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North Hudson, New Jersey

View to West New York, Guttenberg, North Bergen from the Hudson River showing tallest buildings in North Hudson

North Hudson is the area in the northern part of Hudson County, New Jersey, situated on the west bank of the Hudson River, mostly atop the Hudson Palisades. It comprises Weehawken, Union City, West New York, Guttenberg and North Bergen.[1][2][3][4][5][6]

With a combined population of approximately 201,000, the municipalities are among the most densely populated in the United States. Some have large proportions of foreign-born residents and majority Hispanic populations.[7] In four of the five towns, large percentages of the population speak another language other than English.[8]

The towns and adjacent areas have been known as the 'Home of the American Embroidery Industry' and 'Havana on the Hudson'.

Use of the name

The collective name for the municipalities of North Hudson has been used for various agencies, institutions, and organizations.

North Hudson County Railway (c.1865),[9] North Hudson Hospital (c.1900),[10] and North Hudson Park (c.1908) and the Hoboken-North Hudson YMCA (c.1929)[11] were all established before or around the turn of the 20th century.

Public services in the region include the North Hudson Regional Fire and Rescue,[1] founded in 1998 when municipal services were merged,[12][13] and the North Hudson Sewerage Authority,[14] also serving nearby Hoboken.

Hudson County Community College has a North Hudson Campus[15] and Hudson County Schools of Technology has North Hudson Center[16] Other educational facilities bearing the name include the North Hudson Islamic Educational Center[17] and the North Hudson Academy[18]

The North Hudson Community Action Corporation (1965)[19] and the North Hudson Regional Council of Mayors[20][21][22] are social service organizations serving area.

In the late 2000s, North Hudson came to be dubbed "NoHu" within certain communities.[23][24][25][26][27]

Geography and demographics


North Hudson is part of New Jersey's Hudson Waterfront

As of the 2010 Census the region had a population of approximately 201,000: Weehawken (12,554), Union City (66,455), West New York (49,708), Guttenberg (11,176) and North Bergen (60,773) The municipalities are among the most densely populated in the United States. Gutenberg the most densely populated incorporated municipality in the United States, as well as one of the most densely populated municipalities worldwide, with 57,116 people per square mile (22,052/km²) of land area.[28] Of municipalities with over 50,000 people, Union City is the most densely city in the United States.[29] North Hudson municipalities also have one of the nation's largest proportions of foreign-born residents. Among the 100 US places (population 5,000 and up) with the highest percent of foreign-born residents: West New York (65.2%), Union City (58.7%), and Guttenberg (48.7%). Some also have a majority Hispanic population.


Mostly situated atop the Palisades on the Hudson Waterfront on west bank of the Hudson River, the area is directly across from Midtown Manhattan and Upper West Side in New York City, north of Hoboken and Jersey City[30] (the county seat), and east of the New Jersey Meadowlands. Its high elevation allows North Hudson expansive views of the Manhattan skyline, the Meadowlands, and the Watchung Mountains. The cuesta, or slope, on the west side of area makes North Bergen the city with the second most hills per square mile in the United States after San Francisco.[31]

Many of Hudson County's cemeteries were developed along the town's western slope of the Hudson Palisades. The Hudson River Waterfront Walkway is a promenade and park along the river.

An 1841 map shows the area as being part of Bergen and still very rural


North Hudson lies north of Bergen, one of earliest settlements in New Jersey, founded in 1660. During the British and colonial it was known as Bergen Woods and was in the southeastern part of Bergen County. On February 22, 1838, Jersey City was incorporated as a separate municipality,[32] In 1840 Hudson County, comprising Jersey City and Bergen Township, was created from the southern portion of Bergen County.[32][33] North Bergen was incorporated as a township on April 10, 1843, by an act of the New Jersey Legislature, from the northern portion of Bergen Township.[34] At the time, the town included everything east of the Hackensack River and north of and including what is now Jersey City Heights.[35][36]

North Hudson experienced massive immigration and urbanization during the latter half of the 19th century, and led to the creation of various new towns. Portions of the North Bergen were taken to form Hoboken Township (April 9, 1849, now the City of Hoboken), Hudson Town (April 12, 1852, later part of Hudson City), Hudson City (April 11, 1855, later merged with Jersey City), Guttenberg (formed within the township on March 9, 1859, and set off as an independent municipality on April 1, 1878), Weehawken (March 15, 1859), Union Township and West Hoboken Township (both created on February 28, 1861), Union Hill town (March 29, 1864) and Secaucus (March 12, 1900).[34] During this era many of Hudson County's cemeteries were developed along the western slope of the Hudson Palisades.

