Orders extracted from the articles of war

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Whereas experience has shown that great disorders have arisen and are growing more numerous every day among the people here in Fort Willem Hendrick; to prevent and obviate the same, it is therefore, resolved to commit to paper some necessary orders extracted from the Articles of War; and to the end that no man shall plead ignorance, the corporals are hereby strictly ordered and commanded to recommend and to read them to their men.
First. Whosoever blasphemes the name of the Lord or his Holy Word shall be for the first offence fined and committed three days to prison on bread and water; and for the second offence shall have his tongue bored with a red hot iron, and he shall furthermore be banished out of this government and the United Provinces as a villain.
2. Whosoever shall have uttered any words tending to sedition, mutiny or disobedience, or heard them uttered without making them known to his officer, shall suffer death.
3. Whosoever shall go further than cannon range from the garrison, without his officer's consent, shall undergo corporal punishment.
4. Whosoever neglects his guard or any duty committed to him, shall suffer death, and whosoever neglects his parade, his watch shall be assigned to another and he shall be seated three hours on the wooden horse and nevertheless he must stand his guard.
5. Any soldier found asleep on his post or whilst standing sentry shall be flogged without mercy; in like manner the soldier shall be punished who will leave his post either by night or by day.
6. Whosoever shall absent himself from his guard-house, without his corporal's permission, shall suffer corporal punishment.
7. Whosoever smites another with sheathed sword, stick, stone or otherwise and blood flows, shall suffer loss of hand.
8. Whosoever in a quarrel or fight shall call his comrade to help him, shall be hanged and strangled.
9. Whosoever shall be found at night out of the Fort without his Captain's permission, shall suffer corporal punishment.
10. Whoso challenges to fight shall be subject to corporal punishment; in like manner shall be punished the corporal, sergeant or other officer commanding the guard, if he be cognizant thereof and doth not hinder it.
11. Whoso enters or leaves the Fort by any other way than through the ordinary gate, shall be hanged and strangled.
12. The soldier who shall refuse to obey the orders of his officer or others in command over him, shall suffer corporal punishment; in like manner shall be punished whoso disobeys any order communicated by beat of drum.
13. Whosoever shall be found drunk on guard shall be broken and expelled the company. Item, if any man shall commit any evil or forbidden act when drunk, he shall not be excused on that account, but therefore be punished the more severely.
14. The soldier who resists his officer or commander shall suffer death.
15. If the Provost or his men take one or more prisoners, no one, be he who he may, shall oppose it, nor rescue nor endeavor to rescue them; all on pain of corporal punishment.
16. The corporals shall take good care that their men be continually at the guard; pay particular attention that no strong drink be brought, much less drank, in the guard-house; constantly teach the men how to handle their arms; punctually observe all orders which will, from time to time, be issued; take good care that their men obey the same, and, above all things, pay attention that no man (the city Magistrates and those of the Fort excepted) shall come here within its gate without permission, much less be suffered to go on the batteries.
17. All soldiers shall clean their quarters at least once a week and be careful that no filth be found before their barracks, but remove the same without the Fort, on pain of being punished according to the circumstances of the case. In like manner shall be severely punished those sentries who happen to ease themselves or permit others to ease themselves on the ramparts or breastworks; the sentry near whom it is found, shall have to justify it or be himself punished.
18. During the night the corporals shall relieve their sentries every half hour, and during the day according to circumstances, and order them to stand erect during their guard or walk near their sentry-box; wherefore the soldiers are strictly ordered to obey them; and the corporals shall also take care that the arms in guard be loaded with a loose ball, and whenever it becomes necessary to discharge the piece in order to clean it, the same shall be done at the Battery, the ball being previously drawn. Furthermore, care shall be taken that the ordered powder shall-be kept in the Bandoleers, to which end the corporals of each guard shall inspect the Bandoleers; also the sergeants and corporals shall continually see that nothing be deficient in the arms; and whoso shall be discovered to have sold, or to have not been duly careful of, his ammunition, be it powder, ball or match, shall be rigorously punished.
19. All other offences and crimes not specified in this ordinance shall be punished according to the placard, laws and customs of war.
Dated in Fort Willem Hendrick, 4th of October, 1673.


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 theĀ New Netherland Institute website.