Elsinboro is the site of the First English Settlement in New Jersey-1641. The original site was destroyed by the Dutch. The Swedes built Fort Elfsborg in 1643 it was called Fort Elfsborg in honor of the fortress at Gothenburg, Sweden. The fort had a garrison of 13 soldiers, eight 12 lb guns and one mortar. There is a black stone monument of the fort outside the Elsinboro Township School, the stone block came from the old fortress in Sweden built in the 13th century. Today’s Elsinboro is mainly agricultural and residential.
The riverfront in Elsinboro is a prime attraction for summer and permanent residents. There are several homes still standing built in the early 1700’s, two are featured here:
Constructed in 1745 by William Goodwin, the house is original and well preserved, 2 ½ stories over a cellar with brick foundation, timber frame clapboard exterior walls, wood shingle Gable Roof. The 88 acre tract on which it stands was part of a 1200 acre plantation called Elsinburgh.
Abel Nicholson House
Constructed in 1722 by Abel Nicholson is in good condition, 2 stories, brick foundation. An early record contains the following information:
“Samuel Nicholson liveinge at Deifton in the county of Notingham in Old England, And from thence removed or transported himself with his wife and children to America in the shipp called the Griffin beinge master who all arrived in Delaware River in the province of West New Jersey the 23 day of the ninth month, 1675, and soe to the place now called new Salem where they inhabite”. This information was published in 1924 by Sunbeam Publishing Company, 1924 in Salem, NJ. Another reference is “Colonial Roof T” and “Candle Ends”, Salem County Historical Society, 1934.
The two photos (above) of The Abel Nicholson House were taken on September 21, 1936. Information and photos were obtained from The Library of Congress Prints & Photographs Online Catalog. These photos and the one below of the Morris-Goodwin House on Fort Elfsboro Road can be be viewed along with the complete survey records at the Historic American Buldings page for Elsinboro, Salem County.
Another source for history of this area: http://www.preservationsalem.org/PSIHIST.HTM