By F. Topper/C. Wills
A heritage of latest Jersey, from its early exploration and cost to the nation this day.
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Additional resources for A historical album of New Jersey
Thanks to its charter, the Camden and Amboy enjoyed a virtual monopoly on rail transportation in the state. Steam power also laid the foundations for New Jersey's tourist industry, still an important part of the state's economy today. Steamboats linked the Jersey shore with Philadelphia, making Cape May a favorite vacation resort for Philadelphians. In the early 1850s, Jonathan Pitney, a surgeon, persuaded the Camden and Amboy Railroad to lay track to tiny Absecon Island; this led to the creation of Atlantic City, which soon became one of the nation's most popular resorts.
In 1807, however, the state abruptly withdrew these rights after a controversial local election in Essex County. New Jersey also ended slavery within its borders, as did most of the Northern states, following the Revolutionary War. The state government decided on a policy of gradual emancipation (freedom)under state law, any male child born into slavery had to be freed by age twenty-five and female children were to be freed at twenty-one. One of the greatest challenges facing New Jersey at the start of the 19th century was the need to improve its transportation network.
Its mills and factories turned out textiles and manufactured goods for sale in markets all over the worldincluding its former colonies. The United States had fought and won the war for political independence, but Hamilton believed the nation would become economically dependent on Britain unless it developed its own industries. Hamilton's vision was shared by Governor Paterson. In 1791, Hamilton and Paterson set up a trade corporation, the Society for Useful Manufactures (SUM). The corporation's first goal was the establishment of an industrial city on the falls of the Passaic River.