New Jersey Military Records

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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.

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Material through World War I on New Jersey's military activities is found mostly at the New Jersey State Archives, with later records (including World War I) at the New Jersey Department of Military and Veterans' Affairs, Eggert Crossing Rd., P.O. Box 340, Trenton, NJ 08625-0340. The New Jersey Historical Society also has paymaster accounts, militia lists, personal diaries and correspondence, and a card file (as yet incomplete) of Civil War veterans buried in New Jersey. Some material has been published, but there is little on the colonial period. A typescript 'Military Lists from the Office of the Adjutant General, Trenton, New Jersey,' copied by Albert F. and Sara Morton Koehler (n.p., 1962), is available at the New York Genealogical and Biographical Society; a small amount of colonial military material is available at the state archives. See also 'Abstracts of New Jersey Commissions, Civil and Military...[1703'1769]' in Publications of the Genealogical Society of Pennsylvania, vols. 6, 7, and 10.

For the Revolutionary period there is the Official Register of the Officers and Men of New Jersey in the Revolutionary War, compiled by Adjutant General William S. Stryker (1872; reprint, Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1967). An index compiled by the Works Projects Administration (WPA) in 1941 was reprinted: Index of the Official Register of the Officers and Men of New Jersey in the Revolutionary War (Baltimore: Clearfield Co., 1989). This work has only about a third of all the names; other material should be sought at the state archives and the National Archives'Northeast Region (see pages 11-12). The state archives has the Adjutant General's Office materials'the most complete collection of New Jersey Revolutionary War service'with information for each soldier abstracted onto cards that cite the original manuscript sources. Also at the state archives is material on New Jersey loyalists. Background reading is available in New Jersey in the American Revolution, 1763'1783: A Documentary History, edited by Larry R. Gerlack (Trenton, N.J.: New Jersey Historical Commission, 1975). E. Alfred Jones, The Loyalists of New Jersey: Their Memorials, Petitions, Claims, etc. from English Records (1927; reprint, Lambertville, N.J.: Hunterdon House, 1988), originally published in New Jersey Historical Society Collections, volume 10, should be supplemented with other sources. A list of eligible men age eighteen to forty-five who did not serve in the Revolution or in the militia of another state is found in James S. Norton, New Jersey in 1793 (see Census Records). The state archives also has war damage claims filed by the British and Americans, 1776'82. Dorothy Agans Stratford and Thomas B. Wilson compiled Certificates and Receipts of Revolutionary New Jersey (Lambertville, N.J.: Hunterdon House, 1996), listing the names of thousands who provided goods and services for the war. Records of Officers and Men of New Jersey in the Wars, 1791'1815, compiled by the Adjutant General's Office (1909; reprint, Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1970), covers mostly the War of 1812 period. Later nineteenth-century conflicts are treated in Records of Officers and Men of New Jersey in the War with Mexico, 1846'1848 (Trenton, N.J., 1900) and Record of Officers and Men of New Jersey in the Civil War, 1861'1865, compiled by William S. Stryker, 2 vols. (Trenton, N.J.: John L. Murphy, 1876).

The National Archives microfilm 'Index to Compiled Service Record of Volunteer Union Soldiers Who Served...from New Jersey' is at the Northeast Region (see page 11). The state archives also has indexes to the Spanish-American War and some other pre-World War I military service, as well as unindexed material on the War of 1812, Mexican War, Spanish-American War, the State Militia (1789'1947), and the National Guard (to about 1910). Modern military records are with the New Jersey Department of Military and Veterans' Affairs (address above). Cards of the 'old men,' fourth draft registration for World War II for New Jersey are at the National Archives'Northeast Region (see Leslie Corn, 'World War II Fourth Registration Draft Cards: A Newly-Released 20th-Century Resource for 19th-Century Research,' The NYG&B Newsletter, 13 [2002]: 5-9).