New Amsterdam Becomes New York

The British seize Manhattan from the Dutch—and alter the trajectory of North American history

On September 5, 1664, two men faced one another across a small stretch of water. Onshore, just outside the fort at the southern tip of Manhattan Island, stood Peter Stuyvesant, director-general of the Dutch colony of New Netherland, his 52-year-old frame balanced on the wooden stump where he had lost a leg in battle a quarter century earlier. Approaching him aboard a small rowboat flying a flag of truce was John Winthrop, governor of the Connecticut colony, until very recently a man Stuyvesant had called his friend. Read more »

The Hunt For The Regicides

They had sent King Charles to the scaffold without remorse. Now they were fugitives in New England with a big price on their heads


The death warrant was signed on Monday, and the business was then pushed with all haste. At ten o’clock on Tuesday morning—it was January 30, 1649 —Captain Hacker brought King Charles out of St. James Palace. The air was still and very cold—ice was piled up under the Thames bridges. Charles walked briskly, urging his guard to be quick: “March apace!” To the solemn muted roll of drums he crossed the park between lines of soldiers and entered Whitehall.