Manuscript Group 256, Joseph Clark (1751-1813), Revolutionary War Officer Papers, 1777-1783

Archive Documents, Manuscripts, Maps, & Photographs

Manuscript Group 256, Joseph Clark (1751-1813), Revolutionary War Officer

Papers, 1777-1783, 0.07 linear feet / 1 folder

Call Number: MG 256


  • Biographical Note
  • Historical Note
  • Provenance Note
  • Scope and Content Note
  • Related Collections


Kept by a member of the Hunterdon County Militia while attached to the Continental Army. Includes descriptions of the battles of Brandywine, Germantown, and Monmouth. Portions printed in NJHS Proceedings, Ser. 1, 7 (1853-1855): 93-110.

Biographical Note:

Joseph Clark was born in Elizabethtown, New Jersey in 1751. He attended the College of New Jersey (now Princeton University) before the War of Independence broke out. Clark served in the Hunterdon County Militia of the Second New Jersey Regiment during the Revolution. After he finished serving in the Continental Army he returned to Princeton and obtained his bachelor’s degree in 1781. He then studied theology and after two years gained his license to preach. His first congregation was the Presbyterian Church in Allentown, New Jersey. He was transferred to New Brunswick, New Jersey in 1797 where he remained until his death. He was also a trustee of the College of New Jersey and a director of the Princeton Theological Seminary. Joseph Clark died in 1813.

Historical Note:

The Second New Jersey Regiment was authorized and assigned to the New York/Middle Department on October 9, 1775. The regiment was organized from October 26 to December 25, 1775 at Burlington and Trenton, New Jersey and consisted of eight companies. The unit fought in the Defense of Canada, Lake Champlain, Northern New Jersey, Defense of Philadelphia, Philadelphia-Monmouth, Iroquois (1779), New Jersey (1780), and Yorktown (1781) campaigns. The Second New Jersey Regiment was disbanded on November 15, 1783.


Proceedings of the New Jersey Historical Society, Vol. 7, 93-110 (The New Jersey Historical Society, Newark, New Jersey, 1855).

Provenance Note:

The source of this collection is unknown.

Scope and Content Note:

This collection consists of a journal dating from 1777 to 1778 and receipts dating from 1779 to 1783. Joseph Clark kept the journal while he was with the Hunterdon County Militia, which was part of the Second New Jersey Regiment, while they were defending Hackensack, Paramus, Pompton, Morristown, Brunswick, Amboy, and Red Bank, New Jersey and Germantown and Chester, Pennsylvania. Clark wrote on a variety of topics including “Swifts remarks on the Laws of the Liliputians(sic),” “Ancient Philosophers,” a list of officers, and the unit’s encounters with the British across New Jersey. On July 8 1777, he notes that he was appointed Adjutant Master of General Stephens Division. There is also a list of goods and services purchased which include a pipe, tobacco, silk, bridle, shirts, and a barber.

The receipts date from 1779 to 1783 and include “An account between Mr. (Aaron) Burr and Colonel Ash of North Carolina,” dated April 5, 1783. There are a few receipts to Joseph Clark, Master to General Dela(?) for goods bought from the State of Virginia. There is also a recording of the number of each rank in each regiment in February 1779, and a certificate certifying that Joseph Clark served four months as Adjutant in the Third Battalion of Militia Hunterdon, signed by Colonel David Chambers (1748-1842). Another document entitled “Memorandum of my brothers Robert’s affairs” is in this collection.

Related Collections:

For more information on the Hunterdon County Militia in the Revolutionary War see:

Manuscript Group 282, Holmes Family (Middletown, New Jersey) Papers

Processed by James Lewis, June 2001 as part of the “Farm to City” project funded by a grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.

Submit a request to copy part of this collection

Print Friendly, PDF & Email