In the early 1900s the idea of the all towns consolidating emerged and subsided,[37][38][39] Eventually West Hoboken and Union Hill merged in 1925. Though each municipality has an independent local government and school district, they collaborate (sometimes with Hoboken) on certain services including fire-fighting, water supply, sewage treatment[40] emergency medical services, and vocational education. Some are members of the Bergen County Cooperative Library System[41][42]

North Hudson is part of New Jersey's 32nd 33rd legislative districts[43] Most of North Hudson falls within New Jersey's 8th congressional district, with a small portion in the 9th.


Embroidery shops in North Hudson

The earliest known residents were the Lenni Lenape Native Americans, specifically the Hackensack and Tappan, whose territories overlapped. In 1658 Dutch Director-General Peter Stuyvesant of New Amsterdam negotiated a deal with them for the area named Bergen, "by the great rock above Wiehacken," including all of what would become North Hudson.

Like most of the New York metropolitan area, North Hudson experienced waves of immigration, specifically: settlers from the Netherlands, British colonialists, German-speaking farmers and entrepreneurs, Irish fleeing the famine, "Ellis Islanders", World Wars refugees, the "Spanish" (initially Cuban immigrants, and later other South and Central Americans),[44] and most recently, so-called "cosmopolitans" including individuals and childless families, yuppies, retirees, gay men and women, newlyweds, house-sharers, and rent refugees from less gentrified areas.[45]

In the mid-19th century and early 20th century German Americans dominated the area.[46] They, along with Swiss and Austrian immigrants, imported machines and founded the Schiffli lace making industries, for which they were famous, and the region became the "embroidery capitol of the United States".[47][48][49][50][51][52][53][54][55] Many of the factory buildings still house clothing manufacturers, while others have been converted to art studios or housing. It was this community who (in 1915) established what has become longest running passion play in the U.S., creating America's Oberammergau.[56] The German-American Volksfest has taken place annually since 1874 at Schuetzen Park.[57][58]

North Hudson is home to a large Cuban American population

In the 1960s and 1970s the some residents left for the suburbs. Simultaneously middle-class and professional Cubans, fleeing the revolution in their home country, re-located to the area[59][60] and are generally considered to have "saved" it from a devastating downward spiral, leading to the nickname "Havana on the Hudson".[61][62] North Hudson has the second largest Cuban American population in the United States behind Miami.[31] Since its inception in 2000 the Cuban Day Parade of New Jersey has become a major annual event in North Hudson, beginning in North Bergen and traveling south to its end in Union City.[63][64][65][66][67][68]

Once home to a large Jewish community which declined, the area Jewish population has been on the rise since the millennium.[69][70][71]

Unlike other urban industrial areas of comparable size, age and density, North Hudson did not experience marked urban decay during the late 20th century, its population and economic base remaining basically stable, in part, because of its good housing stock, tightly-knit neighborhoods and satisfactory schools systems.


The narrow waterfront at the base of the Palisades (along with Hoboken, Jersey City, Bayonne, and Edgewater) was an integral part of Port of New York and New Jersey's shipping industry. Rail lines under and on both sides of the Palisades were laid. From its terminal in Weehawken the West Shore Railroad operated long-distance and commuter passenger train and ferry service (used by travellers and locals alike),[72][73] from 1884-1959.

North Hudson County Railway developed an extensive network of horse-drawn railroads and later, streetcars,[74] taken over by Public Service Coordinated Transport which bustituted the system in the 1930s and 1940s.

NY Waterway re-instituted ferry service in the late 1980s, and in 2006 opened a state-of-art terminal on the Waterfront for boats traversing the Hudson to lower and mid Manhattan. The Hudson-Bergen Light Rail opened in the early 2000s connecting to south Hudson, has stations at Tonnelle Avenue, Bergenline Avenue, Port Imperial and Lincoln Harbor.[75]

New Jersey Transit, since its opening, has promoted Bergenline Station as a hub/transfer between the light rail and buses: 22, 84, 86, 89, 156, 159, 181 and (one block west on JFK Boulevard) 88, 154. Nungessers at the Bergen County line is a major origination and transfer point. Transfer Station, Hudson County is also a transit hub. Manhattan and suburban-bound bus service is provided along Boulevard East, Bergenline Avenue, Kennedy Boulevard, and 32nd Street. Additionally there are many privately operated licensed mini-buses locally known as immi-vans, gua-guas, carritos,or dollar buses along Bergenline to Journal Square, Downtown Jersey City, 42nd Street in Manhattan, and south east Bergen County, and Paterson.

