The New Netherland Research Center is making available digitized versions of translations and transcriptions of documents relating to New Netherland. Written in an archaic hand, these seventeenth-century documents were damaged by fire and water, but they are our best source of knowledge about the former Dutch colony. Available on this website are government records held by the New York State Archives, private and corporate papers from the collections of the New York State Library, and selected documents from other repositories. Scanned originals of many of these documents are available on the website of the New York State Office of Cultural Education.
New York Historical Manuscripts: Dutch / New Netherland Documents series introductions
This compilation of the introductions to the New York Historical Manuscripts: Dutch / New Netherland Documents series translations contains 13 introductions and will allow researchers to quickly acquaint themselves with the content of these publications.
From the Collections of the New York State Archives
Register of the Provincial Secretary. The Secretary of New Netherland was responsible for recording public documents for potential presentation in court. These volumes contain a wide range of documents, including depositions, contracts, wills, and estate inventories.
• Volume 1, 1638–1642
• Volume 2, 1642–1647
Correspondence. These volumes collect the official correspondence of Petrus Stuyvesant, Director-General of New Netherland. They begin with his arrival in North America in 1647.
• Volume 11, 1647–1653
• Volume 12, 1654–1658
Curacao Papers. This collection of documents—ship manifests, land grants, official reports, and resolutions—chronicles Dutch rule of Curacao as a Caribbean trading center. These documents are from the files of Petrus Stuyvesant who served as director-general of New Netherland, Curacao, Bonaire, and Aruba.
• Volume 17, Curacao Papers, 1640–1665
From the Collections of the New York State Library
Van Rensselaer Manor Papers. The court minutes of Rensselaerswijck along with the business and personal correspondence of patroon Jeremias van Rensselaer (1632-1674) and his wife Maria (1645-1688/89) chronicle social, economic, legal, and governmental aspects of life on the patroonship.
• Correspondence of Jeremias van Rensselaer - Translation
• Correspondence of Maria van Rensselaer - Translation
• Court Minutes of Rensselaerswijck - Translation
• Manuscript Images for Correspondence and Court Minutes from the Digital Collections of the New York State Library
The Memorandum Book of Antony de Hooges
Antony de Hooges served as business manager of Rensselaerswijck, beginning somewhere between March 1645 and February 1646 and running through March 1648. De Hooges recorded the colony’s business and some personal observations in the Memorandum Book.
• Introduction and Translation
• Manuscript Images at the Digital Collections of the New York State Library
From the Collections of the New York Public Library
The New Netherland Papers of Hans Bontemantel. Hans Bontemantel was a director of the Dutch West India Company's Amsterdam Chamber, which supervised the governance of New Netherland. In addition to official correspondence, this collection contains private communications from Director-General Petrus Stuyvesant and his First Councilor Nicasius de Sille.
Coins, Weights & Measures
Guide to Seventeenth-Century Dutch Coins, Weights & Measures — a glossary of terms that appear in these seventeenth-century Dutch records.