Resolution to provide the Mohawks with a moderate amount of powder and lead

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The honorable director-general and council have been in­ formed and advised of the scarcity of powder and lead among the Mohawk nation. The constant turmoil which they thereby cause among the inhabitants of Fort Orange, the village of Beverwyck and the people of the Colony,[1] and considering that if the aforesaid munitions were cut off suddenly and completely from the aforesaid nation, then the good settlers of the aforesaid respective villages and settlements might thereby suffer some misfortune or at least thereby see the whole trade diverted; and considering ] that the aforesaid nation might seek the munitions from our neighbors the English and be successful therein, which in these dangerous times might bring more and greater misfortunes to this province. Whereas the aforesaid Mohawks, now our good friends, have been out of necessity forced to seek munitions from our neighbors, from whom they also can get a larger quantity of sewant for their beavers, and have already received substantial presents and gifts from the English in order to attract their trade; therefore, with the loss of their trade it might well follow that we would also lose the Mohawks' friendship and consequently burden our people and nation with more misfortune. Therefore, we the undersigned director-general and council of New Netherland have deemed it proper and highly necessary, pursuant to the orders and instructions of the honorable Company, to accommodate the aforesaid nation with a moderate trade in munitions, namely, powder and lead, and to have the same sold to them, for the present time, by Rutgert Jacobsz,[2] magistrate of Fort Orange and the village of Beverwyck; however, to be done as moderately and secretly as possible, for reasons and motives, if necessary and required, to be communicated to the honorable lords-directors of the Chartered West India Company. Thus done and approved by the honorable director-general and high council of New Netherland, 25 February 1654, in Fort Amsterdam; and was signed; P. Stuyvesant, Nicasins de Sille and La Montagne.


i.e., Rensselaerswyck.
Rutgert Jacobsz van Schoenderwoert.


Translation: Gehring, C., trans./ed., New York Historical Manuscripts: Dutch, Vol. 5, Council Minutes, 1652-1654 (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc.: 1983).A complete copy of this publication is available on the New Netherland Institute website.