| Peter of New Amsterdam|
|by James Otis|
|The story of the Dutch colony at New Amsterdam, through the eyes of the young lad Peter. Relates its settlement by the West India Company under the leadership of Peter Minuit, their transactions with the Indians including the purchase of the island of Manhattan, their overthrow of the Swedish forts to the south, and their surrender to English forces in 1664. The portrait of the contrasting figures of Peter Minuit and Peter Stuyvesant enlivens the narrative. Numerous black and white illustrations complement the text. Ages 8-10 |
COAXING THE SAVAGES
AND now I have to tell you that which bears witness
to Master Petrus Stuyvesant's ability as a ruler.
Al-  though I never felt friendly disposed towards him,
because of thinking myself neglected, there is enough of
honesty in my heart to give praise where it is due.
When Master Kieft was governor of New Amsterdam,
and through his folly had caused the Indians to seek
revenge, he did no more than meet them with
powder and ball, widening the breach between the
brown and the white men day by day; but our
Director, stern and unyielding as he had ever shown himself
to be, had so much of wisdom that he knew when it was
useless to beat his head against a wall of stone.
With so many of the savages risen against us, all the
white men whom we could muster would not have been
sufficient to hold them in check; to wage war with them
would have meant the utter wiping out of the Dutch
 Therefore it was that Master Stuyvesant, instead of
seeking to punish those who had attacked our people,
set about coaxing them into a friendly mood, and during
the three or four weeks which followed our return from
Trinity and Christina, there was a continual coming
and going of messengers from the Director to the
savage chiefs, who were to be brought, through Master
Stuyvesant's plans, to a peaceable life by the means of
And all this Master Stuyvesant succeeded in doing.
Before the winter's snows were come, the savages were
seemingly friendly with us once more, it being
understood that past crimes, whether committed by white
men or brown, were to be forgotten, and, so to speak,
all of us who were dwelling in and around the land
claimed by the West India Company, were to live on
terms of friendship.
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