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Posts in New Amsterdam
Recovering New York’s Entangled Dutch, Native American, and African Histories: An Interview with Jennifer Tosch

Recovering New York’s Entangled Dutch, Native American, and African Histories: An Interview with Jennifer Tosch

By Andrea Mosterman

Many of New York’s Dutch colonists and their descendants relied on the labor of enslaved people. Some historic sites have struggled to address this part of their history and looked for ways in which they can share it with their visitors. For example, an exhibit at the Old Stone House in Brooklyn, built in 1699 by Hendrick Claessen Vechte, includes a brief discussion of the home’s enslaved residents. Yet, much of the Dutch history of slavery in New York City and its surroundings is still little known, especially among the general public.

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The Cartographic Cudgel: New York, New England, and Colonial Boundary Disputes

The Cartographic Cudgel: New York, New England, and Colonial Boundary Disputes

By Nathan Braccio

In many senses, New York (and New Amsterdam/New Netherlands) should be considered the center of cartography in Colonial North America. Starting with the skilled Dutch cartographers, the mapping of New York was more regular and detailed then that of other colonies, including its neighbors in New England. As Patricia Seed has argued, the Dutch believed detailed records legitimized their claim to the region.[1] English colonists in New England did not treat maps the same way. They came from more parochial backgrounds in which maps were novelties and curiosities, not useful tools. However, when New York fell into English hands, a different kind of Englishman arrived there. Its new administrators, such as Governor Edmund Andros, were not parochial English townsmen like their New England neighbors. Like the Dutch, they saw the power of maps and wielded them as powerful weapons. The New York City-based administration of Andros would eventually come to export mapping as a tool and force the colonists of the region to acknowledge their import. Under Andros and other governors sent from England, both New York and New England became visualized through countless property maps and detailed maps of the boundaries between colonies.

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"The Dutch": Bouweries and Early Settlement in New Amsterdam

"The Dutch": Bouweries and Early Settlement in New Amsterdam

By Alice Sparberg Alexiou

The settlement was to be called New Amsterdam, and it would serve as headquarters of New Netherland, which stretched from New England to Virginia. The Dutch had claimed the vast territory — a claim the English refused to recognize — after Henry Hudson in 1609 sailed the Half Moon up the river that would bear his name.

From Devil's Mile: The Rich, Gritty History of The Bowery by Alice Sparberg Alexiou, copyright 2018 by the author and reprinted by permission of St. Martin's Press.

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Bringing New Netherland back to Breuckelen: Exploring Brooklyn’s Dutch Roots

Bringing New Netherland back to Breuckelen: Exploring Brooklyn’s Dutch Roots

By Andrea C. Mosterman

Why is it important to study New York’s Dutch past? That is the question a New Netherland Institute (NNI) conference in Brooklyn will address on June 1st and 2nd. I talked with Dennis Maika, senior historian and education director of the New Netherland Institute, about New York’s Dutch history and the Brooklyn event.

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