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New Jersey
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New Jersey

New Jersey
(In Detail) (In Detail)
State nickname: The Garden State

Other U.S. States
Capital Trenton
Largest City Newark
Governor James McGreevey
Area
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water
 - % water
Ranked 47th
22,608 km²
19,231 km²
3,378 km²
15%
Population
 - Total (2000)
 - Density
Ranked 9th
  8,414,350
  372/km² (1st)
Admittance into Union
 - Order
 - Date

3rd
December 18, 1787
Time zone Eastern: UTC-5/-4
Latitude
Longitude
38°55'N to 41°21'23"N
73°53'39"W to 75°35'W
Width
Length
Elevation
  -Highest
  -Mean
  -Lowest
110 km
240 km
 
550 meters
75 meters
0 meters
FIPS Code:34
ISO 3166-2:US-NJ

New Jersey is a state of the United States of America and has the U.S. postal abbreviation of NJ. The state is named after the island of Jersey in the English Channel. The tallest building in New Jersey is the Goldman Sachs Tower in Jersey City.

The USS New Jersey, one of the most decorated vessels in the United States Navy, was named in honor of this state.

Table of contents
1 History
2 Law and government
3 Geography
4 Economy
5 Demographics
6 Culture
7 Transportation
8 Important cities and towns
9 Education
10 Professional sports teams
11 Miscellaneous Information
12 Related topics
13 External links

History

Once inhabited by the tribes of the Lenape, the first Europeans to settle the region were the Dutch in the early 1600's, who formed a settlement at present-day Jersey City. At the time, much of what is now New Jersey was claimed as part of the Dutch colony of New Netherland, which also included parts of present-day New York State and had its capital at New Amsterdam, now known as New York City. Some of southwestern New Jersey was also settled by the Swedes in the mid-1600's as part of the Swedish colony of New Sweden, which included parts of Delaware and southeastern Pennsylvania. These territories were taken by the Dutch in 1655 and incorporated into New Netherland.

The entire region became a territory of Britain in 1664 when a British fleet under the command of Colonel Richard Nicolls sailed into what is today New York Harbor and took over the colony. They met minimal resistance, perhaps because of the unpopularity of the Dutch colonial governor, Peter Stuyvesant. The newly taken lands were divided by King Charles II of England, who gave his brother, the Duke of York (later King James II) the region between New England and Maryland as a proprietary colony (as opposed to a royal colony). James then granted the land between the Hudson River and the Delaware River (the land that would become New Jersey) to two friends who had been loyal through the English Civil War: Sir George Carteret and Lord John Berkeley.

Settlement for the first ten years of English rule was in the Hudson River region and came primarily from New England. On March 18, 1673 Berkeley sold his half of New Jersey to Quakers in England (with William Penn acting as trustee for a time) who settled the Delaware Valley region as a Quaker colony. New Jersey was governed as two distinct provinces, West Jersey and East Jersey, for the 28 years between 1674 and 1702. In 1702 the two provinces were united under a royal, rather than a proprietary, governor.

New Jersey was one of the thirteen colonies that revolted against British rule in the American Revolution. On November 20, 1789 the state became the first in the newly-formed Union to ratify the Bill of Rights. Ironically, on February 15, 1804 New Jersey became the last northern state to abolish slavery.

New Jersey suffered heavy casualties in the September 11 Terrorist Attacks. Of the 3,000 people who died in September 11 2001, over 650 were commuters and air travelers (United Airlines Flight 93 took off from Newark Airport) from New Jersey. This meant the state lost more people in the attacks than any other state except New York.

Law and government

See: List of Governors of New Jersey; New Jersey Legislature
The capital of New Jersey is Trenton. The governor of New Jersey is James E. McGreevey (Democrat) and its two U.S. senators are Frank R. Lautenberg (Democrat) and Jon Corzine (Democrat). New Jersey has 13 Congressional Districts.

Geography

See: List of New Jersey counties.
High Point in Sussex County is the highest elevation in the state.

