Saturday, March 12, 2016

1664 - The Fall of New Netherlands

New Amsterdam citizens ask Peter Stuyvesant to surrender to the British army

January 5, 1664 - All the residents of the Finnish colony of Delaware are invited to Fort Altena by Director William Beekman who announces them that he has just been removed from his position.

These were, four days later, free of their former oath at the request of Director Alexander d' Hinoyossa, but were quickly disappointed when learning the new conditions imposed on them, namely that any free man would no longer be allowed to deal directly with the English or the Indians, and that the sale of pelts and tobacco would solely be intended for the City of Amsterdam as a monopoly. The merchants were, however, given 12 months to sell off their stocks.
An important part of the pelt trade passed, at the time, through the Finnish colony of South River which exported in exchange grain and provisions.

January 10, 1664 - Further to the new rules imposed by the City of Amsterdam since it took up their colony, commissioners and citizens of Altena travel to New Amstel at the invitation of Director Alexander d' Hinoyossa. They refuse, however, to give him the oath until they are not given the guarantee that the privileges they enjoyed in the days of the Dutch West India Company will be maintained.

They were just granted a eight-day reflection period to choose between taking an oath or leaving. The Finnish farmers having hardly the opportunity to give up their farm had no other alternative than to agree to the first proposal.

Sir George Carteret
January 29, 1664 - Lord John Berkeley, Sirs George Carteret and W. Coventry send a report on New Netherlands to King Charles II.

According to several key informants from New England, it appeared that the Dutch population living on Long Island did not exceed 1300 men. The English who lived in their neighborhood represented for their part approximately 600 men. The Connecticut colony governed by John Winthrop, Jr. could provide in 8 days from 1300 to 1400 men who would certainly be strengthened by volunteers from the other colonies and if necessary by Indians. The report considered that there was a real opportunity to submit the Dutch colony and to deprive it of its forts by sending a 3 ship-fleet and a battalion of 300 soldiers commanded by good officers.

March 12, 1664 - King Charles II awards his brother James, Duke of York and Albany, a charter giving him a huge territory called "New England" including the current states of New York and New Jersey. These lands become ducal property, a concept hitherto unknown in America, covering a vast area stretching from Maine to Delaware including especially Long Island, Martha's Vineyard, Nantucket, the Connecticut valley and Fort Orange.

March, 1664 - John Endecott is reappointed as governor of Massachusetts for the tenth year running.

James Stuart, Duke of York & Albany
Spring, 1664 – The Pocumtucs decide to abandon their village of Fort Hill (present-day Deerfield, Massachusetts) and ask to make the peace. The Mohawks agree to it but Iroquois ambassadors are killed on the way to the conference without the culprits being detected. Furious at being dumped, the Mohawks repeat their attacks and repel the Pocumtucs beyond the Connecticut River.

April, 1664 - John Winthrop, Jr. is re-elected governor of Connecticut.

April 2nd, 1664 - James, Duke of York, appoints Richard Nicholls deputy-governor of the New Netherlands even though the colony still belongs to the Dutch

April 25, 1664 - King Charles II creates a special committee consisting of four members whose mission is to go to New England with the aim of gathering and assessing all complaints in military and criminal matters, and change the colonial form of government. It includes Colonel Richard Nicholls, Sir Robert Carr, Colonel George Cartwright and Samuel Maverick.

