The Barron name is an important one in Woodbridge, as the family was one of the first to settle here in the late 17th century. The Barron family, noted patriots and philanthropists, made many contributions to the town. The Barron estate encompassed the land opposite First Presbyterian Church and continued west onto the property through which Barron Avenue runs. Two of the original structures built by the Barron family still stand: the Barron House and the Barron Library.
The Barron House at 574 Rahway Avenue was built in 1803 by Joseph Barron, a deacon of First Presbyterian Church, and his sons, John and Thomas. John managed a farm on the family estate and established a cabinet factory in Woodbridge. Thomas Barron held a partnership in a trading house in the West Indies trade. Upon his death, he bequeathed $50,000 for the establishment of a library.
The Barron Library at 582 Rahway Avenue was built in 1877 on land donated from the family estate by Thomas' nephew, Civil War physician John C. Barron. It was the first free public library in Middlesex County. Constructed by renowned architect J. Clevland Cady in beautiful Romanesque Revival-style, the building is a supreme example of Victorian-era architecture and is listed on both the State and National Register of Historic Places. Since 1977 it has housed the Barron Arts Center.
More information visit www.wthpc.org Woodbridge Township Historic Preservation Commission.
(Inscription under the image on the left) John Connor Barron