South Dublin Neighborhood Survey

South Dublin Neighborhood

Project Description and Scope of Work

This report describes the results of an intensive-level historic architectural survey of the southern section of the Dublin neighborhood of the City of Paterson, Passaic County, New Jersey (Figures 1.1 and 1.2). The Dublin neighborhood contains Paterson’s oldest concentration of vernacular workers’ housing and is thus an important complement to the nearby historic industrial buildings and water power raceways at the Great Falls. Quite possibly, the Dublin neighborhood represents the greatest concentration of mid-nineteenth century urban factory workers’ housing in the State of New Jersey, and it certainly represents an unusual concentration of pre-Civil War urban workers’ housing that was not company-owned or associated with the development of a single industry, as was the case with many of New Jersey’s other early industrial towns and villages. Additionally, Dublin is outstanding for its long association with the immigrant experience. In the 19th century, the neighborhood housed substantial Irish, English, German and Italian ethnic groups, as well as smaller numbers of Scots, Swiss, Italians, Spanish and French. In more recent years, Dublin has been home to Puerto Rican, Dominican, Peruvian and Serbian ethnic groups among others who have added their identities to the neighborhood’s evolving cultural heritage.

The overarching goal of this survey is to provide data and recommendations that can be used to guide and promote historic preservation of the Dublin neighborhood. This information is to be used “to inform historic preservation, cultural tourism, economic development and overall community development planning efforts in the short and long term.”1 Specifically, these goals are set within a framework of recognizing Dublin as a major gateway corridor to the Great Falls/Society for Useful Manufacturers (S.U.M.) National Historic Landmark District, listed in 1976, and the overlapping Paterson Great Falls National Historical Park, established by Congress in 2009 and now administered by the National Park Service. As such this survey should be useful to thinking about this gateway area and its recommendations considered in light of other planning projects, including the Greater Spruce Street Neighborhood Plan that was put forward by the New Jersey Community Development Corporation in 2009.

The National Park Service’s presence in Paterson is predicted to increase heritage tourism and promote interest in commercial development of the Dublin neighborhood, particularly along Spruce Street and the western end of Grand Street, which serve as the main approaches from Interstate 80 and N.J. Route 19 to the Great Falls Welcome Center at the corner of Spruce Street and McBride Avenue near the Great Falls of the Passaic River. The City of Paterson desires to guide development within Dublin to be compatible specifically with Paterson’s Great Falls Historic District. To that end, this report identifies potential historic buildings and streetscapes in Dublin, makes recommendations for additional survey as needed, and encourages appropriate treatment of historic resources through adoption of local planning and zoning tools and taking advantage of existing state and federal historic preservation programs.

Chapter 1: Introduction

Chapter 2: Historical Context

Chapter 3: Data Summary

Chapter 4: Recommendations


This study was Prepared for:
The City of Paterson
Division of Historic Preservation

Funded by
State of New Jersey
Department of Environmental Protection
Historic Preservation Office
Historic Preservation Fund

Prepared by:
Patrick Harshbarger, M.A., M.P.A. of HUNTER RESEARCH INC.