The Middletown Township of New Jersey, USA was established in 1667,
making it one of New Jersey's oldest townships. By 1682, Middletown
was the home of at least 100 families; by 2002, it was the most populous
municipality in Monmouth County, with a population of over
Local ghost stories feature Whippoorwill Valley Road, where as
legend has it fifteen women were burned as witches in the 1800s
(though there is no actual record of witch-burnings in New Jersey in the
Even older stories feature Penelope van Princes, "mother of
Middletown," who married Richard Stout in New Amsterdam (now New
York) around 1640. The couple relocated to Middletown and raised a
large family; popular legend claims she has over 500 descendants in the
- Old First Church in Middletown claims to be the oldest Baptist
church in New Jersey, but founded in 1836, it's still 144 years younger
than the neighboring Episcopal Christ Church.
- Middletown resident William Leeds, whose will left 438 acres of
land to Christ Church, was reputed to be one of Captain Kidd's
- Monmouth County's first courts were held in Middletown, because the
county's only lawyer, Richard Hartshorne, lived there.
- The local street-signs label Highway 35 as "Kings Highway," named
after King Charles of England.
This nodeshell looked so lonely...
Data gleaned from the
Atlantic Highlands Herald, the Monmouth County branch of the USGenWeb
project, and the New Jersey History Mysteries site.