They all four received instructions they had to keep secret. It was for them to survey the situation of the colonies and try to endear themselves to the people with intent to bring them to wish for a renewal of their charter. It was beforehand necessary to secure Long Island and ensure the allegiance of all its inhabitants to the royal government. 
It was agreed that they went first to Boston but if the reception of Massachusetts was not what they hoped, they would visit Connecticut, Plymouth and Rhode Island in order to find support. They also had to be aware of the laws enacted by the previous government and to take care not to offend members of the various religious sects, by attending their churches and services. They finally had to do everything to call meetings of General Assemblies and choose among the participants those who seemed the most likely to promote king’s service, then to proceed to the approval of a governor and the appointment of a militia commander.
Regarding Connecticut, it was for the members of the committee to highlight its differences with Massachusetts, in both the civilian as religious. It was agreed to keep the terms of the charter without any restriction on the freedom of religious beliefs and to talk with John Winthrop Jr. of people living at the border with Rhode Island. It concerned the acquisition, in 1644, of the Westerly territory in Narragansett Bay, whose contract concluded at that time with the Indian sachems had remained in the hands of Samuel Gorton, John Wicks and Randall Houlden who lived in Warwick, Rhode Island. Yet, if it turned out that this province fell under the king, he promised to do justice to the Indians without affecting the residents. The commissioners also had a mission to collect all the letters patent for land allocation and check how they were held and farmed, on the basis that the king was empowered to confiscate them if the original requirements had not been met. The Committee had finally to inventory foundries as well as gold and silver mines, the charter stipulating that a fifth of their production rightfully belonged to the king.

June 3, 1664 - Thomas Prence is reelected governor of Plymouth.

The Court of Plymouth ordered under his term of office to unify the lands of Acushena, Ponagansett and Coaksett to form the new town of Dartmouth.

Charles Calvert
Governor of Maryland
March 26, 1664 - To put an end to the border violence committed the previous year by Edmund Scarborough, Governor of Maryland Charles Calvert orders Lieutenant William Coleburne, under the command of Captain William Thorne, to raise an infantry company and to draw a line going from a place called Watkin’s Point on the Eastern shore to the mouth of the river Wighco passing through Pocomoke.

April 23, 1664 - Colonel Richard Nicholls, Sir Robert Carr, George Cartwright and Samuel Maverick are officially assigned by King Charles II to sail to New England and submit to the English rule all the territories held by the Dutch. They are also responsible for gathering and reviewing all complaints and grievances related to liberties and privileges granted to the colony by the various charters.

The restoration of King Charles II had raised in England a real wave of optimism. Many hoped to put an end to the Dutch domination of the seas but the king did not show himself ready to oppose the United Provinces to which he owed considerable amount of money granted to his father by the House of Orange during the Civil War.
A serendipity soon happened during a dispute about the education and future projects he reserved to his nephew William III of Orange, the son of the late William II, whose guardianship he was entrusted by her youngest sister Mary, died suddenly in December, 1660 while she was visiting London. The Dutch struggled since then to get back their young staddowder but no successful outcome seemed acquired until Louis XIV declares war on Southern Netherlands leading for the occasion to reconcile England and Holland. It was however only short-lived, because from 1664, Lord Arlington, one of Charles II’s favorites, got along with the Duke of York, the king’s brother and Grand Admiral of the Fleet, to launch the war against the Dutch.

James took control of the Royal African Company, hoping to seize the possessions of the Dutch West India Company. The English ambassador in The Hague, George Downing, reported that the Republic was divided, some Orangists agreeing to cooperate with the English enemy in the event of war and factions in the hands of rich merchants ready to cede to any requirement of England to protect their commercial interests. Arlington planned accordingly to subject all the Dutch colonies and occupy permanently all their key cities.
This new war aroused enthusiasm among the population. Privateers captured 200 Dutch ships and flags incidents occurred regularly. The hostilities took another form when Robert Homes, sent by the Royal African Company occupied all the Dutch trading posts of West Africa and when colonel Richard Nicholls left England 
to America with orders to seize New Netherlands .

May 4, 1664 - Block Island, where John Oldham had been killed by the Indians in 1636, becomes part of the Rhode Island Plantation.

May 15, 1664 - a peace treaty is concluded between the settlers of Wiltwijk and the Esopus Indians.

May 25, 1664 - A 4-vessel fleet carrying 450 soldiers under the command of Colonel Richard Nicholls leaves Portsmouth to New Amsterdam. Its mission is to attack by surprise New Nertherlands and submit the Dutch colony to British rule even though there has been no declaration of war.

