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The name Parsippany comes from the LenapeNative American sub-tribe, which comes from the word parsipanong, which means "the place where the river winds through the valley". Parsippany-Troy Hills is the most populous municipality in Morris County. The name Troy Hills was changed from Troy, to avoid confusion of mail being sent erroneously to Troy, New York.
Since 2006. Parsippany-Troy Hills has been consistently recognized by Money magazine as one of the Best Places to Live in the United States. That year Parsippany was ranked 17th on the list, the highest-ranked location in New Jersey. In 2008, it moved up to 13th position. Parsippany returned to Money magazine's "Best Places" list in 2012, in the 15th position, and again in 2014, where it ranked 16th with Money citing its "Arts and leisure". Parsippany's ranking improved to the 5th-ranked position on the "Best Places" list in 2016, but in 2017 dropped to 33rd. In 2018, Parsippany again made the list, at the 23rd-ranked position.
After the Wisconsin Glacier melted around 13,000 BC, half of Parsippany was filled with water as this was Lake Passaic. Around the area grasses grew, as the area was tundra and then turned into a taiga/boreal forest as the area warmed. Paleo-Indians moved in small groups into the area around 12,500 years ago, attracted by the diversity of plant and animal life. Native Americans settled into the area several thousand years ago, dwelling in the highlands and along the Rockaway River and the Whippany River, where they hunted and fished for the various game that lived in the area and migrated through the area in autumn. Paintings in a rock cave were found in the late 1970s in western Parsippany in the highlands.
From 1611 to 1614, the Dutch established the colony of New Netherland, which claimed territory between the 40th and 45th parallel north, a zone which included northern New Jersey. The Native Americans traded furs and food with the Dutch for various goods. In return the Dutch gave the Native Americans metal pots, knives, guns, axes, and blankets. Trading with the Native Americans occurred until 1643 when a series of wars broke out between the Dutch and Native Americans. There were hostile relations between the Dutch and Native Americans between 1643 and 1660. This prevented colonization by the Dutch of the Morris County region which was technically included in their claimed "New Netherland."
On August 27, 1664, three English ships approached Fort Amsterdam and the fort was surrendered to the English. The English now controlled New Netherland and Morris County was now under control of the colony of New York. Relations with the Native Americans improved for a while.
There was a war with the Dutch ten years later. The Dutch re-took control of New Amsterdam but after a year returned it to the English. Relations with the Native Americans and English improved for a while. English settlers started to move into the area around 1700. The Parsippany area had flat land and fertile soil, and a fresh water supply, allowing them to succeed at farming. All types of game, especially waterfowl, provided colonists a chance to succeed.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the township had a total area of 25.394 square miles (65.771 km2), including 23.563 square miles (61.029 km2) of land and 1.831 square miles (4.742 km2) of water (7.21%).
Unincorporated communities, localities and place names located partially or completely within the township include Greystone Park, Lake Hiawatha, Lake Intervale, Lake Parsippany, Mount Tabor, Parsippany, Powder Mill, Rainbow Lakes, Rockaway Neck, Tabor and Troy Hills.
Lake Hiawatha and Mount Tabor are neighborhoods with their own ZIP codes. In 2000, 55% of Parsippany residents had a 07054 ZIP code. In 2011, Parsippany residents could live in one of 12 ZIP codes. Until 2000, there was a 13th ZIP code within Parsippany, eliminated with changes at the Greystone Park Psychiatric Hospital.
The township has a humid continental climate, with cold winters and very warm-to-hot summers. It is usually cooler than Manhattan at night and in the early morning. The record low temperature is -26 °F (-32 °C), and the record high is 104 °F (40 °C).
Climate data for Parsippany-Troy Hills, New Jersey
Parsippany-Troy Hills lies in the Newark Piedmont Basin. Around 500 million years ago, a chain of volcanic islands crashed into proto North America, riding over the North American Plate and creating the New Jersey Highlands, which start in the western portion of the township. This strike also created land formations in the rest of eastern New Jersey. Around 450 million years ago, a small continent, long and thin, collided with North America, creating folding and faulting in western New Jersey and southern Appalachia.
