Report of the proceedings of Johannes Prints by Andries Hudde

Scanned Document:

A brief but true account of the actions of Johan Prints governor of the Swedish forces at the South River of New Netherland, including an account of the garrisons of the aforesaid Swedes located along the same river on the first of November 1645.[1]

What regards the garrisons of Swedes at the South River of New Netherland is as follows:

Coming into this river, three miles[2] up from its mouth on the east bank, is situated a fort called Elsenburgh. It is ordinarily garrisoned with twelve men and a lieutenant; four twelve-pounders, both iron and brass, and one pots-hooft[3]. This fort is constructed of earthworks, and was ordered to be erected by the aforesaid Johan Prints shortly after his arrival at this river. By means of this fort the aforesaid Prints keeps the river closed for himself so that all vessels, no matter to whom they belong or from where they come, are forced to stop there. This is the case even with ships belonging to the honorable Company; as apparently several times the Company's yachts coming from Manhattan have been fired upon when they proceeded upriver toward their destination without stopping; and they have even come very close to suffering fatalities.

They then have to go upriver about six miles in small vessels to the aforesaid Prints for permission to proceed further upwards, whether they be English or Dutch and regardless of their commission.

About three miles further up on the west bank in a stream called the Minquas Kil (so named because it runs close to the Minquas country) is a fort named Kristina. This fort is situated a good half-mile up the stream and is surrounded by marshy ground, except on the northwest side where it can be approached by land and on the southwest side where the stream flows past. It has no permanent garrison but is, nevertheless, reasonably provisioned. It is the headquarters for trading and also the place where the commissary keeps his residence. There is also located here the magazine for all goods. This was the first fort to be built by the Swedes under the command of Peter Minwit in the year 1638, although the Company had a sufficient garrison on the river: fortification, soldiers and munitions of war, which it had 14 years before this garrisoning by the Swedes. This Peter Minwit once served the honorable Company as director in this country.

About two miles further up on the same side begin some plantations which continue on for about one mile; but there are few houses, and these widely scattered. They extend to about Tinnekonck which is an island enclosed on the side opposite the river by streams and thickets. Here, where the governor, Johan Prints, has his residence, was located a fairly strong fort built of pine beams laid one upon the other (but this fort burned down on 5 December 1645 along with everything nearby).

Further up on the same side until the Schuylkil there are no plantations, nor are any practicable because there is nothing along the river but thickets and marshland.

With regard to the Schuylkil, which is land purchased and owned by the honorable Company, Prints has destroyed the honorable Company's timber and built a fort[4] there. It is situated on a most convenient island[5] at the edge of the stream, and is enclosed on the west side by another stream; on the south southeast and east sides by thickets and marshland. It is located about a gunshot from the mouth of the stream on the south side. Fine grain is raised on this island. This fort can cause no obstruction to the river, but the stream can be controlled by it and this stream is the only way remaining for trade with the Minquas; without which trade this river is of little importance.

A little way beyond this fort runs a stream[6] that extends to the forest (this place is called Kinsessingh by the Indians). It was a steady and permanent place of trade for us with the Minquas, but the Swedes have now occupied it with a fortified house.[7] A half-mile further through the woods Governor Prints has built a mill on the stream[8] which flows into the sea a little south of Matinnekonck, and has built a fortified house[9] on the other side of this stream directly on the trail of the Minquas. This place is called Kakarikonck by the Indians. Consequently there are no places open to attract these Minquas. He has likewise monopolized the trade with the River Indians because most of them go hunting that way and cannot easily come through without passing his place.

With regard to his manpower: at the most it consists of about 80 or 90 men, freemen as well as servants, with whom he must garrison all his posts.

The fortifications and garrisons of the honorable Company are omitted here since they are sufficiently well known.

