MASTER STUYVESANT ABSENT
ON the night this welcome news was brought to New
Amsterdam, the farm buildings belonging to Martin
Kip were actually crowded with men, who had come
thus far out of the city that they might decide upon
what should be done when the Director gave orders for
all the citizens to stand to their weapons, and a most
excited throng it was.
Some one brought word that a messenger had been
sent in hot haste up the river to summon Master
Stuy-  vesant, and others had learned from fishermen who had
been in the lower bay, that the English fleet was even
at that moment in sight.
Although the people had been so disposed, nothing
could be done in the way of making ready to defend the
city until Master Stuyvesant came back, and from all I
could hear, though as a matter of course I had no
speech with those who were friendly with the Director,
no one was sorry because of there promising soon to be
an end to Dutch rule in America.
We were well content to remain idle, knowing that
each hour of the Director's absence made more certain
the end we desired, and it was rather from curiosity
than anxiety, that Martin Kip and I stood half
sheltered by one of the
bastions of the fort
when Master Stuyvesant arrived.
During the hurried journey he
must have settled
in his own mind
exactly what should be done, for within ten minutes
after having come, orders were given that every third
man of all the citizens should, with axe, spade, or
wheelbarrow, present himself at the fort ready to
aid in strengthening the works.