See also


  1. ^ a b "North Hudson Regional Fire and Rescue". Retrieved June 25, 2019. Covering the North Hudson towns of Guttenberg, North Bergen, Union City, Weehawken and West New York
  2. ^ Varone, Curtis (2014), Legal Considerations for Fire and Emergency Services, Fire Engineering Books, ISBN 9781593703479, North Hudson's Residency Requirement
  3. ^ "NJ Employment Discrimination in Hiring North Hudson County Firefighters". Castronovo & McKinney. 2011. Retrieved June 24, 2019. ...comprised of five towns in northern Hudson County – Guttenberg, North Bergen, Union City, Weehawken, and West New York
  4. ^ Heinis, John (15 December 2011). "Court rules North Hudson Regional Fire and Rescue residency policy discriminates against blacks". Retrieved 26 June 2019. of 2000, the population of North Hudson’s member municipalities North Bergen, Weehawken, West New York, Guttenberg and Union City...
  5. ^ "Disparate Impact Case Turns On Battle Of The Experts". Workplace Class Action Blog. 15 December 2011. Retrieved 26 June 2019. North Hudson fire department was formed in 1998, and it was comprised of firefighters from five New Jersey municipalities, including Guttenberg, North Bergen, Union City, Weehawken, and West New York. North Hudson maintained a requirement that all firefighter candidates must live within the five North Hudson towns to be eligible for hire...
  6. ^ "Jersey City, Hudson River Waterfront Transportation Corridor Improvements, Hudson-Bergen Light Rail Transit System (HBLRTS), Hudson County, Bergen County: Environmental Impact Statement". Federal Transit Administration. 1996. p. Waterfront Study Area Districts Figure 4.5 (map). Retrieved June 30, 2019.
  7. ^ "NAACP v. North Hudson Regional Fire & Rescue, 665 F.3d 464 –". CourtListener. Retrieved 26 June 2019.
  8. ^ Heinis, John (July 9, 2018). "Report: Hudson County prominent on list of N.J. towns where English isn't 1st language". Hudson County View.
  9. ^ Jr, Joseph F. Eid; Gummere, Barker (1 November 2007). Streetcars of New Jersey: Metropolitan Northeast. ISBN 9780980102628. Retrieved 25 June 2019 – via Google Books.
  10. ^ Sullivan, Joseph F. (22 September 1974). "Site of New Hospital Disputed" – via
  11. ^ Maurer, Mark (29 March 2010). "Hoboken-North Hudson YMCA goes broke".
  12. ^ Smothers, Ronald (1 October 1998). "4 Hudson Towns Agree to Unite Their Fire Departments". Retrieved 24 June 2019 – via
  13. ^ Villanova, Patrick (14 August 2018). "Want to be a firefighter in North Hudson? Here's where to start".
  14. ^ "North Hudson Sewerage Authority". Retrieved 24 June 2019.
  15. ^ "Hudson County Community College". Retrieved 23 June 2019.
  16. ^ "North Hudson Center – Hudson County Schools of Technology". Retrieved 23 June 2019.
  17. ^ "North Hudson Islamic Educational Center". Retrieved 24 June 2019.
  18. ^ "North Hudson Academy". Retrieved 24 June 2019.
  19. ^ "North Hudson Community Action Corporation - nhcac". Retrieved 24 June 2019.
  20. ^ North Hudson Regional Council of Mayors
  21. ^ "Meals on Wheels administered by the North Hudson Regional Council of Mayors" (PDF).
  22. ^ "Audit North Hudson Regional Council of Mayors" (PDF).
  23. ^ "Why we call ourselves Nohu". Nohu Collctive. Retrieved July 18, 2019. Note: NoHu consists of the towns North Bergen, Guttenberg, West New York, Union City & Weehawken in New Jersey
  24. ^ "Urban Dictionary: NoHu". Urban Dictionary. 1. The 5 dopest & most diverse hoods in North Hudson County 2. North Bergen, Guttenberg, West New York, Weehawken & Union City
  25. ^ Mary Paul and Caren Matzner. "Scores of artists find a place in N. Hudson" The Union City Reporter, April 17, 2008, pages 1, 6 and 19
