Volume XI of the Dutch Colonial Manuscripts comprises the correspondence of Petrus Stuyvesant from 1647 to 1653. It represents the first six years of his seventeen-year tenure as director general of New Netherland, spanning the final years of the war with Spain through the first war with England.
Stuyvesant became director general of the possessions of the West India Company at a critical time in the history of the United Provinces. Major changes were taking place in European affairs. The thirty year war in Germany and the eighty-year Dutch revolt against Spain were both to be resolved within a year. England had overthrown the monarchy and was about to embark on an experiment with republicanism, which would have grave implications forthe Dutch nation.
Through this volume of Stuyvesant’s letters, Charles T. Gehring shows how the young Stuyvesant—only thirty-six years old when he became director—handled major problems in his administration. Through recovered correspondence from West India Company directors from Amsterdam, Gehring shows how Stuyvesant managed
to confront the challenges before him. His accomplishments were many but he was renowned for the stabilization of the boundary with New England; the resolution of the dispute with the patroonship of Rensselaerswijck; and the neutralization of Swedish influence in the Delaware.
Charles T. Gehring is director of the New York State Library's New Netherland Project, which is responsible for translating the official records of the Dutch colony and promoting awareness of the Dutch role in American history.
Series: New Netherland Documents
6 x 9, 308 pages, 1 black and white illustrations, 1 maps