| 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 |
ORDERS FROM HOLLAND
WE had settled down to the belief that while Director
Stuyvesant ruled us with an iron hand, neither allowing
the people nor the West India Company to
interfere with his wishes, he was improving the city, when
orders came from Holland which aroused us all to the
highest pitch of excitement.
The West India Company had sent positive
commands that the Swedes, whom Master Minuit had
settled on South River, were to be driven out from
their posts, and there was not a Dutchman in New
Amsterdam who did not burn with the desire to have
a hand in the driving; as if this big country of America
were not large enough for all the Swedes and the
Dutchmen that might want to live in it.
Now you must know that when Master Minuit was
made governor of the Swedish people on South River,
there had already been built there a fort by the Dutch,
which was called Casimer. This the Swedish people
captured and changed its name to that of Trinity.
 When Master Minuit came, he built a fort on the river
above Trinity, and named it Christina, in honor of the
They were not bad neighbors, these Swedish people
whom the Queen had advised to make a home in the
NewWorld. They minded their own business far better
than did either the Dutch or the English, and were at
peace with the savages, dealing honestly by them and
treating them as if they were equals; therefore, why the
West India Company should want them driven out of
the New World was more than I could then, or can yet,
explain to my own satisfaction.
However, the order had come that these people, who
had been harming no one, be deprived of the homes
which they had built in the wilderness, and there was
in my mind the belief that Director Stuvvesant was
only too well pleased to receive such commands.
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