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Northern New Jersey Deserted Village

The abandoned village of Fetlville is located in the Watchung Reservation in Berkley Heights, New Jersey. This deserted village is the remediates of an old mill town that was located on Blue Brook. Feltville had seen many areas from mill town, farm town and even a summer resort.

The area was settled in 1736 and the first sawmill was erected only to shortly be demolished as more people moved to the town. Over a decade later David Felt purchased land from descendants of the original settlers to build a second factory for his mill located in Boston. He constructed two mills along with a town for the workers to reside in and named it "Feltville".


After 15 years David Felt sold the property, and after several successor businesses failed it became known as the Deserted Village. in 1882 it was bought by Warren Ackerman who turned it into a summer resort known as Glenside Park. The popularity of the resort dwindled as the accessibility to vacation at the Jersey Shore became easier.



Shortly after it became deserted again the land was bought by the Union County Park Commission and included it in the Watchung Reservation. Many of the buildings were used as the homes were rented out and the served as a cafeteria and lecture hall from 1966 to 1984. Recently in 2011 the Masker's Barn, the carriage house built by Warren Ackerman, was restored.


This is a great place to explore! A self-guided walking tour is available, you can download a pamphlet here. On certain weekends County staff has children's games, a demonstration of apple cider pressing, and a display of archaeological artifacts available. There are also a wide variety of trails spanning through the reservation. You can check them out Here.


Every October you can embark on a Haunted Hayride through the old village! You can check the dates and times HERE. "During the hayrides, visitors are taken around the 130-acre grounds and the “ghost” of David Felt, who built this former mill town in 1845, will briefly explain the history of the site and introduce characters from its past, telling tales of mystery and tragedy. Visitors will also get the opportunity to take a short walk into the village’s Revolutionary War-era cemetery. " - UCNJ.ORG



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