Dutch colonial council minutes, 28 June - 3 July 1647

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[1] Whereas large quantities of strong liquors are dally sold to the Indians, whereby heretofore serious difficulties have arisen in this country, so that it is necessary to make timely provision therein;

Therefore, we, the director general and council of New Netherland, forbid all tapsters and other inhabitants henceforth to sell, give or trade in any manner or under pretext whatsoever any beer or strong liquor to the Indians, or to have it fetched by the pail and thus to hand it the Indians by the third or fourth hand, directly or indirectly, prohibiting them from doing so under penalty of five hundred Carolus guilders, and of being in addition responsible for the damage which might result therefrom.

Also, every one is warned and forbidden to do any damage to farms, orchards, or gardens, either to the fences or fruits, and whoever shall be found to do any damage either to the fences or fruits of any farms, gardens, or orchards, shall pay a fine of one hundred guilders and in addition be subject to arbitrary correction.

Also, all inhabitants of New Netherland are charged and commanded properly to fence off their lands so that cattle may not commit any damage therein, which cattle, whether horses or cows, and especially goats and hogs, must be herded or otherwise placed where they can do no harm, to which end Fiscal van Dyck shall erect a pound (schut huys), in which he may detain the cattle until the damage be made good and the fine be paid. Let every one be warned and guard himself against loss.

Done in Fort Amsterdam In New Netherland, the 1st of July anno 1647 ], Present: the honorable general, the late director, Kieft, Mr. Dincklaghe, Mons. La Montangne, Captain Lieutenant Nuton, Paul Leendersen ], Jacob Loper, Jelmer Tomasz and Jan Claesz Bol.


Monsieur Sergeant Litschoe: You will do well not to allow any goods to be landed except on our signed order or that of Secretary van Tienhoven, written by our order, and meanwhile to keep the fiscal's order and hand it to us. Done in Fort Amsterdam, this 28th of June anno 1647. Was signed: P. Stuyvesandt.

The sergeant is ordered not to obstruct the bearer hereof, Willem Tomasz, master of De Valckenier, in discharging his vessel, but to afford him all possible assistance, taking care only that no goods be discharged or landed that are contraband, such as guns, powder, lead and other munitions of war, or anything that is not marked with the Company's mark. He shall therefore, with the supercargo, keep a perfect record of the goods that are shipped in the boat or any other craft and send us a list thereof with every boat. Done in Fort Amsterdam on the Manhatans, this 3d of July l647. The original hereof was signed: P. Stuyvesandt.


Revised from Laws and Ordinances of New Netherland, pp. 64-65.


Translation: Scott, K., & Stryker-Rodda, K. (Ed.). New York Historical Manuscripts: Dutch, Vol. 4, Council Minutes, 1638-1649 (A. Van Laer, Trans.). Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc.: 1974.A complete copy of this publication is available on the New Netherland Institute website.