Green Island


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1872 Map

From: The Running Brooks by Edward S. Rankin

In the act incorporating the township of Bloomfield in 1812, the boundary is described as "beginning at the Green Island in the Passaic River, near that part of the road leading from Newark to Belleville called the gully, and from thence running westerly, etc." That part of the road called the gully is now Herbert Place, the rest of the road being called Riverside Avenue. Looking east from this point, on the south side of the old gully is Mount Pleasant Cemetery, on the other an old residence, and in front the murky waters of the Passaic, with railroad tracks in the foreground' but no island is in sight.

C. G. Hine, in his history of Woodside, says that 75 years ago (the book was written in 1909) Green Island was a noted rendezvous for wild ducks and geese, with enough water between it and the shore to enable river craft to navigate the channel. "It was a hunter's paradise, and the fishing for shad and smelts a well established industry." An other gentleman writing of the Passaic says, "One of the points of interest was Green Island, just off the shore in front of 'The Cedars,' the house of Henry William Herbert, who styled himself 'Frank Forester'. This sedge island, which bloomed at times with rose mallows among the calamus and cattails, was the mark for a famous striped bass fishing reef across the river."

A study of maps old and modern shows that the original shore line at this point bent well in toward the west, forming a large cove. About 150 feet off shore lay Green Island, some 100 feet in width and 350 in length.

It belonged at one time to the Mount Pleasant Cemetery Company, but was later acquired by the eErie Railroad, when the Paterson branch was Erie, and the channel between the island and the shore was filled in. The tracks of the railroad now run through the center of the old channel, and the present dock lies well out beyond the eastern shore of the island.