This is the next article in my series on the history of the Pauch farm in Delaware Township. In the previous post,1 Charles Sergeant had sold the old Richard Green farm to John R. Opdycke in 1805, and moved to the farm owned by Opdycke’s father, Samuel Opdycke. John Opdycke had no need for the Green farm. He had married in 1803 and was living in Kingwood on land that came from his wife’s family. Why did Opdycke make this swap? I suspect he wanted to close out his father’s estate, and this was one way to do it. Or, perhaps Sergeant knew how eager Opdycke was to settle matters and proposed a swap instead of an outright purchase.
SERGEANT. This family is important to the history of Delaware Township. But researching the earliest members of this family has been very difficult. They may have been from Germany, but they might also have come from the English family that settled in Massachusetts.
Turns out even the family could not agree.
I’ve been baffled by the genealogy of this family, finding it impossible to be certain about their origins. In the process of researching the next chapter in the history of the Pauch farm, I came upon two conflicting sources for this question.
This article is a continuation of the history of the Pauch Farm in Delaware Township, first owned by Richard Bull in 1702, then by Samuel Green, then by Green’s son Richard, and now Richard’s granddaughter Sarah and her husband Charles Sergeant in 1794. Ninety-two years in the same family, and counting.
by Jonathan M. Hoppock
published in the Democrat-Advertiser, July 20, 1905
This article is a follow up to the one published in 1901 titled “Sergeant Mansion and Mill, 1745.” Some of the information in this article was taken directly from the earlier one. Perhaps Mr. Hoppock figured no one would remember what he had written before. I am publishing these articles on the website because there are errors and this is a good way to make note of them.
by Jonathan M. Hoppock
published in the Democrat Advertiser, December 5, 1901
This interesting old property deserves a much longer treatment than Mr. Hoppock was able to give. He did return to this subject when he published “The Old Sergeant Mill” on July 20, 1905. However, that article was focused on the mill, rather than the house—the mill was located just north of the house, but has since been torn down. The most remarkable thing about the house is that it has been in the same family since Charles Sergeant and wife Sarah Green took possession in 1805, over 200 years.1
In 2009, I published an article about this interesting cemetery on the website The Delaware Township Post. This coming June, this cemetery will be the focus of a celebration; most of the original Williamson farm has been purchased from Bryce Thompson by the N. J. Conservation Foundation in partnership with the State of New Jersey, Hunterdon County and Delaware Township. The cemetery is part of this new addition to preserved lands in our town. I am delighted! Here is the article: Continue reading »
Overseers of Roads
At the first town meeting, the Township Committee voted that $1,000 was to be raised for making and repairing roads. Municipalities were responsible for their roads, while the county took responsibility for the bridges. Generally, it was the landowners along the roads who maintained them, so you can imagine what condition they were in: dust in the summer, mud in the spring and downright impassible in the winter, unless you had a sleigh. The township named many people to be Overseers of Roads. It’s hard to say exactly what their responsibilities were. Most likely, they managed the work that was ordered by the Surveyors of Highways. Continue reading »
By Marfy Goodspeed in Amwell Township, Bray, Delaware Township, Families, Gordon, Historians Revisited, Hoppock, Hunterdon County, J. M. Hoppock, Lair, Opdycke, Rittenhouse, Sergeant, Williamson 4 Comments Tags: early settlers, schools
by Jonathan M. Hoppock
published in The Democrat Advertiser, January 25, 1906
This article was written by J. M. Hoppock. I have added corrections and additions in footnotes. Mr. Hoppock’s very specific description of this building, which was demolished long ago, is invaluable to students of the township’s history and early architecture. Continue reading »
By Marfy Goodspeed in Delaware Township, Families, Headquarters, Howell, Kitchen, Lambert, Lambertville, Opdycke, Prallsville, Rosemont, Sandbrook, Sergeant, Sergeantsville, Stockton 5 Comments Tags: early occupations, early settlers, Indians, land titles, mills, post offices, roads, stores
The following is an update of a speech I delivered at the Locktown Stone Church in May 1997. I thought it would be a good idea to archive the speech here on my website, especially since it makes a nice short history of Delaware Township. When I gave the speech, I had two large maps showing locations of mills, taverns, ferries, the oldest roads. One map showed the 18th century version of Delaware Township, and one showed the 19th century version. Whatever happened to those maps? If I find them, I’ll turn them over to Marilyn Cummings who has been working hard on just such a map project, one that can be seen on Google Earth. Continue reading »
By which I mean mill wheels.
There is a fascinating article on water-powered mills to be found on “History–Now and Then” giving detailed information on how the ancient grist mills worked. The author, known as “Jerseyman,” explains how overshot wheels were designed and how much more efficient they were than undershot wheels. Immediately I thought of a locally famous overshot wheel at the old Sergeant’s mill near the Wickecheoke. Here’s a picture that says it all–the perfect example of an overshot wheel. Continue reading »