History of Nova Cæsarea
The Colonial History of New Jersey
by Samuel Smith
Published by Authority
of the State of New Jersey
Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1890,
by WILLIAM S. SHARP,
In the Office of the Librarian of Congress, at Washington.
Trenton, New Jersey
William S Sharp
SKETCH OF THE AUTHOR
A brief view of the discovery of America, and of the present
prevailing opinion respecting the manner it originally became peopled.
An account of the country on Delaware and the North-River, while the
first was in possession of the Dutch and Swedes.
The particulars of the English conquest, in 1664; and the transactions
afterwards, respecting the inhabitants on Delaware; The arrival of
Francis Lovelace, as governor; part of his administration, and
description of the Hoarkills.
King Charles the second, and duke of York's grants, whence lord Berkeley
and Sir George Carteret became seized of New-Jersey; The first
constitution of government under them; The settlement of Bergen,
Middletown, Shrewsbury, and Elizabeth-Town: Philip Carteret appointed
governor of Jersey; The Indian purchase of Elizabeth-Town, by the
settlers; and the first general Indian purchase by the proprietors, &c.
Major Andross appointed governor of New-York; Takes possession at
Delaware; Arrival of the first English settlers to West-Jersey, under
the duke of York's title; Lord Berkeley assigns his moiety of New-Jersey
to Byllinge, and he in trust to others; Their letter and first
commission; New-Jersey divided into the provinces East and West Jersey;
and the declaration of the West-Jersey proprietors.
Arrival of more settlers to West-Jersey; Their difficulties; Their
purchases from the Indians; They lay out a town; Some of their first
sentiments of the country; and an account of the duke of York's two last
grants, being for the provinces East and West New-Jersey separately.
Letters from some of the settlers of West-Jersey; and arguments against
the customs imposed at the Hoarkill by the governor of New-York.
The first form of government in West-Jersey under the proprietors; The
first laws they made; The method of regulating land affairs; and a
further account of the Indians found in the first settled parts of these
Another ship arrives at West-Jersey; Proceedings of the general assembly
of West-Jersey; Sir George Carteret's death; Conveyances to the twelve
Eastern proprietors; Their proposals and regulations in several
respects; particularly in disposing of lands and building a town at Ambo
point; The twelve proprietors each take a partner, and thence are called
the twenty-four; to whom the duke of York makes a third and last grant;
The twenty-four establish the council of proprietors of East-Jersey, on
the footing it now is; A general view of the improvements in East-Jersey
in 1682; A compendium of some of the first laws passed at
Elizabeth-Town; Doubts started whether the government of West-Jersey was
granted with the soil; Jenings continued governor of West-Jersey; and
laws now passed there.
Robert Barclay appointed governor of East-Jersey, and T. Rudyard deputy;
Letters from Rudyard, S. Groome, Lawrie, and others, concerned in that
Manner of the West-Jersey government in 1684; Their unsettled state and
succession of governors; Danger of suffering for want of food in 1687;
The division line run by G. Keith; an agreement between the governors
Coxe and Barclay; Alteration in the manner of locating lands in West
Jersey, and the method now in use fixed; No person in West-Jersey to
purchase from the Indians, without the consent of the council of
proprietors; and instructions respecting deeds and warrants for taking
A flood at Delaware falls; Death and character of Thomas Olive, Thomas
Gardiner and John Woolston; Commotions in East and West Jersey;
Surrender of the two governments to queen Anne; Her acceptance thereof;
and her commission to Lord Cornbury.
Instructions from queen Anne to Lord Cornbury.
Observations on Lord Cornbury's instructions, and the privileges
originally granted to the settlers; with abstracts of some of them.
Lord Cornbury convenes the first general assembly after the surrender;
His speech, their address, and other proceedings; Queen Anne's
proclamation for ascertaining the rates of coin; Cornbury dissolves the
assembly, and meets a new one to his mind; Their proceedings and
dissolution; A summary of the establishment and practice of the council
of proprietors of West-Jersey; Another assembly called; who remonstrate
the grievances of the province.
Lord Cornbury's answer to the assembly's remonstrance.
The assembly's reply to lord Cornbury's answer to their remonstrance.
Memorial of the West-Jersey proprietors residing in England, to the
lords commissioners for trade and plantations; The lieutenant governor,
with some of the council, address the queen; The last meeting of
assembly under Cornbury's administration; They continue their
complaints; Samuel Jenings's death and character.
