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tenants, with the governors, and with the company, which they sought to exclude from trade in their districts, although they bought and sold where they pleased. Finally, to settle disputes, the company purchased the claims of some patroons and regulated the pretensions of the rest.
Swedes on the Delaware.-After
(1631), he went to Sweden and persuaded the great Oxenstierna 1 to send him to America to plant a colony. Without permission from the Dutch, he settled up the Delaware on the patroon grant now vacant. He bought the territory between Cape Henlopen and the Delaware Falls of the red men in 1638 and called it New Sweden. At Wilmington they built dwellings, a church, and a fort, and called the place Christina.
Walter Van Twiller, who followed Minuit as governor, was slow, inefficient, given to drink, and always wrangling with his officers. But he was shrewd in business ways, so that on his retirement in 1637 he was a rich man. He owned a fertile tract on Long Island, where Flatlands sprang up, and also some of the small islands around Manhattan. Under Van Twiller the little town on Manhattan was named New Amsterdam.
1 He was an educated Swedish statesman, who served as chancellor under Gustavus Adolphus and took a leading part in the Thirty Years' War. He ruled Sweden during the minority of the daughter of Gustavus, and died in 1654.
CHAPTER V.-THE ADMINISTRATION OF GOVERNOR KIEFT
William Kieft, the next governor (1638), found the company's interests sadly neglected. The six boweries, or farms, on Manhattan Island were without tenants or stock, the windmills were broken, and the fort needed repair. The company was cheated out of its profits in the fur-trade by private traders and even by the agents themselves. The patroon system and the paternalism of the corporation kept the colony a mere trading-post. Kieft reduced his advisory council to one person and ruled as an autocrat.
Beneficial Changes.-The company now made some changes which mark a new era. Monopolies in trade and land were abolished. The fur-trade and ownership in land were thrown open to the world. The prohibition on manufactures was removed. A farmer willing to go was carried to New Netherland with his family free of charge and was given a farm, house and barn, horses, stock, and tools, for which he paid about two hundred dollars rent yearly for six years. The company retained only small duties on trade and the transportation service. The patroons were restricted to a water-front of one mile and a depth of two, but still held their feudal rights (1640).
Results of the Changes.-The effect of these measures was soon seen. The few farms on Manhattan increased to over thirty. Large companies as well as single families came. De Vries planted a colony on Staten Island (1638), and others followed. Englishmen arrived from
Virginia to raise tobacco or fruit. Others from New England settled eastern Long Island (1639). Greenwich, within thirty miles of New Amsterdam, was also begun. After acknowledging allegiance to the Dutch government these foreigners were given equal rights. Had Kieft avoided war with the natives, this colony would soon have been one of the most flourishing on the Atlantic coast.
Indian Troubles.-Free trade in furs led greedy traders to sell arms and liquor to the Indians, although the company prohibited the sale of fire-arms under the penalty of death. Kieft's mad policy of taxing the Algonquins in return for protection only angered them. On worthless evidence that the Raritans had crossed to Staten Island, stolen some of De Vries's hogs, and attacked a trading-yacht, Kieft sent out fifty men who slew several Indian warriors and burned their crops. (1641). In revenge the Raritans destroyed De Vries's plantation and killed his people. Then Kieft offered ten fathoms of wampum for the head of every Raritan. This meant war.
The "Twelve Men" and the "Eight Men."-Fifteen years before this, an Indian and his young nephew from near Yonkers had gone to New Amsterdam to sell furs. The uncle was waylaid and slain. The nephew vowed vengeance and in 1641 killed a white settler. His tribe refused to give up the murderer. Kieft, resolved on war, called the heads of families to meet in the fort. They chose a committee of "Twelve Select Men " to advise with the governor (Aug. 29, 1641). These Twelve Men demanded the murderer, but refused to consent to Five months later they promised to support
Kieft's war plans in return for a redress of grievances. They wanted a council chosen by the people. The governor, however, ended the matter by dissolving the committee. A few years later, in 1643, he was forced to appeal to the Eight Men, chosen by popular vote, to meet war expenses and to conclude peace. The Eight demanded popular rights as firmly as had the Twelve.
Kieft Attacks Indians. In the progress of the war a party of Mohawks, armed with muskets, descended the Hudson to claim tribute from the River Indians. The claim was enforced by killing and capture. A panic seized the Algonquins. They fled to Pavonia and Corlears Hook near New Amsterdam to implore protection from the Dutch. Against the advice of his best friends Kieft, bent on revenge, sent two hostile forces against the terror-stricken natives. At Pavonia over eighty Indians were slain, and at Corlears Hook about forty (1643).
Results. This insane act arrayed more than a dozen Algonquin tribes against the Dutch. Sixteen hundred red men were killed, while terrible destruction to life and property fell upon the whites. No part of the province except New Sweden and Rensselaerwyck escaped the ravages of war. Finally, with the aid of the brave Captain John Underhill, who had recently settled on Long Island from New England, the Indians were forced to sue for peace. The Mohawk chiefs, acting in behalf of the Algonquins, signed a treaty at Fort Amsterdam in 1645.1
A young daughter of Mrs. Anne Hutchinson was surrendered at this treaty. Mrs. Hutchinson, with other free-thinkers, had left New England and settled in New Netherland. During the
Recall of Kieft.-September 6, 1645, was observed as a day of thanksgiving, but Kieft's life was in danger from the rage of his people. Complaints, loud and numerous, were sent to the company, and he was recalled. When he sailed for Holland he took with him bags of guilders equal in value to $160,000, but off the coast of Wales the vessel was dashed to pieces and the deposed governor, with Dominie Bogardus and about eighty others, was drowned (1647).
CHAPTER VI.-THE END OF THE DUTCH PERIOD
Peter Stuyvesant Governor.-Happy were the people when Peter Stuyvesant arrived as their governor (May,
1647). He was a college man and a soldier. "A valiant, weather-beaten, mettlesome, obstinate, leathern-sided, lionhearted, generous-spirited old governor" was he, says Knickbocker. He had lost a leg in battle and wore a wooden one with silver bands, hence he was called "the governor with the silver leg." He strutted about new Amsterdam "like a peacock as if he were the czar," and told the burghers, "I shall govern you as a father his children."
Indian war her house was attacked and she and all her family were killed except this daughter (1643).