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The Crossroads of War

By Linda Tancs

What is now known as the State of New Jersey began on March 12, 1664 when Charles II of England granted land on the east coast of North America to his brother James, Duke of York (later, King James II).  On the occasion of New Jersey’s 350th birthday today, it seems fitting to highlight its major role in the Revolutionary War.  Although many no doubt recall the battles of Princeton, Trenton and Monmouth from their grade school history books, the fight for independence actually spans 2155 square miles across 14 counties–the Crossroads of the American Revolution National Heritage Area.  This area includes, of course, Morristown’s Ford Mansion and Jockey Hollow, the nation’s first historical national park, commemorating the sites of General George Washington and the Continental Army’s winter encampment of December 1779 to June 1780.  During six years of conflict,  George Washington and the Continental Army spent more days in New Jersey than any other state.

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