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State Facts - History Firsts
State Facts - History Firsts

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New Jersey State Facts - New Jersey History Firsts

Catch up on your state trivia with these New Jersey history firsts and interesting fun facts about the state.

Official Name New Jersey
Capital Trenton
Location
Region
40.22340 N, 074.76422 W
Middle Atlantic
Constitution Ratified 1947
Statehood December 18, 1787
3rd state
Number of Counties 21 Counties in New Jersey
Largest County
(by population)
Bergen County
884,118
234 sq. mi.

New Jersey History Firsts & State Facts

  • 1660 - Fair Haven is believed to have been seasonally inhabited by native Indians prior to the coming of European settlers in the 1660's.
  • 1777 - New Jersey's state seal was designed by Pierre Eugene du Simitiere and presented in May 1777
  • 1812 - Fort Dix is named for Major General John Adams Dix, a veteran of the War of 1812 and the Civil War. During his distinguished public career, he was a United States Senator, Secretary of the Treasury, Minister to France and Governor of New York.
  • 1837 - First electrical telegraph: by Samuel F B Morse in Morristown
  • 1846 - First organized game of baseball: played in Hoboken,
  • 1848 - In order to meet the increasing demand for his wire rope John Roebling opened a factory in Trenton, New Jersey in 1848. John Roebling, along with his two sons, Washington and Ferdinand, built a suspension bridge across the gorge of the Niagara River. They then built the Brooklyn Bridge plus many other suspension bridges in the United States.
  • 1858 - The first dinosaur skeleton discovered in North America was found in Haddonfield, New Jersey.
  • 1869 - The first intercollegiate football game was played in New Brunswick. Rutgers College played Princeton. Rutgers won.
  • 1878 - First submarine ride: Passaic River, Paterson by inventor John P Holland
  • 1882 - First city fully illuminated by electric street light: Roselle
  • 1896 - Find out more about New Jersey State Flag
  • 1889 - First electric sewing machine: by the Singer Company in Elizabeth
  • 1896 - New Jersey firsts include the first professional basketball games.
  • 1907 - First vacuum tube: by Lee de Forest of Jersey City
  • 1911 - First air conditioner: by Willis Carrier, Newark
  • 1914 - In November of 1914, the New York Tribune, cooperating with Mr. Bertram Chapman Mayo (founder of Beachwood) issued an "Extra" announcing: "Subscribe to the New York Tribune and secure a lot at Beautiful Beachwood. Act at once, secure your lot in this Summer Paradise now!" This was the greatest premium offered by a newspaper - nothing equal to it was ever attempted in the United States.
  • 1925 - Although the Borough of Ship Bottom was incorporated in 1925, the name dates back to a shipwreck that occurred in March 1817, when Captain Stephen Willets of Tuckerton rescued a young woman from the hull of a ship overturned in the shoals. The rescue became known as "Ship Bottom."
  • 1933 - The first drive-in movie theater opened outside of Camden.
  • 1935 - The Eastern goldfinch was chosen as New Jersey State Bird
  • 1940 - First solid-body electric guitar: invented in Mahwah by Les Paul
  • 1947 - First transistor: Bell Laboratories, Murray Hill
  • 1950 - The Red oak was designated as New Jersey State Tree
  • 1951 - The Dogwood is New Jersey State Memorial tree
  • 1958 - Modern paleontology, the science of studying dinosaur fossils, began in 1858 with the discovery of the first nearly-complete skeleton of a dinosaur in Haddonfield, New Jersey. The  Hadrosaurus foulkii is the official New Jersey state dinosaur.
  • 1965 - The colors: Buff and Jersey Blue are designated as New Jersey State Colors
  • 1972 - The Common meadow violet was selected as New Jersey State Flower
  • 1974 - The Honey bee becomes New Jersey State Bug
  • 1977 -
    • New Jersey voters approved legislation allowing legalized casino gambling in Atlantic City.
    • The Horse was selected as New Jersey State Animal
  • 1983 - The Square dance was designated as New Jersey State American folk dance
  • 1991 - The Hadrosaurus foulkii was selected as New Jersey State Dinosaur
  • 1992 - The Brook trout was chosen as New Jersey State Fish
  • 1995 - New Jersey State Shell is the knobbed whelk, (busycon carica gmelin,) it is found on all beaches and bays of New Jersey. 
  • 1998 - The A.J. Meerwald is New Jersey State Tall ship
  • 2004 - The Highbush blueberry was selected as the official New Jersey State Fruit

