On June 26, 1931, the town of Manalapan was incorporated. The incorporation had “unanimous backing of those owning large estates in the territory,” according to a Palm Beach Post news story. Among those estates was the oldest home in Manalapan, originally a fishing lodge built of lumber shipped from New Jersey in 1894 by Elnathan T. “Nathan” Field of Manalapan, N.J.
Some sources say that Leila and A. Romeyn Pierson, who bought the fishing lodge from Field, named the property Manalapan Estates, but a 1933 Palm Beach Post story (below) quotes Leila Pierson saying that Field named the area after the New Jersey township. Sources variously define Manalapan as meaning “pleasant waters,” “good bread,” or “good land to settle upon” (based on the literal meaning being “drinking bread”).
E.T. Field bought the property for the fishing lodge for $7,500 in 1891. The Piersons paid $40,000 for the lodge in 1912. Pierson descendants subdivided the property and sold pieces of it over the years, but the original lodge remained until 2000 (pictured above in a 1998 Palm Beach Post file photo), when a developer purchased the ocean-to-lake property at 1780 S. Ocean Blvd. for $4.4 million and razed it.