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.... And His New York become a double portrait, and the use of original documents, journals, diaries, letters, affidavits and sworn testimony, all contemporary, gives a ring of honest interpretation to the man and the city he never understood and which never understood him. The state of the colony of New Netherland before his arrival in 1647, the dilatory behavior of the Chamber in Amsterdam to this cosmopolitan, stubborn, Indian-besieged settlement, the appointment of Stuyvesant as Director-General, all precede his appearance on the scene. Immediately unpopular through a case in which two men were deported, through his instant ordinances, regulations and attempts at cleaning up, his taxes were evaded, his problems over ministers, teachers, roving cattle, illegal drinking and loose living were constant. Dealing with the English in New England, capturing the New Sweden settlers, quelling a far spread Indian raid, helped him win some cooperation in spite of constant attacks on his person and policies and his obdurate treatment of Lutherans, Jews and Quakers and his 17 year rule, which ended in surrender to the English under Nicolls, established a city, growing and prospering. A lot of detective work in this restatement of facts, this develops a familiar attitude towards its material, fills in, and fills out the carefully assembled picture, little resembling the literary tradition of Irving and others, of Dutch days in New York. Worthwhile, both locally and historically.

Pub Date: May 25th, 1959
Publisher: Random House