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them the tokens of former affluence and respectability, such as family-plate, portraits of their ancestors executed in a superior style, and great numbers of original paintings, some of which were much admired by acknowledged judges." In New York, of course, the highest degree of refinement was to be seen, and she says: "An expensive and elegant style of living began already to take place in New York, which was, from the residence of the Governor and Commander-in-Chief, become the seat of a little court."

Society, in that day, was very stationary. About 1635 the first Dutch settlers came out, and the country was much of it occupied by their large grants, many of which had attached to them manorial rights. They brought with them some of the social distinction of the old country. In the cities of Holland, for a long time, there had been "great" and "small" burgher rights. In Amsterdam the "great burghers" monopolized all the offices, and were also exempt from attainder and confiscation of goods. The "small burghers" had the freedom of trade only. In 1657 this "great burgher" right was introduced into New Amsterdam by Governor Stuy

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"These twenty names," says William L. Stone, writing in 1866, "composed the aristocracy of New York two hundred and nine years ago. .. We have also before us the names of the Small Citizenship,' which numbered two hundred and sixteen. In a few short years it was found that the division of the citizens into two classes produced great inconvenience, in consequence of the very small number of great burghers who were eligible to office. It now became necessary for the Government to change this unpopular order. In the year 1668 the difference between 'great' and 'small' burghers was abolished, when every burgher became legally entitled to all burgher privileges." *

About fifty years after the arrival of the early Dutch settlers, they were followed by the Huguenots, driven abroad principally by the revocation of the Edict of Nantes, and including, in their number, members of some of the best families in France. Thus came the Jays, De Lanceys, Rapaljes, De Peysters, Pintards, &c. In 1688 the English took possession of the colony, and, from that time, English settlers increased. The colony became (as Paulding says) a place in which to provide for younger sons." Still, this often brought out scions of distinguished families and the best blood in England.


Thus matters stood until the Revolution. The country was parcelled out among great proprietors. We can trace them from the city of "New Amsterdam" to the northern part of the State. In what is now the thickly-populated city were the lands of the Stuyvesants, originally the Bowerie of the old GovNext above was the grant to the Kip family, called "Kip's Bay," made in 1638. In the centre of the island were the possessions of the De Lanceys. Opposite, on Long Island, was the grant to the Laurence family. We cross over Harlaem River and reach "Morrissanea," given to the Morris family. Beyond this, on the East River, was


Stone's "History of New York City," p. 33.

"De Lancey's Farm," another grant to that powerful family; while on the Hudson, to the west, was the lower Van Courtlandt manor, and the Phillipse manor. Above, at Peekskill, was the upper manor of the Van Courtlandts. Then came the manor of Livingston, then the Beekmans, then the manor of Kipsburgh, purchased by the Kip family from the Indians, in 1686, and made a royal grant by Governor Dongan, two years afterwards. Still higher up was the Van Rensselaer manor, twenty-four miles by forty-eight; and, above that, the possessions of the Schuylers. Further west, on the Mohawk, were the broad lands of Sir William Johnson, created a baronet for his services in the old French and Indian wars, who lived in a rude magnificence at Johnson Hall. All this was sacrificed by his son, Sir John, for the sake of loyalty, when he took up arms for the king and was driven into Canada. The title, how ever, is still held by his grandson, and stands recorded in the baronetage of England.


The very names of places, in some cases, show their history. Such, for instance, is that of Yonkers. The word Junker (pronounced Younker), in the languages of northern Europe, means the nobly-born- the gentleman. West Chester, on the Hudson River, still stands the old manor-house of the Phillipse family. The writer remembers, in his early day, when visiting there, the large rooms and richly-ornamented ceilings, with quaint old formal gardens about the house. When, before the Revolution, Mr. Phillipse lived there, "lord of all he surveyed," he was always spoken of by his tenantry as the Yonker"-the gentleman-par excellence. In fact, he was the only person of that social rank in that part of the country. In this way the town, which subsequently grew up about the old manor-house, took the name of Yonkers.

This was a state of things which existed in no other part of the continent. In New England there were scarcely any large landed proprietors. The country was divided up among small

farmers, and, when the Revolution commenced, the people almost unanimously espoused its cause. The aristocratic element, which in New York rallied around the Crown, was here entirely wanting. The only exception to this, which we can remember, was the case of the Gardiners, of Maine. Their wide lands were confiscated for their loyalty; but, on account of some informality, after the Revolution, they managed to recover their property, and are still seated at Gardiner.

At the South, where so much was said about their being "the descendants of the Cavaliers," there were no such feudal relations. The planters had no tenantry; they had slaves. Their system, therefore, was similar to that of the serfdom of Russia. With the colonial families of New York it was the English feudal system.

