Published on September 6, 2010 by Alice
From excavations, we know that Native Americans moved into New Jersey, soon after the reversal of the Younger Dryas climate, about 10 millennia ago, which had made the area uninhabitable and, during the preceding ice age, unreachable.
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European contact began with the exploration of the Jersey Shore by Giovanni da Verrazzano in 1524, At the time of European contact, the area was populated by many tribes of the Lenape.
The New Jersey region soon came under the control of the Swedes and the Dutch resulting in a struggle in which the Dutch were victorious. However, the Dutch colony of New Netherlands was seized by the English in 1664. New Jersey was one of the Thirteen Colonies that broke off from Britain in the American Revolution, adopting the Declaration of Independence in 1776. Becoming a state upon the formation of the United States, New Jersey saw significant action during the American Revolutionary War. New Jersey’s delegates signed the Articles of Confederation in 1779 and Princeton acted as the nation’s capital for four months in 1783.