Metuchen ( mə-TUTCH-ən) is a suburban borough in Middlesex County, New Jersey, United States, which is 5 miles (8.0 km) northeast of New Brunswick, 19 miles (31 km) southwest of Newark, 26 miles (42 km) southwest of Jersey City, and 33 miles (53 km) southwest of Manhattan, all part of the New York metropolitan area. Metuchen is surrounded by Edison. As of the 2010 United States Census, the borough's population was 13,574, reflecting an increase of 734 (+5.7%) from the 12,840 counted in the 2000 Census, which had in turn increased by 36 (+0.3%) from the 12,804 counted in the 1990 Census.
Metuchen was incorporated as a borough by an act of the New Jersey Legislature on March 20, 1900, from portions of Raritan Township (now known as Edison).
The earliest residents of the area were the Raritan people of the Lenape Native Americans, who lived in the area and travelled through it to the shore. In 1646, Chief Matouchin was part of a group that included 1,200 warriors.
Until 1870, what is now Metuchen was part of Woodbridge Township. Because the settlers in the western part of the township were so far removed from the main settlement of Woodbridge, they early-on developed a separate identity. The name "Metuchen" first appeared in 1688/1689, and its name was derived from the name of a Native American chief, known as Matouchin or Matochshegan. In 1701, an overseer of roads was appointed for "Metuchen district". In 1705, Main Street was laid out at the same time as the road from Metuchen to Woodbridge, which one source calls a "reworking of the original road".
Sometime between 1717 and 1730, a meeting house was constructed for weekday meetings conducted by the pastor of the Woodbridge Presbyterian Church. In 1756, Metuchen Presbyterians succeeded in forming their own congregation, attesting to their growing numbers.