Raritan River Railroad Station – An Update and Community Engagement

Raritan River Railroad Station – An Update and Community Engagement

In our endeavor to preserve the Raritan River Railroad Station, significant efforts have been made to create a comprehensive report. This document, developed over time, reflects our commitment to transparency and inclusivity, ensuring all stakeholders, including the public, are well-informed about the project’s progress. The crafting of this report was a challenging but vital task, spearheaded by the Milltown Historic Preservation Committee. Its purpose extends beyond mere documentation; it aims to foster and cultivate relationships between relevant municipal governments and various historical society groups​​.

A Glimpse into the Current Scenario and Future Plans

As highlighted in our report, the Raritan River Railroad Station’s relocation and refurbishment are crucial to preserving a key piece of our community’s history. The report details the station’s current condition, the intricacies of its relocation, and the urgent need for action given the April 2024 deadline​​.

The Importance of Community Involvement

The Raritan River Railroad Station is a significant testament to Milltown’s history and the broader Middlesex County. Its preservation is essential for maintaining a tangible link to our shared past​​. The station’s story and future hinge on our collective efforts and community support.

Upcoming Events and Fundraising Initiatives

We invite the community to join two key fundraising events:

  1. Holiday Concert & Festival: On December 9th, 2023, at St. Pauls United Church Hall, West Lakewood Ave., Milltown, NJ. The event features a Silent Auction, a performance by The Central New Jersey Wind Ensemble, and Santa’s arrival. Admission fees are $10 for adults, $8 for seniors, and varying rates for children and teenagers​​​​​​.
  2. Holiday Train Display: Scheduled for December 9th and 10th, 2023, at the Milltown Senior Center, 60 Violet Terrace, Milltown, NJ. This event includes model train layouts, photo opportunities with Santa, and is priced at $7 for adults, $3 for children, $5 for seniors and vets, and $20 for families of 5+​​​​.

Your participation in these events is a valuable contribution to preserving the Raritan River Railroad Station. Together, we can ensure this historic landmark remains a symbol of our heritage and community spirit for generations to come.


This Day in History: December 5th, 1908

This Day in History: December 5th, 1908


Head Electrician William Duclos, of Michelin Tire Plant, Had Idea of Coming Death in Elevator Pit

Falling Weight Breaks Neck.

Crushed under an elevator weighing several hundred pounds, William Duclos, 29 years old, was almost instantly killed at the Michelin Tire works, Milltown, this morning. Death was caused by the tremendous weight on his head and back, which broke his neck.

The accident occurred shortly before 5 o’clock. Something wrong with the batteries controlling the elevator made it necessary for Duclos, who was head of the electrical department at the plant, to go into the elevator pit and discover the cause of the trouble. It is said that just before going down the shaft, Duclos had a premonition of his impending death, and turning to a fellow employee said, “I don’t know why, but something tells me I will never come out of that place alive.” Arousing his courage, however, the electrician descended and had hardly begun his investigation when the starting of the elevator caused one of the heavy weights to descend with a rapidity that made it impossible for its victim to move out of its path. He died about 15 minutes after the accident.

Dr. N. N. Forney, of Milltown, and Dr. F. M. Donohue were summoned, but upon their arrival, Duclos was beyond all earthly aid. Coroner John V. Hubbard, of this city, and Undertaker Moke were summoned and the body was removed to the dead man’s home on Vanderbilt Avenue.

Mr. Duclos had been employed at the Michelin plant for nearly two years, coming from Brooklyn in 1906 with his young bride. She alone survives him. Coroner Hubbard made a superficial examination of the circumstances surrounding the electrician’s death this morning but evidently did not satisfy himself that an inquest was unnecessary, for he went to the plant this afternoon for further investigation. There is an unconfirmed rumor that a careless employee was responsible for Duclos’ death in starting the elevator, not noticing the man in the pit.

Inquiry at the Michelin plant revealed a stubborn unwillingness on the part of those in authority to give out details regarding the tragedy. At first, an effort was made to deny that an employee had been killed.

