Sentence of Egbertje Egberts for selling beer to Indians

Scanned Document:

Whereas Egbertjen Egberts, innkeeper in the village of Beverwijck, in contempt and disregard of the ordinances and placards of the director general and council and in violation of the express prohibition of the commissary and magistrates of the aforesaid village, has not hesitated to sell beer to the Indians or, as she herself declares, to give it to them for some tapoesjens,[1] according to her own confession made without being subjected to pain or duress, therefore the officer, in his capacity of plaintiff, for the maintenance of the aforesaid ordinances and placards, in accordance with the published and frequently renewed ordinances, has demanded that the aforesaid Egbertje Egberts be fined five hundred guilders and moreover as an example to others be subjected to arbitrary corporal punishment and correction and be banished from this country, as the very sad and dangerous accidents resulting from the tapping, selling, or giving of wine or beer to the Indians indeed require, on account of the aforesaid disregard and violation of the original and frequently renewed ordinances and the sad accidents resulting from the drunkeness of the Indians, that the aforesaid Egbertjen Egberts as an example to others receive arbitrary corporal punishment therefor and be banished from this country. Nevertheless, the director general and the magistrates of this court, taking into consideration the voluntary admission of guilt by the said Egbertje Egberts and being for the present inclined to show leniency instead of rigor (on which, however, in the future no one is to rely), have sentenced and condemned the aforesaid Egbertjen Egberts, as they sentence and condemn her hereby, to pay a fine of three hundred guilders, she to remain under civil detention until the judgment is satisfied or satisfactory security is given; the further demands of the officer being denied.

Thus done, sentenced, and condemned at the session of the hon. director general and the magistrates of the village of Beverwijck, this 6th of October 1656.

P. Stuyvesant
Rutger Jacobsz
Andries Herberts
Jacob Jansen Schermerhoom
Philip Pietersen


A bag or pouch used by the Indians to carry tobacco and other small items; probably made of deer skin and highly decorated, they were coveted by the European settlers.


Translation: Gehring, C., trans./ed., New Netherland Documents Series: Vol. 16, part 2, Fort Orange Court Minutes, 1652-1660 (Syracuse: Syracuse University Press: 1990).A complete copy of this publication is available on theĀ New Netherland Institute website.