James P Snell.

History of Sussex and Warren counties, New Jersey : online

. (page 39 of 190)
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tho same :

For each person, dinner, hot,of three dishes. ..ono Bhilling.

For dinner, cold nine pence.

Win,- ,„ , t >in t eighteen pence.

Mcllicgliu per clitt sevon pence.

Stroue: Beer per quart five pence.

Ship ditto three pence.

Jlnm per gill four pence.

Punch per quart, of loaf sugar ono shilling.

Dilto, id' brown sugar ten pence.

Flip per quart ten pence.

Lodging each porson per night three pence.

Horses, oats per quart pcnny-lialf-penny.

Stabling burses one shilling.

Pasturing ditto six pence."



"The business of tavernkecping at this time, anil
for at least fifty years afterwards, was a stepping-stone
to public distinction, as well as a source of pecuniary
profit. Nearly all the early judges, justices, si
chosen freeholders, etc., were innkeepers. The num-

lier of hostelric- I'oiitiimally augmented in

quence of the repute and influence they gained for
tln-ir proprietors; but what was little to the credit of
the fraternity was the fact that some of them, in order
to increase their profits, would use diminutive mi as-

lire- in selling their liquors, oats, etc. The court felt

itself scandalized by this le of doing business,

and, by way of suppressing it, took the precaution for

several years to add t< > the annual rate hills which it

made out an official notification in these words:
' Liquors and Oats, when called for, to be delivered in
full mrtisiiri-x.' (ireat inducements lor wholesale lodg-
ing were also held out in those days, the charges being

for ' man in a bed, five pence; for two in abed,

three pence each ; and for three in a bed, two pence

Hence, when two men chose to bundle to-
gether instead of sleeping singly, they saved two
peine each by the operation,— just enough to buy a
gill of New England rum for their respective stimu-
lation, provided they had a partiality for thai most
pungent and odoriferous of all alcoholic liquids.

"During the brief time the courts were held in
Hardwick the business mainly related to the collec-
tion of debts; some cases of assault and a few offenses
against chastity were reached and punished by indict-
ment, but no crime of special magnitude required to
b: pili • i-.dl'. investigated, the grand jurors appeared
to be vigilant, — probably a little too much so; indeed,
some of their presentments would be regarded at the
present d i\ 'is trifling and frivolous In searching
• ■Hi small offenses upon one occasion they pounced
upon a luckless wighl named Richard Duddy, and
formally presented him ' for damning Hi Grace the
l)u ke of Cumberland.' This certainly was manifest-
ing an excess of loyally, 'l'he Duke of Cumberland
never set his foot upon American Boil; lie was merely
a leading general in i lie British army who was de-
feated at Fontenoy by the French, but who had
anced his misfortune bj defeating the force- of the
Preto rider in Scotland on the field oft lulloden, where
he infamously signalized him -elf by inflicting the

IVage cruellies upon the 1 r Scot- whom he

had vanquished. Duddy wasdoubtless a Scotchman,
and the ebullition was entirely natural. The duke
will certainlj have escaped well if, after 'life's fitful
fever, 1 he experienced no other da ing, in righteous

expiation of his crimes at Culloden, than that de-
nounced against him by the irascible Richard
Do Idy."

The clerks of the courts were appointed by the
Governor, and commissioned to hold during pleasun .
There were, besides, one or more clerks of the circuit,

who attended the sittings in t| u . counties and kept

their own minutes. A book containing such minutes

of the Oyer and Terminer and Circuit Courts held in
most of the counties from 1749 to 1762 is preserved
in the clerk's office of the county of Middlesex. The
ity.r and Terminer, as well as the Circuit, was re-
garded as a branch of the Supreme Court, and the
dings therein were subject to it- control. The
clerks exercised the power of appointing deputies.

The Supreme Court was organized in 1704, and met
once a year at Perth Amboy and Burlington. In
1711 it was required to meet twice a year in each
place, and courts for the trial of issues were appointed
to be held yearly in each county. Circuit.- were es-
tablished in 1751, and subsequently the time for hold-
ing them was fixed by the Supreme Court. They
were held in Sussex County in May and November
of each year, the I Iyer and Terminer being held at
the -a ne time.