This Day in History: November 29th, 1920

This Day in History: November 29th, 1920


Motorman Attacked by Angelo Benedetto of This City—Latter Draws Gun and Fires in Restaurant Without Warning.

George Keller, familiarly known as “Dutch,” a Public Service motorman of Ward Street in this city, was shot through both legs early yesterday morning by Angelo Benedetto of this city, an Italian, who, it is claimed, attacked Keller without reason. The shooting occurred at 1:45 Sunday morning in the lunchroom of Michael Ducey on Main Street, Milltown, where Keller and a number of other Public Service employees who had just come off shift had gathered.

According to their story, Benedetto appeared in the place and said that he had taken a South Amboy car in mistake for a Middlesex, had fallen asleep, and had been carried out to Milltown, where he was put off the car. He ordered a cup of coffee and a sandwich, which he ate without speaking to anybody. The Public Service men were laughing and talking among themselves but did not address Benedetto. The latter, when he had finished, laid a ten-dollar bill down on the counter and started out, without waiting for his change.

Ducey, it was said, started after him with the change when the man suddenly drew a revolver from his pocket and, standing at the door, ordered everybody in the place to line up and put up their hands. Keller was sitting on a stool by the counter, some distance away. Thinking that the man was fooling, Keller did not get up but yelled at Benedetto to shut the door. The latter, without warning, fired at Keller and then fled into the street.

The bullet struck Keller in the right leg, passed through it, and into his left leg. A hunt was immediately organized for Benedetto. It was thought at first that Keller had been killed, and Chief County Detective Richard Peltier was immediately notified at his home at Fords. He at once sent County Detective Ferd David, who lives near South River, to the scene. Benedetto tried to escape by the back roads, but a cordon was thrown around, and apparently, he was frightened back into the town. At about four o’clock in the morning, he was seen by Officers George Hall and Harold Stults in front of the National Bank building on Main Street, Milltown. When he saw them, he attempted to draw his gun again, but they overpowered him.

He was given a hearing before Recorder Joseph A. Headley and was committed to the county jail here on charges of carrying concealed weapons, highway robbery, and atrocious assault and battery with intent to kill. Keller was treated by Dr. N.N. Forney of Milltown, who ordered him brought to St. Peter’s Hospital here. An operation was performed on his leg this afternoon to extract the bullet. His condition is regarded as serious.

This Day in History: November 17th, 1924

This Day in History: November 17th, 1924

Attack Made Upon John Sanchev Near Milltown Church

Three unmasked bandits held up John Sanchev, aged forty-two years, of 1164 Ohio Avenue, Trenton, in front of Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church in Milltown, at 10:15 o’clock last night while he was on his way to board a Trenton Street Line trolley for his home. Before the bandits were able to carry out the robbery, they were frightened away by the cries of their victim. Sanchev was mercilessly beaten by the bandits who rained blows upon his face and body, and when he was found by William Huff and Howard DeHart, two young Milltown men, his face was badly battered.

Huff and DeHart went in pursuit of the bandits but they escaped, one taking to the fields and shaking off his pursuers and the other two boarding a westbound Trenton trolley car. Sanchev was taken to the office of Justice of the Peace Joseph A. Headley of Milltown where he told his story of the assault and attempted robbery. Sanchev had reached the church, which is but a short distance from the Trenton trolley junction, when three men came upon him from the rear and, without explanation, began striking him. He tried his best to ward off the blows but they came so fast and furious that he was soon overpowered. Sanchev, who rifled his clothes, called for help and DeHart and Huff came to his rescue. The highwaymen made a hasty retreat.

When brought before Justice Headley, Sanchev stated that he had been visiting at the home of Mrs. Catherine Plassia and that he was in search of employment in Milltown. He was returning to his home in Trenton when the assault took place. He stated that he had $10 in his wallet at the time of the holdup which the bandits overlooked in searching him.

