Guide to the Essex County, New Jersey Tax Office Account Book 1772-1780 MG 262


Descriptive Summary
Historical Note
Scope and Content Note
Access Points
Related Material
Administrative Information

Container List

Account Book

Guide to the Essex County, New Jersey Tax Office Account Book
MG 262

The New Jersey Historical Society
52 Park Place
Newark, New Jersey 07102
Contact: NJHS Library
Phone: (973) 596-8500 x249
© 2006 All rights reserved.
The New Jersey Historical Society, Publisher
Inventory prepared by Luis Delfino, July 2001, as part of the “Farm to City” project funded by a grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.

Finding aid encoded by Julia Telonidis. March 2006. Production of the EAD 2002 version of this finding aid was made possible by a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. Finding aid written in English.

Descriptive Summary

Title: Essex County, New Jersey Tax Office Account Book
Dates: 1772-1780
Abstract: Accounts kept by Silvanus Baldwin, James Clark, Isaac Longworth, John Ludlow, Francis Post, Thomas Post, and Derrick Vreeland – agents for the collection of county taxes and sinking funds, provincial taxes, and later state taxes. Among the communities indicated are Acquackanock (now Passaic), Connecticut Farms (now in Union Township), Elizabeth, Newark, Rahway, Springfield, and Westfield.
Quantity: .02 linear feet (1 volume)
Collection Number: MG 262

Historical Note

The expense of maintaining the early colonial government was relatively slight, (roughly $10,000 as late as 1770) so consequently, property owners were not taxed heavily. The money supply was very low in the colonies, and the currency exchange of the various forms of cash was chaotic. In addition, a large portion of the trade within the colonies involved barter of agricultural products or skins, so the need for cash was low. Only possessions such as houses, livestock and improved property were taxed, not income or investments. The colonial governments also raised funds in times of need by issuing bonds, issuing paper money, and receiving credit from Great Britain.

Much of the anger that led to revolution was derived from measures such as the Stamp Act of 1665 and constraint of trade that effectively forced the colonies to finance the wars of an overextended Britain. After the Revolutionary War, however, the new government was heavily in debt, and the tax burden on the citizenry was not substantially reduced. Before long the government introduced new sources of revenue such as tariffs and tax stamps on legal documents to raise funds.

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Scope and Content Note

This volume contains the Essex County, New Jersey Tax Office accounts of tax collection agents dating from 1772-1780, and Samuel Hayes Congar’s notes for his Genealogical Notes of the First Settlers of Newark (1866).

The Essex County Tax Office account book tracks the accounts of the following collection agents: Sylvanus Baldwin (1721-1799) and Isaac Longworth (1726-1794) of Newark, Edward Thomas (fl. 1774-1775) of Elizabethtown (now named Elizabeth), James Clark (1745-1794) of Connecticut Farms (now named Union), John Ludlow (fl. 1773), Francis Post (fl. 1779-1780), and Derrick Vreeland (fl. 1773-1774) of Acquackanock (now named Passaic). Early in this volume, the sums collected were provincial taxes, but after the Revolutionary War, they became county and state property taxes. This volume documents taxes collected in Acquackanock, Connecticut Farms, Elizabethtown, Newark, Rahway, Springfield, and Westfield. These accounts occupy about a third of this volume, another third are the handwritten notes of Samuel Hayes Congar in pencil, and the remaining pages are blank.

Samuel Hayes Congar’s Genealogical Notes of the First Settlers of Newark was published in The New Jersey Historical Society Proceedings, volume 16, series I (1866) (call number N974.9 N4211 v6 supp).

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Access Restrictions

There are no access restrictions on this collection.

Photocopying of materials is limited and no materials may be photocopied without permission from library staff.

Use Restrictions

Researchers wishing to publish, reproduce, or reprint materials from this collection must obtain permission.

The New Jersey Historical Society complies with the copyright law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code), which governs the making of photocopies or other reproductions and protects unpublished materials as well as published materials.

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Access Points

The entries below represent persons, organizations, topics, forms, and occupations documented in this collection.

Subject Names:

Baldwin, Sylvanus, 1721-1799.
Clark, James, 1745-1794.
Congar, Samuel Hayes, 1796-1892.
Longworth, Isaac, 1726-1794.
Ludlow, John, fl. 1773.
Post, Francis, fl. 1779-1780.
Thomas, Edward, fl. 1774-1775.
Vreeland, Derrick, fl. 1773-1774.

Subject Topics:

Property tax–New Jersey.
Taxation–New Jersey.
Tax collection–New Jersey.

Subject Places:

Elizabethtown (N.J.)
Essex County (N.J.)
Newark (N.J.)
Newark (N.J.)–Genealogy.
Passaic (N.J.)
Rahway (N.J.)
Springfield (N.J.)
Westfield (N.J.)

Document Types:

Account books.

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Related Material

Manuscript Group 565, Silas Crane (1760-1829), Tax Collector, Account book

Manuscript Group 875, Samuel Hayes Congar (1796-1872) Papers

Manuscript Group 957, Somerset County, New Jersey Tax Accounts

Manuscript Group 972, Morris Township, New Jersey Tax Rate books

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Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

This collection should be cited as: Manuscript Group 262, Essex County, New Jersey Tax Office

Account Book, The New Jersey Historical Society.

Acquisition Information

The source of this collection is unknown.

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Shaw, William H. History of Essex and Hudson Counties, New Jersey, Vol. 1. (Everts & Peck, Philadelphia, 1884).

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Container List

Account Book
Box Folder Title Date
1 1 Essex County Account Book 1772-1780

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