5] During the American Revolutionary War, there were over a hundred battles and skirmishes fought in and around Elizabeth.[6]

On March 13, 1855, the City of Elizabeth was created by an Act of the New Jersey Legislature.[7] On March 19, 1857, the city became part of the newly created Union County. Portions of the city were taken to form Linden Township on March 4, 1861.[8]

The Singer Sewing Machine Company was the first major industry in Elizabeth. They as many as 2,000 people. In 1895, it saw one of the first car companies. This is when Electric Carriage and Wagon Company was founded to manufacture the Electrobat. They were soon joined by another electric car builder, Andrew L. Riker. The Electric Boat Company got its start building submarines for the United States Navy in Elizabeth. The first boat to launch was the USS Holland (SS-1) in 1897.[9] Elizabeth grew in parallel to its sister city of Newark for many years. But Elizabeth has been more successful in retaining a middle class presence and was spared riots in the 1960s.

References[change | change source]

  1. DP-1 - Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010 for Elizabeth city, Union County, New Jersey, United States Census Bureau. Accessed 20 July 2014.
  2. "Elizabeth, NJ real estate and demographic information". Locations, Inc. 2014. Retrieved 20 July 2014. 
  3. Elizabeth Svoboda; et al., 'America's 50 Greenest Cities', Popular Science, Vol 272, No. 3 (March 2008), pp. 51–58
  4. Anthony DePalma (28 August 1983). "If Your're Thinking of Living In: Elizabeth". The New York Times Company. 
  5. Jean-Rae Turner; Richard T. Koles, Elizabeth: The First Capital of New Jersey (Charleston, SC: Arcadia, 2003), p. 13
  6. Jean-Rae Turner; Richard T. Koles, Elizabeth: The First Capital of New Jersey (Charleston, SC: Arcadia, 2003), p. 28
  7. Edwin Hatfield, History of Elizabeth, New Jersey (Carlisle, MA: Applewood Books, 2010), p. 685
  8. John P. Snyder, The Story of New Jersey's Civil Boundaries: 1606-1968 (Trenton, NJ: Bureau of Geology and Topography, 1969; Reprinted: New Jersey Geological Survey, 2004), p. 238
  9. Biographical Dictionary of the History of Technology, eds. Lance Day; Ian McNeil (London; New York: Routledge, 1996), p. 604