May 31, 1664 – Fearing the outbreak of a war between England and Holland, Director Peter Stuyvesant asks Captain Thomas Willett to find provisions for New Amsterdam. It was mainly beef and pork coming from Plymouth or England to be paid, if necessary, in slaves or beaver pelts.

June 3rd, 1664 - Governor Charles Calvert admits a boundary dispute with Virginia on the peninsula and asks his counterpart Sir William Berkeley to accredit colonel Edmund Scarborough, John Cattlette and Richard Lawrence with the aim of determining, in a definitive way, the precise location of Watkins Point with representatives of Maryland.

He added that, according to him, Colonel Scarborough had, on the previous October 10, made a hostile incursion in Maryland and spread terror among the populations of Manokin and Annemesex, harassing and detaining without trial people who lived there for long under authorization of his government. 

Dr John Clarke
June, 1664 - After thirteen years in England during which he patiently worked to obtain a charter for his colony, Doctor John Clarke is back in Rhode Island. He is elected a deputy during the General Assembly.

June 7, 1664 - A report sent to the Maryland Council states that tobacco produced in too big quantities in this province and in Virginia, clutters up the markets, whether in England or elsewhere and that the prices are hardly enough to pay taxes. It also considers that tobacco is nothing but a drug and requests to subject its growing to export restrictions knowing the disastrous consequences for both colonies.

June, 1664 - A dispute arises between Sweden and Holland about the Delaware colony. The Swedes require that it be restored to them, accusing the Dutch of bringing settlers mainly from Finland.

June 24, 1664 – James, Duke of York transfers his rights on a part of the territories granted to him by his brother King Charles II to John, Lord Berkeley and Sir George Carteret. This assignment gives birth to New Jersey.

It was, as described, a land in New England, located west of Long Island and Manhattan, bounded on the east by the ocean and a part of the Hudson valley, extending southward to Cape May and Delaware Bay called Sceyichbi by the Natives and renamed Nova Caesarea or New Jersey, given in honor of  Sir George Carteret who had been before a governor of Jersey Island.
Berkeley and Carteret would soon get involved in this newly acquired territory.

Early July, 1664 - Despite protests from the Swedish ambassador, 140 new settlers from Finland and Sweden leave Amsterdam for the shores of Delaware.

July 23rd, 1664 – the new Royal commissioners land in Boston.

August 3rd, 1664 - Following the arrival in Boston of the members of the special committee created in April by King Charles II, the General Court of Massachusetts declares its loyalty to the Crown but requests confirmation of its charter.

It promised to raise 200 men to help England in its war against the Dutch and repealed the law on the admission of free men, granting the right to citizenship for all the English freeholders, whether or not they were members of the church. 
The General Court complained on the other hand about Samuel Maverick's behavior who, according to them, had only ambition to destroy the administration of their government and the freedoms to which they were accustomed.
Samuel Maverick was not an unknown. It was he who, in 1635, had given up in particular his land of Winnisimet (present-day Chelsea, Massachusetts) to former Governor Richard Bellingham. He was a veteran of the colonization, a wise merchant but also one of the largest slaveholders of New England.
His support to the Church of England and the Royalist cause had however earned him many disappointments and after a few years spent in England, he was actually back with the idea of settling accounts.

August 17, 1664 - The New Amsterdam Council decides to send 72 slaves to Peter Alrich, commissioner to the African cargoes and councillor of the New Amstel colony.

Never before as many slaves (38 men and 34 women) had been transported to the Dutch colony of Delaware. It was to agree to Alexander d' Hinoyossa’s requests, considering that slaves being essential in the agricultural development of the colony, a delay in making decisions might lose a full year of crops. The burgmasters of Amsterdam had agreed, a year before, to make the first move by sending 50 slaves but the account had not been considered sufficient. In 1664, the directors of the New Netherlands found common ground with Simon Cornelissen Gilde to buy 290 slaves for farm work. One quarter was reserved for the New Amstel colony but the arrival of the English put a stop to this deal.

