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Minutes of the Executive Council of the province of New York : administration of Francis Lovelace, 1668-1673 (Volume 1) online

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of the


Frontispiece Vol.





1 .'

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From the Original Painting by John Riley in the National Portrait Gallery, London.

(Orifrinal mcasiirfs 47''s by 38' ■> inches.)

MINUTES of the


of the Province of New York

Administration of Francis Lovelace


Volume I



Edited by Victor Hugo Paltsits, State Historian

Published by the State of New York, Albany, 19 10

Reported to the Legislature
April 5th, 1909
May 2d, 1910

Albany. H. ^■
3. B. Lyon Company, State Printers


Table of Contents 5

List of Illustrations 7

Key to Abbreviations g

Introduction 11

Minutes (annotated) 19

Collateral and Illustrative Documents in this volume,

Nos. I to XIX, as follow^s: —
No. I. Proclamation of Fast Days, September 8th

and 22d, 1668 191

No. II. Regulation of Commerce — Exports and

Imports 194

No. III. John Archer, and his Controversies with

Fordham, Harlem, Westchester, and Individuals. 195

No. IV. New Ferry at Spuyten Duyvil 222

No. V. New Road between New York and Harlem. 230
No. VI. Town of Westchester, WiUiam Willett and

Thomas Hunt, Sr 231

No. VII. Yonkers — Van der Donck's Purchase. . . . 234
No. VIII. Bushwick vs Newtown — Boundary Dis-
pute 235

No. IX. Nangenutch alias Will, an Indian, for Rape

at East Hampton, L. 1 240

No. X. Esopus Papers — Kingston, Hurley and Mar-

bletown 241

No. XI. Delaware — Long Finn Insurrection 309

No. XII. Delaware — Rape by an Indian 323

No. XIII. Delaware — Case of William Douglas. . . 324

No. XIV. Newtown — Case of Abraham Frost. . . . 326


Table of Contents


No. XV. Controversy between Nicasius de Sille and

Catharina, his wife, about their Estates 327

No. XVI. Divorce Case of Rebecca Leveridge against

Eleazar Leveridge, of Huntington, Long Island. 331

No. XVII. Staten Island — Final Purchase of Island

from Indians in 1670 337

No. XVIII. Thomas Mayhew, Jurisdiction of Mar-
tha's Vineyard, Nantucket, and other Islands,
etc 345

No. XIX. Albany Affairs and Pacification of the

Mohawks 377

Note: — These Collateral and Illustrative Documents
are continued and concluded in the second


Portrait of James, Duke of York, as James II . . Frontispiece

From the original painting by John Riley in the National Portrait Gal-
lery, London, England. It is undated but shows a younger face than
the portrait by Kneller in the same collection, which represents him at
the age of fifty-one years.

Facsimiles of the Autographs of Richard Nicolls and Fran-
cis Lovelace, the First Two English Governors of Nev?

York — Exact Size Opposite p. 1 1

First Page of the Council Minutes Opposite p. 21

Articles of the Surrender of New Netherlands in 1664
Opposite p. 65

From the very rare original Dutch broadside in the New York Public
Library. It was probably issued in Holland to be used as a poster.

Draught of the Land in Dispute between Pell and Rich-
bell Opposite p. 1 19

From the original manuscript in Land Papers, vol. i, p. lo, in the
office of the Secretary of State.

Facsimile of the Title Page of Daniel Denton's "Brief

Description of New- York," 1670 Opposite p. 132

From a very rare copy intact with the date in Columbia University
Library. It is the first separate printed account of New York in English.

A Page of the Council Minutes, showing the lower quarter
rotten and the writing faded Opposite p. 137

Draught of Fordham and the Meadow, [1669].
Opposite p. 195

From the original manuscript in Land Papers, vol. i, p. 13, in the o£Sce
of the Secretary of State.



Reduced Facsimile of Robert Rider's Survey of Long Island

and Environs, 1670 Opposite p. 237

From the original manuscript (17J by 51 inches) owned by the New
York Historical Society, by whose courtesy it is reproduced here.

Last Page of the Proceedings of the Court held at Esopus
(Kingston) in 1670, with the Signatures. . Opposite p. 303

Signatures of Witnesses to the Indian Indenture Deed con-
veying Staten Island in 1670 Opposite p. 340

From the original manuscript now in the archives of the New York
State Library, but of late in LM,nd Papers, vol. i, in the office of the Sec-
retary of State. The duplicate indenture deed is owned by the New
York Historical Society.

