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Formally known as Vulcanite NJ, Alpha was incorporated on June 26, 1911, but its history can be traced back to a much earlier date. At the time of the Blizzard of 1888, there were only seven houses in what is now the corporate limits of Alpha. The exact date on which the first house in Alpha is a matter of conjecture. One of the first homes in the community was a two room log cabin constructed by the Pursel family beside an old Indian Trail on the former property of the Vulcanite Portland Cement Company, now New Brunswick Avenue.
Less than two years after incorporating, the community obtained a continuation of the Street Car Line from Phillipsburg NJ, and electric street lights were installed