Location: New Amsterdam

The Records of New Amsterdam from 1653 to 1674

This work contains the earliest Dutch Records that have been preserved of the territory included in the present City of New York, the earlier ones having long ago disappeared. These are “The Minutes of the Burgomasters and Schepens of New Amsterdam from 1653 to 1674,” but contain a very few entries preceding the former date. They are contained in six folio volumes of manuscript, in the Dutch language, as spoken and written in the middle of the seventeenth century; and are preserved in the Manuscript room of the City Library in the City Hall. Until the earlier part of this century they remained as they were written. Then the first of the six volumes was translated for the municipality by a gentleman named Westbrook, but not well done, and with it his labors ended. The next step was not taken till 1848. On the twenty-second of January in that year, the Mayor approved a resolution of the Common Council, appointing Edmund B. O’Callaghan, M.D., the author of the History of New Netherland, and editor of the four volumes of the Documentary History of New York and of the eleven volumes of the Documents Relating to the Colonial History of the State of New York (two works published by the State), to translate the remaining five Dutch volumes.

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