The swamps and meadows of Parsippany were created when the North American Plate separated from the African Plate. An aborted rift system or half gruben was created. The land area lowered between the Ramapo Fault in western Parsippany and a fault west of Paterson. The Ramapo Fault goes though western part of the township.
The Wisconsin Glacier came into the area around 21,000 BC and left around 13,000 BC due to a warming in climate. As the glacier slowly melted, this created rivers, streams and lakes, leaving most of the township under Lake Passaic, which was the biggest lake in New Jersey at that time, stretching from the edge of the Ramapo Fault in western Parsippany eastward to almost Paterson.
The area was first tundra when the Wisconsin Glacier melted and then as the area warmed formed taiga/boreal forests, along with vast meadows. Slowly, Lake Passaic drained and formed swamps in the township; Troy Meadows and Lee Meadows (on the old Alderney Farm tract) are perfect examples. Swamps and meadows next to oak forests created a diverse flora and fauna spectrum.
There were 20,279 households out of which 30.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.3% were married couples living together, 7.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.5% were non-families. 25.0% of all households were made up of individuals, and 7.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.58 and the average family size was 3.14.
In the township, the population was spread out with 20.8% under the age of 18, 6.3% from 18 to 24, 29.7% from 25 to 44, 29.4% from 45 to 64, and 13.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40.5 years. For every 100 females there were 97.1 males. For every 100 females ages 18 and older there were 95.7 males.
The Census Bureau's 2006-2010 American Community Survey showed that (in 2010 inflation-adjusted dollars) median household income was $85,760 (with a margin of error of +/- $2,882) and the median family income was $102,601 (+/- $4,650). Males had a median income of $67,109 (+/- $3,242) versus $50,415 (+/- $2,595) for females. The per capita income for the borough was $40,965 (+/- $1,434). About 1.8% of families and 3.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 3.5% of those under age 18 and 5.7% of those age 65 or over.
There were 19,624 households out of which 29.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.2% were married couples living together, 7.6% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.9% were non-families. 27.1% of all households were made up of individuals and 6.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.53 and the average family size was 3.13.
In the township the age distribution of the population shows 21.0% under the age of 18, 6.7% from 18 to 24, 35.2% from 25 to 44, 25.9% from 45 to 64, and 11.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females, there were 97.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.7 males.
The median income for a household in the township was $68,133, and the median income for a family was $81,041. Males had a median income of $51,175 versus $38,641 for females. The per capita income for the township was $32,220. About 2.6% of families and 3.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 4.0% of those under age 18 and 6.3% of those age 65 or over.
Parsippany-Troy Hills has a large Indian American community, with 8.39% of Parsippany-Troy Hills' residents having identified themselves as being of Indian American ancestry in the 2000 Census, which was the eighth-highest of any municipality in New Jersey, for all places with 1,000 or more residents identifying their ancestry.
The township is governed within the Faulkner Act (formally known as the Optional Municipal Charter Law) under the Mayor-Council system of municipal government (Plan E), implemented based on the recommendations of a Charter Study Commission as of January 1, 1966. The government consists of a mayor and a five-member Township Council, all elected to four-year terms of office on an at-large basis in partisan elections held every other year as part of the November general election. Either two or three council seats are up for vote each election, with the mayoral seat up for vote at the same time that two seats are up for vote. The Mayor and Council are separately elected, with the Mayor, serving as the chief executive officer, and the Council serving in the capacity of a legislative body.
Some responsibilities of the Mayor include preparation of the budget, enforcement of the ordinances, supervision of municipal departments and property, execution of Council decisions, and oversight of other functions of the municipality. Some of the responsibilities of the Council include adopting ordinances, approval of contracts presented by the Mayor, scheduling times and places for council meetings and designation of the official newspapers of the municipality.
