Dutch colonial council minutes, 22-30 November 1647

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The 22nd of November anno 1647

Abraham Willemsz, from Amsterdam, requests by petition to be dismissed from his service as seaman, which is granted him by the honorable director general and council with permission to earn his living here as other subjects.

[1]Whereas Fort New Amsterdam is entirely out of repair and it is highly necessary that it be put at the earliest and most convenient opportunity in a thorough and complete state of defense; Therefore, in order that this noble work, which not only tends to the reputation of this province, but also affords a safe refuge to the inhabitants of this place in time of danger which God avert, may be more speedily and diligently completed, we, the director general and council of New Netherland, have deemed it proper and highly necessary, in pursuance also of the order of the honorable directors, to request the commonalty to lend a helping hand to this laudable work, prized by all nations and in order that the commonalty may not be burdened with heavy and intolerable charges we have judged it to be the best plan of all that every male person, from 16 to 60 years, shall each for himself work 12 days in the year at the said fort, and that whoever finds it inconvenient to perform such labor himself shall be exempt therefrom upon payment of two guilders for each day.

The last of November

[2]Resolved and concluded in council at Fort Amsterdam that until further order and more opportune time the loose seawan shall continue current and in circulation; only that in the meanwhile all imperfect and broken and unperforated beads which are declared bullion may be picked out and shall meanwhile be received at the Company's office as heretofore, provided that the Company, or any one on its part, shall in return be at liberty to trade therewith among the merchants or other inhabitants, unless for large quantities it be otherwise agreed upon or stipulated by any individual or on behalf of the Company. Thus done the day and year aforesaid.


Other translation in Laws and Ordinances of New Netherland, p. 79.
Other translation in Laws and Ordinances of New Netherland, p. 80.


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 theĀ New Netherland Institute website.