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SITUATION AND BOUNDARIES.-New Jersey is situat ed between 38° 56′ and 41° 20' north latitude, and 1° 33′ and 3° 5′ east longitude. It is bounded on the north by New York; south, by Delaware Bay; east, by New York and the Atlantic Ocean; west, by Pennsylvania and Delaware. Its length, from north to south, is 160 miles. From the Hudson river on the east, to the Delaware on the west, its least breadth, near the middle, is 42 miles; its greatest breadth towards the north is 70, and towards the south 75 miles. Area 6600 square miles, or 4,224,000 acres.
Aspect of the Country, and Nature of the Soil.The southern parts, extending 100 miles along the sea coast, are generally level, except the hills of Neversink, in Monmouth county, which rise 281 feet above the level of the ocean. On leaving the Pennsylvania shore, the whole country is so flat that it is difficult to distinguish the ridge which separates the waters that fall into the ocean from those which fall into the Delaware. The South mountain, a ridge of the Alleghany, crosses the state near the parallel of 41°, and to the north is another ridge called Kittatinny, from both of which several spurs project in a south direction. Schooley's mountain rises 600 feet above its base,
which is 500 feet above tide water. * Among the mountains, and in the interior parts, the soil is very fertile; in other places it is almost barren, being composed of a loose sand and small rounded pebbles; and it is in general very inferior to that of New York or Pennsylvania. On the Jersey side of the river Delaware it is all sandy; on the opposite side it is all loam and clay. Along the river Rariton, about New Brunswick and Amboy, the country is in general beautifully variegated, and the soil is uncommonly rich.
Salt meadows stretch along the lower parts of Delaware river and bay. Towards the north the country swells into high hills, which are covered with woods, and well adapted to grazing. The banks of the rivers and creeks of the interior country are of a stiff clay, and the soil of the vallies is loamy and fertile. It has been calculated that nearly one fourth of the surface of the state is barren. The soil, to the distance of twenty or thirty miles from the sea, is evidently of recent formation. Shells and bones of an enormous size have been found in different places, at the depth of fifty feet, where the water is of a brackish taste.
Temperature.-The climate resembles that of the southern parts of New York; but near the sea it is much warmer than in the mountains, where the cold of winter is as great as in Massachusetts and Vermont. Kalm, when he visited this country, remarked, that
* Geological Observations by Professor Mitchill, in Bruce's Mineralogical Journal, Vol. I. p. 70.
the cattle remained in the fields during the whole winter, (Travels, Vol. II.) The summer season is very regular. The vegetable productions are seldom injur ed by drought, rains, or frosts. Rudyard, the deputygovernor, speaking of the climate in 1683, says, "As for the temperature of the air, it is wonderfully suited to the humours of mankind; the wind and weather rarely holding in one point, or one kind, for ten days together. It is a rare thing for a vessel to be wind bound for a week together, the wind seldom holding in a point more than forty-eight hours; and in a short time we have wet and dry, warm and cold weather yet this variation creates not cold, nor have we the tenth part of the colds we have in England; I never had any since I came." *
Earthquakes.-A shock of an earthquake was felt in November 1726, between the hours of ten and eleven at night. † A slight shock was felt about noon, on the 5th of September 1732; and in 1787, on the 7th of December, there was a considerable shock, accompanied with a remarkable rumbling noise. It shook the chimneys and doors, and awakened persons who were asleep, without occasioning any great injury.‡ The last was felt in 1755, on the 18th of November, at four in the morning.
Bays.-Delaware Bay forms the south-western boundary. 2. New York Bay lies to the east of Bergen Neck. 3. Newark Bay, which lies west of the latter, is five miles in length, and two in breadth.
Smith, p. 170.
+ Do. p. 419
↑ Do. p. 427.
4. Amboy Bay, lying between Staten island and Middleton, is fifteen miles in length, and twelve in breadth.
Rivers.-1. Hackensack River, which rises in the state of New York, runs parallel with the Hudson forty miles, and joins the Passaick, as the head of Newark bay, from which it is navigable, to the distance of fifteen miles. 2. Rariton River is navigable, to the distance of sixteen miles from its mouth, in Rariton Bay. 3. The Passaick, which takes its rise in the state of New York, and has a southerly course of about sixty-five miles to its outlet in Newark Bay, is navigable to the celebrated falls, or cataract, a distance of ten miles. 4. Maurice River is navigable for vessels of a hundred tons, to the distance of twenty miles, from the Delaware Bay, into which it empties. 5. The Muscanecunk, another branch of the Delaware, is forty miles in length. The sea coast is indented with a number of small streams, or creeks.
Lakes. On the top of a mountain, in Morris county, is a piece of water, three miles in length, one and a half in breadth, from which flows a continual stream.
Mineral Kingdom.-Iron ore. There are seven mines in the mountain of the county of Morris. Iron bog ore is found in the sandy tract towards the south, at Balstow, on the head waters of Little Egg Harbour River; and in the south-western parts, where it is renewed by deposition from water. Brown scaly iron ore abounds near the surface, in the northern parts of Burlington county. Ore of copper occurs in Bergen
county, near Newark Bay. The mine discovered in 1719, and wrought at different periods, yields about 75 per cent. of pure copper. Copper ore is also met with at New Brunswick, and at Rocky Hill, in Somerset county. Antimony is said to have been discovered in 1808. Lead ore, in the township of Hopewell, four miles from Trenton. Black lead, in limestone, at Sparta, in Sussex county. Native silver.? Native copper, at Woodbridge, in a blackish friable rock, disseminated in grains; also in Schuyler's mines. Loadstone, or native magnet, at Schooley's mountain. Soapstone, of a whitish colour and compact structure, in Montgomery county, twelve miles from Philadelphia. Magnesia, at Hoboken, on the estate of Mr John Stevens, in an uncombined state, discovered by Dr Bruce. Ochres, in different places, which are employed as paints; white, yellow, black, green, and red.* Coal, on the Rariton river, below New Brunswick, and at Pluckemen. Gypsum, in the county of Sussex. Slate, in Hunterdon county, near the Delaware, seventy-five miles above Philadelphia. Freestone, in the township of Aquakanock, and county of Newark, where there are nineteen quarries. Zeolytes and serpentine are found at Hobocken. Barytes, in Sussex county. Marl, in the counties of Monmouth and Burlington. In the latter it is of a greenish colour, containing shells. The skeleton of a shark, in a state of preservation, was discovered in it some years ago. Amber, in Crosswick's Creek, four miles from
See Medical Repository of New York for 1804, p. 195.