Hereditary landed property was, in that day, invested with the same dignity in New York which it has now in Europe; and, for more than a century, these families retained their possessions, and directed the infant colony. They formed a coterie of their own, and, generation after generation, married among themselves. Turn to the early records of New York, and you find all places of official dignity filled by a certain set of familiar names, many of which, since the Revolution, have entirely disappeared. As we have remarked, they occupied a position similar to that of the English country gentleman, with his many tenants, and were everywhere looked up to with the same kind of respect which is now accorded to them. Their position was an acknowledged one, for social distinctions then were marked and undisputed. They were the persons who were placed in office in the Provincial Council and Legislature, and no one pretended to think it strange. "They," says a writer on that day,

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his social position. Those people of a century ago now look down upon us from their portraits, in costumes which, in our day, we see nowhere but on the stage. Velvet coats with gold lace, large sleeves and ruffles at the hands, wigs and embroidered vests, with the accompanying rapier, are significant of a class removed from the rush and bustle of life-the "nati consumere fruges -whose occupation was not-to toil. No one, in that day, below their degree, assumed their dress; nor was the lady surpassed in costliness of attire by her servant. In fact, at that time, there were gentlemen and ladies, and there were servants.

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The manner in which these great landed estates were arranged fostered a feudal feeling. They were granted by Government to the proprietors, on condition that, in a certain number of years, they settled so many tenants upon them. These settlers were generally Germans of the lower class, who had been brought over free. Not being able to pay their passage-money, the captain took them without charge, and then they were sold by him to the landed proprietors for a certain number of years, in accordance with the size of the family. The sum received remunerated him for the passage-money. They were called, in that day, Redemptioners; and, by the time their term of service-sometimes extending to seven years—had expired, they were acquainted with the ways of the country and its manner of farming, had acquired some knowledge of the language, and were prepared to set up for themselves. Thus both parties were benefited. The landed proprietor fulfilled his contract with the Government, and the Redemptioners were trained for becoming independent settlers.

From these Redemptioners many of the wealthy farming families, now living in the Hudson River counties, are descended. In an early day they purchased lands which enriched their children. The writer's father once told him of an incident which occurred in his grandfather's family. One of his Ger

man tenants, having served out his time of several years' duration, brought to his late owner a bag of gold which had come with him from the old country, and was sufficient to purchase a farm. "But," said his master, in surprise, "how comes it, Hans, with all this money, that you did not pay your passage, instead of serving as a Redemptioner so long?" "Oh," said the cautious emigrant from the Rhine, "I did not know English, and I should have been cheated. Now I know all about the country, and I can set up for myself."

These tenants, however, looked up with unbounded reverence to the landed proprietor who owned them, and it took much more than one generation to enable them to shake off this feeling, or begin to think of a social equality.

There was, in succeeding times, one curious result of this system in the confusion of family names. These German Redemptioners often had but one name. For instance, a man named Paulus was settled as a tenant on an estate. As his children grew up, they needed something to distinguish them. They were Paulus' Jan and Paulus' Hendrick. This naturally changed to Jan Paulus and Hendrick Paulus, and thus Paulus became the family name.

This was well enough. But they frequently took the name of their proprietor. He was known as Morris' Paulus, and this, in the next generation, naturally changed to Paulus Morris, and his children assumed that as their family name. In this way there are many families in the State of New York bearing the names of the old landed proprietors, which have been thus derived.

Some years ago a literary gentleman, who was compiling facts with regard to the early history of the State, came to the writer, very much puzzled. “Who," said he, "are these people? I find their names in Dutchess county, and yet, looking at Holgate's pedigree of that family, I see they cannot belong to it. Where did they come from, and where do they belong?" The above account was a satisfactory solution of the mystery.


But to return to this system. It was carried out to an extent of which, in this day, most persons are ignorant. the Van Rensselaer manor there were, at one time, several thousand tenants, and their gathering was like that of the Scottish clans. When a member of the family died, they came down to Albany to do honor at the funeral, and many were the hogsheads of good ale which were broached for them. They looked up to the "Patroon" with a reverence which was still lingering in the writer's early day, notwithstanding the inroads of democracy. And, before the Revolution, this feeling was shared by the whole country. When it was announced in New York, a century ago, that the Patroon was coming down from Albany by land, the day he was expected to reach the city crowds turned out to see him enter in his coach-and-four.

The reference to the funerals at the Rensselaer manor-house reminds us of a description of the burial of Philip Livingston, one of the proprietors of Livingston manor, in February, 1749, taken from a paper of that day. It will show something of the customs of the times. The services were performed both at his town-house in New York, and at the manor. "In the city, the lower rooms of most of the houses in Broad-street, where he resided, were thrown open to receive visitors. A pipe of wine was spiced for the occasion, and to each of the eight bearers, with a pair of gloves, mourning ring, scarf and handkerchief, a monkey-spoon was given." (This was so called from the figure of an ape or monkey, which was carved in solido at the extremity of the handle. It differed from a common spoon in having a circular and very shallow bowl.) "At the manor these ceremonies were all repeated, another pipe of wine was spiced, and, besides the same presents to the bearers, a pair of black gloves and a handkerchief were given to each of the tenants. The whole expense was said to amount to £500."

