On December 25, 1758, the Bedminster Dutch Reformed Church was officially recognized and began to select its founding members. The following year, in 1759, Jacobus Vanderveer Jr.
offered to donate approximately two acres of land to the Dutch Reformed Church. After reviewing other offers, the church accepted his offer.
The church would stand to the north of the Vanderveer property just south of Lamington Road along the west side of what was known as Black River Road (Routes 202/206), separated by a small piece of land that became the Bedminster DRC cemetery. While the church no longer stands today, the Bedminster Dutch Reformed Church cemetery exists today just north of the existing J. Vanderveer house.
Jacobus served as one of the first officers of the new church, that was carved out from the Raritan (Somerville) chapter. James Goltra of Liberty Corner, carpenter and church builder, supervised the construction. The first rendition was rectangular in shape and faced towards the south. Records indicated that the first official grave was needed before the church completion for Femmentje (Phebe) Ditmars Vanderveer (Jacob's wife) who died on September 11, 1759 at age 53. Her plot is visible today.
Fifty five years later, In 1815, on September 15, the congregation approved the building of the second DRC next to the original site. The new DRC was completed and dedicated on April 12, 1818 at a cost of $6,675.50 (see photo at right - click to enlarge). James Van Derveer began the financial campaign by making a gift of $102.
Later in 1896, a third church building was erected. Today, only the cemetery still exists. The third church was destroyed during a violent storm while attempting to relocate the church over to Main Street in Bedminster.
1740 – The Lamington Presbyterian Church founded. It is part of the Lamington Historic District on the National Register of Historical Places.
1741 – The Lamington Presbyterian Church built.
1743 - Jacobus Van Der Veer buys 439 acres along the North Branch of the Raritan River from Daniel Axtell.
1745 - Jacobus Van Der Veer builds is first house - ...more details
1746 – John Boylan, son of Aaron Boylan, born.
Since 1747 – members of the Lamington Presbyterian Church have been buried in the graveyard across the street from the church.
1749 – Bedminster Township granted it's charter.
Mid-1700s – the Pluckemin Store called the Pluckamin Store in early years, founded and still serves the community. (George Vosseller, who may have been the son of James Vosseller, was thought to be born on October 21, 1763 in Pluckemin NJ.)
1750 – Jacob Eoff, a native of Holland purchased five hundred acres of land from the heirs of John Johnstone and built the first inn in Pluckemin. The inn was at the intersection of Route 202-206 and Washington Valley Road.
1751 – Aaron Boylan built the Boylan house in Pluckemin. His son, John owned four general stores: at Pluckemin, Liberty Corner, Vealtown (Bernardsville), and Vanderveers Mills.
1750s – William Willet erected mills that would play an important role in Pottersville's early development.
1756 – In Pluckemin, the St. Paul’s Lutheran Church built.
1758 – In Pluckemin, the Dutch Reformed Church chartered/ built over the following two years.
1768 – Son Samuel born to John and Eleanor Boylan. Samuel married Mary Eoff, daughter of Jacob Eoff.
1775-1782 – the Revolutionary War.
1776 – in Pluckemin, St. Paul’s Lutheran Church damaged by a British raid. The British wanted to capture Captain Issac VanArsdale but he escaped to the woods. On a second British raid, British troops went as far as VanderVeer's Mills (toward what is now Bedminster) and took Elias VanderVeer prisoner. (The prisoner was without "coat or hat" and he died from the after effects of the hardship.)
1777 (January 4 and 5) – Washington and his army camped in Pluckemin on their way to Morristown from the January 3, 1777 Battle of Princeton.
1777 (January 5) – in Pluckemin, Generals Washington, Sullivan, Knox and Dr. Benjamin Rush were on hand for the burial of British Captain William Leslie, son of the Earl of Leven, Scotland, with military honors in the church cemetery of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church.