The police of Milltown and the state police made an investigation soon after the robbery was reported but did not find any trace of the bandits. Edward Beecher and William Beecher, Milltown marshals, joined the state troopers in searching for the bandits. The Trenton police were also notified to watch the incoming trolleys, but the men probably alighted before reaching Trenton, as no trace of them was found on any of the trolleys reaching Trenton before midnight.

Sanchev stated he believed the holdup men to be Frenchmen. When they left him in his dazed condition, Sanchev stated that he heard one of the men address the other as “Tenoff.” Sanchev went back to the home of Mrs. Plassia after having his injuries treated, and this morning he left for his home. Sanchev is a married man.

This Day In History: November 16th, 1912

This Day In History: November 16th, 1912


A large wing is being added to Building 14 at the plant of the Michelin Tire Company in Milltown. This addition comprises 46,540 square feet of floor space. The new wing is one story high with a second story of 18,770 square feet over one section. This building is constructed of reinforced concrete. The roof is designed in a “saw tooth” pattern, with light and ventilation coming from above.

Currently, there are now 20 people employed in the traveling department alone at Michelin.

Photograph published in Automobile Topics, June 22, 1912.

This Day in History: November 14th, 1907

This Day in History: November 14th, 1907

MILLTOWN, Nov. 14 – Mrs. Ralph Hanman, who has been ill at her home on Ford Avenue, is again able to be out. Mr. and Mrs. Lejoye, of Main Street, are visiting friends in Hartford, Conn. Mrs. Joseph King, who has been residing in New York for some time, is visiting her father, Adam Christ, of Boocsem Avenue. Mr. and Mrs. King are planning to go to Canada, where Mr. King will be employed. Alvin Nevires, Edward Hodapp, and Charles Wagner, who have been employed in Trenton, have resigned their positions there and will again make their home in the borough.

George Miller, of Church Street, is confined to his home due to illness.

LC.S. will meet at the home of Miss Anna Hoffer on Thursday evening. A number of the members of the D. of I. from our town attended the union meeting held at South River on Monday evening.

Mrs. Irving Van Sickle, of New Brunswick, spent some time with her parents, Mr. and Mrs. John Adams, of Ford Avenue, this week.

Mrs. William Warner, who has been seriously ill at the home of her father, John Kuhithan, is slowly improving. Benjamin McCauley, who has been employed out of town, has accepted a position with the Michelin Tire Company.

Henry Lins, who recently sold his butcher business to Martin Miller, has purchased a farm at Dunham’s Corner, formerly owned by Mr. Cuttrell, and is planning to move there.

The Milltown Kranken Huelfa Verein opened their fair Monday evening with a parade led by the fire and drum corps. It will continue every evening this week.


It is the New Hotel Recently Constructed by Elmer F. Sayre

MILLTOWN, Nov. 14 – Probably one of the finest and most up-to-date hotels in this vicinity is the “Marguerite,” owned by Elmer F. Sayre, which was recently constructed at the corner of Washington and Main Streets in the borough.

The hotel is of a Colonial design and is named “The Marguerite,” in honor of Mrs. Sayre. It is a frame structure, two and three-quarter stories high, with dimensions of 30×70 feet. The first floor contains the bar room, restaurant, kitchen, pantries, and a dumbwaiter. On the second floor is the parlor, bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a hallway connecting to a balcony over the veranda. Above this story are six bedrooms and bathrooms.

Hardwood floors have been laid throughout the house. A pneumatic water supply system has been installed, providing sufficient pressure to carry water to the uppermost floor in case of fire. The average pressure maintained is forty pounds, though it can be raised to fifty pounds if necessary.

The lot dimensions where the hotel stands are 60×250 feet. An ice house and stables will be erected there shortly.

The construction cost was approximately $9,900. It has all modern conveniences, and there is no doubt that the owner will meet with success. Mr. Sayre came to Milltown about six years ago and located on Washington Street, just below the power houses. The rates at the hotel will be within the scope of those who desire quality services.

The plans for the hotel were prepared by George K. Parsell, the architect of this city.