New York-New Jersey Line War

New York-New Jersey Line War

The New York–New Jersey Line War (also known as the N.J. Line War) refers to a series of skirmishes and raids that took place for over half a century between 1701 and 1765 at the disputed border between two American colonies, the Province of New York and the Province of New Jersey.

Border wars were not unusual in the early days of settlements of the colonies and originated in conflicting land claims. Because of ignorance, willful disregard, and legal ambiguities, such conflicts arose involving local settlers until a final settlement was reached. In the largest of these squabbles some 210,000 acres (849.8 km²) of land were at stake between New York and New Jersey.

In this situation originally the western and northern border of New Jersey ran "along said River or Bay (the Delaware) to the northward as far as the northward most branch of the said Bay or River, which is in latitude 41 degrees, 40 minutes and crosseth over thence in a straight line to the latitude 41 degrees on Hudson's River." Said point on the Delaware is Cochecton or Station Point. This border, set in 1664, had been acknowledged by both the New York and New Jersey legislatures by 1719.

However, the northbound extension of New Jersey was not respected by settlers from New York who moved westward from Orange County. The resulting conflict was carried out by settlers from both sides. In addition, these settlers had to fight off Native Americans who also raided the area during the French and Indian Wars.

The last fight broke out in 1765, when the Jerseyans attempted to capture the leaders of the New York faction. Because the fight took place on the Sabbath, neither side used weapons. The New York leaders were captured and kept briefly in the Sussex County jail.

The conflict was eventually settled. The King of Great Britain through the royal commission of October 7, 1769 appointed commissioners to establish what would become the permanent and final border that runs southeast from the Delaware River near Port Jervis to the Hudson River. The New York and New Jersey legislatures ratified the compromise in 1772, and the King approved it on September 1, 1773.

ee also

*Border between West Jersey and East Jersey
*Ellis Island
*Liberty Island


# [ Avalon Project: Original New Jersey Charter, 1664]

External links

* [ The Swarthout Family in the Line War]

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