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First of all, let me just state that the precision of an ID of a plant or animal from a photo dpends somewhat on the details that can be be seen in the photograph. Based on the photo you have provided I can say with some assurance that what you have there is a mushroom.
Berkshire Mycological Society
Breitenbush 2001 Mushroom Conference
Take a spore print and see what color ya get... Be sure to use half black-half white paper with those guys. They may be dropping white spores. White/tan gills doesn't sound too promising as far as magic goes =\
I'm no expert, but if they were growing on wood in New Jersy its probaly not anything worth while, it may even be poisonous. They could possibly be some type of Galerina- which are deadly.
If I were you, I'd toss em out. Better to be safe than in the emergency room with liver failure ;)