Ordinance regulating certain fees payable at the public store in New Amsterdam

Scanned Document:

Whereas the director general and council of New Netherland are reliably informed, and told of general complaints about certain fees, which have been exacted up to now without their knowledge, concerning various official documents and salaries relating to commerce, which they intend to rectify, according to the orders and instructions of the honorable lords directors; therefore, the aforesaid director general and council do hereby order that henceforth there shall be paid for a bill of lading:

Of one to six hogsheads of tobacco  12 stivers 
Of 7 to 12 hogsheads  18 ditto 
Of 13 to 24 hogsheads  24 ditto 
Of 25 to as many as shall be shipped  50 ditto 
Of one hundred beavers  12 ditto 
Of 100 to 200 beavers  18 ditto 
Of 200 to as many as shall be packed in one chest  30 ditto 
Of one or more chests shipped by the same merchant  50 ditto 
For a passport fee to the fatherland, whether for a household or an individual  20 stivers 
And for the church  40 stivers 

Concerning the laborers’ wages for bringing the goods and merchandise from the ship to the Company’s warehouse, the aforesaid director general and council order that the skippers shall henceforth be obliged to deliver the goods and merchandise at the headland or at the main bank at high tide, in front of or near the Company’s warehouse, from where the sworn laborers shall bring them into the Company’s warehouse, and receive as pay:

For one container or pipe of wine   6 stivers 
For one hogshead  5 stivers 
For one aem of wine or tun of beer  4 stivers 
For one half aem  3 stivers 
For one ancker  2 stivers 
For one chest of duffel or another of the same size  8 stivers 
For one eastern chest[1] or large trunk   8 stivers 
For a case of axes, nails or kettle ware  5 stivers 

Other and smaller containers in proportion at the discretion of the fiscal or whoever, in his place, is in charge of the warehouse.

After the goods and merchandise have been delivered at the above rates to the warehouse, the merchants may negotiate with the laborers for the best rate possible, according to the remoteness and distance of the places to which they must be brought; and in the event of unreasonableness, then the fiscal shall decide the matter, or whosoever, in his place, shall have charge of the warehouse as commissary. However, no one is to be hindered from having his own goods transported from the warehouse by his own workers or servants, with the consent and order as previously stated.

Thus done at the session of the honorable director general and council held at Fort Amsterdam in New Netherland, the 6th of September 1656.[2]


Oosterse kist, literally an eastern chest; a type of steamer trunk associated with traveling to Central Europe, the Levant or even the East Indies.
Also in LO, 249-50.


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 the New Netherland Institute website.