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Belle Mead, New Jersey
Looking north along Trent Avenue
Looking north along Trent Avenue
Belle Mead, New Jersey is located in Somerset County, New Jersey
Belle Mead, New Jersey
Belle Mead, New Jersey
Location in Somerset County, New Jersey
Belle Mead, New Jersey is located in New Jersey
Belle Mead, New Jersey
Belle Mead, New Jersey
Location in New Jersey
Belle Mead, New Jersey is located in the United States
Belle Mead, New Jersey
Belle Mead, New Jersey
Location in the United States
Country  United States
State  New Jersey
County Somerset
Township Montgomery
Area
 • Total 0.740 sq mi (1.917 km2)
 • Land 0.740 sq mi (1.917 km2)
 • Water 0.000 sq mi (0.000 km2)  0.00%
Elevation
98 ft (30 m)
Population
 • Total 5,569
 • Density 291.8/sq mi (112.7/km2)
Time zone UTC-5 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC-4 (Eastern (EDT))
ZIP code
08502
Area code(s) 908 Exchanges: 281,359,431,874,904
FIPS code 3404630
GNIS feature ID 02583967

Belle Mead is an unincorporated community and census-designated place (CDP) located within Montgomery Township, in Somerset County, New Jersey, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, the CDP's population was 216.

History

Belle Mead Station on the West Trenton
The Belle Mead railroad station located along the former Reading Railroad (proposed as a part of the West Trenton Line)

Up until about 1875, Belle Mead, then named Plainville, was considered to be part of the community of Harlingen. It was a quiet farming region when about that time a New York City contractor named Van Aken bought up all the local farms and set out to develop a city. He had the farms laid out into lots, some streets put through and named after the style of New York. He donated land for the railroad station that had a dining room underneath (the station was torn down in February, 1940). There is an abandoned train station in Belle Mead. When Van Aken went broke, the property was sold to a U.S. Senator, John R. McPherson, who changed the name from Vanaken to Belle Mead in honor of his daughter, Edna Belle Mead McPherson, according to one popular story.

Woods Tavern in Belle Mead was a popular stop for travelers for more than 100 years and played an important social and political role. Horace Greeley spoke there in 1872 as part of his campaign for President of the United States. The tavern burned down in 1932.

James Baldwin, the 20th-century author and civil rights advocate, lived in Belle Mead in the early 1940s.

Dr. John Summerskill and his wife, Mimi LaFollette Summerskill established the LaFollette Vineyard in Belle Mead in the 1970s. President Bill Clinton and 14 Democratic governors met for a strategy session and press conference at the vineyard during the 1992 presidential campaign.

The abandoned train station was built by Reading Railroad in the 1930s, and was removed from service in 1984. Since then, restoration projects have been announced, however, not one has progressed any further than cleaning up tree debris and graffiti.

The Belle Mead section straddles the northern portion of Montgomery Township and the southern portion of Hillsborough Township. For many years residents of Belle Mead had been served by the Belle Mead Post Office located on Route 206 in Montgomery Township having ZIP code 08502. In the late 1990s, Hillsborough Township was granted its own post office serving all of its residents (ZIP code 08844), including that section of town formerly serving the Belle Mead area. Since that time the Belle Mead post office and its associated ZIP code (08502) serves only the remaining area of Belle Mead located in the northern section of Montgomery Township.

Geography

According to the United States Census Bureau, Belle Mead had a total area of 0.740 square miles (1.917 km2), all of which is land.

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
2010 216
Population sources: 2010

Census 2010

As of the census of 2010, there were 216 people, 78 households, and 62 families residing in the CDP. The population density was 291.8 per square mile (112.7/km2). There were 80 housing units at an average density of 108.1 per square mile (41.7/km2)*. The racial makeup of the CDP was 92.13% (199) White, 0.93% (2) Black or African American, 0.00% (0) Native American, 1.85% (4) Asian, 0.00% (0) Pacific Islander, 4.63% (10) from other races, and 0.46% (1) from two or more races. [[Hispanic (U.S. Census)|Hispanic or Latino of any race were 8.33% (18) of the population.

There were 78 households out of which 39.7% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 71.8% were married couples living together, 5.1% had a female householder with no husband present, and 20.5% were non-families. 15.4% of all households were made up of individuals, and 7.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.77 and the average family size was 3.03.

In the CDP, the population was spread out with 25.9% under the age of 18, 4.2% from 18 to 24, 25.9% from 25 to 44, 30.6% from 45 to 64, and 13.4% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 42.5 years. For every 100 females there were 100.0 males. For every 100 females ages 18 and old there were 102.5 males.

Notable people

See also (related category): People from Montgomery Township, New Jersey

People who were born in, residents of, or otherwise closely associated with Belle Mead include:

  • Wade Baldwin IV (born 1996), basketball player for the Portland Trail Blazers of the National Basketball Association.
  • Mike Ford (born 1992), first baseman for the Tampa Bay Rays.
  • Brandon Grosso (born 2000), racecar driver in the ARCA Menards Series.
  • Ricky Proehl (born 1968), wide receiver who played for 17 seasons in the NFL.
  • Elliott F. Smith (1931-1987), politician who served in the New Jersey General Assembly from 1978 to 1984, representing the 16th Legislative District.
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