On September 10, 1854, a fire swept through the North American Phalanx, destroying its vital mill, ending the experiment in secular utopian socialist commune life. The North American Phalanx was located in Colts Neck Township. The North American Phalanx was established in September 1843. At the time of its termination it was the last of about 30 such communes established during the 1840s still in existence and thus was the longest-lived. The main residential dwelling of the phalanx, a three-story wooden structure, stood vacant until it was also destroyed by fire, in November 1972.