Marks of Indians on the Indenture Deed conveying Staten
Island in 1670 Opposite p. 341

See preceding note.

Plan of Manhattan Island and Environs, v?ith an Inset Plan

of New York City, circa 1665 In Pocket.

From the original manuscript in the British Museum, London, Eng-
land, Additional Manuscripts, No. 1637 1. It is the so-called Nicolls
map, a name given to it because produced while Richard Nicolls was
governor of New York. It is the largest extant plan of Manhattan
Island made during the English colonial period, and is reproduced here
in exact size of the original.


This key is designed to elucidate only the more abstruse
abbreviations and contractions that occur in these two
initial volumes to assist the amateur in reading the texts.
The vi^riters of the original manuscripts did not always mark
contractions as custom demanded and they were not par-
ticularly consistent when they did mark them. In these
volumes the texts are printed as closely verbatim et literatim
et punctuatim as typography will allow. The contraction
mark is usually placed on or over the letter which immedi-
ately precedes the place of elision ; but there are exceptions.
Perhaps the commonest survivals of signs that have come
down to the present day are & (and), a cursive writing of
the Latin word et ; and ^ (Per).

A mark over a letter sometimes indicates that it is doubled,
as in cofnonly, rune, Sumes.
Adfnto" = Administrators,
ats^ alias.
fe== syllable her, as in Hifenis (Hiberniae), Robt (Robert),

Decemb, (December).
C. A. = an editorial designation for the manuscript records

of the Court of Assizes, vol. 2, in the New York

State Library.
Col. MSS. =an editorial designation for the volumes of New

York Colonial Manuscripts in the New York State

Co» and Colt : = Colonel.

Com"""^, Com°^, Comn'^ and Cofn'^ ^^ Commissioners.
Comp^ = Complaint,
con = syllable tion in words that have it.
Def = Defendant.
D^ = Domine.
Diri = Domini.


lo Key to Abbreviations

Q £ ^ an editorial designation for the manuscript volumes
of General Entries, vols, i and 4, in the New York
State Library.
Gen='!', Gen", Gen^^" and Gen^.« =- Generall.
Gent.== Gentleman, Gentlemen.
gra = gratia (p. 286).
Im = Item.

Inhitants = Inhabitants (p. 231).
int = inter (between).
i« : 18^ : 00* = One pound, eighteen shillings and no

pence, English money.
Lres = Letters.
Magrate = Magistrate.
Ma**.^= = Majesties (Majesty's).

O. W. L.= an editorial designation for the manuscript vol-
ume of Orders, Warrants, Letters, vol. 2, in the New
York State Library.
^ and p = syllables, par, per, por.
¥ and p = syllable pro.
PetnT= = Petitioners.
pn^ = Plaintiffs.
po'* = pound (p. 148).
pnts = presents (p. 235).

<p = syllable 9«^, as in Annoq3 (Annoque), Publiq3 (Pub-
lique); also used as a contraction in Es(p (Esquire).
Rich = Richard.
s'^ = said.

Southton = Southampton.
yi and * = syllable ver in Dutch texts.
w'=^= which.
Xpians = Christians.

y = a survival and modification of an Anglo-Saxon letter,
whose value is th, and it is always so pronounced
when written in the words y'= (the), y' (that),
y™ (them), y" (then), y^ (they).

Opposite p. 1 I .

tO'fia/ru :nu^^


(Exact Size.)


THE Minutes of the Executive Council of the Province
of Nevp York span more than a century of time. They
embrace virtually the entire English colonial period
of New York, and represent official administrative materials
of the first magnitude.' But the body of these minutes has
never been printed in extenso, whilst selections of only a
very small part have appeared in various works in unsyste-
matic relations and with many textual inaccuracies.^

It has been deemed pertinent, in presenting the initial
volumes for the consideration of historical students, to
offer a detailed statement of plan and editorial methods.
Transcription has been done with the strictest regard for
accuracy and in accordance with the best canons of his-
torical documentation. The State Historian has himself
copied the body of the minutes printed in this volume, as
well as a large number of accompanying documents, and
has reviewed and revised all transcripts directly from the
originals. Likewise, he has read the printer's proofs with
the original manuscripts. He has selected and systematized
the documents; has written all of the annotations, and
planned the mechanical coordination of the material for
the printer. A special archivist's key-board was con-

' A calendar of the minutes was published, in March, 1902, as Bulletin 58
of the New York State Library, which is designated more particularly as
No. 6 of the library's history series.