As of 2018[update], the mayor of Parsippany-Troy Hills is Democrat Michael Soriano, whose term of office ends December 31, 2021. In the 2017 general election, Democratic challenger Michael Soriano defeated two-term incumbent Republican Mayor James R. Barberio. Soriano won with 7,438 votes (52.92%), and his running mates Emily Peterson and Janice McCarthy swept the two council seats, ousting incumbents Council President Louis A. Valori and Vincent Ferrara. Peterson won with 26.61% or 7,088 votes, and McCarthy won with 26.97% or 7,186 votes.Parsippany-Troy Hills's Township Council consists of Paul Carifi Jr. (R, 2019), Michael J. dePierro (R, 2019), Loretta Gragnani (R, 2019), Janice McCarthy (D, 2021) and Emily Peterson (D, 2021).
James Barberio unseated incumbent Mayor Michael Luther(D) by a margin of 8% in 2009, in an election in which Republicans took hold of all of the township's elected offices.
In November 2012, Jonathan Nelson became the first Democrat elected to the Township Council in 26 years after upsetting Mayor James R. Barberio's candidate, Republican Judy Tiedemann.
List of Mayors
John E. J. Walsh (D) 1966 (died)
Henry Luther (D) 1966-1974 (retired)
Jack Fahy (D) 1974-1982 (lost reelection)
Frank Priore (R) 1982-1994 (resigned)
Mimi Letts (D) 1994-2005 (retired)
Michael Luther (D) 2006-2010 (lost reelection)
Jamie Barberio (R) 2010-2018 (lost reelection)
Michael Soriano (D) 2018-present
Federal, state and county representation
Parsippany-Troy Hills Township is located in the 11th Congressional District and is part of New Jersey's 26th state legislative district.
Morris County is governed by a seven-member Board of Chosen Freeholders, who are elected at-large in partisan elections, to three-year terms on a staggered basis, with either one or three seats up for election each year as part of the November general election. The Freeholder Board sets policies for the operation of six super-departments, more than 30 divisions plus authorities, commissions, boards and study committees. Actual day-to-day operation of departments is supervised by County Administrator, John Bonanni. As of 2019[update], Morris County's Freeholders are
Freeholder Director Douglas Cabana (R, Boonton Township, 2019),
Deputy Freeholder Director Heather Darling (R, Roxbury, 2020),
Kathryn A. DeFillippo (R, Roxbury Township, 2019,
John Krickus (R, Washington Township, 2021),
Thomas J. Mastrangelo (R, Montville, 2019),
Stephen H. Shaw (R, Mountain Lakes, 2021), and
Deborah Smith (R, Denville, 2021).
As of March 23, 2011, there were a total of 30,393 registered voters in Parsippany-Troy Hills Township, of which 7,022 (23.1%) were registered as Democrats, 10,046 (33.1%) were registered as Republicans and 13,310 (43.8%) were registered as Unaffiliated. There were 15 voters registered to other parties.
In the 2012 presidential election, Democrat Barack Obama received 52.7% of the vote (11,324 cast), ahead of Republican Mitt Romney with 46.3% (9,948 votes), and other candidates with 1.1% (233 votes), among the 21,673 ballots cast by the township's 32,187 registered voters (168 ballots were spoiled), for a turnout of 67.3%. In the 2008 presidential election, Democrat Barack Obama received 51.7% of the vote (12,219 cast), ahead of Republican John McCain with 46.9% (11,091 votes) and other candidates with 1.0% (225 votes), among the 23,635 ballots cast by the township's 31,458 registered voters, for a turnout of 75.1%. In the 2004 presidential election, Republican George W. Bush received 51.8% of the vote (11,433 ballots cast), outpolling Democrat John Kerry with 47.1% (10,397 votes) and other candidates with 0.6% (168 votes), among the 22,061 ballots cast by the township's 30,505 registered voters, for a turnout percentage of 72.3.
