Byran Township Sussex County NJ from


This township lies on the southern boundary of the county. Sparta is north, the Musconnetcong River south, and Lake Hopatcong on the east, separating it from Morris County; it is bounded west by Andover and Green It has an average length of eight, and a width of five miles. Lake Hopatcong is a most beautiful sheet of water nearly six miles in length, and in one place more than two miles wide. The Muscounetcong River, flowing from it, is used as a feeder for the Morris Canal. The Sussex Railroad, connecting at Waterloo with the Morris and Essex Railroad, passes through the south-west corner of Byram. A branch of the Musconnetcong rises in the northern part of the township, and flows down through the centre, which, with numerous small ponds, the lake and river on its southern and eastern boundary, gives to the township an inexhaustible supply of water.

The surface is mountainous, and contains a large quantity of iron ore.


In the centre of the township, consisting of some ten or twelve houses, was built for the accommodation of miners who worked in that vicinity some years since.

The other villages in Byram are Stanhope and Waterloo.

Stanhope is situated on the Musconnetcong River, at the extreme southern point of the township. Its history dates back to the commencement of the present century. At that time there were here two iron forges, a grist-mill, two sawmills, a blacksmith shop, and abtut a dozen dwelling houses; there were then no hotel, church, school-house, or store in the place, but in 1810 or '12 the Methodists organiz&l a society and held meetings at private dwellings.

In 1815 the first hotel was opened by Richard Lewis. at the corner where John M. Knight, Esq., now keeps his wellknown house. A few years later a school-house was built, which, in the absence of any church, was used as a place of worship.

The first store was a small one, kept by Mahltrn F. Dickerson, after which the large stone store, built by John Bell, was erected.

The chief attraction of the place, at this early date, was the orges, the ore for which was brought from a distance of six or eight miles.

The Morris Canal, begun in July, 1825, and completed from the Delaware to Newark in August, 1831, made Stanhope a depot for the shipment of wood and charcoal. The Morris and Essex Railroad extension, completed about eighteen years ago, from Dover to Hackettstown, greatly increased the business importance of the village.

In 1844, ten years previous to this extension, the amount of capital invested in the manufacture of iron was about $30,000. This sum has since greatly increased, and the principal feature and centre of attraction, now, is the Musconnetcong Iron Works, which are described in another part of this work. Dr. G. G. Palmer is the superintendent of these works.


A charter for the construction of a canal, to be called the Morris Canal, was obtained in December, 1824. It was corn-
menced in July of the following year; was seven years in con— struction, and was completed from the Delaware River to Newark, in August, 1831.

Greenwood Lake and Pompton Feeders were finished in 1837.

The dimensions of the canal were then—bottom, width at twenty feet; at top water-line, thirty feet; depth of water, four feet.

The first boats carried only an average of eighteen tons gross weight.

A new company was organized in 1844, which commenced enlarging the canal. Since 1860, the boats carry an average of seventy tons. The total cost of building and enlarging, to 1860, had amounted to $5,100,000. In 1866 it was extended to Jersey City.

The principal business of the canal is the freighting of coal from Lehigh, Scranton, and other mines to the east; returning westward, ore from Morris and Sussex counties is. brought to Stanhope, Easton, Phillipsburg, and to the furnaces along the Lehigh.

Stanhope now, with its iron works, canal, and railroad, has a bright prospect of progress and prosperity. Its population is increasing, and men of means and enterprise are its supporters. A new hotel has recently been built near the depot, and new dwellings are going up.

The district school is well sustained, and has an average; attendance of one hundred scholars.


This church was organized January 11th, 1838, by a cornmittee from the Presbytery of Newark.

At that time there were twenty-eight members, mostly from the church at Succasunna Plains.

The minister of the latter place, Rev. Joseph Moore, had preachedin the village school-house once everymonth, and at his suggestion, the church was organized. Mr. Moore became their first pastor. The church was not built until 1844. It cost about $2,000. In the following year, when the church was dedicated, no debt remained on the building. It was enlarged and its interior very much improved during the pastorate of the Rev. James Morton.

In 1870, Rev. John Jay Craine took the charge, and acted as Stated. Supply until August, 1871. He was installed on the 29th of that month, and is the present pastor of the church. It is small in numbers, and has been often aided by the Board of Home Missions. Its prospects, however, are improving, and the members hope soon to become selfsustaining.


The records of this church have been inst. Rev. Theo. S. Haggerty, the present pastor, says: “The society was organized, and the first trustees elected on the 21st of August, 1843, Andrew Rose, John Rowland, and five others were made trustees, and Amos Smith, A. A. Smalley, and A. J. King, a building committee. Among the first pastors were Rev. Messrs. Decker and Lawhead.”


This place was originally called Old Andover. It is situated in the southern portion of Byram.

Waterloo is probably one of the oldest villages in the township; it was within the tract of laud located by William Penn, in this part of the county, and, with the Andover Blast Furnace and Mine, was the district which was disposed of by him to the English Company before referred to.

At that time there was in this place a four-fire forge, and the iron manufactured was carried down the valley of the Musconnetcong to Durham on the Delaware.

The forge was situated a few yards north-east of the gristmill of Messus S. T. Smith and Brothers, and the wails of the old coal-house form a part of this building. While the forge was in blast there was a grist and saw-mifi in running order. The walls of the latter may still be seen a short distance east of the old forge site.

In 1848—9 a mule road was constructed from Andover Mine to Waterloo, over which the ore was carried and deposited in canal boats which conveyed it to Phillipsburg. This was the first railroad built in the country, but was abandoned, when, through the untiring efforts of Hon. A. S. Hewitt, the Sussex Railroad was constructed.

After the Morris Canal was in operation, and before the Sussex Railroad was built, Waterloo was quite an extensive freighting depot. Merchandise was brought from New York by the canal, and was carted from this place throughout the counties of Sussex and Warren.

There are large quantities of iron ore deposited in the vicinity of Waterloo, and, at the present time, the Lehigh Iron Company is working a vein of rich ore measuring from eight to ten feet, on the lands of Peter Smith.

To the west of Waterloo on lands formerly owned by Job Brookfleld, is the Waterloo Mine, operated by the Musconuetcong Iron Company at Stanhope. This ore is also very pure, and the mine looks promising.

The surface around Waterloo is mountainous, on account of which the air is remarkably pure and healthful, and the scenery is unsurpassed. The railroad communications are good, making the situation a desirable one.

The place contains a store, hotel, and a blacksmith shop. A fine large dwelling house has been recently built here by. Mr. Peter Smith.

In the year 1859, during the pastorate of Rev. G. T. Jackson, a neat little church was erected by the Methodists. It stands at the base of the mcqmtain. Services are now conducted on the Sabbath by the Rev. W m. H. McCormick of Alamuchi.

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