The courts of the county were fir-t held at the resi-
dence of Jonathan Pettit, Esq., in Hardwick town-
ship, in accordance with the ordinance of 1753. The
locality is now known as Johnsonsburg, and lies
within tin- present limits of Warren County. No
court-house was ever erected there, although an effort
was made to secure to that place the permanent seat

of |UStlCC. <»n March 21, 1" 4 tin hoard f justices
and freeholder- met at the house of Samuel Green,
in the neighborhood, and appointed a meting of all

the qualified voters of Sussex to be held at the house
of the said Samuel Green on the 16th, 17th, and 18th

of April, 17">f, "to elect a place to build a jail and
COUrt-hoUSe." The meeting was duly held, hut was
very thinly attended nil account of the difficulty of
there from the remote parts of the county.
The jail was ordered to be built near Pettit's tavern,
on lands of Samuel Green, at the expense of the
county. Mr. Green gave an obligation, f in the pen-

• Tho fallowing i- a copj >r ih' proceedings of tho meeting, tnkon from
the records of the i-'iir-l >>f justice! nod freeholden:

"Ai u etlng ..f JusUces and Freeholders hold for the County of

Sn - t-v ut the Dwelling house of Samuel Qreon the 21 Day •■(" nnir.li
Ann.. Doml I7M, Summonod bj Virtue of ■ T.nte Act of tin- <■

ml a -■■nihil. Entitled mi Ait for the ErecUng the upper

thi County ol alorris In New Jeraoy Into a Separate County, S .

En porsuanco Where of Thi IJ id Freeholders han

Unit A.lveiiiiti ments |„. Immediately pnl up in the most public nlnco In

llfled by law to elect a place

to build ii Goal and Court House,— That the Election be held the si\-

locntu, Sovontecnth and Elghti enth days of April V \i

"Thai the Poll shall be C intlnued rrom Day al the said Green'* and

i place ; that tho said Justices and Freeholders

•hall Duly Attend the ealu Election i« the Law in the Cass further

n iti ii,
".'.-■.in Wii.iit-, ,t..\\oi\N I'rrriT,

"KlillAKP 1.IM.\, J (Ml., Til - \\

' i:..in in w ii i - .\. Sam'l Wn Leoy,

" Pi l:iK W ')-; . Sam."

" I .liM I It s W I M BROOK,

" Kiim All men ' j thi as presents thai 1 > ■ - ths Town-

ship of Hardwick Do hereby Obligate mysell my Heirs Exact*" and



alty of five hundred pounds, "to secure to the county
of Sussex the liberty and use of the ground where
the jail is built by Jonathan Pettit, while the court is
continued there." Jonathan Pettit and Richard
Lundy were appointed to superintend its erection.*

The jail was built of logs, and soon completed.
This gave to early Johnsonsburg the sobriquet of " the
Log Jail," by which it was familiarly known. f The
board of justices and freeholders met in Pahaquarry
and examined the bills for materials and labor. They
were ascertained to amount to thirty-seven pounds two
shillings ten pence.J The jail was not considered
safe, and "the board appointed Samuel Wilson and

Administrators in the penal sum of Five Hundred Pounds reclamation
Money, conditioned to secure to the County of Sussex an uninterrupted
Liberty and Privilege for the Use of the ground where the Goal is built
by Jonathan Pittits while the Court is Continued there, and when Re-
moved from thence the Liberty of taking away the Iron in the said Goal
wheneverthe Justices and Freeholders for the time being shall think fit
So to Do as Witness my band and Seal this Eighteenth Day of April

" Sam 'l Green. [seal]
" Seal d and Delivered in the presence of
" James Anderson,
" Maur : Robeson,
" John Wright.
" A True Copy of The Original."

*"At a meeting of the Justices and Freeholders held at Samuel
Green's in Hardwick Township the Eighteenth Day of April 1754, Or.
dered by Unanimous Agreement that the whole Cost of Building the
Goal by Jonathan Pettit shall be paid at the Expense of the County of
Sussex ; That Jonathan Pettit is Appointed to finish the Iron work and
Richard Lundy, Junr. to agree with the workmen to finish the Back and
Chimney and to be Done before the Next Court.

