History and Genealogy of East Greenwich NJ
Main Page
Main Page
Genealogical Research
Maps and Statistics
Maps & Statistics
Historic Places
Historic Places
Public Buildings
Public Buildings
NEWS in East GreenwichTownship NEWS
Useful LinksUseful Links
Family Trees
Family Trees
About Us - Contact Me
About Us/Contact
Site MapSite Map
Sign My GuestbookGuestbook
H I S T O R Y  o f

Clarksboro (originally called Clarksborough) was settled at the crossing of two important roads--the Kings Highway and Cohawkin Road. The Swedes, Finns and Dutch had settlements along the Delaware and local creeks since 1633, and the Native Americans (Lenni Lenape) even earlier than that.

Old photo of Clarksboro - intersection of Kings Highway and Cohawkin Road
Clarksboro intersection at Kings Highway and Cohawkin Road.
Photograph generously donated by Pete Miskofsky

An 1883 book, History of the Counties of Gloucester, Salem and Cumberland, published in 1883 describes Clarksboro as follows:
This quiet old town is situated in the northeast part of the township, at the crossing of Old Salem Pike and the Paulsboro-Mullica Hill Roads.

In the early part of the present (19th) century, the land on the northeast side of the Mullica Hill Road was owned by Jeffrey Clark [genealogy and some descendants of Jeffrey Clark coming soon], from whom the town takes its name. He was a large landowner, his plantation including all in that part of and running well up towards the old Death of the Fox Inn." He caused the farm on that portion nearest the crossing to be laid out in building lots, somewhat larger than is the custom at the present day.

READ about the original CLARK FAMILY burial spot.

The southwest side of the Mullica Hill and Paulsboro road was owned by different parties, among whom was John Eglington (after whom Elgingon Cemetery is named), the Gill family, the Sailers, and others.

The town began to grow and in 1824 it had become the great trading point for miles around... The old Salem turnpike, the milestones of which were set up in 1772-1773, is the principal street, beautifully shaded... The railroad station is at a crossing of the Paulsboro road, an on that street, a few houses and a German Church have been built since the advent of the railroad. Clarksboro has had a post office since 1827. [Centennial 8, Emma Engle]

Clark's Funeral Home
Clark's Funeral Home in Clarksboro

According to some accounts, the name of Clarksboro is probably traceable to John Clark of London who was one of the creditors of Edward Byllinge and who received a deed from Byllinge dated July 26, 1681 conveying 1,000 acres of land along Mantua Creek, 500 on the northwest side and 500 on the southwest side of the Creek. This John Clark died intestate and the land descended to John Clark, Jr. of Hackney, Middlesex County, England, who conveyed his land in 1702 to Benjamin Alford of New England in America [Peaslee, A; 18]

Some other early pioneer owners included Francis Austin 1715, Jonathan Haines 1719, John Eglington prior to 1776, Matty Coats 1799, James C. Wood 1799.

The pioneer merchant, Matthew Gill, as early as 1775 was trading in codfish, molasses, nails, calico, brown linen sheeting, crockery, tea, sugar, rum and other items. For many years this store was the great center of Clarksboro.

Clarksboro Hotel pictured in 1846-1947, Clarksboro NJ
Clarksboro Hotel pictured in 1946-1947 during reconstruction. Many thanks to John Baughman of Clarksboro for providing this photograph
Former Clarksboro Hotel, now apartments
Former Clarksboro Hotel, now apartments
The old Gill store on the northwest corner was replaced by a 3-story red brick building, called the Clarksboro Hotel (see photographs just above). This building was later painted white and is currently a multi-apartment building. While Matthew Gill was in the mercantile business he was also engaged in distilling spirits. His old distillery stood nearly in the rear of this building, or on what is now the next lot. Here the old pioneer farmers could exchange their corn, rye, and wheat for something more exhilarating, which many of them did, until it was banned due to public opinion.

Clarksboro NJ's first fire engine
Clarksboro's first fire engine with horses, "Starlight," and "Twilight." This photo
was taken in 1906 in front of Joseph Clark's barn in Clarksboro.
The horses belonged to Clark and pulled the hearse as well as
the fire engine. Photograph graciously donated by Pete Miskofsky

St. Peter's Episcopal Church was founded at Berkley [Mt. Royal] in 1770/1771. Regular services began here in 1824 with Mr. Richard D. Hall. In 1845 The church's site was moved to Clarksboro. SEE more history and photographs.

Zion Methodist Church. The first Methodist Episcopal Church built in the state of New Jersey was at Berkley [Mt. Royal], in 1766. Here Methodism began--in East Greenwich Township, which was then part of Greenwich Township.In 1834, a church was built in Clarksboro. SEE more history and photographs.

The Evangelical United Methodist Church was established at Clarksboro by the Evangelical Association in 1879. SEE more history and photographs.

SEE a map of Clarksboro's Business Directory of 1860 - showing houses and their owners. (JPG file)

The original Clarksboro School was known to have existed in 1876.

The Justice-Peaslee House was built here circa 1747.

The George H. Grandfield house was built here circa 1878.



Created and maintained by Janice Brown
Copyright 2001-2015 | Send email to the webmaster