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The colonists advised to
Cx. XVIII. director immediately recommended them to form a village,
which could easily be palisaded, and afford them full pro1658.
tection; but the colonists objected that it would be incon
venient to remove their residences while their crops were lage at Eso- yet ungathered, and that it would be difficult to select a
site for a village which would please all. They, therefore, asked that the soldiers should be allowed to remain with them until after harvest. This the director refused, but promised that, if they would agree at once to palisade the ground for a village, he would stay with them until the work should be completed.
Word had meanwhile been sent to the neighboring chiefs to come and meet, the “grand sachem from Manhattan;" and some fifty savages, with a few women and children, soon appeared, and seated themselves under an old tree.
The director went to meet them, accompanied by two folConference lowers and an interpreter. One of the chiefs made a long savages. harangue, reciting the events of Kieft's war, and the losses
which his tribe had then suffered. The director replied that the general peace had settled all the questions connected with that war. “Has any injury been done you," he demanded, "since that peace was made, or since I came into the country?"
66 Your sachems have asked us, over and over again, to make a settlement among you. We have not had a foot of your land without paying for it, nor do we desire to have any more without making you full compensation. Why, then, have you committed this murder, burned our houses, killed our cattle, and why do you continue to threaten our people?" After a long pause, one of the chiefs replied, “ You Swannekens have sold our children drink. The sachems can not then control the young Indians, nor restrain them from fighting. This murder has not been committed by any of our tribe, but by a Minnisinck, who is now skulking among the Haverstraws.” “If this be not stopped," rejoined Stuyvesant, “I shall have to retaliate on old and young, on women and children. T expect that you will repair all damages, seize the murderer if he come among you, and do no further mischiet.
the land by
The Dutch are now going to live together in one spot. It Cr. XVIII. is desirable that you should sell us the whole of the Eso
1658. pus land, as you have often proposed, and remove further into the interior.” Thus ended the conference; and the Indians departed, promising to consider well what had passed.
The settlers, adopting Stuyvesant's advice, now signed 31 May an agreement to form a village, the site of which they left out at Esoto the director's judgment. He accordingly chose a spot at a bend of the kill, where a water-front might be had on three sides; and a part of the plain, about two hundred and ten yards in circumference, was staked out.
A few days afterward, while the Dutch were busily at work stockading their village, a band of savages was observed approaching, and the soldiers were ordered to stand 4 June by their arms.
But the visit of the Indians was one of Cession of peace. They had come to give the land on which the vil- the sav. lage was commenced as a present to the grand sachem of the Hollanders, “to grease his feet, as he had taken so long and painful a journey to visit them.” The work now went merrily on. In three weeks the palisade and ditches were completed, the buildings removed, a bridge thrown over the kill, and a guard-house and temporary barracks built. Stuyvesant detailed twenty-four soldiers to remain as a garrison; and, after seeing the new village fairly started, 24 June. he took leave of Esopus and returned to the capital.*
The next month witnessed the settlement of the diffi- July. culties between the provincial government and the author of dificul. ities of Rensselaerswyck. In place of the tenths demand-erwyck. ed by Stuyvesant, the colonists agreed to pay a yearly contribution of three hundred schepels of wheat. About the same time, John Baptist van Rensselaer was succeeded as director of the colonie by his brother Jeremias, who contin- Jeremias ued for sixteen years to manage its affairs with discretion selaer diand acceptance. He soon acquired a great influence among Renssethe neighboring savage tribes, and was sincerely respected by the French in Canada.t
* Alb. Rec., iv., 248; xvi., 15-35 ; Kingston Rec.; O'Call., ii., 357-362. + Renss. MSS.; O'Call., ii., 310, 551, 552; anté, p. 624.
66 When you
by the Dutch.
In the mean time, the Mohawks had obtained from the
Canadian government the release of some of their captive 1658.
warriors. Six of them, however, were detained until the
Iroquois sachems should come in person and make a gen13 August. eral treaty of peace. Several Mohawk chiefs now visited st Fort Or Fort Orange to procure an interpreter to go with them to
Canada, as they did not understand the French tongue.
