Manuscript Group 970, New Jersey Turnpike Company Records, 1806 – 1912 (Bulk dates: 1806 – 1812, 1849)

Archives Documents, Manuscripts, Maps, & Photographs

Manuscript Group 970, New Jersey Turnpike Company

Records, 1806-1912 (Bulk dates: 1806-1812, 1849), 0.2 linear feet / 1 small manuscript box

Call Number: MG 970 + Folder number



Laws, letters, articles of agreement, reports, and other documents pertaining to the New Jersey Turnpike Company, chartered in 1806 with the purpose of building and operating a toll road between Easton, Pennsylvania and New Brunswick, New Jersey.  Includes a list of Hunterdon County, New Jersey landowners in 1809, and letters of Andrew Howell, Ralph Hunt, Stephen Lace, William McCullough, Philip J. Schuyler, John N. Simpson, and Abraham Woolley.

Administrative History:

The New Jersey Turnpike Company was incorporated in 1806 with the purpose of building a 4-rod wide road from Albany and French Streets in New Brunswick, New Jersey to Easton, Pennsylvania. At that time, the Board of Directors consisted of George Bidleman, William McCullough, Thomas Stewart, George MacDonald, Ralph Hunt, Andrew Howell, George Maxwell, John Frelinghuysen, John Campbell, Jacob R. Hardenberg, John Bray, Henry Vandyke and John Dennis, Jr.  The finished road followed a route similar to today’s Route 26.


Albion, Robert Greenhalgh. “Early Communication,” in William Starr Myers’ The Story of New Jersey, Vol. III ( New York: Lewis Historical Publishing, 1945).

Provenance Note:
The source of this collection is unknown.

Scope and Content Note:

This volume contains 5 folders of the records of the New Jersey Turnpike Company dating from 1800-1912, with bulk dates of 1806-1812 and 1849.  Documents in this collection are arranged by record type (Legal Documents, Board of Directors Documents, Shareholders’ Documents, and Financial Documents), then by date published, and when necessary by the author’s last name.

The Legal Documents series contains such items as the rough draft of an “Act to Collect Tolls,” a list of jurors, a suit filed by Joshua Doughty, the incorporation certificates of the company in 1806 and again in 1869, letters from the company to inhabitants of Somerset and Middlesex Counties regarding incorporation, “Law of the New Jersey Turnpike Company with its several supplements” published in 1865, and work contracts.  This series also contains the decision in a legal case between landholders in Hunterdon County and the Princeton & Kingston Branch Turnpike Company dated September 15, 1809, and land deeds transacted by the residents of Somerset and Hunterdon Counties and the New Jersey Turnpike Company.

The Board of Directors’ Documents series contains a description of the Easton and New Brunswick Turnpike, notes from members of the board as well as notes on the construction of bridges along the turnpike.  The Shareholder’s Documents series includes applications for shares and proxies, while the Financial Documents series includes a small number of receipts and calculations.

Related Collections:

For more information on New Jersey turnpikes and people who worked on these turnpikes see documents in the following collections:

Manuscript Group 89, Sayers Coe (1772-1851) Records

Manuscript Group 358, Newark Turnpike Company Records

Manuscript Group 1302, Gibbons Family (Savannah, GA and Madison, NJ) Papers

Folder List:



1 Legal Documents 1800-1869
2 Legal Documents: Land Deeds 1809
3 Board of Directors Documents 1806-1846
4 Shareholders Documents: Applications 1805-1912
5 Shareholders Documents: Proxies 1806-1808
6 Financial Documents 1806-1868

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

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