Deposition of Egbert van Borsum as to derogatory remarks made by Cornelis Melyn about Director Stuyvesant

Scanned Document:

Before me, Cornelis van Tienhoven, Secretary of New Netherland, appeared Egbert van Borsum, colonist, residing on the island of Manhatans, aged about 40 years, who in the presence of Johannes La Montange and Paulus Leendersz, naval storekeeper, at the request of the honorable fiscal, Hendrick van Dyck, attest, testifies and declares, in place and with promise of a solemn oath if necessary, that he, the deponent, in the month of December last, the precise day and hour to him unknown, at the house of one Willem Westerhuysen at New Haven (where the English now reside), heard Cornelis Melyn say, in the presence of said Westerhuysen, Samuel van Goedenhuysen, Dirck Jansen from Medenblic, shipwright, and two or three Englishmen whose names he does not know, that the High and Mighty Lords the States General ] of the United Netherlands were greally surprised that the English had not forcibly dragged Director Stuyvesant out of the fort and hanged him on the highest tree, and that twenty-five thousand guilders damages each had been done to him, Melyn, and Jochem Pitersz; also, that Willem Westerhuysen had said that the St. Beninic stood him in thirty thousand guilders. Whereupon Melyn replied: "If Stuyvesant must pay all that, he will have enough to do." Furthermore, Melyn said, at the aforesaid place and in the presence of the said persons, that he had seen letters in the office of ] the States General ] from which it appeared that Mr. Stuyvesant had applied to their High Mightinesses for six or seven hundred soldiers to resist the English, to which letters their High Mightinesses and his Highness were said to have answered that it was not advisable to go to war with one's neighbors about a foot of land. Melyn also said: "I have brought Mr. Kieft to his grave;I shall no doubt bring Stuyvesant to his also."The deponent declares that Melyn further indulged in other talk, so that he, the deponent, went away in order that he might no longer listen to the prattle. All of which the deponent declares to be true and he offers to confirm this at all times on oath. Thus done and signed in the record by the deponent in the presence of the said commissaries, the 30th of March A° 1649, in Fort Amsterdam, New Netherland.

Egbert van Borsum
La Montagne
Pouwelis Leendersz van die Grift
Cor. van Tienhoven


Translation: Scott, K., & Stryker-Rodda, K. (Ed.). New York Historical Manuscripts: Dutch, Vol. 3, Register of the Provincial Secretary, 1648-1660 (A. Van Laer, Trans.). Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc.: 1974.A complete copy of this publication is available on the New Netherland Institute website.