Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Kearny (pronounced /kɑrni/) is a town in Hudson County, New Jersey, United States. It was named after Civil War general Philip Kearny. As of the United States 2000 Census, the town population was 40,513.
Kearny was originally formed as a township by an Act of the New Jersey Legislature on April 8, 1867, from portions of Harrison Township. Portions of the township were taken on July 3, 1895, to form East Newark. Kearny was incorporated as a town on January 19, 1899, based on the results of a referendum held two days earlier.
The town has been used for location filming of the HBO series The Sopranos.

As of the census of 2000, there were 40,513 people, 13,539 households, and 9,802 families residing in the town. The population density was 1,711.4/km² (4,433.2/mi²). There were 13,872 housing units at an average density of 586.0/km² (1,518.0/mi²). The racial makeup of the town was 75.75% White, 3.97% African American, 0.37% Native American, 5.50% Asian, 0.07% Pacific Islander, 10.04% from other races, and 4.31% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 27.34% of the population.
There were 13,539 households out of which 34.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.8% were married couples living together, 13.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 27.6% were non-families. 21.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.81 and the average family size was 3.28.
In the town the population was spread out with 21.5% under the age of 18, 10.7% from 18 to 24, 35.7% from 25 to 44, 21.3% from 45 to 64, and 10.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 35 years. For every 100 females there were 106.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 107.0 males.
The median income for a household in the town was $47,757, and the median income for a family was $54,596. Males had a median income of $38,672 versus $30,620 for females. The per capita income for the town was $20,886. About 6.1% of families and 8.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 9.1% of those under age 18 and 10.0% of those age 65 or over.

Kearny, New Jersey Demographics

Local government
Kearny is split between the Ninth and Thirteenth Congressional Districts and is part of New Jersey's 32nd Legislative District.
New Jersey's Ninth Congressional District, covering the southern portion of Bergen County and sections of Hudson County and Passaic County, is represented by Steve Rothman (D, Fair Lawn). New Jersey's Thirteenth Congressional District, covering portions of Essex, Hudson, Middlesex, and Union Counties, is now represented by Albio Sires (D, West New York), who won a special election held on November 7, 2006 to fill the vacancy the had existed since January 16, 2006. The seat had been represented by Bob Menendez (D), who was appointed to the United States Senate to fill the seat vacated by Governor of New Jersey Jon Corzine. New Jersey is represented in the Senate by Frank Lautenberg (D, Cliffside Park) and Bob Menendez (D, Hoboken).
The 32nd legislative district of the New Jersey Legislature is represented in the State Senate by Nicholas Sacco (D, North Bergen) and in the Assembly by Vincent Prieto (D, Secaucus) and Joan M. Quigley (D, Jersey City). The Governor of New Jersey is Jon Corzine (D, Hoboken).
Hudson County's County Executive is Thomas A. DeGise. The executive, together with the Board of Chosen Freeholders in a legislative role, administer all county business. Hudson County's nine Freeholders (as of 2006) are: District 1: Doreen McAndrew DiDomenico; District 2: William O'Dea; District 3: Jeffrey Dublin; District 4: Eliu Rivera; District 5: Maurice Fitzgibbons; District 6: Tilo Rivas; District 7: Gerald Lange Jr.; District 8: Thomas Liggio; and District 9: Albert Cifelli.

Kearny, New Jersey Federal, state and county representation
The Kearny School District is dedicated to the education of the more than 5,000 culturally diverse students in the district. The District has seven schools: four Pre Kindergarten-8 schools; Franklin School with 988 students, Lincoln School with 635 students, Schuyler School with 501 students and Washington School with 636 students — and two Pre-K to 6 schools (Garfield School with 552 students and Roosevelt School with 412 students). Kearny High School serves 1,660 students in grades 9 - 12.

New Jersey Transit offers bus service to the Port Authority Bus Terminal in Midtown Manhattan and to other New Jersey communities. Bus service to Newark is available on the 1, 39, 40, 43, 76 and 80 routes.
The Belleville Turnpike (Route 7) forms the northern border of the town with North Arlington. Kearny Avenue passes through the town and continues north as Route 17. The Essex Freeway (I-280) passes through the boro and ends at Interstate 95(W)/New Jersey Turnpike at Exit 15W. A toll gate (the 15W toll gate) is located in Kearny, with a total of 14 lanes at the gate.
The closest airport with scheduled passenger service is Newark Liberty International Airport, located 6.5 miles away in Newark / Elizabeth.

