Actions; the sheriff vs. Steven Jansen and Hendrick Andriessen

Scanned Document:

83 ] Ordinary Session Held in Fort Orange

June 26, 1657

President, Philip Pietersen
Abraham Staets
Jan Tomassen
Adriaen Gerritsen

The honorable officer, plaintiff, against Steven Janssen, defendant.
The plaintiff says that on the 19th of April the defendant drew his knife on Seger Comelissen and wounded him with it, on account of which he had the defendant summoned on the 28th of May, who, appearing before the court, maintained that he had done it for cause, offering to prove it. Having thereafter appeared before the court on the [blank] of May, he produced two affidavits, from which it appears that he deliberately, and not because he was forced, drew his knife and wounded Seger Comelissen with it, for which the officer demands that Steven Janssen, the defendant, be fined ƒ300:-, according to the ordinance.[i]
The defendant failing to appear, default is entered against him.

The same officer, plaintiff, against Henderick Anderiessen, defendant.
The plaintiff says that the defendant, being in decent company, without any provocation, called Magistrate Jacob Schermerhoorn a scoundrel, a thief, and a bloodhound,[ii] which charges, if untrue, gravely offend this court of justice and also the director and council of New Netherland who chose the said Schermerhoorn for such office, or else, if tme, compel them not only to exclude the said Schermerhoorn from this court of justice but also to inflict corporal punishment on him, wherefore the plaintiff, as interpleader, demands that the defendant prove that the said Schermerhoorn is a scoundrel, a thief, and a bloodhound, in order to institute his action accordingly.
The defendant says that he gave the officer an answer to the complaint of Jacob Schermerhoorn and at the time a deposition of Jacob Janssen, his brother-in-law, whereby he proves that he had occasion to do so, and requests time to secure further testimony.
The court grants the defendant eight days’ delay to produce further evidence and meanwhile orders the officer to furnish a copy of his complaint, in order to proceed according to law.


See LO, 62,324, for this ordinance.
This pejorative’s connotation was much stronger in the seventeenth century, inferring that a person was bloodthirsty or prone to usury.


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 the New Netherland Institute website.