Privileges granted to the several towns in New Jersey

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At the Meeting of the Honorable Council of War, holden in Fort Willem Hendrick, on the 18th of August, Anno 1673,

Present—  Commander Jacob Benkes, 
Commander Cornelis Evertsen, Junior, 
Captain Anthony Colve, 
Captain Nicolaes Boes, 
Captain A.F. van Zyll. 

The following Order was made:

On the petition of the inhabitants of the respective towns, viz.; Elizabets Towne, New-Worke and Piscattaway, situated at Achter Coll. [1]

The Commanders and Honorable Council of War having considered and read the Petition of the inhabitants of the villages of Elizabets Towne, New-Worke and Piscattaway, have ordered thereupon that all the inhabitants of those towns shall be granted the same Privileges and Freedoms as will be accorded to native born subjects and Dutch towns; also the Petitioners and their heirs shall unmolested enjoy and possess their lawfully purchased and paid for lands, which shall afterwards be confirmed to them by the Governor in due form; in regard to the bounds of each town, they shall hereafter be fixed by the Governor and Council; in respect to impressment, none of the English nation shall, in time of war with his Majesty of England, be impressed against their own nation on condition that they comport themselves quietly and peaceably, but their ships and boats shall be subject thereto. Concerning inheritance, they shall have to regulate themselves according to the laws of Netherland, but be at liberty to dispose of their property by will, according to their pleasure; and in case any wish to depart from this government with their property, they shall be at liberty so to do within the term of six months on condition of previously paying their debts, and obtaining proper passport from the Governor. Furthermore, no person shall be suffered to settle within this government without the Governor's previous approbation; and finally, the Petitioners are granted and accorded Freedom of conscience as the same is permitted in the Netherlands.

Further, the Deputies from the towns of Woodbridge, Schrousbury and Middeltowne situate at Achter Coll, coming into court, the above privileges were, at their verbal request, in like manner granted and allowed to their towns; but all subject to further orders from their High Mightinesses and his Serene Highness of Orange.

Captain John Berry,[2] William Sandfort, Samuell Edsall and Lourens Andriessen, appearing before the Council request that they and their plantations may be confirmed in the privileges which they obtained from their previous Patroons, and furthermore possess unobstructed their houses, lands and goods, and enjoy such further privileges as are granted and accorded to all other the inhabitants of Achter Coll, lately called New Jarsey.


' New Jersey.
John Berry removed, it is supposed, from Connecticut to New Jersey in 1669, when he and his associates obtained a grant of land near Newark, and he was appointed a Magistrate of the Court of Bergen and Deputy Governor of the Province in July, 1672, on the departure of Governor Carteret for England. He administered the Government until the arrival of the Dutch in 1673. After the return of Gov. Carteret in 1674, he was appointed one of the Council, and so continued under the various administrations until 1692, when his name is omitted, probably in consequence of his previous death. Whitehead. — Ed.


Translation: O'Callaghan, E.B., trans./ed., Documents Relative to the Colonial History of the State of New-York, vol. 2 (Albany: Weed, Parsons: 1858), pp. 569-730 (vol. 23, pp. 1-270 only).A complete copy of this publication is available on the New Netherland Institute website.