" Derik Westbrook, Abram Van Campen,

" Cornelius Westbrook, John Anderson,

"Joseph Hull, Jonathan Pettit,

" Joseph Wiltits, Sam'l Willson,

"Richard Lundy, Maur : Robinson,

" Robert Willson, Esqrs"

"William IIeneree,
"James Anderson,

" FreeJtoltlers.
f New Jersey Historical Collections.
% " Sussex )
County. J
"At a meeting of the Justices and Freeholders chosen for said County
held at Pahaquary the Eighteenth Day of June, 1704, in order to Adjust
the accompts of Building the Gaol by Jonathan Tettit and to Raise
Money for Defraying the Cost thereof, which now amounts to the Sum
of £37 2s. 10<(. as per Acc ta of Sundrys, Approved and Allowed, Appears,
and for paying the Tax for killing Wolves and Panthers, Unanimously
agreed that the sum of One Hundred Pounds Proc: shall be Raised for
said I ae to be paid to the County Collector on or beforo the first Day of
October Next Ensuing. Also Ordered the said Assessment to be made
Agreeable to the Tenor and Direction of a late Act entitled An Act for
the Support of Government of this Province. And whereas, the said Gaol
is not finished as it ought to bo, Ordered that Sam' Wilson Esq' and
Richard Lundy, Jun r , agreo with workmen to finish it as they shall
Judge needful, and charge the County Dr. for it and draw an Order on
the Collector to pay said Cost, and also that the Iron remaining unused
be sold by said Wilson and Lundy for cash and applyd towards paying
the CoHt of making two pair of Hand-Culls and Shackles and other Ne-
cessary Uses.

"Joseph Willits, Abram Van Campen,

"Joseph Hull-, Japheth Byram,

"Henry Kikendol, Sam 1 Willson,

"Joiianas Westbrook, Abram Van Auken,

"Cornelius Westbrook, J&grfl."

" Richard Lundy, Jun',
" Robert Willson,
" Freeholders.

Richard Lundy, Jr., to finish it as they should judge
needful." This they did, and the additional work
swelled the cost to forty-one pounds three shillings
one penny, about thirty pounds of which was for
iron and blacksmithing, leaving for work, boards,
etc., about eleven pounds.

This building was used nine years as a jail, and a
watchman was paid five shillings a day (of twenty-
four hours) for watching it. Yet the prisoners es-
caped, and the sheriff would plead "clearance of
damages" on account of the unsafe condition of the
prison. The county, however, became responsible for
the amount of about six hundred pounds on account
of the " flight of imprisoned debtors," about fourteen
times the sum originally expended in erecting the jail.

Courts were subsequently held at Wolverton's tav-
ern, in the same neighborhood, but the place and the
accommodations were designed to subserve only a
temporary purpose. Accordingly, at the earliest con-
venient period, Abraham Van Campen, Esq., was
dispatched to Perth Aniboy with a petition of the
people to the General Assembly, praying for authority
to erect a court-house and jail, and on Dec. 12, 1761,
that body passed an act granting the desired privilege
and ordering that the building be erected "on the
plantation in possession of Henry Hairlocker, within
half a mile of said Hairlocker's dwelling-house; the
particular spot to be fixed, with the consent of the
owner of the land, by a majority of the Justices and
Freeholders of said County." The owner of the
land occupied by Hairlocker was Jonathan Hamp-
ton, Esq., a citizen of Essex County, and he, in con-
junction with the board, took the matter immediately
in hand and decided that the course from Hair-
locker's dwelling should run south, " which brought
the site of the court-house in the meadow below.
However, by stretching the chain they managed to
crowd the site partly up the hill, and there it re-
mains till this day. Although the fault is invaria-
bly attributed to a blunder of the Legislature, it is
not true. The Legislature did not require the board
and the owner of the land to take any particular
course in running out the half-mile from Hairlocker's
dwelling, and consequently, if the local authorities so
managed as to land it in a ditch, they alone are to

