Millbrook Village
intersection of Old Mine Road, Millbrook Road, and Flatbrook Road, Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, Warren County, NJ

A re-creation of a late 19th century rural community.  Millbrook offers a self-guided walking tour about the buildings and life 100 years ago. Artisans demonstrate historic crafts on the weekends.


Directions:

US 80 west to Exit 1 and Old Mine Road north. 2.7 miles north of the signal light at the one lane part of Old Mine Road is the southern boundary of Worthington State Forest.  11.1  miles north of the signal light is the entrance to Millbrook Village.


Directions:

12.3 miles north on Old Mine Road off I-80. It is just past the intersection of Old Mine Road and Route 602 to Blairstown.


Geology:

violet-hued sandstone; redbeds (Bloomsburg Formation sandstone stained by their iron deposits)


History:

In 1832 Abram Garris built a mill here, and it came to serve as the nucleus of a village. Millbrook (once home to 75 people) flourished during the middle years of the century, but by 1900 the village was in an irreversible decline.

1955  --  catastrophic flood on the Lower Delaware River. 

1962  --  the Army Corps of Engineers comes up with a plan to build what would be known as Tocks Island Dam, which would have drowned the Millbrook Valley area. 

1970s  --  citizens revolted against the plan and they prevented the building of the dam.  But the land became federal property and residents were forced out of their houses.

Today Millbrook is the stage for a re-creation of a late-19th century rural community rather than an exact restoration of the original. A self-guiding walking tour of the village tells you about the buildings and life here 100 years ago.

Among the buildings are a cider mill, general store, gristmill, Methodist church, smokehouse, and sugar shack.


Trails:

Pick up the Millbrook Village Trail that goes to Donkey's Hollow Trail. Heading south from here along Van Campens Glen Trail takes the hiker past the Watergate Picnic Area, the Upper Falls, and the Lower Falls to the Lower Glen Picnic Area on Old Mine Road. The hiker can hike north along Old Mine Road back to Millbrook Village or turn around and return on the Van Campens Glen Trail.

Or:

A hike of a little more than 5.0 miles starts from the north end of the parking lot.  Pick up the 0.5 mile long orange-blazed Orchard Trail heading uphill.  At the top of the hill turn left onto Hamilton Ridge Road (an abandoned section of the original Old Mine Road).  The trail heads downhill for 2.0 miles.  At the end of the road turn left onto another road; walk 0.2 of a mile and turn left again onto a paved section of the Old Mine Road..  Shortly, turn right ilnto Van Campens Glen parking lot. 

Pick up the yellow-blazed Van Campens Glen Trail (at the end of the parking lot). The trail enters into a hemlock glen with Van Campens Brook flowing at the bottom.  Sights to see are the Lower Van Campens Falls  and Upper Van Campens Falls.Van Campens Glen Trail ends when it crosses the brook on a wooden bridge.  Continue on the gravel roads of Watergate, taking the one closest to the brook. 

At 5.0 miles the hiker reaches the outskirts of Millbrook Village. 

4/22/2005.  Ceferino Santana, dog Sonar and I stopped oh so briefly just to see if we could see anything interesting in bloom in the area.  We did find a few things in bloom. Up a short way from the village on Millbrook Road we found the Coventry Pond Trail.  Did not follow it.  Dr. Patrick L. Cooney. 


PLANT LIST:
* = blooming on date of field trip 04/22/2005

Trees:
Acer rubrum (red maple)
Acer saccharum (sugar maple)
Betula alleghaniensis (yellow birch)
Betula lenta (black birch)
Betula nigra (river birch)
Betula papyrifera (white birch)
Betula populifolia (gray birch)
Carya glabra (pignut hickory)
Carya ovata (shagbark hickory)
Carya tomentosa (mockernut hickory)
Cornus florida (flowering dogwood)
Fagus grandifolia (American beech)
Fraxinus americana (white ash)
Juniperus virginiana (eastern hemlock)
Liriodendron tulipifera (tulip tree)
Picea abies (Norway spruce)
Quercus alba (white oak)
Platanus occidentalis (American sycamore)
Sassafras albidum (sassafras) *
Tsuga canadensis (eastern hemlock)

Shrubs:
Alnus incana var. americana (speckled alder)
Berberis thunbergii (Japanese barberry)
Forsythia sp. (golden bells) *
Elaeagnus umbellata (autumn olive) *
Ilex verticillata (winterberry holly)
Ligustrum sp. (privet)
Lindera benzoin (spicebush) *
Lonicera morrowii (Morrow's honeysuckle)
Rhamnus sp. (buckthorn)
Rhododendron maximum (rosebay rhododendron)
Syringa vulgaris (lilac)

Herbs:
Asclepias vulgaris (common milkweed)
Cardamine sp. (bittercress) *
Hepatica sp. (hepatica)
Taraxacum officinale (dandelion)  *

Ferns:
Dennstaedtia punctilobula (hay-scented fern)
Dryopteris sp. (woodfern)
Polypodium sp. (rockcap fern)
Polystichum acrostichoides (Christmas fern)


Source: Glenn Scherer, 1998.  Nature Walks in New Jersey: A Guide to the Best Trails from the Highlands to Cape May. Boston, MA: Appalachian Mountain Club Books.