1609 -- the Dutch lay claim to the Delaware Valley as the result of chartings by Henry Hudson, an Englishman working for the Dutch East India Company.
1623 -- Cornelius Jacobsen Mey of Hoorn, Holland, builds a trading post he calls Fort Nassau at the confluence of Sassackon (Timber Creek) and the Delaware River.
1631 -- Captain Pieterzen De Vries visits Fort Nassau and attempts to revive trade with the Indians.
1632 -- King Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden falls at Lutzen in 1632 in the German war.
1634 -- English explorer Thomas Young attempts to start a settlement at Pennsauken Creek.
1636 -- In response to the efforts of the English, Wouter Van Twiller (who had replaced Minuit as governor of New Amsterdam) sends troops to man Fort Nassau.
1638 -- the Swedes establish Fort Christina, now Wilmington, Delaware.
1638 -- Peter Minuit led the first expedition to the mouth of the Delaware and to found a New Stockholm. Raccoon would not have come into being without New Stockholm. It was closer to Bridgeport. There was once a place known as the New Stockholm Plantation of 690 acres. New Stockholm was a ferry crossing in earliest days. Swedish settlers rowed to Wilmington for services.
1640 -- Peter Hollander Ridder, a Dutchman working for the Swedes, arrived at the settlements that comprised New Sweden on the Delaware River. He took over as governor succeeding Peter Minuit, who had drowned when his ship was lost in a hurricane in the West Indies.
1641 -- Ridder negotiates with the Indians for the entire side of the Delaware River from Raccoon Creek south to Cape May.
1641-1643 -- Swedish families, mostly worker as trappers increase in the area referred to as Raccoon.
1643 -- Johan Printz becomes governor of New Sweden. Their governor Johan Printz nullifies Fort Nassau by building Fort Elfsborg at the mouth of Salem Creek.
1646 -- Governor Peter Stuyvesant sends 320 reinforcements to Fort Nassau. These help capture both Fort Elfsborg and Fort Christina, giving the Dutch full control of the area.
1651 -- the Dutch build Fort Casimir across the river from Elfsborg (which later becomes useless). The garrison from Fort Nassau moves to Casimir and the Dutch governor orders Fort Nassau destroyed.
1653 -- Fort Elfsborg finally abandoned; Printz departs for home, never to return.
1664 -- England claims the New World and King Charles II gives New Jersey to his brother James, Duke of York.
1667 -- Stuyvesant overpowers the Swedish colony.
1673 -- the Dutch regain control of the Gloucester County area but dispossessed within a year. The Jersey lands were divided between Berkeley and Carteret.
1677 -- the arrival of the ship Kent with 230 passengers from London and Yorkshire who disembarked at the mouth of the Raccoon. There wasn't much to New Stockholm by this time. They made use of what was left of New Stockholm before moving up to the Dutch settlement near Burlington two months later. Many of the Swedes also move on, some to Raccoon.
1701 -- a young preacher, Lars Tollstadius arrives in the colony. He advocates the building of a church at Raccoon.
1703 -- the church at Racoon completed. It was a log structure and called the Swedish Evangelical Lutheran Church at Raccoon. It is known as the first Swedish church in NJ.
1703 -- the Kings Highway from Burlington reaches the vicinity of Racoon Creek. Now something resembling a town comes into existence.
Under Tollstadius Raccoon became the center of Swedish life on the New Jersey side of the Delaware.
1748 -- The botanist Peter Kalm, student of Linnaeus, travels to Philadelphia, PA. He often talked with American botanist John Bartram. Kalm traveled to Raccoon, NJ on November 20, 1748. In the diary of his travels he wrote of the many American sycamores planted in great numbers on the dikes of earth along the Delaware River in the area. He stayed overnight with the Swede Peter Rambo. He subsequently stayed with a deacon of the Swedish church, Eric Ragnilsson. On November 24 he wrote that he had continued his journey past the Swedish church in Raccoon to Pilesgrove.
He had a great interest in the religious sphere. He attended services in Raccoon, NJ. When the pastor of the Swedish congregation, Johan Sandin, died, Kalm often substituted in the pulpit when no regular clergyman could be found.
1750 -- Kalm marries the pastor's widow, Anna Magaretha Sjoman.
1751 -- Kalm returns to Sweden and Finland.
1765 -- townspeople change the name of the town to Swedesboro.
1784 -- the original log structure replaced by a larger building which is still in active service.
1786 -- after continued disagreements with the parent Lutheran church, jurisdiction of "Old Swedes" passed to the Episcopalians. It is now known as Trinity Episcopal Church.
McMahon, William. South Jersey Towns: History and Legend. 1997 of a 1973 publication. New Brunswick: Rutgers University Press.
Buried in the church yard cemetery is Eric P. Mullica for whom the Mullica River is named. In the mid 1600s, he came with a group of settlers to Raccoon but did not stay long. He moved farther inland to the banks of the Little Egg Harbor River. He established a community on the river now called Lower Bank, but at that time called Mullica Hill.