Front Matter Where I Was Born Alone in Holland An Important Introduction I Go My Way The Bargain Sailing for the New World A View of New Netherland The "Brown Men" or Savages Summoned to the Cabin Toys for the Savages Claim of the India Company Making Ready for Trade Braun and Gildersleeve Gathering the Savages Going Ashore Buying Manhattan Boats Used by the Savages Wandering over the Island The Homes of the Savages Master Minuit's Home Beginning the Work A Strange Kind of Craft Building a Fort In Charge of the Goods The Value of Wampum Buildings of Stone The Government A Prosperous Town Quarrelsome Slaves A Brutal Murder A Village Called Plymouth I Go on a Voyage A Lukewarm Welcome Two Days in Plymouth Forging Ahead The Big Ship Minuit's Successor Trouble with the English Van Twiller Discharged Director Kieft Unjust Commands Minuit's Return Revenge of the Savages Kieft's War Director Petrus Stuyvesant Time for Sight-Seeing How the Fort was Armed Village Laws Other Things about Town A Visit of Ceremony New Amsterdam, a City Stuyvesant Makes Enemies Orders from Holland Making Ready for War An Unexpected Question With the Fleet Driving out the Swedes Uprising of the Indians An Attack by the Indians Back to New Amsterdam Coaxing the Savages Religious Freedom Punishing the Quaker Other Persecutions Dull Trade Charge Made by Hans Braun Dismissed by Stuyvesant English Claims Idle Days On Broad Way Looking after the Ferry Coming of the English A Weak Defense Stuyvesant Absent Disobeying Commands Surrender Demanded A Three Days' Truce English Visitors Stuyvesant's Rage The End of Dutch Rule The City of New York

Peter of New Amsterdam - James Otis

How the Fort was Armed

It may interest you to know that our fort was well armed, having mounted and ready for service, eight bombards, by which I mean heavy cannon with wide, flaring mouths; six culverins, or exceedingly long, slim guns with handles on either side for carrying; and seven serpentines, these last being thin, long guns with grooves on the inside to throw the shot in a whirling manner. As missiles for the serpentines, two balls were chained together, being sent among the enemy in such way that they swung round and round, oftentimes inflicting much damage.

The palisade, which had been built straight across the island while the savages were thirsting for our blood, was to me a wonder in those days when Master Tienhoven gave me an opportunity for strolling about the town.

It was made of cedar logs full twelve-feet high, and less than a quarter-mile back from the fort, stretching across the island for a distance of nearly twenty-five hundred feet. Here and there, say every three hundred feet, was a small fort built of logs, where the soldiers could be protected while beating back an enemy, and at the water's edge on the river to the eastward, was what is called a half-moon battery, set well out into the stream, where were mounted two guns.

[Illustration] from Peter of New Amsterdam by James Otis

The same kind of fortification stood at the other end of the palisade, on the shore of that river discovered by MIaster Henry Hudson, and near each battery was a gate giving entrance to the town, while an arch with heavy barriers, formed with much ornamentation of carving, stretched across the Broad Way.

Following this palisade was a wide lane, along which were built the huts of the slaves, servants, or people who were poor because of being lazy.