Lord Lovelace arrives governor; Convenes a new assembly; they apply to
him for a hearing on the subject of the lieutenant governor and
council's application to the queen; His death; is succeeded by the
lieutenant governor Ingoldsby; The first paper currency; Arrival of
governor Hunter; A short account of the first expedition to Canada;
A new assembly chosen; Their first session in Hunter's time.
Representation of the general assembly to governor Hunter and his
A session of general assembly; A second expedition to Canada; Meeting of
a new assembly; They quarrel; Some members designedly absent themselves;
Expell'd the house; Several of them again returnd, and refused seats; A
fruitful session at Crosswicks; Last session in Hunter's time; An act
passed for running the division line between East and West-Jersey;
William Burnet arrives governor; An uncommon wet harvest; Governor
Burnet meets a new assembly.
Occurrences since the year 1721.
The present state of Indian affairs in New-Jersey.
A short geographical description of the province; and additional view of
its present state.
The concessions and agreements of the lords proprietors of the province
of New Caesaria, or New-Jersey, to and with all and every of the
adventurers, and all such as shall settle or plant there.
The concessions and agreements of the proprietors, freeholders and
inhabitants of the province of West New Jersey, in America.
A brief account of the province of East-Jersey, in America, published by
the present proprietors, for information of all such persons who are or
may be inclined to settle themselves, families and servants, in that
Governor Coxe's narrative relating to the division line, directed to the
council of proprietors of West-Jersey.
The council of proprietors of West-Jersey to governor Burnet.
Reasons and proposals for an amendment of the quintipartite line, and
the act made for the confirmation thereof.
Minute of the council of proprietors, held at the city of Perth Amboy,
August 17, 1742.
The remonstrance and humble petition of the inhabitants of East
The memorial of the proprietors of East New-Jersey.
Opinion and answer to the lord commissioners, &c.
Memorial of the East Jersey proprietors to the lords of trade.
The petition of the proprietors of East and West Jersey, to the lords
Representation of the lords of trade to the lords justices.
The memorial of the proprietors of East and West Jersey.
John Tatham, New Jersey's Missing Governor by John D. Mccormick
SKETCH OF THE AUTHOR
Samuel Smith, author of the "History of New Jersey," was eldest son of
Richard Smith, esquire, of Burlington, member for twenty years of the
Assembly of West Jersey, and a flourishing merchant in Burlington and
Philadelphia. Richard Smith was the only son of Samuel Smith the elder, of
Bramham, West Riding of Yorkshire, England, who came to New Jersey in
1694, and was for several years a member of the Assembly. The father of
the first Samuel Smith, Richard Smith of Bramham, Yorkshire, was one of
the original proprietaries of West Jersey, and he and his two eldest sons,
John and Daniel, brothers of the elder Samuel Smith, signed as
proprietaries the "Concessions and Agreements of the Proprietors and
People of West Jersey," the fundamental constitution of the province.
To the above-mentioned John Smith was allotted one of the ten original
town lots of the "London Proprietors," in Burlington, with its annexed
wood or forest lot.
Our author, who was born "12th mo., 13th, A.D. 1720," engaged, as a young
man, in his father's business as a West India merchant, and, for a time,
removed to Philadelphia. He finally settled at Burlington, where his town-
house was the one since known as the "Coleman" house. The fine estate of
"Hickory Grove," a little beyond the "London Bridge," was his country-seat
or "plantation." He married in the "eleventh" month, 1741, Jane, daughter
of Joseph Kirkbride, and by her had several children.
He was a man of most benevolent heart, and of a conscientious uprightness
and exactness in the discharge of duty. His reading was extensive and
accurate; the several historical works composed by him, showing the fruits
of careful research, and a clear and agreeable style. He was the
originator of the benevolent efforts which resulted in the colonization of
the remnant of the New Jersey Indians at the "Brotherton" settlement; drew
up, in 1757, the constitution of the "New Jersey Society for Helping the
Indians," and signed its subscription list with twenty pounds. In all the
family relations, as son, brother, husband and father, Samuel Smith was
most exemplary, and was besides a prominent and useful member of his
religious community, "The Friends."
In 1765, Samuel Smith had the press of the "King's Printer" moved to
Burlington for the purpose of printing his "History of New Jersey," as
appears by the following extract:
"In 1764, James Parker, printer to the King for the Province of New
Jersey, compiled and printed a Conductor Generalis for Justices of the
Peace, he then holding that office in Middlesex county, and the following
year moved his press from Woodbridge to Burlington for the accommodation
of the author of the History of New Jersey, (Smith), but on the completion
of the work it was returned to the former place." (Whitehead's
Contributions to East Jersey History, p. 376.)
