Raritan Water Power Canal
The Raritan Water Power Canal was completed in 1842. The Somerville Water Power Company leased waterpower and land along the canal to industry, but was heavily in debt for the expenses of initial construction. In 1863, the company reorganized as the Raritan Water Power Company and improved the dam. By 1881, the company had sold $35,000 in property along the canal, which powered seven businesses, including a gristmill, machine shop and foundry, a paint factory, flour mills, woolen mills, the Somerset Manufacturing Company and the pumping station of the Somerset Water Company. The steady wages received by the mill workers were a major factor in the economic growth of Raritan, which became a town in 1869.
In the 1970s, this portion of the canal was filled, and Somerset County Park was built. Because of the significance to local history, on August 27, 2001, The New Jersey State Historic Preservation Office determined that the Raritan Water Power Canal Historic District is eligible for the National Register of Historic Places.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: Industry & Commerce • Waterways & Vessels.
Location. Marker has been damaged. 40° 33.913′ N, 74° 38.267′ W. Marker is in Raritan, New Jersey, in Somerset County. Marker is on Colle Sannita Way west of River Road, on the right when traveling east. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Raritan NJ 08869, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this location. Raritan Veterans Memorial (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Somerset County Veterans Monument (about 400 feet away); Raritan Veterans Monument (about 400 feet away); Memorial to the Naraticong Indians (about 400 feet away); John Basilone (about 500 feet away); Nevius Street Bridge (about 500 feet away); Hibernia Mine Railroad Bridge (approx. 0.6 miles away); Jersey Central Lines (approx. ¾ mile away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Raritan.
Credits. This page was last revised on January 23, 2021. It was originally submitted on March 13, 2009, by Alan Edelson of Union Twsp., New Jersey. This page has been viewed 1,538 times since then and 28 times this year. Last updated on January 21, 2021, by David Weintraub of Edison, New Jersey. Photos: 1, 2, 3. submitted on March 13, 2009, by Alan Edelson of Union Twsp., New Jersey. 4. submitted on January 18, 2021, by David Weintraub of Edison, New Jersey. • Michael Herrick was the editor who published this page.