Deptford Township is a township in Gloucester County, New Jersey, in the United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, the township's population was 30,561, reflecting an increase of 3,798 (+14.2%) from the 26,763 counted in the 2000 Census, which had in turn increased by 2,626 (+10.9%) from the 24,137 counted in the 1990 Census.
Deptford was first formed on June 1, 1695, at which time it was known as Bethlehem. It was incorporated as a township by an act of the New Jersey Legislature on February 21, 1798, as one of the state's initial group of 104 townships formed under its new Township Act. Over the centuries, portions of the township were taken to create Washington Township (February 17, 1836), Woodbury Borough (March 27, 1854; now Woodbury City), West Deptford Township (March 1, 1871), Wenonah (March 10, 1883), Westville (April 7, 1914) and Woodbury Heights (April 6, 1915).
Deptford is a suburb of Philadelphia, located on the eastern side of the Walt Whitman Bridge, one conduit which joins southern New Jersey with Philadelphia. It is located 10 miles (16 km) southeast of Philadelphia and 50 miles (80 km) northwest of Atlantic City.
Dutch explorer Cornelius Jacobsen May led some of the earliest European settlement in the area, and was followed by settlers from Sweden and Finland before coming under British colonial rule. When it was first formed in 1695, the township covered an area of 106 square miles (270 km2) that included today's Deptford Township along with present-day Monroe Township, Washington Township, West Deptford Township, Westville, Woodbury and Woodbury Heights.
Deptford Township is named after the English port of Deptford.
The Clement Oak in Deptford was the site of the first hot air balloon landing in North America, gathering that distinction when Jean-Pierre Blanchard completed his flight to Deptford from Philadelphia in 1793. During his flight, Blanchard carried a personal letter from George Washington to be delivered to the owner of whatever property Blanchard happened to land on, making the flight the first delivery of air mail in the United States as well.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the township had a total area of 17.57 square miles (45.50 km2), including 17.33 square miles (44.89 km2) of land and 0.24 square miles (0.61 km2) of water (1.35%).
The township borders the municipalities of Mantua Township, Washington Township, Wenonah, West Deptford Township, Westville, Woodbury and Woodbury Heights in Gloucester County; and Bellmawr, Gloucester Township and Runnemede in Camden County.
Oak Valley (with a 2010 Census population of 3,483) is an unincorporated community and census-designated place (CDP) located within Deptford Township.
Other unincorporated communities, localities and place names located partially or completely within the township include Almonesson, Blackwood Terrace, Clements Bridge, Cooper Village, Country Club Estates, Good Intent, Hammond Heights, Jericho, Lake Tract, New Sharon, Oak Valley, Salina, Westcottville, Westville Grove, Woodbury Gardens, Woodbury Park and Woodbury Terrace.
The 2010 United States Census counted 30,561 people, 11,689 households, and 7,995 families in the township. The population density was 1,760.3 inhabitants per square mile (679.7/km2). There were 12,361 housing units at an average density of 712.0 per square mile (274.9/km2).