Regarding the actions of the Swedes: after a sloop was dispatched to me on 23 June 1646 with some cargo, which, however, belonged to private parties, I instructed that it be made fast in the Schuylkil, and to wait there for the Minquas. Upon arriving there, Jurriaen Blancke, supercargo of the sloop, was immediately ordered to leave the Crown's territory, about which I was notified. Whereupon I went there with four men to see how matters stood. When I also received the same reply I requested that they kindly inform their governor that this area had always been a trading place, and that he should act with discretion and give no cause for discord. After which their preacher[10] was sent the following day who informed me that he had orders that if the boat was in the Schuylkil, it should be obliged to leave. I replied that I first had to see the governor's hand and seal forbidding the Company to trade its goods at certain places on this river. I further requested that he should act with discretion, and that the alliance between Their High Mightinesses and Her Royal Majesty should be kept in mind here. I further protested all the damage and obstruction that would follow this and similar actions. Whereupon the aforesaid Johan Prints sent to me the commissary, Hendrick Huygen, and two of his officers, namely, his bookkeeper Carel Jansz, a Finn by birth, and Gregory van Dyck, his quartermaster, a native of the Hague, who demanded that I respond to some articles. I replied that I desired a copy of them and would then answer him in writing. He said that he had no such orders and that he dared not to do it. So I then answered him verbally, in order to deprive him of any pretext, in the presence on my side of Sander Boyer, quartermaster, Philip Gerraert, and Jurriaen Blancke, freeman. These are the articles and replies in brief, as I was unable to remember more because they were read rapidly:

The following articles, proposed by the honorable Johan Prints, governor for the Crown of Sweden at the South River of New Netherland, communicated by Hendrick Huygen, commissary, a native of Cleef; Carel Jansz, bookkeeper, a Finn by birth; and Gregory van Dyck; quartermaster, a native of the Hague, in the presence on my side of the above-named persons:

Articles 1 and 2

Question concerning the Schuylkil: How do I understand the ownership of it? What are and how far do the boundaries extend?


That documents relating to the boundaries are kept at Manhattan and complete information must be obtained there.

Articles 3, 4, 5

Question: Whether he has offended me or mine by words or deeds?


That he has left me and mine alone, but that he has offended the Company and consequently Their High Mightinesses, inasmuch as I was told in his name that he intended to drive me out of the stream by force.

Articles 6 and 7

That the governor sent for the Minquas at the expense of the Crown; when they arrived, I had them taken out of the Schuylkil.


That I had the sachem here last spring and incurred expenses on his account; also, I made an agreement with him that as soon as I received goods I would send a messenger, of if he heard about it, he should come down.

Article 8

That I ordered Jurriaen Blancke to sail his bark up by force and to make it fast at the bridge.


That I ordered him to sail up but know nothing of any force.

Article 9

That I took up arms without any given cause and that I had responded to the prohibition by saying I would stay here and see who would drive me away.


That I used no weapons, much less showed hostility or acted in a hostile manner; rather I sought to prevent such (without compromising the rights of my lords and masters).

Nevertheless, the matter did not rest there, for on the following first of July a warning was sent to Jurriaen Blancke.

The copy of it is:

Good Friend Jurriaen Blancke, Her Royal Majesty's settlers at Waser[11] have again complained to me that you are being a great bother to them there with your bark, contrary to the tenor of your commission; pretending that you are so empowered by Andries Hudde, who has no such authority in her Royal Majesty's affairs and territory. So I hereby give you friendly warning that as soon as you have read this to depart from there immediately and to trade according to the tenor of your commission in the Schuylkil at the place where the sloops are accustomed to trade. This shall not be forbidden you, and my subordinates, on the other hand, shall not be allowed, out of respect and friendship for your commander and his commission, to obstruct your trading as long as you berth in the Schuylkil. But if you act otherwise, and proceed to scorn my warning, which you cannot reasonably contradict, then your bark with its accompanying cargo shall be confiscated for Her Royal Majesty pursuant to Her Royal Majesty's strict orders; of this you can be fully assured, even if you were my own brother. Commending you to God. Dated this 20 June 1646. Was signed: Johan Prints.

Upon receiving this warning Jurriaen Blancke departed, although not by my order but from fear that if his bark with its accompanying cargo were confiscated, then he would have to attend to it as a private party; and that could give him no satisfaction since I was ignorant of the grounds of the matter between the Company and the Swedes. I

I advised the honorable director Kieft on 12 July of this affair, as well as the most suitable means for continuing trade with the Minquas, of which the aforesaid Prints and his subordinates seek by every means to deprive the Company and their settlers.

