Team of Zach R and Brentyn F
New Jersey was one of the original thirteen colonies founded in North America, and New Jersey was considered to be a mid-Atlantic colony. This is due partly to its location and the culture that the people had. Before the colony of New Jersey was discovered it was inhabited by the Delaware Indians in the 1500's. The population of Delaware Indians ranged from 8,000 to 20,000 before the colonists settled on the land. The Indians survived by farming things such as, beans, squash, sweet potatoes, and corn, which is much different than how the colonists would survive. The colony of New Jersey was first explored by Giovanni da Verrazano in 1524, though he did not settle there, this would later open the door for the colonists to settle in New Jersey. The founder of New Jersey was an English captain sailing under a Dutch Flag, his name, Henry Hudson. Hudson led the Dutch to claim certain territory in the "New World" during this voyage, and after he died, his followers had success trading with the Hollanders in Hudson County. In trading with the Hollanders, the Hollanders not only gained resources and material, but they also founded the first New Jersey town. (usahistory.info, 2001)
Henry Hudson founder of New Jersey (1565-1611)
Henry Hudson founder of New Jersey (1565-1611)


New Jersey was founded in the year 1609 by Henry Hudson during one of his last voyages as he would die just two years later in 1611. New Jersey's first town, Bergen, would later be discovered in 1660 by the Hollanders who were trading the Hudson's followers in 1618. In 1639, Swedish settlers started to move to the east, mainly east of the Delaware River and at one point in their peak had made New Jersey into their own colony, and they called it New Sweden. The colony of New Sweden would only last for ten years under their governor Johan Printz from 1643-1653. The Indians, known as the Leni-Lenape Indians could not hold on to territory once the English, Dutch, and Swedish settlers began to move toward the new world. In March of 1664, all other countries would lose out on New Jersey with the exception of England because King George II gave his brother, the Duke of York land from the Connecticut River to the Delaware River, and therefore making New Jersey a part of the massive British Empire. After he was given this land, he gave it away to his "court friends" 1st Baron Berkeley of Stratton and Sir George Carteret in June of 1664.(Yesterday's Classics, LLC, 2000) These two men would soon become the proprietors to the land, similar to nobles in Europe, and they would govern over all land owned in New Jersey. Due to the low prices, these two proprietors were able to make New Jersey's population grow to about 100,000 people which was a high number considering that it was a rural society during the colonial era. (Advameg, Inc. 2010)
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New Jersey was founded for several different reasons which include economic, political, religious, and social opportunities. New Jersey was founded to serve as a trading post to help the economy of Great Britain because some of the revenue that was made went to Great Britain. Some people settled in New Jersey for religious toleration, and some of these people became Quakers, which is a religion that Great Britain did not accept in their country. In fact the British did not have religous toleration which is why so many people moved to the Americas. Others looking for religious equality became Calvinists, which is a Protestant religon, but it has different routes than Protestant religion does. (The TimePage, 2006) Additionally, some colonists just came to New Jersey for economic opportunity, or just to own land that they didn't own in Europe. At this time, land in New Jersey was being sold at a relatively cheap price, so countless people flocked to this area in search of cheap land. Along with the cheap land came the wealthy lifestyle of being a businessman or a farmer with rich farm land. These lifestyles were extremely popular in New Jersey at the time when people were migrating to New Jersey. The governor of New Jersey was also the governor of New York, and this happened to cause issues between the two colonies. Eventually New Jersey would have to separate into two different colonies until things could be rectified. (Fradin, Dennis B. 1988). Finally in 1738, things were rectified when New Jersey got their own governor, his name, Lewis Morris.
Lewis Morris, governor of new Jersey in 1738
Lewis Morris, governor of new Jersey in 1738

As with most of the other colonies, the Native Americans found it hard to get along with the colonists. They were able to trade with the Dutch, but that was the only time they would consider themselves trading partners. The Europeans came in with their greed, and basically took the land from the Leni-Lenape Indians. They had no respect for the Indians and even treated them as if they were slaves or indentured servants. Their relationship got so ugly; it led to the Slaughter at Pavonia on February 25, 1643. The Netherlands director-general ordered an assault on the Indians that were staying in Pavonia. He ordered that his soldiers would spare the women and children, which did not happen, and much of the tribe was taken out. The Iroquois Indians retaliated and drove the soldiers back until a truce was agreed upon in 1645. Once the Dutch came over, the Native American's lives really changed to a point where most of them were moving north just to get away from them. The ones that stayed witnessed dramatic changes to their lifestyles and watched their population drop to almost a half of what it once was. The Native Americans and the Europeans always had a different view on every topic and it continued until the American Revolution started. (Ditmire, Susan. 2000). Other than the Native Americans and colonists, the only other major population that resided in New Jersey was the slave population. The slave population in New Jersey varied as did the other colonies, but in 1726 the slave population was estimated to be 2,581. The slave population would eventually grow to over 4,000 in 1738 which is a small growth over a twelve year span. This was a relatively small slave population compared to some of the southern colonies, but it did account for twelve perecent of New Jersey's population up until the Revolutionary War. After a slave uprising in New York in 1713, New Jersey designed a special court which was specifically set up for crimes that slaves. These courts had severe punishments for slaves even if the crime was miniscule or a very small crime that did not effect many people. For example, if a slave was caught just carrying a firearm without their master present, the fine was up to twenty shillings which was considered to be a huge fine in which the slave usually could not pay. These courts that were developed stayed in place with their harsh punishments until 1788, which technically was illegal according to the Declaration of Independence and to the Bill of Rights. It was technically illegal because, in the Bill of Rights it states that harsh or cruel punishment is illegal, however slaves were not considered to be citizens under the law so it was deemed legal to have these courts in place. (Morris, Charles, 2000)
Lenni-Lenape Indians
Lenni-Lenape Indians