  26. ^ Dia, Hannington; Writer, Staff (13 May 2018). "Meet neighbors in North Hudson". Retrieved 23 June 2019. “Only in NoHu,” a group for people in North Bergen, Weehawken, West New York, Guttenberg, and Union City – all in northern Hudson County.
  27. ^ "NoHu Collective". NoHu Collective.
  28. ^ Guide to State and Local Census Geography, United States Census Bureau. Accessed October 26, 2017.
  29. ^ 2000 Census: US Municipalities Over 50,000: Ranked by 2000 Density, accessed March 22, 2007
  30. ^ "JOHN A. M'rV1AHON; Once Democratic Leader of North ,Hudson County--Dies Here". Retrieved 24 June 2019.
  31. ^ a b Most liquor licenses? Bumpiest town? Local municipalities hold unusual distinctions Archived 2008-05-23 at the Wayback Machine, Hudson Reporter, August 27, 2006
  32. ^ a b Winfield, Charles Hardenburg. "History of the county of Hudson, New Jersey: from its earliest settlement", p. 289. Kennard & Hay Stationery M'fg and Print. Co., 1874. Accessed December 22, 2011.
  33. ^ Barber, John W.; Howe, Henry (1844). "Hudson County". Hudson County Historical Collections of the State of New Jersey. New York: S. Tuttle.
  34. ^ a b Snyder, John P. The Story of New Jersey's Civil Boundaries: 1606-1968, Bureau of Geology and Topography; Trenton, New Jersey; 1969. p. 145. Accessed November 13, 2012.
  35. ^ Lang, Arnold. "Bergen County's Townships and Municipalities, Part 3 1836 to 1893". The Archivist. Archived from the original on September 15, 2008. Retrieved December 22, 2011.
  36. ^ Barber, John W.; Howe, Henry (1844). "North Bergen, NJ from Historical Collections Of The State Of New Jersey". New York: S. Tuttle. Retrieved May 10, 2011. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  37. ^ "BEAR OF ECLIPSE STIRS WEEHAWKEN; Residents Oppose Plan to Consolidate Neighboring Towns Into Hudson City. SATISFIED TO STAND ALONE As for Its Rivals, Look at Their Debts -- And Then Think of Guttenberg's Reputation!" (PDF). The New York Times. November 13, 1909.
  38. ^ "NEW JERSEY TOWNS MAY CONSOLIDATE; Weehawken, West Hoboken, and Union Hill Discussing a Municipal Merger" (PDF). The New York Times. June 18, 1911.
  39. ^ "HOBOKEN TAKES STEPS TO MAKE A 150,000 CITY; Bill to Consolidate Outlying Suburbs to be Sent to Trenton. MUCH SPECULATIVE BUYING Recent Purchases, Supposed to be for Railroads, Now Attributed to Prospective Home Development" (PDF). The New York Times. November 12, 1905.
  40. ^ North Hudson Sewerage Authority/
  41. ^ "BCCLS". Retrieved 22 April 2018.
  42. ^ []
  43. ^ Laura, Joseph (22 November 1981). "Cubans Alter Hudson Politics". Retrieved 26 June 2019 – via
  44. ^ Appropriations, United States Congress House Committee on (November 15, 1973). "Foreign Assistance and Related Agencies Appropriations for 1974, Hearings..., 93-1, Subcommittee on Foreign Operations and Related Agencies..." – via Google Books.
  45. ^ "UC History". Retrieved 22 April 2018.
  46. ^ Cunningham, John T. (18 June 1994). This is New Jersey. Rutgers University Press. ISBN 9780813521411 – via Google Books.
  47. ^ Villanova, Patrick. "The 17 Hudson County institutions you need to know about from 1867-2017". The Jersey Journal. Retrieved July 2, 2019. The industry’s glory days were between 1950 and 1980 when North Hudson (and Fairview in neighboring Bergen County) had 700 firms with 90 percent of the U.S. market share...just a remnant of the historic industry remains – along with signs over the Lincoln Tunnel approaches proclaiming North Hudson Embroidery Capital of the World.
  48. ^ History page, Schiffli Lace and Embroidery Manufacturers Association. Accessed February 18, 2011.
  49. ^ Committee, United States Congress Senate Subcommittee on Patents, Trademarks, and Copyrights of the Judiciary (25 June 1961). "DesignProtection". Retrieved 25 June 2019 – via Google Books.