Meanwhile, having been ordered in a letter from the honorable Kieft to explore for some minerals, I set out accordingly for Sanghikans[12] and sought to go to the great falls where there appeared from the specimens to be large quantities. As I was crossing the first falls I was stopped by a sachem called Wirackehon. He asked me where I was going and I answered that I intended to go upstream. He told me that he could not allow it. I then asked to know why. He said finally after various reasons that the Swedish governor had told Meer Kadt, a sachem residing near Tinnekonck's Island, that we intended to build a house near the great falls, and that with the expected ships 250 men were to be sent here from Manhattan, and they were to kill the Indians from the lower to the upper river, and that the men, who would be stationed in the house which we intend to build up there, would turn back the Indians above so that none would escape; and as proof: we would come up with a small vessel to inspect the place there, and we would kill two Indians in order to obtain a pretext; but he, Prints, would not allow it, rather he wants to drive us out of the river. Although I tried various means to proceed upwards, I was repeatedly barred and as often met with the aforesaid reason. So I was forced to give it up.

And whereas on the following 7 September I received a letter giving me strict orders to purchase some land from the Indians on the bank, from Fort Nassouw northward for about a mile, I accordingly occupied the place on the 8th, erecting the arms of the honorable Company. Because the owner was out hunting, I had to postpone the purchase until the 25th of the same month. After concluding the purchase, the owner went with me in person, and the arms of the honorable Company were attached to a pole and set in the ground at the remote boundary. After taking possession, some freemen made preparations to build there. About that time, 8 October, the Swedish commissary Huygen came down carrying the arms which I had set up. According to him they were taken down by order of his governor. Whereupon words were exchanged; some of which related to the gross insolence of his quartermaster and other Swedes here on 30 September last, in violation of all orders and after the guard was posted; and that I had put him[13] in the guardhouse. I requested him kindly to complain about it to his governor and to inflict proper punish- men so that it may appear that he had no part or share in such gross outrages; and if it happened again through his negligence, I myself would de facto carry out punishment as one is accustomed to inflict on such troublemakers.

After this affair the aforesaid Johan Prints sent me the following protest on the 16th of the following month by two of his freemen, namely Oloff Stille and Moens Slom of which this is a copy:

Mr. Andries Hudde: By this written warning I once again remind you, as was done verbally before this by the royal commissary, Hendrick Huygen, that you immediately abstain and desist from the offenses which you are accustomed to commit against Her Royal Majesty in Sweden, my most gracious Queen, on Her Royal Majesty's lawful property and land, without any respect to Her Royal Majesty's magnificence, reputation and dignity; and to consider how little it befits Her Royal Majesty to suffer such gross outrages, and what great calamaties can be expected to arise therefrom. Secondly, how unwilling, in my opinion, your nation or superiors would be to come in conflict with Her Royal Majesty for such a trifle, for you have not the slightest justification for these rude actions against Her Royal Majesty; especially now with your secret and improper purchase of land from the Indians, you have made it quite clear how lawful and just have been the ancient and old rights to which you have previously appealed. Thus it has been revealed that you have just as little right to this place, which you now occupy, as to the other places here in this river which you now claim, which Her Royal Majesty or her representatives have never molested or sought in a sinister manner to undercut. Of all this I thus wished to warn you in writing for my own acquittance and exculpation from any subsequent misfortunes. Dated N. Gottenburgh, old style, 1646.

Below in the margin was written:

The orders to which you appeal may well be a result of incorrect information to your superior, and it would do you well to inform him correctly and clearly of these matters, and to send him a summary of the present situation here.