August 18, 1664 – Having left Portsmouth aboard four battleships, Colonel Richard Nicholls and the 450 soldiers under his command reach New Amsterdam's harbor after a stopover in Boston.

Captain Hugh Hyde who commanded the fleet ordered to drop anchor in Gravesend Bay, off Coney Island. Militia men come from New Haven and Long Island got then together on the shore. Nicholls did send proclamations to the Dutch cities of Long Island and sent a letter to Director Peter Stuyvesant, asking him to hand over all cities, forts and all other places held by the Dutch.

Peter Stuyvesant reading the letter
asking his submission
August 30, 1664Sir George Cartwright goes to New Amsterdam to hand-deliver to Director Peter Stuyvesant the letter asking him to submit to the authority of king Charles II in exchange for which he will keep his freedom and estates.

Stuyvesant read the letter to his council and tore it in pieces in a fit of anger, ready to order his troops to prepare a response. Immediately warned, the people of New Amsterdam gathered to the city-hall to demand the contents of the letter. Peter Stuyvesant had no other choice than to pick up the paper scraps he gave to the burgomasters, telling them to make as they wanted. He got from his ready to organize the defence and sent a defiant answer to Colonel Nicholls. But he had to yield to the rallying of New Amsterdam citizens who demanded not to shed blood.

The surrender of  Peter Stuyvesant
September 8, 1664 - Director of the New Netherlands Peter Stuyvesant and Colonel Richard Nicholls sign the act of surrender putting an end to the Dutch colony. The handover ceremony takes place in the City hall (Stadt-Huys) of New Amsterdam. The capitulation act has 23 points guaranteeing to the residents the preservation of their privileges, their freedom of conscience and the same trade rights as enjoyed by English subjects.
Richard Nicholls becomes the first English deputy governor of New Amsterdam renamed New York.
The colors of the Dutch West India Company are removed.

After a few days of negotiation, Director Peter Stuyvesant had preferred to leave the city without fighting.
He had initially decided to resist but for lack of military means (he had at his disposal only hundred men, 25 guns and ammunitions for one day), dropped by the city council and aware that many citizens of New Amsterdam agreed to submit to the English jurisdiction, he had decided to hand over the Dutch colony.

Although his dictatorial management and religious intolerance had made him unpopular with most of his people, Peter Stuyvesant left, on the whole, a positive assessment. After 17 years of government, he boasted of having made New Netherlands, a prosperous colony the population of which increased from 1500 to almost 10 000 inhabitants. He had besides solved the problems with the Indians and allowed farmers families to take gradually the place of the first adventurers interested only in quick profits. The New Netherlands produced moreover important wealth that fuelled the markets of Holland and many foreign countries.

September 20, 1664 – After passing a law stipulating that baptism does not insure freedom to a slave, the assembly of Maryland enacts a second one forbidding white women to marry Africans.

September 24, 1664 - Fort Orange surrenders to the English troops commanded by Colonel George Cartwright. It is renamed Albany in honor of James, Duke of York and Albany, new holder of the rights.

George Cartwright laid the foundations for an Anglo-Iroquois alliance and maintained the control of the Indian affairs and trade under the responsibility of the new Council of Albany, as it was already in the time of the Dutch rule.

September 25, 1664 - Sent to Fort Albany by colonel Richard Nicolls, Commissioner George Cartwright chairs a peace conference with the Iroquois of the region, especially the Mohawks and Senecas.

The English and the "New York Indians" signed a friendship, trade and mutual assistance treaty entitled " Articles of Agreement and Peace". It was important for the first ones to ensure the neutrality of the Indians in order to pursue the colonization carried out by their predecessors while knowing that the provisions of this treaty concerned only Iroquois living within the boundaries of the province of New York.

October 3rd, 1664 - Sir Robert Carr (1629-1667) is appointed with three other commisssioners " to place Delaware and all its inhabitants under the authority of His Majesty the King of England ".

