1st Things First - City of Burlington Historic District Lincoln, Franklin, Capn. Lawrence, J. F. Cooper, U. S. Grant Where the past is our present to you
Places to SeePeople to Meet
1st things FirstThings to Do
Contact UsReady, Set, Tour
Contact Us
40+ Historic Sites

1st Things First

Immersed in Firsts! Below, over 45 origins of county, state or national significance.

As the first recorded European settlement in New Jersey, the City of Burlington has played host to many beginnings, origins and “firsts”. Many of them have left visible reminders, buldings or artifacts which help us travel back in time, and relive for a moment the glories of the past.

And much more– read on. It’s a past to be proud of. It’s ours. And it’s our present to you.

  • First Home of Naval Hero Cap’n. James “Don’t Give Up the Ship” Lawrence (Capn. James Lawrence House, 459 High St., 38 on Map)
  • First “True American Author” James Fenimore Cooper (born Sept. 15, 1789, Cooper House, 457 High Street, 37 on Map)
  • First Home of Author James Fenimore Cooper “Last of the Mohicans”, “Leatherstocking Tales” (Birthplace, 457 High Street, 37 on Map)
  • First New World Development of William Penn (8 years before Philadelphia!) 1673
  • First NJ Pharmacy in Continuous Operation (Burlington Pharmacy 301 High Street, 1731, 8 on Map)
  • First Recorded European Settlement in NJ (Burlington Island, 1624, 1 on Map)
  • First Anglican Church Built in NJ Now 300 yrs. Old! (Old St. Mary’s, Broad & Wood Streets, 1703, 18 on Map)
  • First NJ Colonial Paper Currency: Ben Franklin Prints Here! (Former Site of Isaac Collins Print Shop 206 High St., 1729, 3 on Map)
  • First Copperplate Press in America: Ben Franklin Uses it Here! (Former Site of Isaac Collins Print Shop 206 High St., 1729, 3 on Map)
  • First Burlington County Boy Scout Troop formed (Herman T. Costello - Lyceum Hall, May 25, 1911, 39 on Map)
  • First U.S. Porcelain Dentures Developed (Samuel Stockton, 1830-1840)
  • First President of U.S. Continental Congress (Elias Boudinot , Boudinot-Bradford House, 207 W. Broad Street, 1783, 22 on Map)
  • First President & Founder, American Bible Society (Elias Boudinot 207 W. Broad Street, 1816, 22 on Map)
  • Among the First African American Congregations in NJ (Bethlehem A.M.E. Church 213 Pearl Blvd., 1830, 44 on Map)
  • First Capital of Province of West Jersey (“Concessions & Agreements...”, Surveyor General’s Office W. Broad St., March 3, 1676, 15 on Map)
  • First Governors of New Jersey (Council of West Jersey Proprietors, 1688)
  • First Capital of West Jersey (Council of West Jersey Proprietors, 1688)
  • First NJ Weekly Newspaper Published (Isaac Collins’ New Jersey Gazette, Former Site of Isaac Collins Print Shop 206 High St., Dec. 1777, 3 on Map)
  • First Library Building Erected in NJ (Library Co. of Burlington, 23 W. Union Street, 1789, 25 on Map)
  • First NJ State Constitution Signed Here (Blue Anchor Inn, Broad & High Streets, July 2, 1776, 13 on Map)
  • First NJ Governor to Lead Men in Military Action (Jos. Bloomfield, 1795 Mayor of Burlington, in 1812; Birch-Bloomfield House 415 High St., 34 on Map)
  • First NJ Sunday School (Charles McIlvaine, McIlvaine House, 100-102 W. Broad Street, 17 on Map; held at Old St. Mary’s Broad & Wood Sts., 1820, 18 on Map)
  • First Jinricksha in World Built (James H. Birch, Birch-Bloomfield House 415 High St., 1867, 34 on Map; carriage on display Burlington County Historical Society Corson Poley Center Museum 451 High Street, behind 36 on Map)