(was signed) Johan Prints

The following day I was obliged to go upriver. Upon my return I was advised that the Swedish governor had forbidden his subjects to do any trading with us. This is customary among professed enemies but has no place among allies. I was also informed that the Swedes had taken me to task for not responding to his protest. Therefore, I drew up the following protest and sent it to him on 23 October by the quartermaster, Sander Boyer, and two soldiers, namely Davit Davitsz and Jacob Hendricksz. The copy of it is as follows:

To the Most Honorable Lord Johan Prints,

My lord: I was handed a document in the evening on the 16th instant, new style (by Oloff Stille and Moens Slom dated 30 September, old style) in which you warn me to desist from some offenses which I supposedly perpetrated or committed on the land of Her Royal Majesty of Sweden, and about which I am still ignorant to the present time. Had you notified me thereof and were I guilty, I would gladly desist; as I do not know that I have ever neglected anything that may contribute to the conservation of fraternity, much less have I committed any gross outrage. I did not purchase the land secretly or unjustly, unless you call secret that which is done without your previous knowledge. I purchased it from the rightful owner. If he sold it to you previously, then he has shamefully deceived me. The places which we occupy, we occupy in rightful ownership; we have also occupied them perhaps before the South River was heard of in Sweden. I am unaware that my lord and master has been incorrectly informed. I have simply reported the matter to him according to truth and justice, and I shall do so again at the first available opportunity and send your document together with this in order to know more fully what he has to order and I am to do. And, whereas your commissary, coming down from above on the 8th instant, did, in a hostile manner, pull and tear down the arms set up by me on the purchased land, with the accompanying threats: that even had it been the flag of His Royal Highness the illustrious Prince of Orange, standing there, he would have trampled it as well under his feet - this in addition to many bloody threats which were reported to me from time to time. This can lead to nothing else but serious misfortune and since this concerns not only my nation or superiors but also the supreme authority of their High Mightinesses, the Noble Lords the States General, as well as His Highness the illustrious Prince of Orange, and the honorable directors who have been thereby insulted, I am thus forced to send this to you and at the same time to protest before God and the world, as I do hereby protest, that I am innocent of all injuries, damages, and losses which might arise from these affairs; but that on the contrary I have done, promoted, and endeavored to do everything that would contribute to good relations and fraternity. Just as I commit myself to do the same (consistent with my oath and honor) I expect the same from you; at least in consideration that we, who are Christians, do not ourselves become subjects of mockery to the heathen Indians. Trusting therein I remain your affectionate friend. A. Hudde. Dated October 22 1646 on the South River of N. Netherland.

When the quartermaster returned he reported that when he wished the governor, who was standing before his door, a good morning and said further, "I bring you greetings from Commissary Hudde who sends you this document in response to yours," he, Johan Prints, took it from his hand and threw it over to one of his men who was standing near him, saying, "There, take care of it." The other one picked it up from the ground and put it away. As the governor was going back inside to some Englishmen from New England who had arrived some time before, the quartermaster asked the governor for an answer. Although he approached him in a proper manner, he was pushed out the door. He could see that the governor had taken a gun from the wall in order to shoot him, but was restrained.

And thus the governor, Johan Prints, omits no means to make us suspect before everyone; among the Indians as well as among the Christians. Indeed, he even improperly permits the subjects of the honorable Company, freemen as well as servants who come to his posts, to be treated very unreasonably; so that they return home bloody and bruised. This has happened several times at the hands of the Indians, in particular in 12 May 1647 with the Armewamese Indians, who tried to overrun us at noon, but this was prevented through God's grace and good information concerning their misunderstanding. And above all this, he claims categorically that the Company has nothing to say in this river, and that he had purchased the land for the Crown of Sweden, as well as the Minquas' land; that the Company could not rely upon or confirm their old or continuous ownership; that the devil was the oldest owner of hell, but that he sometimes admitted a younger one, as he himself declared on 3 June 1647 while sitting at his table in the presence of me and my wife, as well uttering other offensive remarks to the same effect. But he also lets the same be evident by actual deeds, especially through the closing of this river so that no vessel can come up except by his consent, although it may have a respectable commission. By which means he not only seriously impedes freemen in their voyages, to their excessive loss, but also outrageously holds in contempt the respect due Their High Mightinesses by regarding as frivolous and unworthy the lawful commission granted to the freemen, by virtue of Their High Mightinesses, by the noble lord governor. Although the same freemen have repeatedly complained to me, I have not even been able to help them, except by further protests. It is for this reason that several freemen, lying here with their vessels, came to me on 2 July of the same year and requested that I draw up a petition for them to the noble lord governor, Petrus Stuyvesant, asking for assistance with their considerable obstacle. This I did and dispatched the same. In reply to this petition I received on 15 August a protest from the aforesaid Lord P. Stuyvesant concerning the same matter, which I delivered on the 17th to Governor Prints. I received in response that he would reply in writing, and since my request to come up was allowed by a letter from the governor, I arrived in Manhattan on the first of December, and delivered the written reply of Mr. Prints to the esteemed lord.