In the 2013 gubernatorial election, Republican Chris Christie received 65.5% of the vote (9,083 cast), ahead of Democrat Barbara Buono with 32.8% (4,547 votes), and other candidates with 1.6% (228 votes), among the 14,280 ballots cast by the township's 32,046 registered voters (422 ballots were spoiled), for a turnout of 44.6%. In the 2009 gubernatorial election, Republican Chris Christie received 53.3% of the vote (8,384 ballots cast), ahead of Democrat Jon Corzine with 36.8% (5,794 votes), Independent Chris Daggett with 7.5% (1,176 votes) and other candidates with 0.7% (114 votes), among the 15,742 ballots cast by the township's 30,870 registered voters, yielding a 51.0% turnout.
Parsippany Troy-Hills Township is protected by six different fire districts serving out of ten fire houses throughout the township. Each district operates as their own fire department with each having its own Chief and other line officers. Every district is 100% volunteer and are on call around the clock, with dispatching for all fire districts provided by the township police department.
District 1: Mount Tabor Fire Department (Mount Tabor / west side of town), founded in 1910.
District 2: Rainbow Lakes Fire Department (Rainbow Lakes section)
District 3: Lake Parsippany Fire Department (Lake Parsippany Section), founded in 1935.
District 4: Lake Hiawatha Fire Department (Lake Hiawatha Section), established in 1935.
District 5: Rockaway Neck Fire Department (East side of the township)
District 6: Parsippany - Troy Hills Fire District 6 (Central part of the township), founded in 1929. Provides fire protection to Tivoli Gardens, Cambridge Village, Hills of Troy, Morris Hills Shopping Center, Green Hill Shopping Center, Hilton/Hampton Hotels, Sylvan way and Campus Drive Area, Jefferson Road Area, Lake Intervale, and Mazdabrook Housing and Senior centers, as well as sections of I-80, I-287, 46, 10, and 202, with stations at 60 Littleton Road (Main station) and Smith Road (sub-station).
All Saints' Academy serves preschool though eighth grade, as the result of a 2009 merger of Saint Christopher Parochial school and Saint Peter the Apostle School. St. Elizabeth School, founded in 1970, offers Montessori education to children in preschool through sixth grade. Both are Catholic schools operated under the auspices of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Paterson.
Popular culture references
In the Seinfeld episode The Mom & Pop Store (originally aired on November 17, 1994), Jerry loses his shoes and finds out that they ended up at a garage sale in Parsippany.
In the movie The Ex, Wesley (Lucian Maisel) states, "So during the school year I live with my mom in New Jersey. And I spend the summer here with my dad. But he's at work all the time, and all my friends live back in Parsippany, so it's pretty gay."
I-80 eastbound in Parsippany-Troy Hills
Roads and highways
As of May 2010[update], the township had a total of 208.45 miles (335.47 km) of roadways, the most of any municipality in the county, of which 173.78 miles (279.67 km) are maintained by Parsippany-Troy Hills, 11.30 miles (18.19 km) by Morris County and 23.37 miles (37.61 km) by the New Jersey Department of Transportation.
^Horovitz, Bruce. 'Football's super prize reaches icon status", USA Today, January 30, 2002. Accessed December 20, 2012. "Hidden away inside Tiffany's sprawling distribution center in Parsippany, N.J., is an off-limits silversmith shop where every Super Bowl trophy has been made.Here, workers are pounding out everything from the NBA championship trophy to the U.S. Open trophies."
^"The Mom and Pop Store", Seinfeld Scripts. Accessed July 18, 2007. "Guy on phone: You don't know me, but a really strange thing happened. I was at a garage sale, and this old couple sold me a used pair of sneakers they claimed belonged to Jerry Seinfeld, the comedian. Jerry: Can I have the address of that garage sale? Okay, thank you very much. <To Kramer> I found Mom and Pop, they're sellin' my sneakers! Kramer: Where are they? Jerry: Parsippany, New Jersey."
