The New Jersey towns that make up the Somerset Hills include Bernards Twp (Basking Ridge), Bernardsville, Bedminster, Far Hills, Peapack/Gladstone). Starting back in the late 1800’s many of the richest and most famous people lived in the Somerset Hills.
Remembering who they are is one thing.
Remembering what they did is another.
Remembering where they live(d) is tougher still.
Here’s a list of some of the most famous people to live in the area.
If you have more, feel free to post.
- John Jacob Astor – Basking Ridge – American Tobacco Company Founder – 1950
- John Roebling- Bernardsville- Grandfather designed the Brooklyn Bridge
- John Forest Dryden- Bernardsville- Founder of Prudential Insurance 1950
- Francis Lloyd- Bernardsville – Developed Brooks Brothers into a major retail chain.
- Percy Pyne- Bernardsville- Banker (Upton Pyne Estate)
- Robert L. Stevens, Bernardsville, Inventor
- Charles Pfizer, Bernardsville, Son of Founder / Drug Inventor 1881
- J. William Clarke, Bernardsville, – Founder of the thread company
- George B. Post – Bernardsville – Famous Architect – 1896
- James Brady – Bedminster – Peapack – Wall Street Financier -1921
- Clarence Dillon – Bedminster – Read & Company, Purchased Dodge, National Cash Register 1928
- C. Ledyard Blair – Peapack – Investment Banker, Blair & Co., Made it on Erie Lackawanna Railroad. – 1898
- John McGraw – Bedminster, Founder of McGraw Hill Companies – 1968
- Charles W. Engelhard, Jr. – Bernardsville – The Famed “Goldfinger” from the Bond Series
- Malcolm Forbes – Bedminster, Publisher of Forbes Magazine
- Cyrus Vance – Bernards Twp (Liberty Corner- Secretary of State under Carter
- Jacqueline Mars – Bedminster (born October 10, 1939) is an American heiress, investor and philanthropist.
- Jackie Kennedy Onassis – Bernardsville – First Lady
- Elizabeth Merck – Bedminster – Heir to the Merck Pharmaceutical family
- John DeLorean – Bedminster – Former GM Exec, Automaker (later sold to Trump as now Trump National Golf Club)
Alive but Gone
- Christine Todd Whitman – Far Hills – Former Governor of NJ and great granddaughter to Grant Schley
- Bill Moyers – Bernardsville – Broadcaster (Sold and Moved in 2015)
- Andrew McCarthy – Bernardsville – Actor
- Meryl Streep – Grew up in Basking Ridge from 1955. Moved to Bernardsville in 1962. – Actress – Bernards High School 1967 graduate
- J. Geils Jr. – Far Hills – the founding member of the J. Geils Band BHS Grad 1964. Actually dated ?Meryl Streep at Bernards High School (quite the power couple). Moved in 1976.
Those still alive and living in “The Somerset Hills”
- Woody Johnson – Bedminster – (aka Robert Wood Johnson IV) Owner of the New York Jets
- Thomas Kean – Bedminster – Former NJ Governor
- Steve Forbes – Bedminster – Publisher
- Marc Ecko (Pictured) – Bernardsville – Entrepreneur – Stronghold Estate (Current- But House is for sale)
- Patrick Hobbs – Basking Ridge – Rutgers Athletic Director
- Chris Daggett – Basking Ridge – Ran for NJ Governor 2010 – President & CEO of Geraldine Dodge Foundation
Original Publish – Nov 18, 2008
Updated: June 8, 2016