Meanwhile, winter was at hand. In the spring I met with the following: in the evening of 2 April 1648 a vessel came up from below under mainsail without pennant or flag so that I was unable to ascertain its origin or type. Whereupon a shot was fired across its bow, but it just continued on its course. A second shot was fired across its bow, but no attention was paid to it either. Therefore I sent eight men in pursuit, but since the vessel had a fair wind and the weather was drizzly, and it was very dark besides, they were not able to catch it. Nevertheless, I learned a few days later that it had been the Swedish bark. When it came back down, I asked the skipper why he sailed past the fort without colors, with neither flag nor pennant whereby it could be ascertained who his master was, in as much he apparently had them on board since he was now letting them fly. He answered quite scornfully, saying that had he thought of it, he would not have done it now either and henceforth would continue not to do so only out of spite and contempt. Whereupon I gave him a document for his governor of which the following is a copy:

Noble, Respected, Lord Johan Prints.

In view of the fact that on the 3rd instant your sloop sailed past here towards evening and contrary to custom struck its colors before it passed Fort Nassouw, without a pennant much less a flag so that it could not be ascertained who its master was, which is directly contrary to your contention that our vessels, which come into the river, are obliged to anchor before your forts, even though they sufficiently communicate their origin, so that no inconvenience should befall either your vessels or ours, as one has to be apprehensive that in this way no nation might pass to our detriment. Therefore, I cannot wonder enough at your intention in sending your vessels past here in such an irregular manner; consequently, I can neither judge nor reasonably consider what should be done in such instances against others coming here without orders. It is truly the proper way to maintain good relations, but has given cause for mutual misunderstanding, so that I find it unbelievable that such would be laid before me. Whereas in such cases I shall promote all that is conducive to the maintenance of respect for Their High Mightinesses, His Highness the Prince, and the rights of my lord and master, I therefore request that in the future a different course be adopted; if not, I shall be forced, should a difficulty arise, to protest my innocence, all the more if your officer on your vessel again dares to utter that he did it out of contempt; and he shall regret it if he should do it henceforth.

Farewell. A. Hudde

Done at Fort Nassouw this 13 April.

Because it was reported to me throughout the winter that the Swede was collecting large quantities of pine logs, and that a large number already lay in the Schuylkil, I was apprehensive that he, the governor, might well erect some buildings at the place where the vessels presently anchor and trade. Since they were previously driven out of Kinsessingh, and except for this place cannot go near the forest to trade with the Minquas, whereby this river would be of very little importance if the trade with the aforesaid were snatched away from us, I therefore, wrote the lord governor (not daring to do anything on my own and also not having any orders to undertake anything for the preservation of trade); whereupon I received orders that if he, the Swede, should come to build and should, return to settle any unsettled places that I should in the name of the Company and with all due civility, settle down beside him. Thus it happened on the 24th of the same month that several sachems of Passajonck came to me, asking why I did not also build on the Schuylkil, and saying that the Swede already had several buildings there. Whereupon 1 had the matter looked into on the following day, and after having received certain information about the Swede's further designs, and especially about such places of importance, I immediately made preparations to build there alongside him. On the 27th following I went there with the most necessary materials, and sent forth sachems to whom I stated that I had now come to build on that place which they had given me. Whereupon they summoned the Swedes, who were already living there, and ordered them to depart, informing them that they had come in surreptitiously and had occupied the place against their will and that they had given the place to me for the time being, and that I would also build there. Whereupon two of the most principal chiefs, namely, Mattehooren and Wissemenetto, themselves planted the prince's flag there and ordered me to fire three shots as a sign of possession. This was done, and there in the presence of all of them I erected the house. Towards evening the Swedish commissary came with seven or eight men and asked me by what order I built there. I replied, "By order of my superior and the consent of the Indians; what did it matter to him?" He further asked whether I could actually produce a document showing that I did this by order of my superior, and not just to please the freemen. I answered, yes, I would give it to him after he first delivered to me a document showing by whose authority he demanded one from me. Meanwhile, the sachems said the following to Hendrick Huygen and his companions: that they had sold us the land, and that we should live there; by what authority they (the Swedes) had built there on the land; whether it was not enough that they occupied Moetinnekonck, the Schuylkil, Kinsessingh, Kakarikonck, Upland, and other places settled by the Swedes, all of which they had stolen from their people; that Minwit, now about eleven years ago, had purchased no more than a small piece of land at Paghahackingh in order to plant some tobacco, of which they the natives, were to have half in acknowledgment; whether they (pointing to the Swedes), by coming to them and buying one piece of land, should be able to take further all that adjoins it, as they (the Swedes) had done here in the river and still were doing; that it amazed them that they (the Swedes) wanted to prescribe the law to them, the native owners, so that they would not be able to do with their own possessions whatever they wanted; that they (the Swedes) had only recently come into the river and had already seized and occupied so much of their land, and that we (meaning us) had never taken away any land from them although we have been frequenting here for over 30 years.

