Rachel (Runyon) Coddington
Rachel, who had married William R. Coddington at the Millington Baptist Church in 1883, lived with her husband in Plainfield, New Jersey, where he practiced law.
William Rueben Codington, the son of George W. and Jane Codington, grew up a neighbor of the Runyons, and his family descended from early settlers of the neighborhood. In addition to his law practice, he played a role in political and business affairs at the local and state level, including the directorship of several companies, twenty-five years as attorney for Union County, and two terms in the state assembly in the 1890s.
It is believed the farmstead was tenanted until the 1920s when Rachel and William made the farmstead their home.
Coddington established a dairy operation at his Bernards Township property (which he named River-Edge Farm). Physical evidence indicates that the main dairy barn and several other sheds and improvements can be dated c.1920-1940. The house also was updated as evidenced by such embellishments as the quadrant gable windows and the classically detailed screen porch overlooking the river which was later replaced by the existing east gable-end appendage. He may also have been responsible for rebuilding the living room fireplace from its original corner configuration, perhaps concurrently enlarging the room by the removal of partitions.
Rachel Codington died on November 12, 1936, less than two years after her husband, leaving all of her property to her two children, Martha and Albert.
The inventory provides considerable information about the house at River-Edge Farm and its furnishings.
Eight rooms are named: telephone room, living room, dining room, kitchen, hall, north bedroom, south bedroom and southwest bedroom. The living room, dining room and kitchen mentioned presumably are the present ones, and the telephone room must have been one of the two rooms to the north of the living room.
The hall might have included the east end of the present living room, judging from the number of furnishings it contained, or the listing may refer to both the lower and upper stair halls.
In 1942, Martha C. and husband Colin Dascombe conveyed her half interest in the family homestead and three other tracts to her brother, Albert I. Coddington.
The property passed from the ownership of Oliver Stelle’s descendants in the following year when Albert Coddington, sold it to the Arlington Investment Corporation of Kearny, New Jersey.
Sources & More information:
Dennis Bertland Associates, Kennedy-Martin-Stelle Farmstead National Register Nomination, 2001 (Township of Bernards).
Somerset County Deeds, Book Q2, pp. 361 & 375, Book A2, page 82; Siegel, Cemetery Records of Warren Township Somerset County New Jersey, no page; D. J. Lake & S. N. Beers, Map of the Vicinity of Philadelphia and Trenton, 1860; F. W. Beers, Atlas of Somerset County, 1873.
US Census, Bernards Township, 1860 and 1870.
US Census, Agricultural Schedule, Bernards Township, 1870.
US Census, Agricultural Schedule, Bernards Township, 1880.
NJ Wills, 6157R.
New Jersey Death Registers, 1891-92; NJ Wills, 6157R; “Judge Codington Succumbs at 81,” The Bernardsville News, January 24, 1935.
Somerset County Deed, Book X18, page 476) [Somerset County Deeds, Book X22, page 372
1942 entry [Somerset County Deeds, Book 636, page 261].
Farmstead Owner: 1892 – 1936
Spouse: William Rueben Coddington
Children: Martha, Albert
Parents: Isaac Runyon and Rachel (Stelle) Runyon
Martha (Coddington) Dascombe (1884 – 1947) and Albert Coddington
Farmstead Owner: 1936—1942
Farmstead Owner: 1942 – 1943
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