Posted in arts, time travel, writing

Town Hall for the people of New Amsterdam

On Friday, February 12th, 1663, the characters created by our class attended a meeting at the Stadhuis (Town Hall) of New Amsterdam. The subject of the meeting was none other than Petrus Stuyvesant himself, and the meeting was led by two representatives of the Dutch West India Company. Before being placed into our time machine, everyone had a chance to prepare notes with their thoughts about Stuyvesant’s leadership and changes that should still be made to New Amsterdam.

Here are the children of New Amsterdam, scribbling treatises for and against their Director-General. The Quakers were so passionate they wrote speeches during lunchtime!

 

Here are some images of the Town Hall as it unfolded…

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James Angola lobs some harsh words at the Director-General
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Margrit, a Quaker girl, came with plenty to say about the unjust treatment of her religion and gender.

“Stuyvesant shall be removed though he has cleaned the town he has done terrible things. I was put in stocks for lifting my skirts over a muddy street. Stocks, I say, for preventing discomfort. And I am not even aloud to practice my religion, and no, I am not going to the Dutch Reformed Church. I am my own priest and no one can stop me cause I’ll find God in the stocks. I’ll find god in prison. I’ll find god wherever you put me, wherever I go.” –Margrit, created by Burk

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David Israel, who is Jewish, railed against Stuyvesant’s unjust laws
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Every child in attendance wanted a chance to speak!
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This Walloon child simply cannot contain himself

We were even presented a joint resolution written by Quaker and Walloon girls (Grace and Elisabeth, created by Clementine and Xeta, respectively!

Dear Dutch etc.

  1. Girls should not be fined for lifting their dresses because they’ll ruin their dress and waste lots of wampum.
  2. If your house was on fire you should not have to pay, because you’ll lose a bunch of your stuff including your house.
  3. People are getting fined for passing speed limits, when there is a rush.
  4. Using stocks, it’s a bad idea, because it’s hurting your own people, or village.
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Grace and Elisabeth present a list of grievances to Stuyvesant, who is unmoved
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Yet another Quaker has come prepared with a speech in his hands and the fire of righteousness in his heart

And, video of some heated moments (you must visit TroutTime site to watch the video).

Here is Askook, a Lenape boy, sharing his opinion of the Director-General

The passionate spirit of Amber, a Dutch child,  cannot be constrained!

Continue reading “Town Hall for the people of New Amsterdam”

Posted in arts, time travel, writing

A big problem for Amber…

–Entry by Lola

March 19th, 1662

Dear journal,

Today I woke up with the sun rising in my window. I lay there for a minute, but then I rose, for I have work to be done. I got dressed in my sky blue dress with white flowers that used to be my mothers when she was a girl. Then I braided my hair, put it in a bun, and tied on my bonnet. Helena, the other indentured servant living with us, was wearing her mellow orange dress, with white birds and a white bonnet similar to mine. She was to clean the house with Peter every 

IMG_3118morning and make the beds. Then I woke Peter, went downstairs, and left him to get dressed. When I got downstairs to the kitchen, my apron was hanging by the hearth. I brought it over my head. I got out the grain to make porridge, and put it in a big pot on a hook over the fire. Then I poured water in the pot and lit the fire with flint and steel. I let it boil and then put the grain in. I looked in the cupboard and found there was only a small bit of sugar, bread and cheese left. Then I called for Peter to set the table. I brought the sugar, bread and cheese to the table, where I placed them and called “Meneer Hanuss, Miss Sara, breakfast is served!”

I heard their footsteps on the creaky wooden floor of the steps as I poured bitter beer into their cups for them to drink. After Miss Sara and Meneer Hanuss had finished their breakfast, before Peter and Helena had come to clear the table, I asked if I could go to the market. When Minheer Hanuss asked why, I simply said I needed more ingredients if they wanted to have food by lunch and I had to go right away. He said I could go, without a second thought. He had gotten kinder since the first time I met him. Then, before I left with a big bag of guilders, he said I could use the leftovers to trade for something I’d like.