And so I pushed forward the work which was begun, and also had the house surrounded with palisades because the Swede destroyed the house which the honorable Company previously had on the Schuylkil. I have erected a fort so that he might not also come here to do the same. While this was being done, Moens Klingh (lieutenant at the fort on the Schuylkil) came marching in with 24 fully-armed men with loaded weapons and burning matches. He asked whether we intended to continue with the commenced work or discontinue it. To which I replied "What has been started must be completed." Whereupon he ordered all his men to lay down their arms, and each drawing an ax from his side, cut down the trees standing around near the house, destroying as well some fruit trees which I had had planted there.

On 7 June the honorable lords, the commissioners arrived here, namely, M.L. van Dinclage, deputy, and Mr. L. Montangie, councillor. On the 10th of the same month the most principal chiefs made a public conveyance of the Schuylkil to the honorable lords, and reconfirmed the purchase made by Arent Corsz (formerly the commissary here) of the same Schuylkil and adjoining lands, of which the noble lords have taken once again public and legal possession.[14] After which the honorable noble lords sailed on the 16th instant with a suitable entourage to Tinnekonck and were received there by the Commissary Huygen and Lieutenant Papegay, who kept them standing outside in the rain for about half an hour. After they were admitted to an audience, they protested against the aforesaid Prints for the illegal occupation of the Schuylkil, upon which he promised a written answer before their departure. Since some freemen requested permission to build, they assigned them places upon which to settle. On the following 2 July a certain Hans Jacobsz began to settle in the Schuylkil but was obstructed by the Swedes. The son of Governor Prints[15] was ordered to go there and force the aforesaid Hans to tear down what was already put up; and when the aforesaid Hans refused, he did it himself by burning it down, and threatened that if he came there again to build he would be sent away with a beating.

The same thing happened to Tomes Broen, who went there on the 6th instant to settle at Nieu-Hooven (being the name given to the place by their Honors). He was there about three hours when the Swedes arrived under the command of Gregory van Dyck, quartermaster, and pulled down, as before, what he had already erected there, warning him to leave or they would drive him off with a beating. Thus this matter stands for the present.

In the meantime, I was ordered to come to Manhattan. I proceeded there and arrived 8 September. While there I reported on the state of the South River and submitted in writing what was necessary for the maintenance of the same. During this time, news came overland that the Swede had built a house in front of Fort Beversreede, whereby the entrance to this fort was virtually closed off. With winter approaching I departed on 5 October, accompanied by some freemen who had been issued patents to allow them to build in the Schuylkil. When I returned to the South River of New Netherland on 18 October, I was informed that the Swede seriously intended to go to the Minquas country contrary to the agreement which had been made. In order to prevent such pretensions and to show that the agreement had not been broken by the honorable lord governor, I therefore sent the following note to Hendrick Huygen as a protest against his governor. Copy:

Worthy, Most Kind and Good Friend.

