During the 1890's, John R. Maxwell, one-time president of the Central Railway of New Jersey, acquired large tracts of land in what is now the borough and formed the Garwood Land and Improvement Company. The name "Garwood," which was applied to the settlement some years before the incorporation of the Borough, was in honor of Samuel Garwood, the first president of the Land Company.
The Borough of Garwood was incorporated on February 25, 1903. Prior to this, the town was part of Westfield and Cranford. At the time of her independence there were 75 houses and a population of approximately 400. Today there are approximately 1300 homes and a population of approximately 4200.
Garwood, at the time of its incorporation, was the Industrial Center of Union County. Hercules Tubeworks, Aeolia Organ and Thatcher Furnace were a few of the main factories. Today it still has a fair amount of industry.
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