Plainfield is a City in Union County, New Jersey, United States. As of the United States 2010 Census, the city population was 49,808.
Plainfield was originally formed as a township on April 5, 1847, from portions of Westfield Township, while the area was still part of Essex County. On March 19, 1857, it became part of the newly-created Union County. Plainfield was incorporated as a city by an Act of the New Jersey Legislature on April 21, 1869, from portions of Plainfield Township, based on the results of a referendum held that same day. The city and township coexisted until March 6, 1878, when Plainfield Township was dissolved and parts absorbed by Plainfield City and the remainder becoming Fanwood Township (now known as Scotch Plains).
Plainfield is nicknamed "The Queen City".
Plainfield was settled in 1684 by Quakers, and incorporated as a city in 1869. A short train ride from New York City, Plainfield is a bedroom suburb in the New York metropolitan area, it has become the urban center of 10 closely allied municipalities, with diversified industries, including printing and the manufacture of chemicals, clothing, electronic equipment, and vehicular parts. Among the several 18th-century buildings remaining are a Friends' meetinghouse (1788), the Martine house (1717), and the Nathaniel Drake House (1746), known as George Washington's headquarters. Nearby Washington Rock is a prominent point of the Watchung Mountains and is reputed to be the vantage point from which Washington watched British troop movements.
Plainfield is the birthplace of Bill Evans, a jazz pianist who played with Miles Davis on “Kind of Blue” – still the largest selling jazz album of all time. Plainfield is also known as the birthplace of P-Funk. George Clinton founded The Parliaments while working in a barber shop in Plainfield. Parliament-Funkadelic was inducted in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1997.
Plainfield is the birthplace or former home of several well known people including Dudley Moore, Judy Blume, Vic Washington, Jay Williams and Jeff Torborg. Plainfield is now home to former New Jersey governor James McGreevey. In sports history, Plainfield is the birthplace of several current and former athletes, including professionals and well-known amateurs, including Milt Campbell, the 1956 Olympic Decathlon gold medalist (the first African-American to earn this title); and Joe Black, the first African-American pitcher to win a World Series game.