Order on a petition of Lewis Morris permitting him to bring to New Orange property belonging to Richard Morris's child

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To the Honorable Anthony Colve, Governor-General of New Netherland.

Right Honorable Sir:
Whereas, departing on your pass from New Orange to Oysterbay, and so to New Haven, I have recovered there some of the missing estate belonging to my nephew's plantation within your jurisdiction, I therefore humbly request you to be pleased to grant me a pass to enable me to bring said property which belongs to my nephew, who is one of your subjects, with the sloop belonging to my cousin's plantation, known by the name of Bronck's land, or to New Orange, or to Oysterbay, or to Silvester's Island; my affairs being such, your compliance herewith will oblige me to be and remain,

Your Honor's faithful friend, 
In the name and at the request of 
Lewis Morris.[1]  

Ordered: The Petitioner is allowed to come hither in person, and to bring with him all such goods as lawfully belong to the late Richard Morris' orphan child, also said orphan's boat.

This 30th November, 1673. By order of the Governor-General
of New Netherland.
(Signed), N. Bavard, Secretary.


Lewis Morris was a native of Monmouthshire, Wales, and commanded a troop of horse in the Parliament army against Charles I. He afterwards went to the West Indies; purchased "a lovely estate " on the Island of Barbadoes, and was member of the Council of that Island. In 1654, an expedition having been fitted out against the Spanish possessions in those parts, a commission of Colonel was sent to him by Protector Cromwell, but when the fleet arrived at Barbadoes, in 1655, "he prized himself at so high a rate" that he demanded a present of one hundred thousand weight of sugar to pay his debts, before he would consent to accompany the fleet. He finally, however, consented and was present at the reduction of Jamaica, after which he returned to Barbadoes and is said to have been interested in the purchase of St. Lucia in 1663.He now openly professed the principles of the Quakers, and as one of their prominent members entertained the celebrated George Fox, at his seat near Bridgetown, when he visited Barbadoes in 1671; signed the addresses to the Governor and Legislature complaining of the persecution to which the Friends were subjected, Mr. Morris, himself, having been mulcted, in fines, to the amount of 16,193 pounds of sugar for refusing to pay Church dues and Minister's money, and to furnish men and horses for the militia. On receiving intelligence of the death of his brother, Richard (Volume 23, document 51, note), he came to this country, whilst it was in the possession of the Dutch, in the year 1673, and not after the peace of 1674, as erroneously stated by Dunlap and others. After visiting Barbadoes for the purpose of winding up his affairs, he returned to New-York in 1675 and settled at Bronoksland, in Westchester county, for which he received a patent, 25th March, 1676. He was afterwards member of Governor Dongan's Council, from 1683 to 1686, and died in the year 1691, at his "plantation over against Harlem." This property is called "his Manor of Morrisania," by Mr. Whitehead, in the Introductory Memoir to the Papers of Governor Morris, p. 3; but erroneously. The Manor of Morrisania was not erected until the 6th of May, 1697, some six years after Colonel Morris' death. Granville Penn's Memorials of Admiral Penn, II., 41, 42, 46; Fox's Journal, folio, 433; Besse’s Sufferings of the Quakers, IL, 313, 314, 315; New-York Council Minutes, V., 43, 78, 86, 93, 166; VH., 109.— Ed.


Translation: O'Callaghan, E.B., trans./ed., Documents Relative to the Colonial History of the State of New-York, vol. 2 (Albany: Weed, Parsons: 1858), pp. 569-730 (vol. 23, pp. 1-270 only).A complete copy of this publication is available on the New Netherland Institute website.