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ber 5, 1661, and christened "The Village of Bergen." The origin of the name "Bergen " rests in some doubt. Some writers confidently claim it to have been derived from " Bergen," the capital of Norway,

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while others as confidently assert it to have been derived from Bergen op Zoom, an important town on the River Scheldt, in Holland, eighteen miles north of Antwerp. Without expressing an opinion,

I may say that, so far as my investigations have extended, the evidence seems to favor those who claim the name to have been derived from the Holland town. During the seven years following the christening new settlers rapidly purchased and located on lands outside of the "Village" limits. These, with a view to more effectually protecting themselves from the savages, asked that they might be annexed to the main settlement. Accordingly, on the 7th of April, 1668, Governor Philip Carteret and his council, of East New Jersey, granted to the settlers of Bergen (then comprising some forty families) a charter under the corporate name of "The Towne and Corporation of Bergen." This new "Towne" comprised the present County of Hudson as far west as the Hackensack River. The line on the north, as described in the charter, started "at Mordavis meadow, lying upon the west side of Hudson's River; from thence to run upon a N. W. lyne by a Three rail fence that is now standing to a place called Espatin [The Hill] and from thence to a little creek [Bellman's Creek] surrounding N. N. W. till it comes unto the river Hackensack [Indian name for "Lowland"], containing in breadth, from the top of the Hill, 14 miles or 120 chains." During the next sixteen years new settlements sprang up north of Bergen, but in matters of government these were termed "out lands" or "precincts," without any corporate power whatever, and subject to the jurisdiction of the authorities of the "Towne."


As time went on and population increased, courts became necessary; and as all the colonial officials were Englishmen, and many English immigrants had settled in the colony, it was but natural that they should desire the adoption of the English system of county governOn the 7th of March, 1682, the provincial legislature passed, and Deputy Governor Rudyard approved, an act under which New Jersey was divided into four counties: Bergen, Essex, Middlesex, and Monmouth. Bergen County, as then defined, contained "all the settlements between Hudson's River and the Hackensack River, beginning at Constable's Hook and so to extend to the uppermost bounds of the Province, northward between the said rivers with the seat of government at the town of Bergen." (See Map No. 1.) Essex County comprised "all the settlements between the west side of the Hackensack River and the parting line between Woodbridge and Elizabethtown, and northward to the utmost bounds of the Province." By this division the greater part of the present County of Bergen fell within the limits of Essex County, where it remained until 1709-10. This division into counties caused great dissatisfaction among the people, particularly in Northern New Jersey. They complained that the counties were too large, that the distance between their homes and the county seat was too long, and that traveling such long dis

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