Winter of 1778-1779 – General Henry Knox and his family lived in the Jacobus Vanderveer House. The fields behind the Boylan house in Pluckemin, where the Hills Development stands today, was the site of a massive Revolutionary war artillery encampment. It included an artillery school established by General Knox that was the forerunner of West Point.
George Washington and his troops marched through Bedminster. During the Revolutionary War – Jacob Eoff’s Pluckemin tavern was the meeting place for the committee of safety, and Washington's army. His son Christian Eoff succeeded him and built the "Barracks" on the opposite corner).
1779 – John Boylan and his wife Eleanor Hodge Boylan entertained George and Martha Washington in Pluckemin at the Grand Alliance Ball. The Ball was celebrated to honor the first anniversary of the alliance with France.
1782 – William Willet supplied grain to Washington's Army, but was bankrupted by the devaluation of Continental Currency. He sold his mills to Captain Samuel Potter. Captain Samuel's grandson, Serring, played an important role in the growth and development of the Pottersville. The town became known as "Potter's Mills," and was later officially named "Pottersville." The village is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
1793 – Death of John Boylan.
Early in the 19th century – St. Paul’s Lutheran Church torn down when it was no longer safe.
1814 – The Pluckemin Inn destroyed by fire.
1831 – A small Methodist chapel built.
1852 – Pluckemin Presbyterian Church built at the village center over the site of St. Paul's Lutheran Church.
1861-1865 – Civil War.
During the 19th century – many wealthy families built estates
1865-1904 – the Temperance Society forced Pluckemin to go completely dry and sell no alcohol.
1885 – Dr. John B. Beekman purchased the Boylan house.
1890s – In the vicinity of Pluckemin, the Kenilworth Inn built where the current A&P shopping center now stands at the intersection of Washington Valley Road and Route 202-206. The alcohol prohibition hurt the inn and it failed. It became a State Police Headquarters.
1892 – The Pluckemin Store burned. The store was then moved diagonally across the street. It also served as a post office. During the 19th century – many wealthy families built estates.
1897 – The Boylan house modernized.
1905 – The Dr. Beekman sold the house to Nathan Compton. He, in turn, sold it to his son Andrew. Until 1912 – the old small Methodist chapel served as the Pluckemin School.
1912 – The Pluckemin School built. It served as a primary grade elementary school (referred to as the Pluckemin Grammar School) until the late 1950s.
1913 – Andrew Compton, owner of the Boylan House, participated in an Anniversary Celebration of the original Grand Alliance Ball of 1779.
1950s – The Boylan house was the home and antique shop of Hanscom Antiques.
1961 to 1976 – the Boylan house was home to Fireside Antiques.
1977 to 1988 – the Boylan house was a residence and home based craft shop.
1989 – A real estate firm housed in the Boylan house, it was later converted to an office and retail center called the Courtyards at Pluckemin.
1989 to 1990 – a duplicate of the Boylan house in yellow constructed to accommodate shops and offices.
1928 – In Pluckemin, the old Kenilworth Inn/State Police Headquarters structure burned down.
Late 1950s – The Pluckemin School closed. It later served as offices for local police. The new
Bedminster Township School began serving students from Kindergarten through Grade 8.
Until 1970s – before this time the Township was a quiet rural. It changed with the coming of I-78 opened along its southern edge, and I-287 crossed at its eastern border
Mid 80's – The Hills, with its town homes, condos, and small lot houses, was developed on Schley Mountain, east of I-287.
1989 – The Jacobus Vanderveer House and property were purchased by the township. The house issituated on part of the 218 acres that make up River Road Park.
1995 – The John Vanderveer house listed on the National and New Jersey Registers of Historic Places.
2000 – Township population was 8,302. 65% of Township residents now live in The Hills set off by the intersection of I-78 and I-287.
Links to other infomation about Pluckemin and Bedminster History
Crossroads of the American Revolution - Click Here or (National Park Service - Click Here)
The Historical Society of the Somerset Hills - Click Here
Pluckemin History - Click Here
A Classic Book - The Old Farm - Click Here