481 Eagle Rock Avenue, West Orange, NJ

A Brief History of West Orange

In 1666, a group of Puritans lead by Robert Treat, sailed into the Long Island Sound past the English & Dutch settlements of NY. They continued west through the Kill von Kull that opened onto the waters of a great bay that narrowed into a river known as the Passaic. In 1667 a formal treaty was signed between Treat and the Hackensack Indians (a band of the Lenape tribe) for the purchase of a tract of land on the banks of the Passaic River, and became known as the Newark Settlement. Because of its rugged terrain in the western part, the settlers of this land became known as the Mountain Society.

By 1806 the township of Orange was established and was no longer part of the original Newark Settlement.  The population of Essex County was growing from hundreds to thousands and from agricultural to manufacturing and into prosperous towns.  In 1862,  a parcel of land from Orange was taken and the present day West Orange began to take shape.

In 2012, West Orange celebrated its 150th Sesquicentennial Anniversary.

Famous people born or lived in West Orange:

  • Michael Pitt, actor
  • Amos Alonzo Stagg, athlete and pioneering college coach
  • Ian Ziering, actor
  • David Cassidy, actor/singer
  • Scott Wolf, actor
  • Leo Fitzpatrick, actor
  • Carole King, musician
  • Thomas Alva Edison, the "Wizard of Menlo Park"
  • Brendan Byrne, Governor of New Jersey 1974-1982
  • Richard Codey, State Senator, Governor of New Jersey 2004-2006

For additional West Orange History, visit this web site: http://westorangehistory.com

Excerpts taken from Joseph Fagan