Dutch colonial council minutes, 28 September 1647

Scanned Document:

The 28th of September anno 1647[1]

The proposition of the honorable director general respecting the pretended governor of Long Island and the neighboring islands being heard in council, it was unanimously considered highly necessary by the honorable director general and council to hear the aforesaid pretended governor, named Forrester, personally in council, in the presence of two or three impartial witnesses, and to examine his commission, in order to ascertain by whose authority he, Forrester, lays claim to the government of Long Island and the islands situated thereabouts. Was signed: P. Stuyvesandt, L. van Dincklaghe, La Montagne, Brian Newton, Poulus Leendersz van die Grift and A. Keyser.

Andreas Forrester, born at a place called Dondey[2] in Scotland, appeared in council, in the presence of Carel van Bruggen, Adriaen van der ] Donck and Philip Geraerdy, impartial witnesses, all understanding the English language, being asked, who had given him commission to take possession of Long Island and the neighboring islands as governor and where said commission was, said Forrester exhibited a large parchment, covered with writing, in the form of a commission, to which hung an old broken seal; having no name subscribed, nor any place designated where the commission was issued; also, a power of attorney signed by Marry Steerlings.

The honorable director and council asked said Forrester why the commission was not duly signed? To which he gave for answer, it was not customary and that the seal alone was sufficient.

Said Forrester was further asked if he had no other, or better, commission than the one he now produced and what authority he had to demand the general's commission? To which he gave for answer, he had no other commission at present and therefore could not produce any other.

Said Forrester was also asked in council if their High Mightinesses' ambassador had said in England that he, on behalf of the Lords States, relinquished those parts of New Netherland. Andru Forrester answered that such had been said in the lifetime of Mylord Steerlings.


Revised from Doc. Rel. Col. Hist. N. Y., 14:80-81.


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.