Green Bank NJ
Green Bank, NJ

Green Bank is one of the small villages that comprise the township of Washington, in Burlington Co. While doing research on the village of Batsto, I frequently come across references to the surrounding towns, and those references will be posted on these pages. This is not a full-blown research effort on Green Bank or the other towns, but I thought since I was finding so much information by happenstance I may as well include it here;hopefully someone out there will find it useful. If you have anything you would like to add, please e-mail me. I would love to hear from anyone who lives in that part of the world.

According to Major Woodard's History of Burlington County, published in 1883, :

"The hamlet of Green Bank is located in the extreme southwest part of the township, on the Mullica River. It contains one store and post office, school-house, hotel, grist mill, blacksmith and carpenter shop, and one hundred dwellings. The mercantile business has been carried on at Green Bank by William Sooy, present merchant, for a number of years. The post office is also in the store of Mr. Sooy.

The Herman City Hotel, which is located about one mile north of the post office, was formerly used as a private dwelling, and in 1870 it was purchased by Augustus E. Kaster, and converted into a public house, and he has carried on the business since."

This resolves the confusion surrounding reports of Mr. Koster being a Green Bank or Hermann resident; apparently less than 20 years after it's founding, the city of Hermann was widely considered to be part of Green Bank, although he does mention later that the location of the Hermann glass works was still owned by it's founder's estate and some of the workers houses still occupied; perhaps there really was no absolute boundary between the two villages.

The names of some additional residents are given to us as well by Major Woodard:
"The blacksmith shop has been carried on by Mark R. Sooy for the past few years. Hazelton Birdsall carried on the carpenter business. The grist mill is operated by E.B. Johnson. Among the business men of Green Bank are William Sooy, general store and post office; Charles Bowne, justice of the peace; Elwood Van Sant, Joel Vansant, Joel Vansant, jr., ship builders; Samuel Van Sant and Son, boat builders; A. White, mason; Hazelton Birdsall, carpenter; A. E. Koster, hotel; and E.B. Johnson, grist mill. The farmers are Hazelton Birdsall, Charles Brome, Watson Cole, Caleb L. Ford, Samuel Ford, George More, Charles Pharo, Henry Pool, William H. Pool, A.E. Koster,William Sooy, Mrs. Henry Sooy, S.E. Taylor, Walter R. Weeks, and A. White."

Woodward also provides us with the name of the saw and grist mill owner/ operator, E.B. Johnson, which he claimed (in 1882) had been operating for "many years."

The following marriage was recorded in the New Jersey Courier newspaper on 16 May, 1867:
Rev. George Whitehead DOBBINS married Anna M. Sooy of Greenbank on 30 April 1867.

The following marriage was recorded in the New Jersey Courier newspaper on January 6th, 1869, published in Toms River, concerning a resident of Greenbank:
Asa S. Weeks of Green Bank married Dorothy A. Prickitt of Medford.

Below is a transcription of a letter written to the editor of the New Jersey Courier newspaper from a resident of Greenbank, with some details of recent news items from that village; it appeared on October 28th, 1875:
Dear Sir--A terrible case of burning occured about a mile from this village last Saturday night, by which one life was lost and another person was severely burned. The circumstances as near as can be learned, are as follows: Hannah Cranmer, a middle aged lady, living alone with her grandson, Conrad Predmore, aged about twelve years, was awakened at about half past twelve last Saturday night, by a sense of suffocation, and upon springing out of bed, found the floor so hot as to burn her feet. She awakened the child, who slept with her, and they hastened to escape by the door, but upon opening it, the flames and smoke rolled in upon them, cutting off their egress by the stair-way. There was no way of escape now ut the window, and no time to throw a bed out, for the floor was trembling beneath them. She told the child to jump out first, and she would follow. He did not want to jump out of the window, saying,"I am afraid to do it, Grandma; it will kill me." Failing to persuade him to make the leap and finding the situation growing more dangerous, she raised the sash, and sprang out, but the window fell, catching one of her feet under it. The heat from the floor, and from the flames which the draft from the open window had drawn through the door, was unbearable, and feeling that she would soon perish she begged the boy to raise the sash and free her foot. He answered, "I can't, grandma, I can't get through the flames." By almost superhuman efforts, she succeeded in drawing herself up, so as to reach the window with her hand, and get her foot out, and fell to the ground. Then burned as she was, and bruised by the fall, she dragged herself to the well, and with her torn and blistered hands, drew three buckets of water, and raised the window, calling upon the boy to try and get out, but she never heard anything from the time she fell from the window. It is supposed he was smothered by the smoke. She heard the floor fall in while she was drawing the water. Feeling it was useless to try longer to save the child, she started for the residence of Mr. Walter Weeks, a quarter of a mile distant, and roused them. How she ever got there is a mystery, with one foot almost cooked to the bone, with nothing on but a night dress, and the night very cold. She did not seem to realize her own sufferings, but was almost wild over the fate of her grandson, to whom she was deeply attached, and who was a good, intelligent boy. Her burns were dressed by Mr. Weeks family, and she was taken to the residence of her brother, Mr.William Cranmer, near Lower Bank, where she is kindly cared for. The doctor gives hope for her recovery, though it is feared without the use of either hand. Neighbors repaired to the building as soon as possible, but only to find a heap of embers, out of which they raked a charred, and shapeless little mess, all that was left of Conrad. It happened that the fire originated in the chimney.

