The Murray Farmhouse and Barn are located within Poricy Park. Built circa 1770, it was the home of Joseph Murray, a stonemason who immigrated to New Jersey from Ulster County, Ireland in 1767 with his mother. He married Rebecca Morris, and the couple had four children, three sons and a daughter.

Joseph Murray  began serving in the Monmouth County militia in 1776. The Murray farmhouse was raided by loyalists in 1779, and Joseph was sent to prison. Upon his release in January 1780, he resumed his militia service. His militia was ordered to commandeer horses, and Murray is believed to have taken one from Marlpit Hall, the home of Edward Taylor, a loyalist.

Several months later, on June 8, Joseph was working on his farm when he was shot in the back and then bayoneted by three men. It is believed that these men worked for Edward Taylor, and that they shot Joseph Murray in retaliation for stealing the horse.

There is a small monument in the field where Joseph is believed to have been killed. Its plaque reads, “On June 8, 1780 at this site, Joseph Murray was murdered by Tories in retaliation for his daring patriot deeds.”

Joseph Murray is buried in the cemetery of Middletown’s Old First Church.


345 Oak Hill Rd, Red Bank, NJ 07701



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