Dutch colonial council minutes, 28 June - 6 July 1646

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June 28 ], 1646

Joris Homs, plaintiff, vs. Tonis Nyssen, defendant, for payment of fl. 40. The defendant acknowledges the debt and says that he must pay the child of the said Homs here first when a ship of the Company arrives, and this not in money, but in clothes. Ordered that the defendant shall promptly fulfil this obligation.

On this day the court messenger has delivered in court a lampoon signed by Jan de Fries, serving as a rebuttal to the reply of the fiscal, entitled: “To the honorable Council of Justice In Fort Amsterdam.” And whereas this is contrary to the usual custom and the order of the honorable gentlemen and tends to the disparagement of the honorable director and council of New Netherland, it is ordered that the same shall be ignored and be returned by the messenger, with order to summon the said de Vries to appear In person on next Thursday, being the 5th of July, on pain of being placed in confinement.

5th of July 1646

The fiscal, plaintiff, vs. Jan de Vries, defendant. Case is put over until the next court day and parties are ordered meanwhile to make everything ready that is needed or serviceable for their prosecution or defense.

The fiscal, plaintiff, vs, Jan Snediger, defendant, for selling a gun that did not belong to him. Defendant admits having sold to Piter Wolphersen a gun which had long stood in his house without his knowing to whom it belonged. Case put over until the next court day to examine the witnesses.

Examination in court of Tomas Gridj, at present a prisoner, aged 60 years, from Devenschier in old England, charged by Jan Joons with and suspected of having stolen silverware and other goods and having tried to induce the said Joons and others to commit theft also. Which is partly admitted by said Gridj, except that he says that he has not stolen any silverware, whereupon it is ordered that he shall be again placed under arrest and that the fiscal shall secure further evidence.

Marla Robberts, wife of Tomas Gridj, declares in court that Jan Joons in the winter, about Christmas, the exact date she does not remember, in the evening, when the candle was lit, brought to her house the shirts of Spyser, which she well knew were stolen and that the same were put away by her husband,

6th of July

Tomas Gridj, a prisoner, admits that he has had and kept stolen goods in his house and that the goods which were stolen at different times last winter were taken out of his house; he also acknowledges that he solicited Spyser's nephew, a young man of about 18 years, to steal his uncle's grain, lead and whatever else he could lay his hands on and bring them to him, which the aforesaid young man has also declared to be so, and whereas Gridj remains obstinate in denying that he stole silverware, notwithstanding, the strong indications we have against him, it is ordered that he be put to the torture.


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.