More New Jersey History Firsts & State Facts

  • "I'm From New Jersey" is the only state song that is adaptable to any municipality with a two or three syllable name.
  • About one-sixth of all drugs manufactured in the United States come from New Jersey.
  • No other state has as dense a system of highways and railroads as New Jersey.
  • New Jersey has the highest population density in the US An average 1,030 people per sq. mi., which is 13 times the national average.
  • New Jersey has the highest percent urban population in the US with about 90% of the people living in an urban area.
  • New Jersey is the only state where all its counties are classified as metropolitan areas.
  • North Jersey is the car theft capital of the world, with more cars stolen in Newark then any other city. Even the 2 largest cities, NYC and LA put together.
  • New Jersey has the most dense system of highways and railroads in the US
  • Picturesque Cape May holds the distinction of being the oldest seashore resort in the United States and one of the most unique.
  • New Jersey has the most diners in the world and is sometimes referred to as the diner capital of the world.
  • North Jersey has the most shopping malls in one area in the world with seven major shopping malls in a 25 sq. mile radius.
  • New Jersey is home to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.
  • Passaic river was the site to the first submarine ride by inventor John P. Holland.
  • New Jersey has over 50 resort cities and towns, some of the nations most famous, Asbury park, Wildwood, Atlantic City, Seaside heights, Cape May.
  • New Jersey is a leading industrial state and is the largest chemical producing state in the nation.
  • New Jersey is a major seaport state with the largest seaport in the US located in Elizabeth.
  • Jack Nicholson, Bruce Springsteen, Bon Jovi, Redman, Das EFX, Naughty by Nature, Sugar Hill Gang, Lords of the Underground, Jason Alexander, Queen Latifa, Shaq, Judy Blume, Arron Burr, Alexander Hamilton, Whitney Houston, Eddie Money, Frank Sinatra, Grover Cleveland, Woodrow Wilson, Walt Whitman, all New Jersey natives.
  • The light bulb, phonograph (record player), motion picture projector were invented by Thomas Edison in his Menlo Park laboratory.
  • New Jersey is home to the Miss America pageant held in Atlantic City.
  • Atlantic City is where the street names came from for the game monopoly.
  • Atlantic City has the longest boardwalk in the world.
  • New Jersey has the largest petroleum containment area outside of the Middle East countries.
  • The first Indian reservation was in New Jersey.
  • New Jersey has the tallest water tower in the world.
  • The first tin-foil phonograph developed by Thomas Edison was crude, but it proved his point-- that sound could be recorded and played back. Thomas Edison had phonograph demonstrations and became world-renowned as the "Wizard of Menlo Park" for this invention.
  • Two-thirds of the world's eggplant is grown in New Jersey.
  • New Jersey is the only state in the nation which offers child abuse prevention workshops to every public school.
  • The first baseball game was played in Hoboken.
  • The first Drive-In Movie theatre was opened in Camden.
  • New Jersey has 108 toxic waste dumps. Which is the most in any one state in the nation.
  • New Jersey has a spoon museum featuring over 5,400 spoons from every state and almost every country.
  • Origin of New Jersey name: From the Channel Isle of Jersey.
  • Tourism is the second-largest industry in New Jersey.
  • New Jersey is the nation's most densely populated state.
  • The light bulb, phonograph (record player), motion picture projector were invented by Thomas Edison in his Menlo Park laboratory.
  • New Jersey is a leading industrial state and is the largest chemical producing state in the nation.
  • New Jersey has over 50 resort cities and towns, some of the nations most famous, Asbury park, Wildwood, Atlantic City, Seaside heights, Cape May.
  • New Jersey is home to the Miss America pageant held in Atlantic City.
  • New Jersey has 21 counties.
  • New Jersey State motto is "Liberty and Prosperity."
  • Atlantic City's original summer visitors were the Absegami Indians of the Lenni Lenape tribe.
  • Parsippany has been named Tree City USA for 24 consecutive years.
  • Software and software related companies account for nearly 2,700 companies in New Jersey.
  • The Statue, "Soldier At Rest" was dedicated to New Jersey Civil War veterans on June 28, 1875. It was purchased by the New Jersey State Legislature for $10,000.
  • General Philip Kearny had a New Jersey town and 2 military decorations named after him.
  • The Borough of Roosevelt is the only municipality in New Jersey that is, in its entirety, a registered National Historic Site.
County Information and County History
State Facts
History Firsts
State Fun Facts - History Firsts
History firsts and fun facts: popcorn triva that you always wanted to know about the United States of America.
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