New Jersey is bordered on the north and northeast by New York, on the east by the Atlantic Ocean, on the south by Delaware, and on the west by Pennsylvania (the latter two across the Delaware River.) Among its geographical features:

Economy

New Jersey's 1999 total state gross product was $332 billion, placing it 8th in the nation. Its 2002 Per Capita Personal Income was $39,453, the second highest in the nation. [1]

Its agricultural outputs are nursery stock, horses, vegetables, fruits and nuts, seafood, and dairy products. Its industrial outputs are pharmaceutical and chemical products, food processing, electric equipment, printing and publishing, and tourism.

Demographics

As of the 2000 census, the population of New Jersey is 8,414,350. Its population grew 8.6% (666,600) from its 1990 levels. According to the 2000 census, 72.6% (6,104,705) identified themselves as Caucasian, 13.6% (1,141,821) as African-American, 13.3% (1,117,191) as Hispanic or Latino, 5.7% (480,276) as Asian, 0.2% (19,492) as American Indian or Alaska Native, 0.04% (3,329) as Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander 5.4% (450,972) as other, and 2.5% (213,755) identified themselves as belonging to two or more races.

6.7% of its population were reported as under 5, 24.8% under 18, and 13.2% were 65 or older. Females made up approximately 51.5% of the population.

Newark and Camden are two of the poorest cities in the U.S., but the state has the second highest household income in the nation.

New Jersey is also noted for being the most densely populated state in the nation.

Culture

Musician Bruce Springsteen has sung of New Jersey life in many of his most popular songs, including "Atlantic City," "Freehold," "Jersey Girl" (written by Tom Waits), "Jungleland," "Spirit in the Night" and others. Fellow musician Jon Bon Jovi has also written many songs about New Jersey and even named one of his albums after it.

Motion pictures and televisions shows also have been set in New Jersey. The popular television drama "The Sopranos," broadcast on HBO, depicts the life of a New Jersey organized crime family and is filmed on location in the state.

Many believe in a creature called the Jersey Devil, an evil demon born to a human mother who terrorizes the population of the Pine Barrens. It is also known sometimes as the Leeds devil.

Transportation

The New Jersey Turnpike is one of the best-known roadways in New Jersey. This toll road carries interstate traffic between Delaware and New York. Commonly referred to as simply "the Turnpike," it is also known for its numerous rest-areas named after prominent New Jerseyans as varied as inventor Thomas Edison; United States Secretary of the Treasury Alexander Hamilton; U.S. President Grover Cleveland; writers James Fenimore Cooper, Joyce Kilmer, and Walt Whitman; patriot Molly Pitcher; Red Cross advocate Clara Barton, and football coach Vince Lombardi.

The Garden State Parkway, or just "the Parkway," carries more in-state traffic, and runs from the town of Montvale along New Jersey's northern border with New York to the southernmost tip of the state at Cape May. It is somewhat true that some New Jersey residents who live near the Parkway or the Turnpike locate their hometowns according to their respective highway exits, though very few New Jerseyites living anyhere else in the state will do so.

The New Jersey Transit Corporation (NJ Transit) operates extensive rail and bus service throughout the state. NJ Transit is a state-run corporation that began with the consolidation of several private bus companies in North Jersey. In the early 1980s, it acquired the commuter train operations of CONRAIL that connect towns in northern and central New Jersey to New York City. In 1989, NJ Transit began service between Atlantic City and Lindenwold, extending it to Philadelphia in the 1990s.

New Jersey has interstate compacts with all three neighboring states. The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, Delaware River Port Authority (with Pennsylvania), and the Delaware River and Bay Authority (with Delaware) operate most of the major transportation routes into and out of New Jersey. Tolls for the bridges are charged in one direction - it's free to get into New Jersey, but you have to pay to get out.

See also: List of New Jersey State Highways

Important cities and towns

Major cities (and their populations):

Education

Although some problems exist in certain inner city neighborhoods, New Jersey overall is considered to have one of the best public education systems in the United States. In addition, more than 80% of high school graduates continue on to college or university, the highest rate in the nation.

Colleges and universities

Institution Name, Location

In addition to the above institutions, there are 19 community colleges, serving the 21 counties in the state.

Institution Name, Location

Professional sports teams

Miscellaneous Information

State Bird: American Goldfinch
State Flower: African Violet
State Tree: Red Oak
State Song: None official

Related topics

External links


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