Jersey aficionados probably know a lot of these interesting firsts and facts about New Jersey. But how many of the rest of us do?
Anyway, culled from a variety of sources, here they are:
New Jersey was the first state to ratify the Bill of Rights (Nov. 20,1789)
New Jersey is a peninsula.
New Jersey is the only state where all of its counties are classified as metropolitan areas.
New Jersey has more race horses than Kentucky.
New Jersey is said to have more Cubans in Union City (1 sq mi.) than Havana, Cuba.
New Jersey has the densest system of highways and railroads in the US.
Cartoonist Thomas Nast (of Morristown, NJ) created the popular image of Santa Claus.
New Jersey has the most diners in the world and is sometimes referred to as the "Diner Capital of the World."
North Jersey has the most shopping malls in one area in the world, with seven major shopping malls in a 25 square mile radius.
New Jersey is home to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island.
The Passaic River was the site of the first submarine ride by inventor John P. Holland.
The game Monopoly, played all over the world, named the streets on its playing board after the actual streets in the Atlantic City area.
And, Atlantic City has the longest boardwalk in the world,
Not to mention salt water taffy.
New Jersey has the most stringent testing along our coastline for water quality control than any other seaboard state in the entire country.
The "Trial of the Century" (the Lindberg Baby kidnapping) was held in Flemington.
Jersey tomatoes are known the world over as being the best you can buy.
You haven't lived until you have eaten New Jersey sweet corn.
New Jersey is a leader in blueberry and cranberry production.
In 1642, the first brewery in America, opened in Hoboken.
New Jersey rocks! The famous Les Paul invented the first solid body electric guitar in Mahwah, in 1940.
New Jersey is a major seaport state with the largest seaport in the US, located in Elizabeth. Nearly 80 percent of what our nation imports comes through Elizabeth Seaport first.
New Jersey is home to one of the nation's busiest airports (in Newark), Liberty International.
George Washington slept here. Several important Revolutionary War battles were fought on New Jersey soil, led by General George Washington. On Christmas Eve 1776 he crossed the Delaware to attack the Hessian troops at Trenton.
The light bulb, phonograph (record player), and motion picture projector, were invented by Thomas Edison in his Menlo Park, NJ, laboratory.
We also boast the first town ever lit by incandescent bulbs.
The movies were born in New Jersey The first movie studio was in West Orange.
The first western was filmed by Edison in the hills of West Orange-"The Great Train Robbery."
Highest population density in the US
The transistor was invented by Bell Labs in NJ
The telephone was invented in NJ
Samuel Morse's code machine was built in NJ (Morris Plains)
The first seaplane was built in Keyport, NJ.
The first airmail (to Chicago) was started from Keyport, NJ.
The first phonograph records were made in Camden, NJ.
New Jersey has the tallest water-tower in the world. (Union, NJ!)
New Jersey had the first medical center, in Jersey City.
The Pulaski SkyWay, from Jersey City to Newark, was the first skyway highway.
NJ built the first tunnel under a river, the Hudson (Holland Tunnel).
The first baseball game was played in Hoboken, NJ, which is also the birthplace of Frank Sinatra.
The first intercollegiate football game was played in New Brunswick in 1889 (Rutgers College played Princeton).
The first drive-in movie theater was opened in Camden, NJ, (one remains in Vineland...The Delsea Drive In).
The first FM radio broadcast was made from Alpine, NJ, by Maj. Thomas Armstrong.