Selling Staten Island2021-05-28T14:45:10-04:00

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Selling Staten Island

This resource is adapted from the New-York Historical Society’s New World—New Netherland—New York curriculum.

Deed for Purchase of Staten Island

Deed for Purchase of Staten Island, 1670. New-York Historical Society Library.

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This Indenture made the Thirteenth Day of April in the twenty second year of the Reign of our Sovereign Lord Charles the Second by the Grace of God of England Scotland France and Ireland King Defender of the faith etc. etc. and in the year of our Lord God 1670. Between the Right Honorable Francis Lovelace Esquire Governor General under his Royall Highness James Duke of York and Albany etc. of all his territories in America for and on the behalf of his said Royal Highness on the one part and Aquepo, Warrines, Minqua-Sachemack, Pemantowes, Quewequeen, Wewanecameck, and Mataris, on the behalf of themselves as the true Sachem owners, and lawful Indian proprietors of Staten Island and of all other Indians any way concerned therein on the other part. This contract, made April 13, 1670, is between Francis Lovelace, the governor general of New York, and the Lenni-Lenape Sachems of Staten Island.
Witnesseth that for and in consideration of a certain sum in wampum and divers other goods which in the schedule hereunto annexed are expressed unto the said Sachems in hand paid by the said Governor Francis Lovelace or his order, the receipt whereof they the said Sachems do hereby acknowledge and to be fully satisfied and thereof and every part thereof do for themselves and all others concerned, their heirs and Successors and every of them clearly acquit and discharge. The said Governor and his successors have given, granted, bargained, and sold, and by these presents do fully and absolutely give, grant, bargain, and sell unto the said Francis Lovelace Governor for and on the behalf of his Royal Highness aforementioned all that island lying and being in Hudson River commonly called Staten Island, and by the Indians Aquehonga Manacknong. The Lenni-Lenape Sachems of Staten Island agree to sell their island to Governor Francis Lovelace in exchange for the money and goods listed later.
Having on the South the bay and sandy point, on the North the river and the city of New York on Manhattan Island, on the East Long Island, and on the West the main land of After Coll, or New Jersey, together with all the Lands, soils, meadows, fresh and salt pastures, common wood land, marshes, rivers, rivulets, streams, brooks, waters, lakes, and whatsoever to the said Island is belonging or any way appertaining and all and singular other the premises with the appurtenances and every part and parcel thereof with on any reservation of the herbage or trees or any other thing growing or being
thereupon,
This section describes the exact location of the island, and its main features.
And the said Sachems for themselves and all others concerned their heirs and successors do covenant to and with the said Governor and his successors for and on the behalf aforesaid in manner and form following. That is to say, that they the said Sachems now are the very true sole and Lawful Indian Owners of the said Island and all and singular the premises as being derived to them by their ancestors, and that now at the sealing and delivery of these presents they are lawfully seized thereof to the use of themselves their heirs and assigns forever according to the use and custom of the rest of the Native Indians of the Country. The Lenni-Lenape Sachems promise that the island belongs to them and that they are authorized to sell it according to the terms described above.
And further that the said Island now is and at the time of executing the said estate to be made as aforesaid shall be and from time to time and at all times hereafter shall and may stand, remain, and continue unto the said Governor and his successors to the use of his Royal Highness as aforesaid freely and clearly discharged and acquitted from all and every former bargains, sales, gifts, grants, and encumbrances whatsoever. Once this contract is signed, it will take the place of any older contracts, and it will last for all time.
And furthermore the said Sachems for themselves and all others concerned their heirs and successors do covenant that the said Governor, his successors, and assigns for and on the behalf of his Royal Highness as aforesaid shall and may from henceforth forever lawfully peaceably and quietly have hold, possess and enjoy all the said Island with the appurtenances and all and every other the premises with their appurtenances without
any Lett resistance, disturbance, or interruption of the said Sachems or any other concerned, their heirs and successors and without any manner of lawful Lett resistance, molestation, or interruption of any other person or persons whatsoever claiming by, from, or under them or any of them.
The Lenni-Lenape Sachems promise that their people will never attack the English settlers of Staten Island after this contract is signed.
And it is likewise lastly covenanted and agreed that the said Sachems and the rest of the Indians concerned with them now inhabiting or residing
upon the said Island shall have free leave and liberty to be and remain thereupon until
the first day of May next when they are to surrender the possession thereof unto such
person or persons as the Governor shall please to appoint to see the same put in execution. Upon which day they are all to transport themselves to some other place, and to resign any interest or claim thereunto or to any part thereof forever to have and to hold the said Island so bargained and sold as fore mentioned unto the said Francis Lovelace Governor and his successors for and on the behalf of his Royal Highness his heirs and assigns unto the proper use and behalf of his said Royal Highness his heirs and assigns forever.
The Lenni-Lenape people of Staten Island have one year before they have to surrender the island to the governor and his representatives. On May 1, 1671, the Lenni-Lenape must leave the island and never try to reclaim it. After this date, the island will belong to the king of England and his heirs forever.
In witness whereof the party to these present indentures have interchangeably set to
their hands and seals the day and year first above written.Sealed & Delivered in the presence of:
All of the people agreeing to this contract have signed their names on April 13, 1670.
FRANCIS LOVELACE
Corn : Steenwych Mayor
Tho : Lovelace
C V Reiyven
Oloff Stevenson van Cortland
Allard Anthony
Johannes Vanbrugh
Gerrit van Frigt
I. Bedloe
Warn. Wessels Constapel[4 Youths]
William Nicolls
HumpheryDevenport
Cornelis Bedloo
Nicholaes Antonij 
These are the signatures of every English person who signed. The last four are boys. There are also symbols made by the Lenni-Lenape Sachem.
The payment agreed upon for the purchase of Staten Island conveyed this day by the
Indian Sachem Proprietors is1. Fower hundred fathom of wampum
2. Thirty Match Coats
3. Eight Coats of Duzzens made up
4. Thirty Shirts
5. Thirty Kettles
6. Twenty Guns
7. A Firkin of Powder
8. Sixty Barres of Load
9. Thirty Axes
10. Thirty Howes
11. Fifty Knives 
This is the list of items the Lenni-Lenape Sachem accepted as payment for Staten Island.
Memorandum It is covenanted and agreed upon by and between the within mentioned Francis Lovelace Esq. Governor etc. for and on the behalf of his Royal Highness and the within written Sachems on the behalf of themselves and all others concerned before then sealing and delivery hereof, that two or three of the said Sachems their heirs or successors or so many persons employed by them shall once every year upon the First day of May yearly after their surrender repair to this fort to acknowledge their sale of the said Staten Island to the Governor or his successor to continue a mutual friendship between them, As witness their hands.

FRANCIS LOVELACE

 

Note: Every year on May 1, the Sachem and their heirs will visit New York City to commemorate this agreement and ensure friendship between our peoples.

FRANCIS LOVELACE

Memorandum That the young Indians not being present at the sealing and delivery of the within written deed it was again delivered and acknowledged before them whose names are underwritten as witnesses. April the 15th 1670

The mark of Pewowahone, about 5 years old, a boy.
The mark of Rokoques, about 6 years old, a girl.
The mark of Shinguinnemo, about 12 years old, a girl.
The mark of Kanarehante, about 12 years old, a girl.
The mark of Mahquadus about 15 years old, a young man.
The mark of Asheharewes, about 20 years old, a young man.

 

NOTE: On April 15, 1760, six Lenni-Lenape youths signed the treaty as well, to guarantee that future generations would honor it.

Deed for Purchase of Staten Island, 1670. New-York Historical Society Library.

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