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A Local Church's Forgotten History

Part two of a three-part column.

W. Woodford Clayton, an 1877 researcher who wrote the book “History of Middlesex and Union Counties,”

The church was located in the “Africa” section of Cranbury Village, which was the colored neighborhood. The land that the church was built on was purchased by Samuel Nixon, of Cranbury, for $105 in 1855.

The church organization was weak and finally collapsed in 1875. The church existed for 20 years between 1855 and 1875. Because its existence coincided with the Underground Railroad timeline, some people did believe it was a “station” on the line.

No evidence has been found to confirm those suspicions, nor do records of the church or community, and there's not even a list of ministers.

The church was surrounded with African American families, Nixon, Higgins, Smith and Merrill. After its sale, the church was turned into a private dwelling. The only document proof the church did exist is a deed listed in the Administration Building in New Brunswick.

scott January 25, 2013 at 11:25 PM
wow! My name is scott nixon, Viola Phares was my great grand mother. any info on the nixon would be great thanksssss

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