Delaware & Raritan Canal State Park: East Millstone
East Millstone, Franklin Township, Somerset County, NJ
US 78 west to US 287 south; exit 12; turn left onto Weston Canal Road; follow this road south passing by Lock Number 10 and then passing a Girl Scout Camp known as Oak Spring Program and Environmental Center; turn right onto Mettlers Road. Pass by the entrances to Colonial Park and turn right at the T-intersection onto Amwell Road.
Turn left onto Market Street and park at the East Millstone Park on the right near the E. M. First Aid Squad.
Or: continue along Amwell Road and over the bridge crossing the canal; there is parking just over the bridge spanning the D&R Canal.
Millstone was home to the Somerset Court House, the County seat, when Colonel John Graves Simcoe and his raiders set fire to the Court House thereby destroying it in 1779. Hessians hung up the wife of John van Dofren by her heel in an attempt to get information out of her as regards food stuffs. p. 250
Simcoe's raid was by the Queen's American Rangers. Simcoe wanted to capture Governor Livingston. He had 80 riders. p. 271
(Source: Beck, Henry Charlton. 1984 from 1934 original. The Jersey Midlands. New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press.)
The village of Millstone was on the wrong side of the canal and so a commercial center started to grow on the east side. It was originally called Johnsville, but that was later changed to East Millstone. There was a large basin to handle all the unloading of coal and other goods and the loading of farm products.
An important stopover for canal workers, boatmen and other travelers was the Franklin Inn, the oldest structure in East Millstone. (It was originally the Van Liew farmhouse, but was remodeled into a tavern called the Franklin House.)
There was an A-frame bridge here that was replaced by the stronger king-post construction.
1913 -- the king-post bridge was replaced by the fixed East Millstone bridge.
There is a somewhat decrepit canal tender's house.
(Linda J. Barth 2002. Images of America: The Delaware and Raritan Canal. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Press.)