around to offer a bounty of one hundred guilders for a vol. 15 August. unteer. One of the soldiers, Henry Martin, agreeing to furnished go, was surnished with a letter from Vice-director La Mon
tagne to La Potherie, the governor of the Three Rivers, and accompanied the savages under a promise to be brought safely back in forty days. When near the Three Rivers, Martin lost himself in the woods; and ten of the Mohawks, presenting themselves to La Potherie without La Montagne's letter, were seized as spies, and sent as prisoners to Argenson, the new governor general of Canada, who "did good justice” upon them for the recent murder of some Algonquins under the very guns of Quebec.*
Before the winter set in, Stuyvesant revisited Esopus, to
provide for its security and obtain some further concessions 16 October. from the Indians. The savages demurred, and adroitly en
deavored to divert him from his purpose by promising a large trade with the Minquas and Senecas, if the Dutch would furnish them with ammunition. After waiting several days, the director found that the chiefs would not yield to his wishes; and, from their anxiety to have the soldiers removed, he suspected them of treacherous designs as soon
as the closing of the river should isolate the settlers. On 19 October. his return to New Amsterdam, he, therefore, left a garrison
Stuyvesant revisits Esopus.
* Relation, 1657–58, 60-69; Charlevoix, i., 338, 339; O'Call., ii., 366, 367; ante, p. 647.
of fifty men, under the command of Ensign Dirck Smit, Ch. XVIII. with instructions to keep a steady watch, act only on the
1658. defensive, allow no Indians inside the stockade, and detail Dirck Smit a proper guard for the protection of the farmers while work-commanding in the fields. *
On the South River, New Amstel--where several ship-South Riv. wrecked Englishmen from Virginia, whom Alrichs had ransomed from the savages, had become residents began to wear an appearance of prosperity, and was now 6a goodly town of about one hundred houses." An inevitable con- Consesequence, however, of the establishment of the city's col- the estah ony was the increase of smuggling. The revenue suffered New Amseverely, and the regular traders complained. The colonists at New Amstel seemed to think themselves independent of the company and of its provincial authorities at New Amsterdam. These and other considerations induced the council to advise Stuyvesant to go there, and correct all irregularities in person.
Accompanied by Tonneman, the director accordingly set 20 April. sail for the South River. On his arrival at Altona, the 8 May. Swedes were called upon to take the oath of allegiance visits Alwhich was required of all the other colonists. This they willingly took, and at the same time asked for certain specific favors; among others, that they should be allowed to remain neutral in case of war between Holland and Sweden. Some of these requests were evaded; others were granted; and the Swedes were allowed to choose their own officers. On his return to New Amsterdam, Stuyvesant 13 May. informed the council that “many things are there not as the council. they ought to be;" smuggling and fraud had prevailed, by reason of the shipments to the city colony; and Alrichs, though he now promised amendment, had entirely omitted from the oath, required of the newly-arrived colonists, any mention of the West India Company and of their provincial authorities of New Netherland.
Fearing that the English from Virginia would endeavor to intrude at Cape Hinlopen, " as they before tried it from
* Alb. Rec., xiv., 380; xvi., 41-59; O'Call., ii., 367–370.
in June. Instruc
CH. XVIII. the side of New England,” the West India directors now
recommended that Alrichs should “disentangle himself, in 1658.
the best manner possible," from the Englishmen whom he had allowed to settle at New Amstel, and, "at all events, not to admit any English besides them in that vicinity,
much less to allure them by any means whatever.” A few tions of the days afterward, they instructed Stuyvesant to purchase pany to buy from the Indians the tract between Cape Hinlopen and Cape Hin- the Boomtje's Hook, so that it might be afterward legally
conveyed to the commissaries of the city of Amsterdam. “You will perceive," they added, " that speed is required, if for nothing else, that we may prevent other nations, and principally our English neighbors, as we really apprehend that this identical spot has attracted their notice.” “When we reflect on the insufferable proceedings of that nation, not only by intruding themselves upon our possessions about the North, to which our title is indisputable, and when we consider the bold arrogance and faithlessness of those who are residing within our jurisdiction, we can not expect any good from that quarter."
To maintain the rights and authority of the company, Beeckman Stuyvesant immediately appointed Willem Beeckman, "an
expert and respectable person," and one of the earliest magistrates of New Amsterdam, as commissary and vice
director on the South River. Beeckman, however, did not 28 October. receive his instructions until late in the autumn. They men's in- required him to live at first at Altona, but to have his per
manent residence at or near New Amstel, where he could more conveniently attend to the collection of the revenue. He was invested with all the powers of the company on the whole of the South River, except the district of New Amstel, and was bound to maintain the Reformed relig. ion. With regard to the proposed purchase, he was to act in concert with Alrichs, and obtain a deed from the Indians as soon as possible.
The prosperity of New Amstel had, meanwhile, become and sick-clouded. The colonists had planted in hope ; but heavy New Am- rains setting in, their harvest was ruined, and food became
30 July Willem
Failure of the harvest,