What Was the Geography of Colonial New Jersey?
The colony of New Jersey was eventually classified as the land between the Hudson and Delaware rivers, bordered to the west by the Appalachian Mountains. New Jersey’s fertile soil, long growing season, location between the two easily navigable rivers and religious tolerance contributed to the colony’s wealth and popularity.
The physical geography of colonial New Jersey began at its lengthy border with the Atlantic Ocean, from which coastal plains developed into rolling hills, then the Appalachian Highlands. When the glaciers to the north melted at the end of the previous ice age, their runoff brought rich soil into what became the New Jersey colony. As a result, many of the settlers farmed wheat, grain and corn, providing bread for most other colonies, while others became fur traders, merchants and craftsmen.