History of Sparta Township

Sussex County, New Jersey

Hamlets of Sparta:



Houses Corner



Sussex Mills

Woodruff's Gap

late 1600s  -- Sparta settled by the Dutch and then the English.  French Huguenots came later. 

1845  -- Sparta Township established from lands in Byram, Frankford, Hardyston, and Newton Townships. 

19th century  --  Monroe hamlet was thriving with a store, post office, school, gristmill and creamery.  The hamlet also had a station on the Lehigh & Hudson River Railway. 

1889  -- Thomas Alva Edison decided to start a business of using magnets to pull out iron ore from crushed rock.  He decided to buy 2,250 acres on Sparta Mountain near the village of Ogdensburg.

1891  -- the Edison operations began.  The works were atop Sparta Mountain and employed some 400 men.

1890s  --  the Walnut Terrace was one of 10 hotels, all of them close to the New York, Susquehanna & Western station, built in the middle of the village of Sparta.

1892  --  Minerva Roe established a large tourist inn in the middle of Sparta that could accommodate 40 guests. 

1893  -- iron ore production halted by a national financial panic.

1896  --  production of iron ore resumed. 

1900  --  Edison formally closed down the concentrating plant.  He had lost millions of dollars. 

beginning of the 20th century  --  Thomas Edison opened the Limestone Products quarry on the Sparta-Lafayette Township border.

beginning of the 20th century  --  just one of 25, the Everett House was one of the largest hotels in Sparta.

1941  -- the Everett House experienced a drop in visitors with the onset of World War II.

1942  --  the Everett House complex was torn down. 

1906  --  J. R. Davenport was the proprietor of the Lake View House (complete with a view of Morris Lake) on Glenn Road opposite the intersection with Morris Lake Road.  (The structure is now an apartment building.)

1911 postcard  -- shows the stone blacksmith shop on Mill Road (now Station Road) in Sparta.  The building is now used by a water-purification company.

1926  --  the Arthur D. Crane Company began developing Lake Mohawk.  They created the 900-acre Lake Mohawk by damming the Wallkill River. 

1928 & 1929  --  the clubhouse and boardwalk built for Lake Mohawk. 

(Source: Wayne T. McCabe. 2003. Images of America: Sussex County. Charleston, SC: Arcadia Press.)