For the purpose of building the court-house a tax
of five hundred pounds was at first levied upon the
county in 1762, to which other assessments were
added during the two following years. " The total
cost of the building and furniture was two thousand
one hundred pounds proclamation money, — equal to
five thousand six hundred dollars." The managers
under whose direction the building was erected were
Abraham Van Campen, Jacob Starn, and John
Hackett.? In 1763 the cells, or that portion which

? The following is the authority under which this committee acted:
" We, tho Justices and Freeholders, convened this day at tho house of
Henry Hairlocker, have elected and chosen Colonel Abruham Van Cam-



was devoted to the purposes of a jail, were bo far
completed as to admit of the confinement of prisoners

During the May term of 1765 courts were opened
|d the building, and the managers delivered ii to the
board of justices and freeholders as a finished
•' Devoted originallj to the conservation of royal au-
thority, ii became in a few years the agenl and ex-
ponent of republican equality and justice. For a
period of seventy-nine years this solidly-constructed
temple of justice, unaltered in its external appearance,
firmlj resisted the ' corroding tooth of Time,' and re-
tained its identity amidsl surr lunding change and in-
novation. In 1844 the old edifice was enlarged.
lis steep angular roof disappeared ; its gra;
which had withstood the Masts of eighty winters, re-
ceived i ,vei theii nakedness, and massive
pillars, surmounted by a corresponding entablature,
adorned its front, entirely obscuring the familiar out-
lines of the old building. Thus enlarged and reno-
vated, ii stood until Thursday, Jan. 28, L847, when ii
hras destroyed by fire. Immediate measures were
hiken for its reconstruction, and the present commo-
tions court-house arose upon its ruin-."

' II \ PTEE I I.


land upon which the courthouse stands, with
the public green annexed, was conveyed to the board
"!' chosen freeholders of the county of Sussex on
Nu 81, 1764, by Jonathan I lampion, i;.,,.. f Essex
County. Ii was through the exertions ol Mr. Hamp-
ton thai the Legislature was induced to Belecl New-
1,111 <w the county-seal in place of Stillwater, more
0>ntrall) located in the count) and then pressing its
Maims as the most formidable competitor. Mr.
Bampton also conveyed land for an academy at

■ N '" t0 "i and the su now forms a part of the cem-

flterj near the Episcopal church. We give below a

ferbatim copy of the deed for th urt-house lol

and public square in Newton, taken from ther rds:

in, .1 Jul, I, lliicketl

Iliwnnl "i Hi- Iiuumi ul ll-,,ii

'" I " 1 ''"■ "' '" "' ! i > i ■■• ■ I, ■■■

i- Hill I in, ul Hay, 17U2.


' ' '"• ll! KORI, K.1 H..M.W.

"«OBI , i Ul JlTJBTBlIt, ABRAHAM .- i

"NA1 ll'l Ti I ill. -ins, h ,


Elijah Calcard,

Khi'm i

Av w WlU IK,

"TO ALL CliniSTIAN PEOPLE to wli .., ..„ „ .,.„„„,

i I, null, :n, rjampl


billy for ami i„ coushlerutl i I

nvo " 8" lawful ill v.,i'»ih,1 l>rovluce to m« ind |


iim.I provided h, New Jersey, the r pi v , Jonathan

ll; ""i'' ,l ""' ackimwliilge And am hilly satisfied, cuutentcd,

Mi, Hi given, granted, Dunn sil, Sold, Aliened, Convoy,

lll.il i..v n,-s- ■•,,.... nta do fully, rroelj

i\v,and '..hi in tothoabuve freeholders
1 i

being in Ilia Township ,,f Nowtou, in the ('..may ol s

"'- g i" •■ -

forty-eight degree! East from Eplimim Darby's beginning Cun

linlim and Elghtj Units I i

Wesl Seven Chains mill u hall to auothcr SI l '

i t, twoChnlni and Seventy-three Liuks toaStake four llnka
North m,,m, the North-Wesl I .., ..„,, ,■.,„„,,. ,,,■

Sussex 1 ! then North Klghty-Six links; then I ,-i elglity-thi

"'•■" s i Niuety links to the Nurth-Euatcornor of said Com

then East Sixty and Six links; then South forty-tu .
i irty-flve links to the begiuuiutj ' ;

.tenths he tho same i - Itli all the Appur-

'''"■'""" '■' ' •'""■ belonging or any wise apiiertaiuii

have and to hold, nil and singular, the nlvve-g anted premises .,i„l every
part thereof unto them the said Freeholds

hall be contluui I I
use, bencflt, mid behoof ,,i iho said Freehold

1 : iiiipton do foi myself, m, ,

lol'ders aud their
Inrthoi Covenant to Warm ,,i j-,,.,..

