Petition of Charles Gabrij requesting Augustijn Herman to render an account

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[      ] they, petitioners, [      ] [      ] which purchases importing [      ] here [      ] [      ]have sent off [      ] [      ] Harman, a native of Bohemia, [      ] [      ] servant worked [      ] house and office[      ] the same merchandise [      ] trade in the Caribbean islands as well as in New England and New Netherland [      ] coming from return merchandise, together with being able to render an honest account here. Now it is such that the foresaid Augustijn Harman, having also been given the goods and merchandise in the aforesaid respective lands, partly having to bring sufficient returns previously to the house, together with having to render an account of his administration, has undertaken with the means and effects of his masters in New Netherland, without their knowledge and against orders, to buy lands and other goods, together with building houses for himself and his account, whereby, to a large extent, they have been denied the profits and proceeds of their merchandise. As a consequence, when the aforesaid Charles Gabryels, as certainly the most interested party, resolved to travel there in the year 1652 in order to receive gratification and satisfaction from their aforesaid servant, he requested at that time from your high mightinesses earnest letters of recommendation from the director Petrus Stuyvesant and councilors so that when the petitioner arrived there, he would offer a strong hand in the promotion of his affairs. Upon favorably being granted these aforesaid letters by your high mightinesses and having arrived with them in New Netherland, he, petitioner, because of the refusal and resistance of the aforesaid Augustijn Harmen, and that he was suspected of flight, with the approval and authorization of the court there, had the same person arrested and confined in his house, together with having his books and papers, belonging to the petitioners and kept for their business, placed under seal in order thereby to constrain him in his activities. Instead of having this effect, he was so bold not only to violate his arrest by breaking out and running away, but also to break the seals and take and carry away all the books, accounts, and papers with him, fleeing to the Indian nation, without anyone [      ] his person [      ] line lost ] [      ] was necessary [      ] to have carried out [      ] left one such order [      ] vande Grift [      ] order which he [      ] were given [      ] the business of the aforesaid placard to [      ] for which it happened in this manner [      ] the petitioner once again departed from there [      ] Augustijn Har- man left the wilderness and went to his house and although he should have, at least at that time, given to those who had any order from the petitioner a proper accounting and settlement of his transactions regarding their goods, or obey his superior and submit a satisfactory accounting here pursuant to the contract for which he was sent.[1] Thus, under some frivilous claims, he attempted to set up a compromise with the aforesaid Paulus Leendersen (who still had no special order from the petitioner to submit anything concerning it) in his capacity as deputy, and that under willful condemnation by the superior judge there; likewise [      ] concerning [      ] already some certificates of residency [      ] were appointed therein as abitrators or good men, a certain Cornelis Steendam, former comforter of the sick, and other acquaintances and accomplices of his who also wanted to do some business and resolve significant errors to the petitioner's disadvantage. When the petitioners received information thereof in this country, they disapproved of all these procedures done and sent in their people's absence and without special order on the matter, remaining under the condemnation of the highest court, and protested against it for a delay to those of the justice system there. In order to take note of any judgment by the present good men, it might be taken, much less any approval or condemnation be discerned thereon, according to which the matters have come to a halt for some time there, because the previous order or power of attorney confirmed on the aforesaid Paulus Leendertsen vander Grift, was revoked by the petitioners and in the process ceased; and consequently, as there was no one in New Netherland qualified to act on behalf of the petitioners, or to represent their interests. Instead the aforesaid Augustijn Herman [      ]

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[      ] and settlement. Therefore [      ] [      ] submit an accompanying petition [      ] [      ] petitioners claim many thousands [      ] [      ] as well as concerning losses [      ] [      ] at the time when Charles [      ] had [      ] request- mg hereby that [      ] would settle his claims [      ] terminate formally, which request the aforesaid director and councilors ought to have denied, as they have no jurisdiction over the inhabitiants of this land; therefore, they were pleased on the 5th of last March to grant their recommendation, affecting in substance that before any judgment made or still to be made, to approve or ratify all that the aforesaid Augustijn Harmens has to claim by the order of the aforesaid Charles Gabrij with the first ships sent from there over to him here in order to reply thereon with the first ships from here going over there or by himself or by his deputy, on pain of being deprived of right of appeal, by which absurd and negligible procedures the petitioners find themselves greatly burdened, not only because it is contrary to all law and reason that those of New Netherland should sue the inhabitants of this country for them there with such a judgment, especially as it would be a matter of dangerous and bad consequence, so that the merchants, sending their servants and deputies from here to trade merchandise there or elsewhere, would be obligated to follow them in person, and undertake such a great voyage in order to demand the same accounting there, or not doing so that they would thereby be denied their rights, especially in case of a dispute, where the aforesaid servant is obligated, according to his promises and bonds, to account for his administration in this country; and whereas the petitioners are extremely apprehensive that those of the government there, in case none of them goes there (which is very inconvenient for them), would proceed perhaps by depriving one of his rights and as a consequence impose on them an extraordinary and irreparable accommodation, which would come to be an obstacle to them afterwards. Therefore, they find it necessary to address themselves to your High Mightinesses, as superiors [      ]

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[      ] councilors there [      ] and they ordered [      ] some procedures [      ] Augustijn Hermans [      ] still suffered that [      ] it would also [      ] [      ] ordered their commissary [      ] [      ] to transport to this place pursuant to [      ] to do here duty and obligation of the petitioners [      ] an accounting of his administration , and that which may have already been done shall be annulled as illegal and done in debit or at least ceased in the future. Which doing . . .


See Council Minutes, 1652-1654, NYHM , 5:71 for the resolution of Herman's offences.


A complete copy of this publication is available on the New Netherland Institute website.