  • First U.S. Library to Publish a Book Catalog (Library Co. of Burlington, 23 W. Union Street, 25 on Map)
  • First Union Organized in NJ (Women Weavers, Friends Meetinghouse 341 High St., 1696, 11 on Map)
  • First Law Code to Govern NJ (“Concessions & Agreements...”, Surveyor General’s Office W. Broad St., March 3, 1676, 15 on Map)
  • First NJ Court System Established (March, 1681)
  • First Witch Trial in NJ History (October 12, 1730; See Ben Franklin’s article)
  • First Recorded Murder in NJ History (Burlington Island, 1671, 1 on Map)
  • First Methodist Service in NJ (Cap’n. C. T. Webb, 1771)
  • First and Oldest NJ Fire Company under Same Name (Endeavor 19 E Union Street, 1795, 7 on Map)
  • First and Oldest Library in Continuous Operation (Library Co. of Burlington, 23 W. Union Street, 1758, 25 on Map)
  • First Patron of First Library: Royal Gov. William Franklin, son of Ben (Library Co. of Burlington, 23 W. Union Street, 1758, 25 on Map)
  • First Oldest Residence Existing in County (Revell House, 213 Wood Street, 1685, 27 on Map)
  • First Recorded African Presence in NJ (Burlington Island Dutch Colony, 1659--1664, 1 on Map)
  • First Organized Group in U.S. to Speak Out Against Slavery (Quakers, Friends Meetinghouse 341 High Street, 11 on Map)
  • First Iron Plow Made in America (Charles Newbold, 1797)
  • First U.S. Steam Boat Trip to Burlington (Inventor John Fitch, July 1788)
  • First Family Residence of Ulysses S. Grant During Civil War (Ulysses S. Grant House 309 Wood Street, 1856, 23 on Map)
  • First Foundation for Public Schooling in NJ (Board of Island Managers, 1682)
  • First Episcopal Bishop on American soil, John Talbot, M.A. (Old St. Mary’s Broad & Wood Sts., 1703, 18 on Map)
  • First Grand Master of the Masons of America, Col. Daniel Coxe, 1730
  • First President of the First Society for the Abolition of Slavery, Gen’l. Jos. Bloomfield, 1783 (Birch-Bloomfield House 415 High St., 34 on Map)
  • First Practitioner of Medicine in Burlington, Daniel Wills, 1677
  • First U.S. Steam Power Printing Plant (Enterprise Printing Co. 1877)
  • First U.S. Cruciform Church with Central Tower & Spire (“New” St. Mary’s W. Broad St., 1854, 19 on Map)
  • First Farm Fair authorized in New Jersey at Burlington in 1681
  • First American book on fruit culture published by Burlington agriculturist William Coxe

When you think of American History,
Think of Burlington First! Where the past is our present to you!

Seniors Groups and Families with Kids, Clubs and Associations, Activities and Service Groups,Travel Agents, Bus Tours, Take your First Tour of 325-yr. old Burlington... Get Our First Full-color Tour Guide & Map! 609-386-0200 or 609-386-4773

Should be Your First Choice for a Fun Day Trip!

< return to top >

Where the past is our present to you. Welcome to the City of Burlington.

 

 

Seal of City of Burlington
City of Burlington
Official Online Resource



Places to See
People to Meet
1st Things First
Things to Do
Contact Us
Ready, Set, Tour


Come experience real American History on our tree-lined, sun-dappled streets.
Over 45 origins of state or national significance... get immersed in “firsts”.
History comes alive as you see and enter the oldest homes, and more.
INSIDE: Maps! Photos! Over 40 Historic Sites dating back over 327 years.
PLUS: Attractions • Fun & Festive Events for Families with Kids • Seniors • Groups

Tour City of Burlington Historic District • Where the past is our present to you
E-mail: info@tourburlington.org • 609-386-1900 or 386-0200 or 386-4070 • Home

 


Maps, Directions
Attractions
Dining
Shopping
Accommodations
Events