Evesham Township is a township in Burlington County, New Jersey, United States. As of the 2010 United States Census, the township's population was 45,538, reflecting an increase of 3,263 (+7.7%) from the 42,275 counted in the 2000 Census, which had in turn increased by 6,966 (+19.7%) from the 35,309 counted in the 1990 Census.
Evesham Township dates back to November 6, 1688, when it was formed as Eversham, with an "R" in the middle of the name that was lost in subsequent years. It was incorporated by an Act of the New Jersey Legislature on February 21, 1798, as one of New Jersey's original group of 104 townships. Portions of the township were taken to form Washington Township (November 19, 1802), Medford Township (March 1, 1847) and Mount Laurel Township (March 7, 1872).
The Township was substantially larger than it is today, originally including what are now Mount Laurel, Medford, Lumberton, Hainesport, Shamong, and Washington Townships. The South Branch of the Rancocas on the East Side and Cropwell Creek on the West Side bound this area. Evesham Township was eventually incorporated in 1692 as one of the thirteen Townships in Burlington County. In 1802, a tract was cut off for Washington Township; in 1847, the Township was then divided in half, with the eastern half becoming Medford Township; and in 1872, Evesham was divided again, for the last time, with the northern part becoming Mount Laurel Township.
Marlton is a name commonly associated and interchangeable with the name Evesham, derived from the census-designated place within Evesham. The name Marlton came about in the early 19th century and stems from the name "Marl." Marl is a naturally occurring mixture of green clay with remnants of shells that was used as a fertilizer, like manure. Its discovery helped local commerce and fueled the first "building boom", which took place in the 1830s and 1840s. Marl continued to be mined locally until 1930, when the pits were finally closed. Today one is known as the Benicia recycling center.
The Marlton area was recognized as a village in 1758. The village was named Marlton in 1845. The same year the "Evesham" Post Office and the "Evesham" Baptist Church both had their names changed to "Marlton" Post Office and the "Marlton" Baptist Church. The names remain the same today. Most maps and directional signs refer to Marlton instead of Evesham. The historic village, Olde Marlton, remains mostly intact and is a locally regulated Historic District. Full-time police services began in 1966.
Evesham remained mostly unchanged until the 1950s, when developers began buying farms and building the Township's first housing developments. Today, no significant farmland remains.
In 1955, the United States Army opened the PH-32 Nike Ajax facility on Tomlinson Mill Road. This battery was one of twelve used to shield Philadelphia, Pennsylvania from aerial assault during the Cold War. The base was decommissioned in the mid-1960s and used for various functions, including a civil defense center. The site of the base is now a housing development which was built in the mid-1990s.