,u ii,- Q i .,,,1 i

""" "' '"■ above-granted ■ ideverypo roi the lis ■

i "" ' I I Hid lawful claim or nil and every i

persons whnlsoevoi lawfiillj ..,, orHnv ,„„., ,„,.,,..,,. r „

il IJonathaii lliuiipton, hav, I nl

hand aud

Vearof the Rvignofour Sov,
Dritaiu, Franco, i„„l Ireland, 4c., and in II,
ind sovon hundred and sixty-four.


ii, ,

"JoSA. R.lJIPl i.N


"Em i

' ISA v W is.is-.

"Tin- i

"N. II. tho above deed ackuowls Van Oamiien one

.if the Juilges.''

The expenditures of the county for 1754 were
ninety-six pounds sixteen shillings. This was chiefly
for building the "log jail" and to pay the bou

Wolves' -,-aljis.
" *' : ' meeting ol the Jo tl , |U| ,, , v , .,

Ping audltod It ap|
of tboOoiiiiti "

Tl "" irwasTh .mas Woolverl in, Esq.,

and the treasurer was Samuel Smith.

ie County and n -
for making aud pn

Thomas Wbolverton, Esq., served as collector of
the county till the Bummerof 1759. He appi

i to Tli, ,m.




have died about that time, at his residence, in New-
ton, for on May 9, 1759, "the Justices and Free-
holders met at the house of Thomas Woolverton,
Esq., in Newton," and on the 20th of September fol-
lowing they met "at the house of Widow Woolver-
ton," in the same village, at a special meeting to
choose a county collector in Mr. Woolverton's place.
Two candidates were nominated, Samuel Lundy and
Ephraim Darby,— as the record says, "to be voted
for, and the majority of votes carried it in favor of
Samuel Lundy to be County Collector."

Among the items paid by the county in 1760 we
find " Cash paid to Ephraim Darby for Judge Nevels
expenses the sum of £192 19.5. 4tf." This sum, we
take it, was paid to Judge Neville for holding Oyer
and Terminer in Sussex County, which was probably
the first instance of that court being held in the

In 1761 the board of justices and freeholders met
at the house of John Downy, in Hardwick. The
usual sum of one hundred pounds was ordered to be
assessed upon the taxable property of the county.
The collector had been in the habit of being delin-
quent in small sums in the payment of the taxes to
the treasurer, and the board resolved not to tolerate
this lax way of doing business, and so ordered " that
the County Collector shall pay the said money imme-
diately on demand after he shall receive the same or
any part thereof, towards defraying the debt now out-
standing for wolves' and panthers' heads and other
necessary expenses, which shall or may be ordered by
the Justices and Freeholders of said County."

In 1774 the quotas of assessment for the towns of
the county were as follows:

£ «. d.

Nowton Ml 2 *

Mansfield 77 19 r>

Greenwich 10-1 5 5

Oxford H2 10 3

KuowltoD 141 15

WHlpack 43 9 4

Montague 40 8 H

Saudyston 49 2

u,,,, ,,.„ 02 o a

Hardwick 22!)

tlardyston m s 7

This, with a balance in the treasury of £56 10s. 5d.,
made the sum-total for the county £1185 lis. 2d.

The taxes increased rapidly during the Revolution.
From July, 1777, to Sept. 27, 1778, the amount col-
lected was £5868 4*. 8rf. Of this amount, £43 10s. 3d
was from militia fines. From Sept. 27, 1778, to May
8, 1779, the tax collected in the county was £8054
15«. lOrf. Peter B. Shaver was duly elected county
collector July 8, 1777. The following certificate
appears Oct. 22, 1779:

" We hare examined and cast the receipts by Mr. Shaver to tills time,
and find them amount to £17,932 2». M."

