Happy Birthday, Lincoln… Park!

by Erin Feith, Research Assistant
February 22, 2022

On the first map of Morris County published in 1853, Lincoln Park is labeled “Beavertown.”

While renamed in 1872 after the 16th President, Lincoln Park began as a small, rural community within Pequannock Township. In fact, the area went unnamed until 1825, when it became known as Beavertown, due to the number of beaver which may have rivaled that of early residents. Though small in size, the efforts of its citizens to grow and sustain their community continually increased, until 1922 when it voted to become a borough. Now in its centennial year, the namesake of President Lincoln cemented its own place in Morris County history worth celebrating with a look back to 100 years ago.

By the late 1910s, changes were occurring in Lincoln Park that hinted at the annexation from Pequannock Township that was to come. A variety of new organizations took shape, with the goal of addressing the needs of the community, along with the expansion of existing ones, such as the Lincoln Park Fire Department. Throughout these years, different faith-based congregations established their own places of worship in town, and secular groups, like the social club known as the Fellowship Club, looked to do the same. Soon after its formation, the Fellowship Club joined with other residents to create Lincoln Park’s own Public Library to serve their community.

The town library, today the Lincoln Park History Musuem, was built in the 1920s. Photo courtesy of Lincoln Park Historical Society.

The growing sense of independence and creation of local institutions reached its climax in 1922. Perhaps inspired by Kinnelon’s official separation from Pequannock in February 1922 (also celebrating its centennial), citizens of Lincoln Park secured its own recognition as an independent borough on April 25, 1922. With its new status, Lincoln Park quickly established public offices and organizations, including the Board of Education just one month later and Board of Health by that July. The rapid creation of these institutions proved beneficial in the coming decades, as the post-World War II industry and population boom led to a surge in the borough’s inhabitants. Today, far from the unnamed entity of the past, Lincoln Park, much like the man behind its presidential moniker, holds a legacy all its own.