A blog about living in Aberdeen, New Jersey.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Jacob R Lefferts, Namesake of Lake Lefferts of Matawan

The headline of the 2 March 1928 edition of The Matawan Journal reads  

Contributors Adopt Resolution
An Ambition Realized

Jacob Lefferts Had Worked Long and Faithfully to Secure Large Lake - Honored for His Efforts.  The article reads, in part: 

A meeting of the contributors to the fund for the construction of the new dam and the present property owners along the site of the new lake was held Monday evening at the store of Charles C Schock.

The object of this meeting was to select an appropriate name for the new lake on the north side of Matawan.  It was the popular sentiment of those present, that in consideration of the efforts put forth by Jacob R Lefferts in promoting this project, and in consideration of the desire of Mr Lefferts to have the lake bear his name, that it should be named "Lake Lefferts," if it were to bear the name of any individual, as he has been one of the most instrumental in getting the money subscribed, in securing the co-operation of the County Freeholders in building the new bridge over the dam and the construction of the new county highway.

At the meeting a resolution was passed to the effect that the name be named after Jacob R Lefferts, who was instrumental in its creation, and that it be known as "Lake Lefferts." The resolution was adopted.

Jacob was born in April 1882 in New Jersey, according to the 1900 Federal Census, which showed him living in Passaic with his parents (married 35 years) and siblings. His father, W C Lefferts (Dec 1842), was a lawyer. His mother was Catherine(Aug 1843). The family moved from NY to NJ between 1872 and 1879. Jacob's siblings were Annie (Aug 1867), Paul (Mar 1871), Joseph R (Jun 1872), and Donald (Mar 1879).

Jacob R Lefferts (28) lived in Passaic with his brother Donald (29) and family, per the 1910 Federal Census. They were both born in NJ to NJ parents, and the brothers were both lawyers.

For his World War I draft registration in 1918, Jacob listed his full name as Jacob Rapelyea Van Mater Lefferts and his date of birth as 16 Aug 1881. He was a lawyer at the time, living on Jackson Street and working for himself from an office on Main Street. His wife was Madeleine Klemm Lefferts.

Jacob (38) was still a lawyer in the 1920 Federal Census, but he was married and living with his growing family at 314 Main Street in Matawan. Jacob's wife was Madeleine Klemm (34); she was born in NY. Their three sons were Donald (7), Douglas (5), and David (1 1/2).


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