Coquettishly ducked behind the Jersey Shore proper, Brielle peaks over the shoulders of Manasquan and Point Pleasant, a verdant suburban community on the corner of the Manasquan River. Originally Lenape hunting grounds, Brielle became a part of Shrewsbury Township in 1664 when it was first chartered. Settled first by farmers and fishermen, the famed Union Salt Works opened its doors here in 1775. Salt being a crucial preservative in the days before refrigeration, Brielle was one of the only sources of salt in colonial New Jersey aside from British imports. It was with this in mind that loyalists raided Brielle in 1778, clashing with the vastly outnumbered patriots before burning the Salt Works to the ground. Like the young United States itself however, the Union Salt Works was rebuilt within a year and remained defiantly in operation for the duration of the war. Throughout the nineteenth century, Brielle was repeatedly subdivided, joining Howell Township in 1801 and then Wall Township in 1851. The town only stepped out of its agricultural shadow in 1881 when enterprising businessmen formed the Brielle Land Association, planning to build vacation homes and the accompanying amenities to attract summering New Yorkers and Philadelphians. Previously known as Union Landing, investors renamed the town Brielle, reminiscent of the quaint, riverside Netherlands town of the same name one of the developers had visited.
Today, Brielle is one of the loveliest towns in New Jersey, a riverside community in the heart of the Jersey Shore. Fish or sail in the sparkling Manasquan River before dropping anchor at The Pig and Parrot Sandbar to refuel with seafood, sushi and burgers. Tee off at the Manasquan River Golf Club or soak up the sun on the sandy beaches of Fisherman’s Cove Conservation Area. Neighboring Manasquan and Wall Township, only minutes from Point Pleasant, Spring Lake, Bay Head and Belmar, one needn’t venture far for even more dining, shopping and entertainment options. Centrally located and with one of the highest rated school districts in the state, come home to Brielle.