  50. ^ "History of West New York, New Jersey: In Commemoration of Its Golden Jubilee". July 3, 1948 – via Google Books.
  51. ^ Cunningham, John (2004). This is New Jersey (4 ed.). Yonkers, New York: Rutgers University Press/Hudson River Museum. p. 100. ISBN 0-8135-2141-6.
  52. ^ Cheslow, Jerry (February 11, 2001), "If You're Thinking of Living In/Union City, N.J.; Manhattan Views At Blue-Collar Price", The New York Times, retrieved June 25, 2019
  53. ^ "COMMERCIAL GROWTH IN NEW JERSEY TOWN ON HEIGHTS HAS DOUBLED THE POPULATION WITHIN FIVE YEARS; West New York the Greatest Embroidery Factory Town in the Country and a Growing Silk Centre ;- Big School Just Finished and Artistic Municipal Building Nearing Completion ;- Hundreds of Apartment Structures Erected in Last Three Years". The New York Times. December 20, 1914.
  54. ^ Schneider, Coleman (1968). Machine Made Embroideries. Globe Lithographing Company.
  55. ^ Kotker, Norman (28 January 1973). "Guttenberg on Hudson: Terra Made Cognita". Retrieved 26 June 2019 – via
  56. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2011-07-27. Retrieved 2010-01-04.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  57. ^ "お問い合わせ". Archived from the original on February 3, 2011.
  58. ^ Keller, Susan Jo (October 6, 1996). "At Schuetzen Park, a Bit of Germany and a Tradition of Charity" – via
  59. ^ Diaz, David R.; Torres, Rodolfo D. (January 1, 2012). Latino Urbanism: The Politics of Planning, Policy, and Redevelopment. NYU Press. ISBN 9780814784051 – via Google Books.
  60. ^ "West New York Public Library". Retrieved 22 April 2018.
  61. ^ Ph.D, Reed Ueda (21 September 2017). America's Changing Neighborhoods: An Exploration of Diversity through Places [3 volumes]. ABC-CLIO. ISBN 9781440828652 – via Google Books.
  62. ^ Nieves, Evelyn (1992-11-30). "Union City and Miami: A Sisterhood Born of Cuban Roots". The New York Times. Retrieved 22 April 2018.
  63. ^ Rosero, Jessica (June 11, 2004). "Celebrating Cuba Pride: Fifth annual Cuban Day Parade draws residents and honored guest". Hudson Reporter. Retrieved 2010-06-15.
  64. ^ Miller, Jonathon (May 31, 2007). "Judge Decides Against a Mayor Who Banned Cuban Parade". New York Times. Retrieved 2010-06-15.
  65. ^ Website Cuban Day Parade and Festival of New Jersey Archived 2012-03-21 at the Wayback Machine
  66. ^ Schmidt, Margaret (May 30, 2009). "Cuban Parade of New Jersey". Jersey Journal. Retrieved 2010-06-15.
  67. ^ Rosero, Jessica (June 17, 2007). "The parade marches on: Eighth annual Cuban Day Parade of New Jersey keeps traditional route". Hudson Reporter. Retrieved 2010-06-17.
  68. ^ Ph.D, Reed Ueda (21 September 2017). America's Changing Neighborhoods: An Exploration of Diversity through Places [3 volumes]. ABC-CLIO. ISBN 9781440828652. Retrieved 25 June 2019 – via Google Books.
  69. ^ Zusman, Charles. "Hudson County's Jewish community enjoys a growth spurt".
  70. ^ Alexander, Rev (November 19, 2014). "Jews in North Bergen get a Shab-Bus to shul".
  71. ^ "Hudson County".
  72. ^ Beck, Henry Charlton (1983), Tales and Towns of Northern New Jersey, Rutgers University Press, ISBN 9780813510194
  73. ^ Karcher, Alan J. (1998). New Jersey's Multiple Municipal Madness. ISBN 9780813525662.
  74. ^ "Hudson County Is Awake; Vast Improvements Are Under Way And In Prospect. Evidences Of A Realization That She Has Not Kept Up With The Procession -- Parks, A Fine Driveway, And Rapid Transit" (PDF). The New York Times. March 29, 1891.
  75. ^ "Grand opening ceremony for Bergenline Avenue and Tonnelle Avenue stations, start of 7-day service at Port Imperial". February 25, 2006. The light rail station opening is a tremendous success...become a higher education and commuter destination in the North Hudson area

External links