Gloucester County, NJ

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Gloucester County is located south of Philadelphia and northwest of Atlantic City. It is part of the Camden, New Jersey Metropolitan


Division of the Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington Metropolitan Statistical Area as well as the Delaware Valley Combined Statistical Area.


Swedesboro and Bridgeport were the among the earliest European settlements in New Jersey as a part of the 17th century New Sweden colony. Gloucester dates back to May 26, 1686, when courts were established separate from those of Burlington. It was officially formed and its boundaries defined as part of West Jersey on May 17, 1694. Portions of Gloucester County were set off on February 7, 1837, to create Atlantic County, and on March 13, 1844 to create Camden County. The county was named for the city of Gloucester / county of Gloucestershire in England.

Woodbury, founded in 1683 by Henry Wood, is the oldest municipality in the county. National Park, another town in the county, was the site of the Revolutionary War Battle of Red Bank where Fort Mercer once stood. It is now the site of Red Bank Battlefield Park and the remains of the HMS Augusta laid there until they were moved and subsequently re sunk in Gloucester City on their way to Philadelphia. During the colonial era, Gloucester County's main economic activity was agriculture. Woodbury was the site of the county courthouse, the county jail, a Quaker meeting house (still in existence), and an inn (on the current location of Woodbury Crossings). Because of the county's many creeks leading to the Delaware River and the Atlantic Ocean, smuggling was very common.


Important Dates for Genealogical Research

The original Gloucester County was split into 3 seperate counties over time and the dates of these county formations are important to remember for genealogical research in southern New Jersey.

  • Feb. 7, 1837, Atlantic County was formed from a portion of the original Gloucester County.
  • Mar. 13, 1844, Camden County was formed from a portion of the original Gloucester County. 

Surrounding counties:  Philadelphia County, PA | Camden County, NJ | Atlantic County, NJ | Cumberland County, NJ | Salem County, NJ | New Castle County, DE | Delaware County, PA

[Links to the remaining counties will be added once Rootsweb is again functional or the counties move to a different location.]

Subpages (1): Marriages