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ORIGINS

Essays

We have prepared a number of expository essays of varying topics related to South Street during the Origins Period. Each is available in HTML and PDF formats. The HTML versions are for viewing online and may contain pictures and hyperlinks, while the PDF versions are suitable for downloading and printing.
  • A Furry Interlude
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  • A discussion of the international Dutch fur trade in New Netherlands. By Michael Begun.

  • America's China Trade
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  • A discussion of the ideological importance that the China Trade had on post-Revolution American consciousness. By Michael Begun.

  • Conquering Nature
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  • An examination of nature’s role in 17th, 18th, and early 19th century New York’s maritime trade, and how technological innovations ultimately conquered nature. By Colleen Slentz.

  • John Jacob Astor
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  • A discussion of one of New York's most successful China Trade Merchants. By Michael Begun.

  • Impressment
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  • A discussion of the 18th-century British practice of impressment, and its economic and psychological effects on the seamen of the Port of New York. By Thomas McCord.

  • Jack Tar
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  • A discussion of the seamen of New York City and their role in the 1765 Stamp Act Riots and the American Revolution. By Thomas McCord.

  • John Jacob Astor
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  • A discussion of one of New York's most successful China Trade Merchants. By Michael Begun.

  • New York and the China Trade
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  • An excursus on the particular significance that the China Trade had on the development of New York. By Michael Begun.

  • Northwest Passage
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  • A discussion of the fabled Northwest Passage and how the search for it led to the discovery of New Amsterdam. By Michael Begun.

  • Privateers and Pirates
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  • A brief description of the rewards, risks, and defeat of piracy under the English control of New York City. By Thomas McCord.

  • Slavery in New York City
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  • An exploration of the legal, economic and social status of slaves and freed blacks in the 17th-century Dutch colony of New Amsterdam. By Adrienne Cousineau.

  • Tea For All
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  • A discussion of the growing popularity of imported tea in New York and how this contributed to the rise of the China Trade. By Michael Begun.

  • The Long and Short of What the Dutch Gave New York and America
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  • How the Dutch influenced the course of American history through their egalitarian and relatively tolerant colony, New Amsterdam. By Jessica Thompson and Adrienne Cousineau.

  • Wars of Succession - 17th Century Anglo-Dutch Conflicts and Manhattan
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  • A short essay on the way in which national conflicts between the English and Dutch during the 17th Century affected New York's early development. By Michael Begun.

  • William Kidd
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  • A discussion of the volatile life of William Kidd, one of New York’s most famous pirates. By Thomas McCord.

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