Feltville: THE BEGINNINGS.

(Adirondack posts not included)

David Felt, Unitarian Universalist and New York stationary businessman extraordinaire (famous for his marbleized ledger paper), purchased this land in 1844 (from the Willcocks and other early settlers) and built up the town of Feltville from 1845 to 1847. It included a mill, two dams to provide water power for the mill, surprisingly well-constructed privies (according to local archeologists), a church/ general store, and housing for mill workers.

Most of the existing houses were built in 1845 (without porches, dormers, and Adirondack railings, which were added when the town was converted to a resort in 1882). They’re standard suburban-sized houses nowadays, but back then, each one housed about four families (living separately, of course)!

Here’s a zinger: village residents—that is, Felt’s mill workers—were required to attend religious services each week on the second floor of the general store (hence “church/ general store”). They were “allowed to worship and practice religion in accordance with their own beliefs,” though… apparently Felt cycled a minister, priest, and rabbi to conduct the weekly service before finally hiring a generic non-denominational minister.

Reference:
Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders (Eds.). (n.d.) A Self-Guided Tour of the Deserted Village of Feltville/Glenside Park. [Pamphlet.]

(This is part of a series on the Deserted Village of Feltville. Click here for other Feltville posts.)

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