West Caldwell Real Estate Listings and Information

West Caldwell

West Caldwell is an township located in the West Essex area in northwestern Essex County, New Jersey.  It is located approximately 16 miles west of Manhattan and six miles northwest of Newark.  As of the United States 2000 Census, the township population was 11,233, and has a total area of 5.1 square miles, none of which is covered by water.

West Caldwell was incorporated as a borough by an Act of the New Jersey Legislature in 1904 from portions of Caldwell Township (now known as Fairfield Township).  In 1981, West Caldwell became a township to take advantage of federal revenue sharing policies.

Collectively referred to as “the Caldwells,” the three communities of Caldwell, North Caldwell, and West Caldwell are closely aligned yet distinct.  West Caldwell offers a unique setting dominated by lovely single-family homes.  Residential streets showcase colonials, split-levels, ranches, and Cape Cods.  Recreational amenities are abundant and first-class, from private sports clubs to lush parks and sports facilities.  In addition to local shops and services, this area offers easy access to Willowbrook and Livingston malls.

Though today the Caldwell area is considered to be a suburb of both Newark and New York, the area originally developed as its own individual, self-contained town and economy rather than as urban sprawl from a larger city.  When it was formed, a few miles of woods separated downtown Caldwell from Newark or any of its developing suburbs.  Bloomfield Avenue is located in the center of town, and is home to many of the locally owned stores of the town.

New Jersey Monthly magazine ranked West Caldwell as its 60th best place to live in its 2010 rankings of the "Best Places To Live" in New Jersey.

The communities of Caldwell and West Caldwell share a public school district, the Caldwell-West Caldwell Public Schools.  Schools in the district are four K-4 elementary schools, all named for American Presidents — Jefferson School (located in West Caldwell), Lincoln School (Caldwell), Washington School (West Caldwell) and Wilson School (West Caldwell) — Grover Cleveland Middle School (Caldwell) for grades 6-8 and James Caldwell High School (West Caldwell) for grades 9-12.

Additionally, West Caldwell is home to the Essex County Vocational High School for regional students who do not wish to attend their public high schools or who wish to learn a trade.

The West Essex Campus of Essex County College is located in West Caldwell.

Also nearby is Caldwell College at 120 Bloomfield Avenue in Caldwell; a Catholic liberal arts college, founded in 1939 by the Sisters of St. Dominic, the college is accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.

Points of Interest include--
- Grover Cleveland Park -- a county park named in honor of the President of the United States who was born in the neighboring town of Caldwell.
- Memorial Park and Francisco Park -- smaller parks and land preserves, such as.
- West Essex Park Reservation (aka Hatfield Swamp) -- Located at 598 Eagle Rock Avenue on the border of Roseland and West Caldwell, is a 1360-acre wetlands preserve that abuts the eastern shore of the Passaic River.

Places for golfing include--
- Mountain Ridge Country Club - 713 Passaic Avenue, West Caldwell
- GreenBrook Country Club - 100 W Greenbrook Rd, West Caldwell

Some restaurants include--
- Wazwan Indian Restaurant (Kashmir) - 691 Bloomfield Avenue West Caldwell
- Original Pancake House (Breakfast/Brunch, American) - 817 Bloomfield Ave, West Caldwell
- Sushi Cafe (Japanese, Sushi) - 691 Bloomfield Ave, West Caldwell
- Franco Pizzeria (Pizza) - 907 Bloomfield Ave, West Caldwell
- Asian Delite (Sushi, Chinese, Japanese) - 893 Bloomfield Ave, West Caldwell
- Russillo Pizzeria & Ristorante (Pizza, Italian) - 675 Bloomfield Ave, West Caldwell
- Good Earth Potato (American) - 800 Bloomfield Ave, West Caldwell
- Michael's Pizzeria (Pizza) - 669 Bloomfield Ave, West Caldwell
- Sam's Bagel & Deli (Bagels) - 757 Bloomfield Ave, West Caldwell
- Frank's Trattoria (Pizza) - 802 Bloomfield Ave, West Caldwell
- Vitella's Cucina (Sandwiches/Subs, Italian, Pizza) - 40 Clinton Rd, West Caldwell

National Register of Historic Places listings include--
- Samuel Orton Harrison House, 153 Orton Rd., West Caldwell

In the early 18th century, a group of settlers left Newark and purchased a large tract of land northwest of their home city for the equivalent of a few hundred dollars from the Lenni Lenape Native Americans.  This piece of land extended west and north to the Passaic River, south to the town center of what would become Livingston, and east to the First Watchung Mountain, and was called Horseneck by the natives because it resembled the neck and head of a horse.  Caldwell, West Caldwell, and several neighboring towns were all originally one town known as the Horseneck Tract.

What was then known as Horseneck contained most of the present day northern Essex County towns: West Caldwell, along with Caldwell, Cedar Grove, Essex Fells, Fairfield, North Caldwell, Roseland, and Verona are all located entirely in Horseneck, and parts of what are today Livingston, Montclair, and West Orange also were contained in the Horseneck tract.

At the time of the Horseneck Riots in 1745, James Caldwell, after whom the Caldwells are named, was a young boy of about 11 years.  By the time of the Revolution, though, he was a man - a minister, in fact, who had endeared himself to the people of Horseneck by journeying over the mountains to preach to them.  During the War for Independence not long afterwards,  Caldwell earned the nickname "the Fighting Parson" because of his aid to Washington's men as they battled in various parts of Horseneck.  Following the Revolution, a local chapel was finally erected - and in memory of the Fighting Parson who had stood with them since colonial times, the citizens of Horseneck in 1798 renamed their home "Caldwell."

Caldwell Township flourished throughout the 1800's.  Prescribed by physicians as a "pure air" retreat for patients with all kinds of ailments, the quiet region was home to about 485 people (1800 census).  Westville (what would eventually become known as West Caldwell), owned predominantly by the Crane and Harrison families (whose historical homes still exist), was the site of farming lands and the local sawmill.

By 1904, the population of Caldwell Township had grown and to address this West Caldwell was incorporated as an individual borough comprised of 3,175 acres and 410 people.  Over this century, West Caldwell has come to be considered one of the most beautiful residential areas in all of Essex County.  Designated since 1982 as a Township.

The Zenas C. Crane House currently serves as the home of the West Caldwell Historical Society.  It is located at 289 Westville Avenue and was built about the year 1853 on the site of an earlier structure erected in the early 1790's by Caleb Crane, but destroyed by fire in 1848.

To this day, the towns of Caldwell and West Caldwell remain by far the most urbanized, densely populated, and ethnically, racially, and income-diverse in the West Essex area.  The town is home Grover Cleveland Park (also partially located in Caldwell and Essex Fells, a county park named in honor of the President of the United States who was born in the neighboring town of Caldwell.

Additionally, West Caldwell contains a number of smaller parks and land preserves, such as Memorial Park and Francisco Park.  Hatfield Swamp, located in the western section of the town along its borders with the towns of Fairfield, Roseland, and East Hanover, is a protected preservation that usually very little building is allowed to be done on.

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