Ordinance renewing the ordinance against furnishing strong drink to Indians

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Whereas it is perceived and seen by daily experience that, although it has been repeatedly forbidden in previous proclamations to tap, give, barter or sell by the third or fourth hand, directly or indirectly, and strong drink to the Indians or natives of this country, still one painly sees every day how the Indians run drunken about the Manhatans; also, that the people who live in remote areas suffer great insolence from the drunken Indians, from which, as before, new misfortunes and wars are to be feared.

Therefore, the honorable lord director general and lords councilors have deemed it necessary to renew once again the previous proclamation and hereby most strictly forbid, as we hereby do, the giving, bartering or selling of any strong drink, howsoever it may be called, and if anyone is so accused after this date even be it reported by the Indians (who, for important reasons, shall be given credence in such matters), he shall receive in addition to the fine in the previous proclamation, without any dissimulation, arbitrary corporal punishment, because it is better that such ill-willed people be punished than that a whole country and community should suffer through their deeds.

Thus done the 13th of May 1648 at a session in Fort Amsterdam in N. Netherland.[1]


Also in LO, 100. The first ordinance was published on June 18,1643, followed by one in 1645. Further renewals occurred in 1656,1657, and 1658; see LO, 34,52, 259,311,343.


Translation: Gehring, C., trans./ed., New Netherland Documents Series: Vol. 16, part 1, Laws and Writs of Appeal, 1647-1663 (Syracuse: 1991).A complete copy of this publication is available on theĀ New Netherland Institute website.