Newark, New Jersey
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Newark was first incorporated as a township on October the 31st, 1693. It was founded by Connecticut Puritans led by Robert Treat, who had arrived in New Jersey from the New Haven Colony following the union of the New Haven and Connecticut colonies. According to Curious New York, Newark Township was named by Abraham Pierson, who “said the community reflecting the task at hand should be named ‘New Ark’ for ‘New Ark of the Covenant.’” The name was later shortened to Newark.
A 2014 US Census report estimated the population of modern day Newark to be 280,579 people. This makes it the 67th largest city by population in the country, and the largest in the state of New Jersey. Newark is the second largest city within the New York metropolitan area, which in 2013 was estimated to have a population of 23,632,722 people. The New York Metropolitan Area is the largest metropolitan area in the United States.
The city of Newark is home to Port Newark, which is the major container-shipping terminal in the Port of New York and New Jersey. Port Newark is also the largest port on the East Coast and the third largest in the country. It is considered the principal container ship facility for goods entering and leaving the NY metropolitan area. The basis for Port Newark was constructed in the 1910s.
Newark Liberty International Airport, which opened on October the 1st, 1928, was the first municipal commercial airport in the country. Today, the New York Times estimates the airport to be the New York-New Jersey metropolitan area’s busiest airport in terms of flights.
The city of Newark also serves as the headquarters for large corporations such as Prudential Financial, Panasonic Corporation of North America, PSEG, IDT Corporation, New Jersey Transit, Manischewitz, Horizon Blue Cross and Blue Shield of New Jersey, and Audible.com. Newark is the US’ third-largest insurance center, after New York City and Hartford. In fact, the Star-Ledger reports 100,000 commuters work in Newark during the weekdays, and 40,000 students attend the city’s universities.
One of Newark’s most famous universities is undoubtedly Rutgers University-Newark, which is one of three regional campuses of Rutgers University. Rutgers itself was founded in 1766 and as such is the eight oldest colleges in the United States. Rutgers University-Newark incorporates the Rutgers Business School, Rutgers School of Law – Newark, and several research institutes including the Institute of Jazz Studies. In total, Rutgers University-Newark contains 11,315 enrolled students and employs 528 academic staff.
Newark is also the site for Branch Brook Park, which is listed on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places. Branch Brook Park opened in 1895 and features Late Victorian and French Renaissance architectural styles. Branch Brook Park is most famous for its collection of cherry blossom trees, however. The park contains over 4,300 cherry blossom trees, stemming from fourteen different varieties. Locals refer to the area as ‘Cherryblossomland’ and it hosts the annual Cherry Blossom Festival every April.
Newark is home to the Newark Bears of the Canadian American Association of Professional Baseball. The Bears play their home games at Bears & Eagles Riverfront Stadium and have two league championships to their name. The NHL’s New Jersey Devils play their home matches in Prudential Center. The Devils have won three Stanley Cups.