Arrived in the bay on September 30 aboard two ships, he had sailed along the fort of New Amstel without being fired a shot and had gone up the river to the Finnish colony where he had assured its settlers that they would continue to enjoy, as under the former jurisdiction, their farms and herds. He had guaranteed them on the other hand that they could trade freely with all the English possessions in the same conditions as those granted to the English people. All the colonists saw protecting their freedom of conscience and the magistrates were confirmed in their offices for six months, the time to take new provisions. Sir Robert Carr then held a meeting with Director d’Hinoyossa and the Dutch burghers of New Amstel.
All agreed to surrender and took an oath of allegiance to the king of England. The governor and the officers refused, however, to give the fort which was, in the end, taken by strength, killing three people and wounding some on the Dutch side. After the fall of the fort, the soldiers and English sailors indulged in looting the city despite the oath of its inhabitants. The properties of the Dutch authorities and their partisans were then all confiscated. The city was renamed New Castle.
Manhattan Sunset
(painting by L.F. Tantillo)
October, 1664 - New deputy-governor of New York Richard Nicholls goes to East Hampton to sign an agreement with Sachem Quashawam guaranteeing to the Indians the allocation of an a 4000 acre-land situated east of Fort Lays on the Montauk peninsula.

October, 1664 – Governor of Virginia William Berkeley appoints William Drummond at the head of the Albemarle colony and
Early Carolina Counties
grants him as compensation a monopoly on fur trade.

Native of Scotland, William Drummond (? - 1677) had come in Virginia as indentured servant in 1637. He later served as justice of the peace and main sheriff of James City's county. It was he who discovered Lake Drummond in the center of the Great Dismal Swamp that covers the bordering coastal zone between Virginia and Carolina, an inhospitable region where few Indians had taken refuge fleeing the advance of the European colonists.

The Albermarle colony that extended along the vast estuary of the same name, had been founded in 1653 by Nathaniel Batts (1620-1667), a fur trader working for John Yeardley, an influential planter of Virginia. The latter went then in partnership with George Durant and, purchased in 1660, from Yeopim tribe’s Chief Kiscutanewh a large area lying over all the west shore of the Pascottank River.
It became in 1664 the first county of the new province of North Carolina.
Two other counties were created shortly after, Clarendon along the northern shore of Albemarle Sound and Craven south of Pamlico Sound.

George Durant (October 1, 1632-February 6, 1692) - this seaman from England lived first in Northumberland County,Virginia before settling in Nansemond. He became a partner of Nathaniel Batts with whom he explored Albemarle Sound. On September 4, 1661, he purchased a first land from Ciketando, king of the Yeopim and a second in 1662, from Kilcocanen, another tribe’s chief. A year later, Governor William Berkeley informed the settlers who had dealt directly with the Indians that they would now be subject to his prior approval. When was established Carolina, both Durant and Batts lived in Albemarle.

October 24, 1664 - Sir Robert Carr is called back in New York and Richard Nicolls sent in his place to Delaware to put the house in order.

When Fort Amstel fell in the hands of Sir Robert Carr, it was discovered inside a large inventory of goods. Carr had decided to appropriate this booty and to claim for himself the houses, farms and stores seized to the Dutch officials.

December 1, 1664 - Long Island is detached from Connecticut to pass under Duke of York’s jurisdiction. However, the Connecticut laws still apply while waiting for the new laws of New York.

December, 1664 - After three years of discussions, the residents of the New Haven colony agree to comply with the terms of the Connecticut Charter that free men are not necessarily members of the church.

Governor of New Haven William Leete was, for the occasion, appointed assistant to the General Court of Connecticut. He worked to an unification in justice and reciprocal goodwill, so that the future provincial government removes doubts among the people of New Haven.

December, 1664 - Governor of New York Richard Nicolls allows a group of people from Long Island to purchase a land in the New Jersey colony to found a new city. It is agreed that the Lenape Indians who are the current owners of the area receive in exchange 750 ft. in length of white wampum.

The city took the name of Elizabethtown in tribute to the wife of Sir George Carteret, the new Lord Proprietor

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