Park Ridge in Bergen County, New Jersey — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
The Dutch of Bergen County
“No people are more respected for honesty and uprightness of character than the Americans of Dutch extraction; but they are not reckoned so enterprising as the other classes of the inhabitants. There are individuals in the country even now, who can hardly speak a word of English; and Mr. Taylor, and all the clergymen of the Dutch congregations in this neighborhood, preach, at certain times, in the Dutch language.”
Although the Dutch came to New Jersey seeking trade opportunities, agriculture quickly became more important than trade once permanent towns were mapped out in the areas west of the Hudson River. The village of Bergen was settled in 1660. It was one of the earliest permanent centers of Dutch settlement. Some who came had been farmers on Long Island, but many were recent arrivals from
Starting first in the lowlands along the Hackensack and Passaic Rivers and then moving up onto the Piedmont Plain and the Highlands, settlers hurried to clear forests to farm the rich soil.
The descendants of the first Dutch in New Jersey came to be respected as among the best farmers in the colonies. Emigration from Holland nearly ceased following the English conquest of the area in 1664, but the strong Dutch presence and agricultural prosperity already established continued under English rule. The Dutch found that they could grow virtually all of the same field crops, vegetables, fruits and livestock they remembered in the Netherlands. Many varieties of food plants came directly from their homeland.
Local conditions also encouraged the development of new varieties such as the Double Paradise apple of Bergen County and special varieties of cider apples grown in Essex and Bergen counties.
- Even today the influence of the Dutch settlers is all around us in familiar names
Location. 41° 1.718′ N, 74° 2.725′ W. Marker is in Park Ridge, New Jersey, in Bergen County. Marker is on Pascack Road, on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Park Ridge NJ 07656, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Between Two Brooks – The Wortendyke Barn (here, next to this marker); The Wortendykes (here, next to this marker); Wortendyke Dutch Barn (within shouting distance of this marker); Wortendyke Homestead (within shouting distance of this marker); Peter P. Post House (about 700 feet away, measured in a direct line); Pascack Reformed Church (approx. ¼ mile away); Atkins Glen (approx. half a mile away); Pascack Historical Society Museum (approx. 0.6 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Park Ridge.
More about this marker. A map of New Jersey and surrounding states appears on the left side of the marker. A Dutch family sitting around a table is on the marker’s upper right.
Categories. • Colonial Era • Settlements & Settlers •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on April 19, 2010, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey. This page has been viewed 1,068 times since then and 27 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5. submitted on April 19, 2010, by Bill Coughlin of North Arlington, New Jersey.