Mansfield Township, established as a constabulary in 1688, was incorporated in 1798. It is in the northeast part of Burlington County and is bounded north and northeast by Bordentown Township, northeast by Chesterfield Township, south by Springfield Township and southwest by Florence Township. In all portions there are good roads and accessibility to railroads, shipping and airports affording easy and direct communication with the surrounding centers of population. Its soil is generally sandy loam and it is watered by Bacon's Creek, Assicunk Creek, Kinkora Creek and Craft's Creek. The level of the land is flat with just enough rolling terrain to make the countryside beautiful. The climate is mild. Winter brings snow to delight. Summer has a comfortable warmth. Mansfield Township includes a little over twenty-three square miles.
The early pioneers were mostly Friends who had been land-owners and men of wealth and standing in England. Some of them became prominent in affairs of the township, county and state. They cleared the land for roads and dwellings, established businesses and transportation facilities, founded schools and churches, and fought for the government which we enjoy today. There are still residents in this generation who bear the name of these sturdy and resourceful people.
Sources of income have changed from predominate farming and trades in local areas to earning an income in the manufacturing centers nearby.
Encompassed by Mansfield Township are Columbus, where the town hall is located, Georgetown, Hedding and Kinkora. The hamlets are Mansfield and Rising Sun Square (also known as Mansfield Square). The population in 1987 was approximately 3,000. "Homestead", a retirement village, consists of 1,200 homes in Columbus.
The governing body consists of an elected five-person committee, each serving alternating three year terms. The mayor is designated to the one of senior term. They hire those who work in the administration, protection and financial departments. The first woman in Mansfield Township's 300 year history to be elected to the governing body was Mary Ellen Lister, Mayor in 1988.
Facilities offered are the Columbus Grammar School and Northern Burlington County Regional Jr./Sr. High School, three churches, post office, bank and organizations for fire protection, recreation and public good.
With shopping centers within two miles, good roads and schools, employment areas within a ten mile radius, historical Mansfield Township is a lovely place to live.
From the minutes of the Supreme Court 1681 — 1709, pages 77, certified by K.W. Richards, Head, Archives and History Bureau, N.J. State Library; "Sessions of Burlington County, 6th day, 8th month, 1688: Presentments of Grand Jury:
"THE CONSTABULARY OF MANSFIELD TO LYE ON YE SOUTH SIDE OF WILLIAM BLACK'S CREEK DOWN DELAWARE RIVER TO THE TOWN BOUNDS OF BURLINGTON, AND SOE UP BIRCH CREEK TO JOHN PANCOAST'S, TO MICHAEL NEWBOLD'S, AND SOE YE NORTH OF YE GREAT MEADOW TO ELIAKIM HIGGINS' PLANTATION."
(This was also documented by Henry Haines, N.J. Surrogate and Proprietor's Office.)
- Pearl J. Tusim, Township Historian