Montague, New Jersey

The township of Montague , NJ was created in January of 1759.  It is about twenty miles northwest of Newton on Hwy 206.  The Montague name was quite prominent in both England and the Colonies in those days, but for whom the town was actually named is uncertain.  However, it is believed to have been named for the Duke of Manchester, George Montague.  The Dutch controlled this area until 1664.  Later it was ruled by England and was part of New York until 1738.  The property was deeded from the Delaware Indians so they had no more claims to the land after 1758, even though there were Indian wars up to the 1850ís. 

The first houses were made of stone, as wood was a sign of wealth.  The first industries were sawmills, gristmills, blacksmiths, tanneries, and small stores.  Early trade was done on the Delaware River and on the Old Mine Road that ran along its bank.  River crossings were by ferry until the bridge to Milford was built in 1829.  The D & H Canal caused present day Port Jervis, NY to develop as a center of commerce and the Erie Railroad further affected the future of Montague.  The town evolved into an agricultural community growing crops, poultry, hogs, and cattle. 

In the early 1900ís people would come to vacation and in later years it has become a recreation area.  In the 1920ís the population bottomed out around 530.  In 1960 the population was about 880 when land developers began to purchase large tracks of agricultural property for country clubs and home building.

Now Montague supports a Post Office with a zip code of 07827 and over 3,000 residents.  The countryside is hilly and wooded with farming in the valleys.  Much of the farming is to support the cattle and dairy industry.  Rural residences are numerous with the township split up into the several communities.

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