• For example, in Documents relative to the Colonial History of tlie State of
New York, vols. 12-14, embracing selections for the years 1668 to 1683.

12 Province of New York

structed for the typewriter and special sorts of abbreviations
were designed for punches for the printer.

Brevity and crudity characterize these minutes — hence
they are very often involved or unintelligible. Business
determined in council, but not engrossed in the minutes,
has been found in the volumes of general entries. Great
pains have been taken in studying and interpreting the
materials. The business in council originated from litiga-
tions, petitions, complaints, letters and other papers which
came before the governor and his associates for considera-
tion; and the proceedings in council gave origin to com-
missions, court cases, orders, warrants, letters, licenses,
passes, proclamations and other official papers. In order
to revivify the minutes and restore the administrative
history of the period, the engrossed miscellaneous records,'
engrossed deeds,- and original colonial manuscripts ' were
combed over several times for the collateral documents
which, more or less veiled, are referred to in the minutes,
and for other records which are quite as illustrative of the
matters discussed and adjudicated. These two classes
of records have been brought together in cases or groups
as "Collateral and Illustrative Documents." They are
placed after the body of the minutes; are authenticated
properly as to source, and each case or group has been
given a distinct roman number. The discovery of this
accompanying material, often dimly discernible as to its
relationship, has involved a great task and has consumed
much time. The engrossed records are proof that they

' Known as Orders, Warrants, Letters, vol. 2; General Entries, vols, i and 4;
Court of Assizes, vol. 2, including miscellaneous records as well as the court
records. In Archives of the New York State Library.

> In the oiEce of Secretary of State, from which a few patents were also

' Volumes of the heterogeneous collection known as New York Colonial
Manuscripts, in the archives of the New York State Library.

Introduction 13

were entered often days, sometimes months and even a
year or more after the date of their origin. Whenever a
subject appears in the minutes which can be elucidated by
related records, reference is made in a foot-note of the min-
utes to the proper numerical group or groups of the "Col-
lateral and Illustrative Documents."

The council minutes in this volume cover the period
during which Colonel Francis Lovelace was governor under
the Duke of York, from the first convening of the council,
on September 2, 1668, until interruption just before the
retaking of New York by the Dutch, in the summer of 1673.
It is known that Colonel Richard Nicolls, who was the
predecessor of Lovelace from August, 1664, until about
August, 1668, had an advisory council; but no minutes
exist for that period, and no evidence has been found that
distinctive minutes were kept. The executive acts of
Nicolls are available in general entries and correspondence,
and the minutes of the court of assizes for the period reveal
functions similar to those afterwards embodied in regular
council minutes. The court of assizes, in fact, acted as a
law making body. So that, notwithstanding the prescrip-
tions in the code known as the Duke of York's laws, there
were provisions that appear not to have become immediately

The annotations to the council minutes are designed
particularly as supplementary data. They add to the
understanding of the material and intensify the personnel
of the records. A real difficulty was encountered In keep-
ing that part of the work within reasonable limits, on account
of the superabundance of data that had been gathered for
editorial service. The annotations usually authenticate
themselves. They are derived from original manuscripts
and engrossed records of the State preserved In the archives

14 Province of New York

of the New York State Library and the office of the Secre-
tary of State. The printed local records of the jurisdictions
of the period have been consulted, and some hundreds of
such secondary works as county and town histories and genea-
logical publications have been examined. It is manifest
that these secondary works cannot be guaranteed for every
statement quoted. They vary greatly as to value, but
they do at times supply important sidelights and furnish
creditable data not otherwise obtainable in print. They
have been used cautiously and often are merely suggested
at the end of a note. It has not been my purpose to write
biographical or genealogical notes. That feature is inci-
dental to the main object. I have sought to illustrate who
the persons were, in their bearing and relations to the events
in which they figure in these particular minutes and gen-
erally within the period embraced by the administration
of Governor Lovelace. But it has been deemed wise at
times to extend the period at both ends in the interest of
lucidity. It would have rejoiced me much to have carried
on these investigations among the unpublished original
local records of New York City, and the old settlements
of Long Island, Westchester, Ulster and Albany counties.
Such investigation would have led also far afield, into the
colonial archives of neighboring colonies and the records of
the Public Record Office, in London. Lack of time, money
and assistants were sufficient reasons for waiving such a
herculean task. The chief result of such extended inquiry
would have been a more intimate exhibit of intercolonial
relations, local conditions, and the status of particular
litigations in courts of sessions, before they were handed
up to the governor and council or to the court of assizes.
The bodies of early court records of colonial New York

