Bernardsville: A History
A borough with roots in the Revolutionary War era, Bernardsville has managed to maintain its smalltown charm in the face of modern-day development pressures.
Bernardsville was originally a section of Bernards Township known as Vealtown. In 1840, Vealtown became Bernardsville, named after Sir Francis Bernard, Colonial governor of New Jersey from 1758 to 1760. Nestled in the northern most part of Somerset County, just 12 miles south of Morristown, New Jersey, this rustic community sits in some of the last vestiges of the Great Eastern Forest.
Sir Francis Bernard
Founder of Bernardston
After the Civil War, many wealthy and prominent New Yorkers moved into the area, first as summer visitors, then as permanent residents of the Bernardsville Mountain.
The railroad line was built through Bernardsville in 1872 and played an important role in the borough’s development. Bernardsville did not become a separate borough until 1924, when it split from Bernards Township.
Bernardsville has a land area of 12.85 square miles and 7,345 residents. The town is governed by a mayor and six-member Borough Council.
Borough Hall, a circa 1800 building, formerly was known as Bunn’s Mill. It was operated as a grist mill, sawmill, cider mill and distillery in the mid 1800s.