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Hillsborough Township is a township in Somerset County, New Jersey, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, the township's population was 38,303, reflecting an increase of 1,669 (+4.6%) from the 36,634 counted in the 2000 Census, which had in turn increased by 7,826 (+27.2%) from the 28,808 counted in the 1990 Census.
Hillsborough Township was originally created by Royal charter on September 12, 1771, from portions of Western precinct. It was incorporated by an act of the New Jersey Legislature on February 21, 1798, as one of New Jersey's original group of 104 townships. Portions of the township were taken to form the boroughs of Millstone (May 14, 1894) and Manville (April 1, 1929). The township's name may have come from an earlier name of "Hillsbury", though it may have been named for Wills Hill, 1st Marquess of Downshire who was the Earl of Hillsborough.
On May 31, 1771, Hillsborough was officially granted a Charter incorporating it as a Township. A revised charter was issued on September 12, 1771. The records of Hillsborough Township are complete from their inception in 1746 and there are ten volumes, each some several hundred pages, kept in the Special Collections Department of the Rutgers University Library along with the Charter.
Hillsborough Township quickly took its place in history as the path General George Washington and his troops traveled from the Battle of Princeton to winter quarters in Morristown. While the British were encamped in the valley below awaiting an opportunity to attack, it is said that Washington drilled his troops on the Sourland Mountain around a spring near the top using different formations and corn stalks for guns. As the sun caught the stalks, the British thought Washington had received reinforcements and fresh supplies.
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