Ethnic Groups of New Jersey

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This entry was originally written by Roger D. Joslyn, CG, FUGA, FGBS, FASG for Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources.

This article is part of
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the New Jersey Family History Research series.
History of New Jersey
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Ethnic Groups of New Jersey
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David Steven Cohen, comp., New Jersey Ethnic History: A Bibliography (Newark, N.J.: New Jersey Historical Society, 1986), lists over 600 books, articles, and theses, covering African-Americans, Cubans, Dutch, Germans, Hungarians, Irish, Italians, Japanese, Jews, Native Americans, Portuguese, Quakers, and Swedes. Another interesting but controversial work by Cohen is The Ramapo Mountain People (New Brunswick, N.J.: Rutgers University Press, 1974).

Theodore F. Chambers, The Early Germans of New Jersey (1895; reprint, Lambertville, N.J.: Hunterdon House and Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1982), has information on non-German families as well as northwestern New Jersey, but it must be used with great caution.

Dennis J. Starr, The Italians of New Jersey: A Historical Introduction and Bibliography, New Jersey Historical Society Collections, vol. 20 (Newark, N.J.: New Jersey Historical Society, 1985), discusses the largest ethnic group of the state and is helpful for finding other sources on the subject.

Clement Alexander Price, comp. and ed., Freedom Not Far Distant: A Documentary History of Afro-Americans in New Jersey, New Jersey Historical Society Collections, vol. 16 (Newark, N.J.: New Jersey Historical Society, 1980), is based heavily on original source material. One WPA project highlighted records of Afro Americans: Transcriptions of Early County Records of New Jersey: Gloucester County Series: Slave Documents, prepared by Gloucester County Historical Project (Newark, N.J.: Historical Records Survey, 1940).

Herbert C. Kraft, The Lenape: Archaeology, History, and Ethnography, New Jersey Historical Society Collections, vol. 21 (Newark, N.J.: New Jersey Historical Society, 1986), is a study of the so-called Delaware Indians who lived in what are now New Jersey, Delaware, Pennsylvania, and New York. In an earlier work, William Nelson compiled a reference work, Personal Names of Indians of New Jersey (Paterson, N.J.: The Paterson History Club, 1904), listing 650 names, mostly from seventeenth-century deeds.