As part of my ongoing project to separate the residents of Green Bank, Lower Bank,, and especially Batsto, I will include here those persons that I have determined to be residents of Green Bank. Aside from the names mentioned in the article above, I have also come across the following names. The real purpose behind this is not so much for me to determine who in Washington Township lived at Green Bank, but moreso who did not live at Batsto.

According to a Burlington County Directory for 1876-77, the following merchants plied their trade at Green Bank:

1890 Veteran's Census

The following names are mentioned as Green Bank residents on this census:

William H. Ford
William H. Pool
Leek Sooy
John Rink
Alfred Woolston. The census also mentions that he was paralyzed as a result of an an injury received during the war.
Samuel P. Ford
Charles Pharo
Gustave Voss
Jeremiah Ford
Mary E. Cobb. She was the widow of James R. Cobb
Sarah E. Ford According to the 1890 Veteran's Census, this woman was the widow of Thomas Ford (Private Co.I 10th NJ Inf 21 June 1862-31 June 1864) and a resident of Green Bank.
Mary E. Ford According to the 1890 Veteran's Census, this woman was the widow of Samuel Ford (Private Co.K 23rd NJ Infantry 28 Aug 1862-June 1863) and a resident of Green Bank

Two Poll Books, from elections of 1892 and 1894 in Washington Township, are in the collections of the Batsto Historic Site. They list individuals who voted in those elections, and what town they resided in. Below I have listed the Greenbank residents who voted in those elections:

1892 1894
Watson G. Sooy Joseph B. Maxwell
Henry E. Brown George W. Ford
William G. Brown William Jervis
Mark C. Sooy
Towers Sooy Towers Sooy
Walter R. Weeks
William A. Johnson
Albert Sooy
William Sooy
Thomas Sooy
William H. Pool
James P. Bonner
Caleb L. Ford
Charley Pharo
Eprhaim Sooy Ephraim Sooy
Fred Meiners
Henry E. Brooms Henry E. Broom
Edwin T. Sooy Edwin T. Sooy
Charles Pharo Charles Pharo
Thomas K. Sooy Thomas K. Sooy
Albert Sooy
Walter Weeks
William A. Johnson
Mark Sooy Mark Sooy
James E. Allen
James Bonner
William Sooy William Sooy
Caleb S. Ford
Samuel Ford
Fred Miner
William Brooms Wm. R. Brooms
Job. W. Sooy
Constant Cobb
Robert S. Ford Robert S.Ford
James E. Allen
Samuel K. Ford
Jacob Sooy

According to Alfred M. Heston's 1924 work, South Jersey: A History, the following Green Bank residents served in the township government in that year:
Name Office
William A. Johnson Clerk
B.W. Crowley Treasurer
Albert Sooy Township Committee chairman
J.B.Maxwell Township Committee
J.C.Clark Justice of the Peace
Harry Ford Road Supervisor

The following bit of genealogical miscellany is unsubstantiated; I found it on the World Family Tree #5301. It concerns a William Baker Sooy, who is supposed to have been born at Green Bank on Oct 17, 1828, the son of John Sooy and Ann Tomlin Sooy. He married Lucinda Gale(1824-1877) on 11 May 1846, and they had a child named Howard Sooy on 2 August 1864 in Hammonton, NJ. William died on 18 Dec, 1890, in Hammonton.

This page was last updated on June 25th, 2011