Introduction 15

should be published independently as an organic whole.*
In this work, the minutes of the court of assizes have been
quoted in the annotations. But one exception has been
made, in the case of Richard Smith against the town of
Huntington, because that controversy persisted through
some years, in council and in courts. A full transcript of
that case from the minutes of the court of assizes has been
included with the other collateral papers of the period.

It is regrettable that there are gaps in the related docu-
ments and that imperfections in others mar the continuity
of evidence. Ignorance, vandalism and war have con-
tributed their share of havoc in the past, and it is remarkable
that so many of the records yet remain.^ In compliance
with a joint resolution of the legislature, passed February
18-19, 1819, many of the records, then in the office of the
Secretary of State, were rebound. The set of council
minutes and the related volumes of general entries were
among them. But as the lettering of the bindings was done
carelessly, titles were transformed and sets became mixed. ^

The council minutes now printed in this volume cover
one hundred and fifty-nine pages of a small folio volume
lettered " COUNCIL/MINUTES/3/1668-1678/SECRYS/
OFFICE." The volume has also an early manuscript
index, for 1668-1673, of eleven unnumbered pages. This
constitutes part i. Part ii begins with October 31, 1674, and
ends with the session of November 30, 1678, and has one

' For example, I have planned to collect from various places those of the
court of assizes, to form a future publication.

2 See Tragedies in New York's Public Records, by the present State His-
torian, in Annual Report of American Historical Association, 1909.

' Aa account of these records was printed as Senate Document, No. 2,
entitled: Report of the Secretary of State relative to the Records, etc. in his
Office. Albany, 1820. Folio, 43 pp. Many of them were removed to the
New York State Library, by act of legislature, passed April 19, 1881 {N. Y.
Laws, 1881, ch. 120).

1 6 Province of New York

hundred and eighty-eight pages and an early index of
fifteen unnumbered pages. The volume number does not
appear in the manuscript, but on preliminary blank leaves
are found, in early handwritings: "Matters Relating to
Council 1668. to 73", and "Matters of Councell." During
the rebinding, already referred to, "General Entries 1664-
65"' and "Court of Assize, 1665-72" were lettered as i
and 2, respectively, of a set of thirty-three volumes of council
minutes and general entries, which caused the first volume
of council minutes to be dubbed as 3. The minutes of the
intervening Dutch control (1673-4), are in New York
Colonial Manuscripts, vol. 23, pp.l-270, and have been
translated and printed in Documents relative to the Colonial
History of the State of New York, vol. 2, pp. 569-730.
Toward the end of the second part of the so-called third
volume another interruption in the minutes occurs from
November 10, 1677, to August 17, 1678, including the period
of the visit of Governor Edmund Andros to England and
the temporary regime of Captain Anthony Brockholls. A
few minutes for this period are found in New York Colonial
Manuscripts, vols. 26 and 27. A volume of "General
Entries" (1671-1674), having been lettered as 4,- the next
volume of the minutes for 1683 to 1688 is marked as 5,
producing a gap from 1678 to 1683, part of which, to Novem-
ber 19, 1680, is supplied in New York Colonial Manu-
scripts, vols. 28 and 29, whilst executive acts are recorded
in "General Entries" (1678-1680), lettered as vol. 32, and
in "Entries" (1682-1683), lettered as vol. 33. Another

> Printed and abstracted as History Bulletin, No. 2 (May, 1899), of the
New York State Library.

