This guide is intended to serve as a starting point for those researching New Jersey history. With this in mind, while compiling the guide preference for inclusion was given to material that is available at several Rutgers Libraries (and likely to be held by some public libraries) rather than rare or unique resources. This guide is, of course, only a selection of material that is available in the Rutgers University Libraries; the researcher is encouraged to continue searching for additional sources.
Researchers will also be interested in Kean University's own LibGuide on New Jersey History resources. It also links to the Kean University New Jersey History Project in which they've gathered together New Jersey-related items in the Hathi Trust Digital Library into a single online "collection."
Any serious inquiry into the history of New Jersey will lead the researcher to Special Collections and University Archives, which consists of two elements: Special Collections, which is the largest, most comprehensive library documenting New Jersey history and culture and one of the finest collections of state and local history in the country and the Rutgers University Archives, which serves as the final, official repository for the historical records of the University.
QuickSearch is the best place to begin your research. Additional manuscript material held by Special Collections and University Archives, but not yet entered into the Library Catalog, can be found by searching WorldCat (OCLC) [Rutgers-restricted Access] or the National Union Catalog of Manuscript Collections (NUCMC) via OCLC [Publicly Accessible]. For additional manuscript material, researchers will also want to consult the manuscript card catalog located on-site in the Special Collections and University Archives reading room.
Deborah Mercer and her colleagues at the New Jersey State Library library have established a page with information on which New Jersey newspapers have been digitized and are available online.
Also, Proquest Historical Newspapers: New York Times database [Rutgers-restricted Access] should not be overlooked as a valuable tool in researching New Jersey history as happenings in New Jersey were often reported in addition to New York news. The database includes the Times from its first issue (September 18, 1851) to three years prior to the current year. More current New Jersey newspapers are available through the NewsBank's Access World News [Rutgers-restricted Access].
Now available online is an essential guide for researchers using New Jersey newspapers, the Directory of New Jersey Newspapers, 1765-1970 by William C. Wright and Paul A. Stellhorn (New Jersey Historical Commission, 1977),
Material published by the State of New Jersey can be found in the Government Documents section of the Alexander Library and the Government Publications in the Library of Science and Medicine.
A guide to a electronic resources containing current information on and about New Jersey is also available through the Rutgers University Libraries' Electronic Reference Sources.
Researchers should also note the LibGuides created by other RUL Librarians that contain additional valuable resources about New Jersey, paricularly Stephanie Bartz's "New Jersey Information," which includes links to a wealth of electronic resources about New Jersey, and Natalie Borisovets' "New Jersey Genealogy."
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