Ordinance regulating the baking and sale of bread

Scanned Document:

The director general and councilors of New Netherland, to all those who see, read or hear this read.

Let it be known, that upon the numerous complaints made to us by many of our inhabitants concerning the meagemess of the coarse bread as well as the underweight of the white bread, with which the good inhabitants cannot even be accommodated by the bakers, as a consequence of the Indians or natives of the country buying it from the bakers for strung sewant without examining or questioning the weight or price, which the majority of the inhabitants cannot do for lack of stmng sewant; as a result it then follows that the Indians and barbarous natives are furnished the best in preference to the Christian nation from a desire and inclination for the highest profit.

Therefore, the aforesaid director and councilors, being desirous to provide, in the most proper manner, for the general welfare as much as possible under existing circumstances, do hereby order and ordain that henceforth, until our further resolution, no bakers shall be allowed to bake for sale any fine bolted white bread or cake, or to sell such to the natives or Christians, on pain of forfeiting all the baked white bread, and, in addition, fifty Carolus guilders to be applied as is customary; provided, nevertheless, that no inhabitants are hereby prevented from baking or having baked such a quantity of white bread for their own household or for honest meals, as their situation requires; however, their honors of the court hereby intend to interdict and forbid, as they hereby do interdict and forbid, the needless consumption and general sale of white bread and cake to the inhabitants as well as to the natives, in order thereby to prevent and deter what is committed with regard to the sale of common bread; and so that neither the good inhabitants nor the natives are inconvenienced over and under weight, the aforesaid director and councilors order that the bakers, who henceforth make a profession of baking bread for sale, bake the same either of pure wheat or of pure rye, as they come from the mill, in weights of eight, four and two pounds, at such prices as shall be set by their honors of the court from time to time, according to the value and supply of grain.

Thus done and enacted in session, the 8th of November 1649.[1]


Also in LO, 112-13. This ordinance was amended April 14,1650, for bakers to bake white bread for the commonalty, but no cakes. See LO, 115. Further ordinances regarding the weight and baking of bread occurred in 1651, 1656, and 1658; see LO, 120, 261, and 345.


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.