2 Really vol. 4 of the miscellaneous engrossed records. In 1772, a vol. 4 of
the council minutes was yet in the secretary's office, covering from December,
1678, to September, 1683. This is now missing and its whereabouts is

Introduction 17

hiatus in the minutes occurs between vol. 5, breaking off
with the last council under Governor Thomas Dongan,
August 2, 1688, and vol. 6, which begins with the first
council under Governor Henry Sloughter, on March 19,
169 1. The State has no regular minutes for the first year
of this period when New York was united with New England
under Governor Edmund Andros, but the administration
of Jacob Leisler, for the years 1689 to 1691, is represented
by a few minutes and many letters, commissions, appoint-
ments, orders, accounts, etc., in New York Colonial Manu-
scripts, vol. 36. Beginning with vol. 6, the minutes form
virtually an uninterrupted series till February 14, 1776,
inclusive. There are also a few minutes of councils of
Governor James Robertson and Lieutenant Governor
Andrew Elliott, from March 23, 1780, to November 19,
1783, of sessions in New York City during the British

When the first regular colonial legislature ' was convened,
in 1 69 1, by Governor Sloughter, the council became a legis-
lative body, coordinate with the assembly, but continued
also its executive sessions. Its legislative minutes have
been printed in two large volumes, as Journal of the Legis-
lative Council of the Colony of New-York. Began the gth
Jay of April, 1 69 1; and ended the ^d day of April, Ijy^
(Albany, 1861). The executive and legislative minutes were
first entered, reversed, in vols. 6 to 8, the legislative minutes
occupying the end of each volume. In vol. 6 were entered

' As the governors of the royal colonies were required to transmit regularly
to England copies of council proceedings, among other official records, for
approval and information, many of them are yet preserved in the Public
Record Office, London, among the Colonial Office Papers, Class 5. Some of
the gaps that appear in the State's archives, after 1686, it will be possible to
supplement from this source. See Andrews. List of the Journals, etc.,
pp. 477, ff., in Appendix D. Ninth Report of the Public Archives Commis*
sion of the American Historical Association, igo8.

' There was of course a representative assembly as early as 1681.

Province of New York

also the minutes of the council in its judicial capacity, for
1 687-1 688, and in vol. 7 the proceedings of the court of
oyer and terminer, for 1679-1685. The executive and
legislative functions were mingled in vols. 9 to 17 (1702-
1736), and the legislative minutes that have been printed
were marked at the time of publication by a pen or pencil
line in the margins of the manuscripts. Vols. 18, 20, 22,
24, 27, 28, and 30 contain only legislative minutes and were
printed entire in 1861. Vols. 19, 21, 23, 25, 26, 29, and 31
complete the quota of engrossed executive council minutes.
But the State has besides the engrossed minutes parts of two
extra sets. The second set is made up of rough copies in
blank books and, allowing for some breaks, covers the years
1709 to 1776. The third set contains the original drafts
of the proceedings on loose sheets, from 1754 to 1775.' So
it will appear evident that the proper editorial supervision
of the executive council minutes, for a large period, will
require a careful collation of two or three sets owned by
the State and the minutes, after 1686, in the Public Record
Office, London. Only by this procedure can a standard
text be established. Added to this task is the selection
and proper coordination of the miscellaneous engrossed
and original documents for the entire body of minutes,
commensurate with the plan outlined and put into execution
in these initial volumes. The State could not do itself
greater honor than to encourage the persistent prosecution
of a work so important for students and so desirable to
rehabilitate her administrative history during the entire
English colonial period.


State Historian
Albany, July 27, 1910.

' Calendar of Council Minutes (Albany, 1902), p. 3, £f.



Opposite p. 2 1



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Oi^ina Mo 2 2.'" '~h aY crs Ji^'J c//anM ^et, aOS^t^ueh ^


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(Reduced from IW2 by 7Vj inches. I

LSept. 2j

Executive Council Minutes 21

[i] At a Councell held at Forte James in New
Yorke y^ 2^ day of Septem: 1668.


His Honor y^ Governor
M"" Mayor
Cap? Willett
M' Whitfield
The Seer:*

It is this day Ordered, That a Fast or Day of Humiliation A Fast
bee kept throughout this Governm* to deprecate Gods ^^ ^^'

. . , . pointed.-

afflicting hand from us, & to imprecate his Blessing upon
the Governor & Governm'; To w'^'' end a Proclamacon is
to bee issued forth.// ^

Ordered, That Tuesday next bee y^ day appointed to bee
sett apart being the 8*'' of this instant Month, for the City
of New Yorke & the Libertyes thereof.//

Ordered, That Tuesday Fortnight following being the
22"^ day of this Month bee observed in like manner for the
Inhabitants of Albany & y^ Sopez,^ & soe likewise through-

Online LibraryNew York (Colony). Executive CouncilMinutes of the Executive Council of the province of New York : administration of Francis Lovelace, 1668-1673 (Volume 1) → online text (page 1 of 29)