The 9.3 square mile (24 km²) area of Kearny Township, created in 1867, had been part of the original Crown Grant of 30,000 acres (120 km²) obtained by Major William Sandford of Barbadoes Island on July 4, 1668. Major Sandford named it "New Barbadoes Neck" after his old home. As was the custom of the times, the Major paid Chief Tantaqua of the Hackensack Indians 20 English Pounds Sterling for all their reserve rights and titles. It would seem these transactions made Major Sandford Kearny's first citizen and founder. William Sandford died in 1690.
In 1708, his friend Major Nathaniel Kingsland took over the upper western tract of the Grant. In 1710 he sold it for 300 English Pounds Sterling to Captain Arent Schuyler, a former Dutch trader and Indian Agent. The new purchase included present-day Kearny, North Arlington, Lyndhurst and Kingsland.
Shortly after Schuyler's purchase of his new homestead, a peculiar green stone was uncovered. It was sent to England for analysis and he learned that that it contained 80% copper. His opening of a copper mine brought the first steam engine to America from England; it was used to pump out the deep mine shaft. The engine was secretly delivered by its engineer, Josiah Hornblower. The engine and mines were destroyed by fire in 1772 and remained idle for some years.
Schuyler Mansion played a role during the American Revolutionary War Era. When Lord Howe of England took possession of New York Harbor, the nearness of Schuyler Mansion drew many of his officers. They generally traveled over a road that today is referred to as the Belleville Turnpike. It was originally made of cedar logs from the nearby swamps in 1759.
During September 1777, General Henry Clinton, head of the British Expeditionary Forces in America, selected Schuyler Mansion for his headquarters during one of his more important raiding operations which included the famed Battle of Second River. The Mansion stood until 1924, a period of 214 years, when it was torn down by a land development company.
In the middle 1800's, Kearny was the upper, or northern, section of the Township of Harrison. A prominent citizen and resident of the upper section, General N. M. Halsted, felt it was impossible under these political conditions for his section to obtain proper recognition. He engaged an energetic campaign for an independent township. He succeeded when the NJ Legislature of 1867 on March 14 th, adopted "an act creating the Township of Kearny". The town was named to honor Major General Phil Kearny, Commander of the New Jersey Forces in the Civil War and the late resident of well-known "Belle Grove", locally called Kearny Castle.
On April 8, 1867, the first election of town officers was held. Every office in the new Township had to be filled. General N. M. Halsted was elected Chairman. The first official seat of Government was three rooms in the old Lodi Hotel, on the northeast corner of Schuyler and Harrison Avenues.
In the early 1870's, Kearny erected its first Town Hall, on the corner of Kearny and Woodland Avenues, the present site of the Knox Presbyterian Church Parish Hall. This served as a Town Hall, Court House, and Schoolhouse. When the town's growth demanded larger quarters, the present Kearny Town Hall, built of Indiana Limestone, was erected in 1909. It is located in almost the exact center of own.
The Minute Book of the Township states on August 16, 1870, the first step toward establishing Kearny's present public school system was taken. The first schoolhouse was housed in the Town Hall built at Kearny and Woodland Avenues.
The early influx and development of industry in Kearny dates back to 1875 when the Clark Thread Company of Scotland extended its activities to this country by erecting two large mills in Kearny, and adding two others in 1890. These mills brought to Kearny thousands of Scots immigrants.
In 1876, the Mile End Thread Mills started operating, giving employment to several hundred operators.
In 1883, the Marshall Flax Spinning Company of England erected a large plant in Kearny, known as the Linen Thread Company. Their need for experienced flax spinners brought an influx of workers from other sections of the British Isles. Families of those early textile workers were the nucleus of Kearny's present population.
The Puraline Manufacturing Company, later called the Arlington Company, which became a subsidiary of E. I. DuPont de Nemours Company, had purchased a large tract of land east of the Arlington Station on the Erie Railroad extending well out, north of the railroad embankment, into the meadowland.
In 1887, Sir Michael Nairn established the Nairn Linoleum Company, now the Congoleum Nairn Company of Kearny, giving further impetus to local industrial growth.
In 1902, the Lovell-Dressel Company, manufacturers of marine and railway lamps and fixtures, located in Kearny adjacent to the Erie Railroad.
Other industries which located in Kearny include: Swift & Company, Koppers Company, Theobald Industries, Western Electric Co., Standard Tool & Manufacturing, Wilkata Box Company, Harris Steel Company and L & R Manufacturing.

Kearny gained national attention in 2006 after public high school history teacher David Paszkiewicz was caught on a tape recorder by student Matthew LaClair telling his students that they belonged in hell if they rejected Jesus. Additionally Paszkiewicz told students that Noah's ark carried dinosaurs and that the theories of evolution and the Big Bang were not scientific. LaClair claimed the religious preaching had been going on for some time and that he had wanted to approach school officials but feared they would not believe him if he did not bring evidence. After going through the principal the controversy reached the school board whose decision to ban secret recordings of teachers has been criticized by groups advocating separation of church and state.

Popular culture

Ownie Carroll (1902-1975), Major League Baseball pitcher who played nine seasons in the major, from 1925 to 1934.
John Harkes became the first American to score at Wembley Stadium when he played for Sheffield Wednesday in the 1993 League Cup Final.
James and Alex Webster played professional football in the 1950s and 1960s. James played halfback for Marquette University earning MVP in 1959, and professionally for the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and for the UFL Grand Rapids Shamrocks/Blazers (1960-1964). Alex Webster played halfback for North Carolina State University and began playing professionally for the Montreal Alouettes earning MVP and was an All-Star in 1954. In 1955 he was drafted into the NFL and played for the New York Giants (1955-1964). Alex Webster eventually became assistant coach under Allie Sherman, later being promoted to head coach (1967-1973) where he won NFL Coach of the year in 1970.