Signed by Timothy Symmes, Gabriel Ogdcn, and
Charles Rhodes.

The following, under date of Oct. 7, 1779, shows
that all the money collected WHS not genuine :

" Ordered that the Counterfeit money in the late County Collector's
hands paid into him as tax, the loss shall ly on the whole County."

This item follows :

" Ordered that the Laws of this State be brought by Timothy Symmes,
Esq., into this County at the expense of the County."*

The following statement is copied from the free-
holders' records, folio 77 :

" A list of the Quotas of the several Townships in the County of Sus-
sex settled January 13, 1781 :

^ Tax. ^^

Sandiatbwn £3,059 *7,723

Ha.distown 10,728 27,086

Kn.iwltowu 10,227 40,974

Mansfield 11,437 28,874

Hardwick 20,009 07,014

Givena»o 15,095 40,381

Oxford" 12,010 32,592

Wantage 6,331 10,109

Newtown 12,777 32,256

Wallpack 4.'JS» H. K: «

Monticue : VI24 9,000

£125,330 £315,073

The addition of these totals makes a grand aggre-
gate for the county of £441,009 for 1781. At the
bottom of the certificate is written "True Copy."
Signed by Guisbert Sutfin, John Cortright, Japheth
Byram, Jacob Stoll, Joseph Gaston, and Manuel

At a meeting of the justices and freeholders of the
county, Nov. 10, 1780,

"Timothy Symmes was by a Majority of the votes elected County Col-
lector. Voted that the County pay a fine inflicted ou Mr. Ogdin by the
Treasurer for not Conveying Taxes to him. Voted that three hundred
pounds in .the hands of the former Collector be paid to Mr. Ker to dis-
charge the Collector's Fine, and cost if sufficient. Voted that Timothy
Symmes and Wm. Anderson draw up a petition to the Assembly and put
the Names belonging to this Board to it, praying that they will pass an
Act to enable the Treasurer of this State to receive £1695: 1: of old
Jersey Money from the former Collector— little more in the hands of the
Town Collectors of the same Money."

"Voted that the Goal and Court House be repaired by Sherif Ker at
his own discretion and that his account be laid before the board at their
next meeting.

" Voted that eight thousand pounds Continental nioneyf be levied by
a Tax on the County and Collected with the next tax that is levied on
the County."

July 23, 1781, £8000, Continental money, was as-
sessed upon the county, the quotas being divided
among the several townships as follows:

Hardyston «8S 2

Newton Sl» ? V

Wantage 409 4 4

Oxford 827 10 1

Mansfield 731 9 10

Sandy.t.iii 1; ,'-» 7 °

Kuowlton If" M I

Walnut ,! ;■

Hardwick "20 J5 *

Greenwich '"25 16 2

Montague 201 13 1

" A hard-money tax of £600" was also levied, and
proportionally divided among the townships. From
Oct. 15, 1781, to April 22, 1782, the tax collections of
the county amounted to £18,119 15s. 9d., of which

* Those wore tbo laws passed by the new Legislature under tho
stitutlon of 1776.

f This is tho first notice of Continental money wo meet with in
record. It was about this time taking the place of tho "old Jorsey
money" referred to above, and hence the desire to get an act of tho Leg-
islature to substitute the former for tho latter.


1 .").")

£6816 ].-■. Bd. was in specie and the balance in "State
Money and Certificates." These assessments were
made, the record tells us, "by virtue of an acl passed
at Trenton the 26th of December, 1781, for Raising
the sum of One hundred and fifty thousand pounds
in Money and Certificates; also an Act passed the
29th December to provide for the defence of the
Frontiers and for defraying the expenses oi the ' (ov-
ernmenl of thin State."

The tax of this year was payable quarterly, March
35, June 25, April 1, and July 1, 1782.

"Juno 1-, L78-. Onlercil that IheC ) Colin lui Cull 1111 II

Online LibraryJames P SnellHistory of Sussex and Warren counties, New Jersey : → online text (page 39 of 190)