New Jersey is the 3rd state of the United States. The state is made up of 21 counties and the people of New Jersey are known as New Jerseyans or New Jerseyites. It was admitted to the Union on December 18, 1787. The capital of the state is Trenton and the biggest city is Newark. The state covers a total area of 8,721 sq miles and it is the 47th largest state in the country. Read motivating facts and trivia about New Jersey to better your knowledge.
Location and Geography: New Jersey is a relatively small state located in the East Coast of the United States, between the Delaware River and the Atlantic Ocean. It is known for being densely populated and has few areas within it that are not part of an urban landscape.
Counties and Regions: New Jersey has a total of twenty-one counties, but because it is such an urban state, these are generally grouped into a given number of metropolitan areas:
New York-White Plains-Wayne
The state can also be looked at as being divided into six greater regions:
Delaware River Region
Greater Atlantic City Region
Southern Shore Region
Major Cities: Every single county in the state of New Jersey has been classified as “urban,” largely because so many people who work in New York City or Philadelphia actually have their homes in New Jersey. New Jersey’s largest cities are Newark and Jersey City, which each have more than two hundred thousand residents. Its capital, Trenton, has far fewer people, with only eighty-five thousand or so. The resort and gambling town of Atlantic City, which is perhaps New Jersey’s most famous community, has a population of nearly forty thousand, with more than two hundred thousand more living in its metropolitan area.
Population: New Jersey is home to more than eight million, seven hundred thousand people, which given its size makes it the most densely populated state in the Union. Its unique location between two of the nation’s largest cities, New York City and Philadelphia, has made it a center of population throughout history and into the present.
Story Behind the Name: New Jersey was named as such by King Charles II, after the British took control of that portion of the New World. King Charles had found sanctuary on the British island of Jersey during a recent war, and wanted to name one of the new colonies after it.
History and Colonization: The area that is now New Jersey was inhabited by a handful of semi-mobile Native American cultures when the Europeans first discovered it. Some of the first colonies were founded there in the seventeenth century, when at the time
it was considered to be a part of New Sweden and New Netherland. In 1664, the British took control of the entire region, and declared an area of it as the Province of New Jersey. This state would prove to be one of the most diverse areas in the New World, with people of many different creeds and backgrounds making their homes there.
New Jersey was one of the thirteen original colonies that partook in the American Revolution, and actually earned the nickname “The Crossroads of the Revolution” because so many battles took place there. Once independence was achieved, because the new United States Constitution did not show favoritism to Pennsylvania or New York, the citizens of New Jersey were quite in favor of it. They became the third state to ratify the Constitution, and later proved to be the first state to ratify the newly written Bill of Rights.
In the nineteenth century, New Jersey supported the Union side in the Civil War, although none of its battles took place on their soil. The state’s previously agricultural economy was largely replaced by manufacturing and mining during the Industrial Revolution, so much so that New Jersey developed quite a reputation and is even still known for its blue-collar industries, despite much gentrification over the years.
New Jersey solidified its place as an industrial powerhouse in the twentieth century, when it churned out tanks, planes, and missiles at an astonishing rate during both World Wars. It also developed popular resorts along its shorelines, most notably Atlantic City. Today, it remains known for its cultural and ethnic diversity. Although it is home to some of the most impoverished regions in the country, it also has so many wealthy inhabitants that it ranks as the second richest state overall.
More New Jersey Facts & Trivia
1) The nickname of New Jersey is "The Garden State".
2) The capital city of the state is Trenton and the largest city is Newark.
3) Before it gained statehood, NJ was known as the Province of New Jersey. It entered the Union on December 18, 1787 as the 3rd state of the country.
4) New Jersey is bounded by New York, Pennsylvania, Atlantic Ocean, Hudson River, and Delaware.
5) Famous residents of New Jersey are Jon Bon Jovi, Frank Sinatra, Richard Nixon, Bruce Springsteen, Jack Nicholson, and Bruce Willis.
6) The official motto is "Liberty and prosperity".
7) The official fish is the Brook Trout.
8) The official tree is the Northern Red Oak.
9) North Jersey is nicknamed the Car Theft Capital of the World. The number of vehicles stolen in the city of Newark is more than any other city in the world.
10) The tallest point in the state is the High Point. It is sited at an altitude of 1,803 feet.
11) The official bird is the Eastern Goldfinch.
12) The official anthem is "I'm From New Jersey".
13) The state has the densest network of railroads and freeways in the country.
14) The state is nicknamed the Diner Capital of the World because of the large number of restaurants it houses.
15) Famous tourist draws like Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty are located in New Jersey.
16) There are more than 50 resort cities in the state. Wildwood, Asbury Park, Seaside heights, Atlantic City, and Cape May are some of the renowned resort cities.
17) The official flower is the Common Meadow Violet.
18) The official mammal is the Horse.
19) The official dance is the Square Dance.
20) Newark, Jersey City, and Paterson are the three biggest cities in the state of New Jersey.