^The Karate Kid Script - Dialogue Transcript, Script-O-Rama.com. Accessed December 20, 2012. "You should go back to New Jersey. How did you know where I was from? 'Cause I'm from New Jersey. I got a nose for my own. Well what part? Parsippany. I never should've left. My Uncle Louie's from Parsippany."
^ abForrest, Cindy. "Stretch of highway in Parsippany to honor DeCroce", Parsippany Life, October 9, 2013. Accessed October 30, 2013. "Former Parsippany resident and GOP Assembly Leader Alex DeCroce likely will be remembered forever in his hometown and beyond, due to the passage of assembly bill A-3789. Under the legislation, unanimously approved by the Assembly Transportation, Public Works & Independent Authorities Committee, Route 53 in Morris County will be renamed the Alex DeCroce Memorial Highway."
^Staff. "Conquest Assigned Four More Players", Our Sports Central, March 12, 2008. Accessed October 30, 2013. "Curry, 26, returns for his second season with the Conquest and arenafootball2. The Parsippany, New Jersey native played in four games for Albany in 2007, making 21 tackles (20 solo, 2 assisted), while recording two interceptions and four pass break-ups."
^via Associated Press. "Widow of Late NJ Assemblyman Sworn In", WNYC (AM), February 16, 2012. Accessed October 30, 2013. "BettyLou DeCroce was sworn in Thursday to represent the 26th District, which includes towns in Essex, Morris and Passaic countiesThe 59-year-old Parsippany resident has retired as deputy commissioner of the state Department of Community Affairs."
^Staff. "Jazz and '1776' Launch Parsippany Arts Center", The Star-Ledger, October 2, 1993. "Before the curtain went up on the theater-in-the-round production of 1776, the musical written by late Parsippany-Troy Hills resident Sherman Edwards, township officials gathered for a ribbon-cutting ceremony in the main gallery."
^Biography: Danielle Jonas[dead link], Married to Jonas. Accessed April 27, 2013. "Danielle (Dani) Deleasa Jonas has lived a modern day Cinderella story since marrying the love of her life, Kevin Jonas.Growing up in Parsippany, N.J., Dani lived the life of a typical teenager as she participated in ice skating and cheerleading throughout high school."
^Nash, Margo. "Jersey Footlights", The New York Times, March 19, 2006. Accessed October 27, 2018. "So, on March 12, Ms. Krakowski, who grew up in Parsippany but lives in New York City, took the stage at the Bickford Theater in Morristown to perform Better When It's Banned: A Sinful Songbook, the cabaret act she first performed at Lincoln Center last year."
^Staff. "Indy Driver Hit by Some Thrown Object", Hartford Courant, May 31, 1970. Accessed October 30, 2013. "Steve Krisiloff of Parsippany, NJ, a driver who failed to qualify for Saturday's 500-mile auto race, was struck by some thrown object as he walked toward the Indianapolis Motor Speedway."
^Westhoven, William. "Parsippany native leads charge against cyber attacks", Asbury Park Press, December 29, 2014. Accessed February 22, 2018. "A Parsippany native on the front lines of the global cyber wars says if you thought 2014 was wild, wait until 2015.... Kurtz, who spent much of his time in Parsippany fly fishing or playing for the Parsippany High School football team, started out as an accountant after graduating from Seton Hall University, after which he worked for firms such as Price Waterhouse."
^Hempel, Jessi. "Fei-Fei Li's Quest To Make Ai Better For Humanity"', 'Wired (magazine), November 13, 2018. Accessed December 5, 2018. "When Li was 12, her father emigrated to Parsippany, New Jersey, and she and her mother didn't see him for several years. They joined him when she was 16.... Parsippany High School didn't have an advanced calculus class, so he concocted an ad hoc version and taught Li during lunch breaks."
^"Year in Review"Archived September 13, 2007, at the Wayback Machine, Parsippany Monthly. Accessed March 3, 2008. "Lake Parsippany resident Angelo Savoldi, now 93 years old, has wrestled against some of the greatest men ever to enter the ring, and was inducted into the Professional Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2004."