I skipped up De Heere Gracht then up De Princes Gracht and turned right on Tuyun Street,and  by this time I was out of breath.  I needed flour, grain, meat (fish, pig, rabbit), and sugar. The rest I could get from the garden at home. I had just finished buying five pounds of sugar for only 4 guilders instead of 6. What a good deal I had made.  I now had 5 guilders left and was looking around for something when I saw 12 year old Sara running towards me calling my name desperately. As she ran towards me, she tripped over a bucket next to the schoolhouse that strayed from the well. I started to run towards her as she got up. I immediately asked her if she was okay. She responded with a stone face that she was alright then the words blurted out of my mouth “WHY WERE YOU RUNNING TOWARDS ME?!” She was so taken aback by my loud curious voice, for she knows me to be secretive and moderately quiet. I quickly apologized and asked her again in a quiet and less eager voice. It still took her a while to get it out. Then she finally spoke clearly. These were her exact words. “Your brother has been slacking with his work and my father is thinking of moving him to his my uncle’s farm in Holland…”    

Posted in time travel, writing

Another day in New Amsterdam

Lief dagboek,

Today I was sitting under the big tree when a Lenape trader walked up. He was carrying bever pelts. I dropped my lunch. “Welnik alapaek,” he said. I picked up my bread and threw it to a nearby varken. I stood up one of my klompen landed in my hutspot. Lenape traders never traveled this far into the city. “Goedemorgen?” I said uncertainly. I took out a string of sewan and asked “how much?” I picked out 3 strings of sewan and pointed at the one I wanted. I handed it over, I handed over the sewan. I admired my prize. I had thought I would have to go past the wall. I walked home and hung my prize on the wall. I was going to make it into a scarf tomorrow. I went upstairs. I had quite a lot of paperwork to fill out. My will was taking a long time. I stayed up till 12:00 ignoring the constant “all is well” from the rattle watch. I tossed and turned in my sleep. “It’s 1:00 and all is well” I heard from a distant place. I fell asleep and was suddenly woken up by a yell, “fire at the blacksmiths! Fire at the blacksmiths! Bring your buckets!” I get up and hastily got dressed, raced to the door, picked up my bucket and sped to the blacksmith. When I got there people were pouring bucket after bucket onto the blaze…

–Nicholas

Posted in time travel, writing

Getting to know New Amsterdam

Letters written “home” after a few days in New Amsterdam…

Liefste moeder,

I have just arrived here in New Amsterdam and I don’t mean to be picky but I am not very impressed! I see streets unpaved, not very friendly kids at the what’s it called? The latin school! But hey, I can’t complain I mean I agreed to it and I know it will be worth it. I do enjoy Stone Street though it’s the only street paved so my eyes don’t have to be glued to the floor all the time! I am impressed by the big tall tree! I have ate lunch there 4 times already. I am provided with food by the way. I’m pretty sure this first week is supposed to be not very hard because I’m not doing much work. I hear there is a gate going to a bunch of berries GIANT ones it’s called the Water Gate. I wanted to go there but my “master” says no! I do like him though his name is Frank. I also saw a big ship called the “HAKASAKAF.” It was written in gold!!! Probably fake gold that’s what Frank said at least but he says everything’s fake! Except for his stuff of course, his treasure, his 500 pound pig, his diamond collection…etcetera etcetera. He gave me worker’s shoes so his animals won’t step on me! They’re way too big but he says I’ll grow into them but they’re so big both my feet can fit in them at the same time! As you know I’m a perfectionist so your perspective is most likely different.
Sincerely your son, me

–Fidel

Liefste moeder,
Moeder you will never believe the Coentie Slip, there was a ship that was docking in as soon as I got off the boat I was on. The boat was loud because they had to take a bunch of crates off the ship. There were a lot of beaver hat in the beaver shop and I think I saw a back room full of even more beaver objects. When I got to Stone Street I saw a chicken chasing a dog! There’s a school for rich boys it was really fancy, the boys made sure that they did not sit on dirt and they paid very good attention on the teacher. Right next to the school was a very big old tree with benches all around the tree. I miss you moeder I love you. Love your daughter Xeta.

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Liefste moeder,

I have just arrived here in New Amsterdam one week ago on a boat. It is a nice town with a big meadow with a river and some delicious berries. I am currently living on Pearl Street. I am near Stone Street (the only paved street here). Only the walls are made out of wood which would burn down in a second but it is a magnificent sight. They also have a Latin school only the rich people go to high school I have no hope of getting there anytime soon. There is a place called Beaver Street they sell lots of beaver pelt hats there. De Heere Street used to be a indian foot trail and a war path but if you stay on the other side of the wall you will be safe from the indians. A foot trail is a place where you walk not ride a horse…

–Ben I