Map of Branchburg Township in Nfpa 55 2013 pdf County. Inset: Location of Somerset County highlighted in the State of New Jersey. Branchburg is a township in Somerset County, New Jersey, United States.
10,888 counted in the 1990 Census. While the area of today’s Branchburg has a history antedating the American Revolutionary War, the township itself was incorporated by an act of the New Jersey Legislature on April 5, 1845, from portions of Bridgewater Township. The township is named for its location at a point where branches of the Raritan River merge. The land that is now known as Branchburg Township was originally inhabited by the Raritans, a tribe of the Lenni Lenape Native Americans.
By 1686 most of the land was purchased from the Lenape by the Lords Proprietors of East Jersey, who sold the land in small parcels to numerous settlers, mostly of Dutch or English extraction. With the 1688 redrawing of the boundary between East and West Jersey, the Branchburg region was split between Essex County to the north and the newly formed Somerset County to the south.
With Somerset’s acquisition of territory from Essex and Middlesex Counties in 1741, Branchburg lay entirely within Somerset County. Bridgewater Township was chartered in 1749.
The residents of the part of Bridgewater west of the Raritan River petitioned the New Jersey Legislature for incorporation as a separate township, which was granted by an act dated April 5, 1845. The first town meeting was held April 14, 1845, in White Oak Tavern, a stagecoach stop and local meeting place along the Old York Road.