First, salutations and kind greetings. I have learned to my great regret after returning here, that our fugitives have taken up residence in the Minquas country, truly contrary to the good intention of our lord governor, who shall never allow his subjects to undertake anything against the agreement which was made but desires that it be vigorously enforced on his side. Whereas it is certain that this shall provoke your governor to have second thoughts, I therefore could not omit sending this to you for my exculpation, being assured that you shall alter your decision. Farewell.

Meanwhile, it happened that during the night one of the Swedish servants named Pieter Jochim contemptuously pulled the palisades of Fort Beversreede apart and broke through them, making use of great insolence by words as well as deeds. And since the freemen were seeking to settle according to their commission, they began their work and completed construction of it on 4 November; but this was torn down again by the Swedes with great force, chopping the timbers to pieces. I have transmitted a report of this affair to the honorable lord governor, and since I have nothing but paper weapons to remedy such deeds, I have therefore seen fit to send the following protest to Mr. Johan Prints. Copy:

Whereas by the authority and commission granted by our lord governor P. Stuyvesant to Symon Root, Pieter Harmensen, and Coornelis Mauritsen to build at the Mastemaecker's Hoeck, Symon Root, by authority of his commission, on the 4th instant began to erect a house on the Mastemaecker's Hoeck, which has been obstructed for the present by your officers, and with open force by your subjects, not withstanding the friendly petition of the officials authorized by our lords and masters, and a protest that such close allies ought not to meet one another with force, but on the contrary behave as is fitting for good allies and confederates, leaving it to our royal superiors to decide this matter. As a result of this kind treatment, your officer was persuaded, for the present, to suspend any actions until further orders from you; but with the rising of the sun your officer returned and warned the aforesaid subjects, namely Alexander Boyer and Ariaen van Thienhoven, that he had orders to destroy the construction which had begun, which he immediately accomplished, hacking and chopping until nothing was left; directing shameful, scornful, and abusive language towards those who were seeking to carry out their master's orders. These matters which can lead nowhere else but to mutual frustration and hostility, as they are quite contrary to good friendship, which we have on all occasions cultivated, abstaining from whatever might give any cause for animosity, although our good intentions have sometimes been wrongfully interpreted and viewed unfairly.

For all of which insolence and contempt towards the lawful commission issued by virtue and authority of Their High Mightinesses, His Royal Highness, the Prince of Orange, as well as our superiors, together with the breaking of good mutual friendship; we, herewith, are compelled to protest against you before God and the world, being innocent of all difficulties which may arise from such affairs; and we testify that we, for our part, have sought nothing else than what might lead to the preservation of good friendship, to which we still pledge ourselves, and was signed: A. Hudde. Done at Fort Nassouw on the South River of New Netherland, this 7 November 1648.

And notwithstanding this open force, it is still the case that the Swedes persist daily in making us suspected by the Indians, not only...

Remainder lost  ] [16]


Andries Hudde assumed his office as commissary at Fort Nassau on this date; this report, however, was probably written several years later at Petrus Stuyvesant's request. The last letter incorporated in this report is dated 7 November 1648. For related papers see NYCD, 1:584ff.

These are unconverted Dutch miles, see Appendix D for English equivalent.

An artillary piece fashioned from iron instead of being cast.

Nya Korsholm.

Province Island.


Nya Vasa.

Kwarn Kil (now Cobb's Creek).


This is either Johan Campanius or Israel Fluviander.

Nya Vasa, a fortified house or blockhouse on the Schuylkil.

The area to the west of Trenton Falls.

This is Gregory van Dyck, the Swedish quartermaster.

See NYCD, 1:593 for the reconfirmation of this patent.

Gustaf Prints.

The remaining pages of this report were lost as early as the 17th or 18th century since a transcription and translation made in 1740 also breaks off at this point (PHS, Coates List No. 59).


Translation: Gehring, C. trans./ed., New York Historical Manuscripts: Dutch, Vols. 18-19, Delaware Papers: Dutch Period, 1648-1664 (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc.: 1981).A complete copy of this publication is available on the New Netherland Institute website.