A Glance Back in Time: Life in Colonial New Jersey (1704-1770) as depicted in News Accounts of the Day

This compilation of news accounts from the colonial era can help today’s reader better visualize what life was like in America between two and three centuries ago. It includes approximately 2,000 names of the earliest inhabitants of the provinces of East and West New Jersey and others from 1704 through 1770, collected from nearly a thousand news accounts of life in colonial America, not previously published this century. Sometimes quaint and linguistically fascinating in their own right, these accounts retell the sensational news of the day (the Indian and pirate attacks, for example) together with the ordinary, the “help wanted” columns and “real estate for sale” notices, news reports from the medical, legal, and educational spheres of society, colonial weather accounts, even early puzzles and more. There are headline type stories, describing crime in the colonies, shipwrecks, fatal accidents, slave insurrections and land riots. Other narratives depict the rural life of the Provinces of East and West New Jersey, the whales caught off its shores, the wild animals that attacked the colonists, and life on the “plantations.” Even obituaries and early “letters to the editor” reflect the values that society thought desirable. And, unmistakable throughout, is the American’s sense of personal liberty and his growing dissatisfaction with Parliament’s infringement of his rights as an Englishman. A Glance Back in Time is the result of research into more than twenty thousand news reports dealing with New Jersey during its colonial period, 1704–1770.