Now, all this was a state of things and a manner of social life totally unknown in New England. We have al

ready mentioned that most of its inhabitants were small farmers, wringing their subsistence from the earth by hard labor. Here were literally no servants, but a perfect social equality existed in the rural districts. Their "helps" were the sons and daughters of neighboring farmers, poorer than themselves, who for a time took these situations, but considered themselves as good as their employers. The comparatively wealthy men were in their cities.

No two races of men could be more different than the New Yorkers of that day and the people of New England. There was a perfect contrast in all their habits of social life and ways of thinking. The Dutch disliked the Yankees, as they called them, most thoroughly. This feeling is shown, in a ludicrous way, through the whole of Irving's "Knickerbocker." "The Dutch and the Yankees," he says, 66 never got together without fighting."

There is a curious development of this prejudice in the following clause, which was inserted in the will of a member of a distinguished colonial family of New York, dated 1760. "It is my desire that my son,

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may have the best education that is to be had in England or America; but my express will and directions are, that he never be sent, for that purpose, to the Connecticut colonies, lest he should imbibe, in his youth, that low craft and cunning so incidental to the people of that country, which is so interwoven in their constitutions that all their acts cannot disguise it from the world, though many of them, under the sanctified garb of religion, have endeavored to impose themselves on the world as honest men."

Once in a year, generally, the gentry of New York went to the city to transact their business and make their purchases. There they mingled, for a time, in its gayetics, and were entertained at the court of the Governor. These dignitaries were generally men of high families in England. One of them, for instance-Lord Cornbury-was a bloodrelative of the royal family. They cop

ied the customs and imitated the etiquette enforced "at home," and the rejoicings and sorrowings, the thanksgivings and fasts, which were ordered at Whitehall, were repeated again on the banks of the Hudson. Some years ago the writer was looking over the records of the old Dutch Church in New York, when he found, carefully filed away, some of the proclamations for these services. One of them, giving notice of a thanksgiving-day, in the reign of William and Mary, for some victory in the Low Countries, puts the celebration off a fortnight, to give time for the news to reach Albany.

During the rest of the year these landlords resided among their tenantry, on their estates; and about many of their old country-houses were associations gathered, often coming down from the first settlement of the country, giving them an interest which can never invest the new residences of those whom later times elevated through wealth. Such was the Van Courtlandt manorhouse, with its wainscoted rooms and its guest-chamber; the Rensselaer manor-house, where of old had been entertained Talleyrand and the exiled princes from Europe; the Schuyler house, so near the Saratoga battle-field, and marked by memories of that glorious event in the life of its owner - (alas, that it should have passed away from its founder's family!), and the residence of the Livingstons, on the banks of the Hudson, of which Louis Philippe expressed such grateful recollection when, after his elevation to the throne, he met, in Paris, the son of his former host.

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founder, and regarded as their first home on this continent. It was erected in 1655, by Jacobus Kip, Secretary of the Council, who received a grant of that part of the island. There is, in the possession of the family, a picture of it as it appeared at the time of the Revolution, when still surrounded by venerable oaks. It was a large double house, with three windows on one side of the door and two on the other, with one large wing. On the right hand of the hall was the dining-room, running from front to rear, with two windows looking out over the bay, and two over the country on the other side. This was the room which was afterwards invested with interest from its connection with Major André. In the rear of the house was a pear-tree, planted by the ladies of the family in 1700, which bore fruit until its destruction in 1851. In this house five generations of the family were born.

Then came the Revolution, and Sargent, in his "Life of André," thus gives its history in those stirring times: "Where now, in New York, is the unalluring and crowded neighborhood of the Second avenue and Thirty-fifthstreet, stood, in 1780, the ancient Bowerie or country-seat of Jacobus Kip. Built in 1655, of bricks brought from Holland, encompassed by pleasant trees, and in casy view of the sparkling waters of Kip's Bay, on the East River, the mansion remained, even to our own times, in possession of one of its founder's line. Here" (continues Sargent, incorporating the humorous recollections of Irving's "Knickerbocker ") "spread the same smiling meadows, whose appearance had so expanded the heart of Oloffe the Dreamer, in the fabulous ages of the colony; here still nodded the groves that had echoed back the thunder of Henry Kip's musketoon, when that mighty warrior left his name to the surrounding waves. When Washington was in the neighborhood, Kip's house had been his quarters; when Howe crossed from Long Island on Sunday, September 15th, 1776, he debarked at the rocky point hard by, and his

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