Dutch colonial council minutes, 17 - 28 December 1646

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Jellitjen, wife of Gerrit Douman, complains in court that Elke Jansen has stolen her money that was in the cradle, inasmuch as Elke remained in her house while she and her husband went to church and that on coming home from church, Elke Jansen being still in her house, she immediately missed the money.

Elke denies having stolen the money and says that she never saw it. Case adjourned until tomorrow to secure further evidence.

Gerrit Seers, soldier, aged about 26 years, declares at the request of Gerrit Douman that Elken said to him yesterday, "If the sergeant has again sent out a spy, I have two attorneys who will see the matter through for me, if I only stick to the words which the attorneys tell me to say." The aforesaid Elke Jansen is provisionally released on her promise to answer at any time the charges brought against her by the sergeant.

The fiscal, plaintiff, vs. the wife of Hendrick Kip, defendant, alleging that said Kip's wife said that the honorable director and council were false judges and that the honorable fiscal was a false fiscal.

Hendrick Kip appearing with his wife makes answer that his wife received such a shock at the time that Maryn Andriaensen attempted to murder the honorable director in his room that she has never been well since and that, when she experiences the least excitement, the woman does not know what she is doing. The wife of Hendrick Kip declares that she never said that the honorable director and council were false judges, or that the fiscal was a false fiscal.

The plaintiff’s complaint and the answer of the defendant and her husband being heard, the defendant is ordered to prove that she has not said anything to the detriment of the honorable director and council or the fiscal. The fiscal is ordered to prove his charges on the next court day, or to compound with his opponent.

Jan Onderhill, plaintiff, vs. Jan Hadduwe, defendant, for having slandered plaintiff's daughter. Jan Hadduwe declares in court that he has nothing to say that in anyway reflects on the honor and virtue of his daughter. Ordered by the honorable director general and council that Jan Hadduwe in the presence of Debora, daughter of Jan Onderhill, shall acknowledge having done wrong and to pray her for forgiveness.

Jan Hadduwe prays Jan Onderhill for forgiveness and is therefore condemned to pay the costs of the trial.

Tomas Spyser, plaintiff, vs. Tomas Sandersen, defendant. Plaintiff complains that the defendantkeeps him off his land, assaults him, calls him a rogue and a rascal and has shot dead one of his goats. Ordered that the first time defendant gives offense to Tomas Spyser or anyone of the neighbors he shall be banished from the plain. As to the goat and damage to the cabbage, parties shall each select two of their neighbors to decide the matter as arbitrators and Tomas shall now take his produce from the land and deliver it to Spyser.

Jonas Wodt, plaintiff, vs. Pietertje, wife of Claes Jansen, for balance due for two cows. Plaintiff is condemned to pay 12 gl., on condition that the defendant shall give security to repay the money if defendant's husband can prove that the plaintiff kept the cows six or seven weeks longer than was agreed upon.

On the 28th of December anno 1646

Jellitjen, wife of Gerrit Douman, says in court that last Sunday she went to church with her husband, leaving at her house her young daughter with Elke Jansen and Jan de Voocht. The aforesaid woman says that she left money in a cradle at her house and that when she came home the money was no longer in the cradle.

Jan de Voocht, being drunk, lay asleep, therefore, she says Elke must have stolen the money. Elcke Jansen says that she never knew of the money, let alone stealing it.

Jan Pitersen from Amsterdam, Jailer, declares at the request of Elcke Jansen that the eldest daughter of Douman, being questioned, said that her mother had taken the money out of the cradle and mislaid it. Case is adjourned until tomorrow in order meanwhile to prove the accusations and to give the accused an opportunity formally to establish her innocence.

Gerrit Segers, soldier, aged about 26 years, declares in court at the request of Gerrit Douman that Elcke Jansen said to him yesterday, "If sergeant Douman has sent out a spy, I have two attorneys who will see me through, if I only stick to what my attorneys tell me to say." Gerrit Segers has confirmed this on oath before the honorable director general and council.


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.