Samuel Smith filled some of the most important public offices in the
Province of New Jersey. He was, for many years, a member and Secretary of
the King's Council, Treasurer of the Province, &c., &c. He died in 1776.
His brother Richard was a member of the Continental Congress.
Although among the following Papers there are some of consequence in point
of interest to most concerned in the province of New-Jersey, several of
them were not to be found on record in the publick offices, several were
scattered in different provinces, others could not be easily obtained,
some tho' in print formerly were in but few hands, some never made
publick, and many in danger of being lost; on this account whatever
success may attend this undertaking as to the general design, or
disposition of the facts, 'tis some satisfaction, that the labour of
collecting them cannot be altogether useless.
Whoever will be at the trouble of an enquiry into the general inexperience
and methods of colonizing formerly, especially at the time the settlements
here were first attempted under grants, will find but little reason to
doubt, that views of permanent stability to religious and civil freedom,
must have been the inducement to the original adventurers to think of such
a voyage. The New-England governments had before been considerably settled
from motives of a like kind; these, tho' near forty years later in their
removal, were also protestant dissenters, and involved in the general
insecurity, that such with reason apprehended in the reign of king Charles
the second; and the actual sufferings of many, through the mistaken policy
of that time, merely for a free exercise of their religious sentiments,
with their own accounts of their removal, renters it as to them
indisputable; and in this, as they do not appear to have been charg'd with
any indirect violation of religious integrity, so no instance occurs of
dissatisfaction among themselves, tho' many of them were remarkably tender
on that head; with the motives above, some of them had without doubt, a
distant prospect also of improving their estates; but this could not be
the case so much at first as afterwards.
However smooth the passage may look now, it must be a reasonable
supposition, that persons and families, who lived well (which was the
circumstance of many of the settlers of this province) found it no
inconsiderable trial, to unsettle and remove 3000 miles; besides parting
with the usual connections of friendship and neighbourhood, it was in a
great measure an unprov'd experiment; and then much out of the common
course of things; the navigation also to this part of the continent, for
want of experience, look'd difficult, and the wilderness formidable; but
whatever were their motives, they successively encountered the hazards and
hardships to which the enterprize was exposed; and, at their own expense,
by the blessing of divine providence on their labour, frugality and
industry, laid the foundation for the present improvement of territory to
the mother country; which, tho' not in many respects to be compared to
colonies of greater extent and growth, is nevertheless a link in the chain
of some considerable importance.
That a century should pass, and very little appear abroad of what the
settlers here have been doing, is not so much to be wondered at, when
their difficulties in procuring the conveniences of living are consider'd;
but this will hardy be allow'd, when the too general negligence as to
particular rights of individuals, and the reputation of civil policy comes
in question: 'till very lately, a variety of matters of that kind, were as
much secrets to most of the inhabitants, as they commonly are to
strangers; and yet in many parts of the province, are justly made the
subject of general complaint.
Whether the endeavours here used for bringing these into one historical
view, will sufficiently answer the purposes of a more general information,
must now be submitted to experience; they were undertaken with hopes of
service to the province, and if found but in a small degree contributing
to that, the end is so far answered: With this view, they were several
years since designed for the publick, and nearly prepared; but other
occasions interfering, necessarily delayed their appearance much longer
than was expected. Being sent to the press sometime in the last spring, no
transaction that hath happened since, could be included, or is in any
respect alluded to: On a continuation, these will of course follow in
To a collection principally intended to consist of a plain state of facts,
much need not be premised; this may with justice be said, that through the
whole, the strictest impartiality has been attended to, and if in other
respects executed according to intention, they are offered to the publick,
with as few material omissions, as the present opportunities of collecting
would allow; yet the diffidence attending an attempt from papers in great
part not used before on the like occasion, would plead for some allowances
as a few mistakes, especially in dates, and other minutiae among the
smaller facts, may have escap'd, notwithstanding an assiduous care to
avoid them; but these it is hoped will not be found so considerable, as to
obstruct the service intended.
As nothing is aim'd at, more than a fair and candid representation; any
friendly hints, or materials necessary either for correction or
improvement, will be thankfully received, and the first opportunity
embrac'd to apply them accordingly.