Collier's New Encyclopedia (1921)/Trenton (New Jersey)
TRENTON, a city of New Jersey, the capital of the State, and the county-seat of Mercer co. It is on the Delaware river, the Delaware and Raritan canal, and on the main line of the Pennsylvania and of the Philadelphia and Reading railroads. The city is connected by electric lines with Philadelphia, northern New Jersey, and New York, while there is a large traffic on the canal and by steamship and barges on the Delaware river to the south. The city is connected with Morrisville in Pennsylvania by bridges over the river. Trenton is an important industrial city and is noted for the wide variety and extent of its manufactures. The industrial zone had in 1920 200 manufacturing plants with $120,000,000 invested and 40,000 employees. The value of the finished product was nearly $175,000,000. The leading industries are the manufacture of pottery, rubber, wire, machinery, structural steel and linoleum, automobiles, bedding and spring mattresses, bricks, candy, cigars, clothing, furniture, hosiery, silk and woolen yarns, steam turbines, watches, etc. Trenton has a total area of 19 square miles. The assessed property valuation in 1919 was $76,177,195 in real estate and $16,030,800 in personal property. The net public debt was $6,110,437. The annual cost of maintaining the city government was $1,665,169. There were enrolled in the public schools 15,336 pupils and the cost of maintaining the schools was $734,606. It is the seat of the State Normal and Model School, School of Industrial Arts, and several private schools. It contains three hospitals. State home for girls, a reformatory. State hospital for the insane, and a State prison. The notable public buildings include the State Capitol, Masonic Temple, and the State Armory. The city has two parks. The spot where Washington planted his cannon during the Battle of Trenton is marked by a statue.
History.—The site of Trenton was settled as early as 1679 by Mahlon Stacy and other Quakers. Judge Trent purchased a large plantation here about 1715, and the place became known as Trent Town, subsequently shortened to Trenton. It became the State capital in 1790, but prior to that year the Legislature often met here. The town was incorporated in 1792. After the Revolutionary War the Continental Congress once met here and discussed the feasibility of making Trenton the National capital, but State jealousies defeated the movement. On Dec. 25, 1776, the town was the scene of night attack by Washington on the British troops, whom he surprised by crossing the Delaware, when the floating ice was supposed to have rendered it impassable. A monument erected by the National and State governments commemorates this event. Pop. (1910) 96,815; (1920) 119,289.