Cities Near Perth Amboy, NJ
Local city information for Perth Amboy, NJ
is a city in Middlesex County, New Jersey, United States. As of the United States 2000 Census, the city population was 47,303. Perth Amboy is known as the "City by the Bay".
Perth Amboy was formed by Royal Charter on August 4, 1718, within various townships. Perth Amboy was chartered as a city by an Act of the New Jersey Legislature on December 21, 1784, within Perth Amboy Township and from part of Woodbridge Township. Perth Amboy Township was formed on October 31, 1693, and was enlarged during the 1720s to encompass Perth Amboy city. Perth Amboy Township was incorporated as one of New Jersey's initial 104 townships on February 21, 1798. The township was absorbed by Perth Amboy city on April 8, 1844.
Perth Amboy, and South Amboy across the Raritan River, are collectively referred to as The Amboys. Signage for Exit 11 on the New Jersey Turnpike refers to "The Amboys" as a destination. The Amboys are the northern limit of the area informally referred to as the Bayshore.
Perth Amboy was settled in 1683 and incorporated as a city in 1718. It was founded by English merchants, Scots seeking religious freedom, and French Protestants, who sought to make use of Perth Amboy's harbor to its full potential.
Perth Amboy served as the state capital from 1686 until 1776. In 1684, Perth Amboy became the capital of East Jersey and remained the capital until the union of East and West Jersey in 1702 and became an alternate state capital with Burlington until 1776. A few of the buildings from this early period can still be seen today (a map of historic sites and buildings
). Most notably, the Proprietary House, the home of William Franklin, the last Royal Governor of New Jersey and estranged son of Ben Franklin, still stands in the waterfront area of the city. Other early architectural examples include the Kearny Cottage (moved from its original location), and St. Peter's church. St. Peter's is surrounded by a graveyard of early inhabitants and displays a collection of incredible stained-glass windows. In addition to the religious scenes these windows portray, early depictions of New Jersey receiving her charter and a meeting between William Franklin and his father, Ben, are also included. Perth Amboy's city hall, first built as a courthouse in 1685, survived major fires in 1731 and 1764 and is the oldest city hall in continuous use in the United States.
By the middle of the 1800s, immigration and industrialization transformed Perth Amboy. Factories such as A. Hall and Sons Terra Cotta, Guggenheim and Sons and the Copper Works Smelting Company fueled a thriving downtown and employed many area residents. Perth Amboy also grew after it became the tidewater terminal for the Lehigh Valley Railroad and a coal shipping point. Perth Amboy also witnessed tightly knit and insular ethnic neighborhoods such as Budapest, Dublin, and Chickentown. Immigrants from Denmark, Poland, Hungary, Czechoslovakia, Italy, Russia, and Austria quickly dominated the factory jobs. Perth Amboy was also a resort town in the 1800s and early 20th century.
Today, Perth Amboy’s immigrants are primarily Hispanic. Unfortunately the immigration growth occurred at a time when factories were being demolished and plants were being closed down; thus Perth Amboy became part of the rust belt. Once a resort town, Perth Amboy’s beaches are no longer in use for swimming because of the polluted waters. Competition from malls outside the city and in New York forced the big chain and higher end stores out of Perth Amboy’s downtown. There are no movie theaters or major department stores remaining in Perth Amboy.
The overcrowded schools are slightly passing or failing. Perth Amboy is an Abbott funded district, which ensures that the district receives parity funding. There is also a large and growing number of students who cannot read or write in English.
However, since the early 1990s Perth Amboy has seen redevelopment. Small businesses have started to open up, and with the presence of an Urban Enterprise Zone.
The waterfront has also seen a rebirth. The marina has been extended, there are new promenades, parks, and housing overlooking the bay. Perth Amboy is still continuing for an attempt of an upheaval in the waterfront. A new project called Landings at Harborside
will feature 2,100 residential units composed of town homes and mid-rise luxury condominiums along with indoor garage parking. There were also be of retail space with an international market, restaurants, specialty shops, community center, and recreation amenities for the public as well. It is an eight year and $600 million plan. Moreover there will be an extension of Route 440 to High Street, connecting commuters from the Outerbridge Crossing directly to the waterfront.
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