Hackensack History from 1609-1976

Several city employees and residents wrote Heritage to Horizons in 1976 in anticipation of the Bicentennial. In the end, publication proved to be cost prohibitive and the manuscript was never published.

The unfinished manuscript provides a comprehensive history of the City and is a valuable research tool. The book is available here. Internet hyperlinks were added for easy cross-referencing. The manuscript is completely searchable.

Note: The manuscript contains some typos and grammatical errors as a result of the scanning process. Please report these to adib@hackensack.org . Bear in mind the history was written in the social context of 1976 and does not include the last 30 years.


The attempt to put into writing the history of a city now over 300 years old was undertaken with high ideals and a desire to detail much of the story of this area so rich in Revolutionary War history.

An area close to New York, the port of entry for people from all over the globe, seeking a better life, has thousands of interesting personal histories which could never be compressed into a small volume.

Instead, an attempt has been made to describe how each ethnic group came to be a part of the Hackensack Story. For whatever is not covered to the satisfaction of any person, or any group, we must apologize.

We anticipated in the short, volunteer life of your Bicentennial Committee that we could create what would be a small miracle. Larger ones take longer.

Why publish then? If we can look forward to encouraging others to become involved, digging into microfilmed newspapers in our library, finding old letters in their attics, delving into the “whys” of life in Hackensack as an immigrant, etc., then this small start may be a seed from which to grow. We want to know one another better. This was Hackensack.

We are Hackensack. Where will we lead it?