criteria for New Netherland Settlers & New Sweden [closed]

+11 votes

Hi! This is a question related to the New Sweden project & the criteria for the New Netherland Settlers (NNS) project. On the NNS Criteria page are a series of questions about who qualifies. The first:

  • What about settlers who predated Dutch rule? - please submit for project participants to consider by posting a G2G question from the profile, tagged new_netherland

I think New Sweden settlers meet that description (predated Dutch rule), and I propose that New Sweden settlers and their descendants can be included in the NNS Project. Currently the criteria for New Netherland Settlers excludes New Sweden settlers. From the Category:New Netherland Settlers page:

This sub-category New Netherland Settlers of the New Netherland Settlers Project includes only the immigrants to New Netherland, 1624 through October 1674, their spouses, and their children who were born in New Netherland before that end date.

I edited the definition for New Netherland on the NNS Criteria page to encompass New Sweden settlers:

  • New Netherland: Province of New York, Province of New Jersey, Delaware Colony (as described in Wikipedia; see also Dutch colonization of the Americas). The NNS project page "New Netherland Settlements" has additional details. Also, some profiles that are included in the New Netherland Settlers project may more closely identify with the New Sweden project. They can be in both projects, but should use the New Sweden template instead of the NNS project box (both can be used if desired).

However, the NNS "three main groups" for settlers still excludes New Sweden Settlers, as they embarked from Sweden. For the period 1637-1655, that may not be a bad thing - the New Sweden project covers them. Post-1655 (when New Sweden was acquired by New Netherland), I think that the New Netherland Settlers project should make New Sweden settlers an exception to a couple of things. Specifically, (1) the port they left from & (2) adding just the category New Netherland Settlers (not the project box {{New Netherland Settler}}).

I propose adding the following to the NNS Criteria page (& a reference on the NNS project page):

For the purposes of the NNS project, "New Netherland Settlers" can also include settlers who embarked from Swedish ports and settled in either New Sweden or New Netherland. Between 1637 and 1655, New Sweden was a separate colony and has its own project: New Sweden. Those in New Sweden in 1655 to October 1674 can be in both projects & their profiles should be included in [[Category:New Netherland Settlers]] (for New Sweden settlers, the category can be added separately, which is an exception to NNS guidelines that require the NNS project box to be included on all profiles in that category).

This suggested addition does not address descendants post-Oct. 1674, but I think the criteria for the Community category does not need to change:

"These are the descendants of New Netherland Settlers who stayed and retained a strong sense of community, after the 1674 final capitulation to the English conquerors."

Let me know if you disagree or have improvements for the suggested change by posting a comment or answer. I posted this G2G question to continue discussions that started in this one.


closed with the note: the New Sweden question was resolved. the broader question of criteria for the NNS Project will be addressed separately by NNS Project leadership
in The Tree House by Liz Shifflett G2G6 Pilot (528k points)
closed by Liz Shifflett

2 Answers

+4 votes

I don't understand the reason for all of the clauses in the criteria and feel that the whole thing is too wordy and takes a huge time investment to read when it's not so complicated.

As I mentioned a week ago, I think the criteria should be much more simple and look like this edited version of the criteria for settlers written by the Holland Dames.

A New Netherland Settler is defined as someone who:

(i) resided in New Netherland [including any lands that became New Netherland] prior to the Treaty of Westminster, 24 Oct 1674*; OR

(ii) was born, prior to the Treaty of Westminster, 24 Oct 1674, in New Netherland; OR 

(iii) was one of the following:

a Director General or other Director of New Netherland,

a member of the Council of the Director General of New Netherland,

a member of a governmental or religious body of New Netherland,

a patroon or freeholder of New Netherland,

a commissioner in New Netherland either of Indian Affairs, Boundaries, or Treaties,

a commissioned officer, soldier, or sailor who served in defense of New Netherland.

*The date that the Treaty of Westminster took effect and the Dutch turned over New Netherland to the English.

There's more to consider than New Sweden, there were Puritans and English subjects that were allowed to settle in the area, the Native Americans who became a part of the community, the council members and others that didn't arrive by Dutch boats.

Do we not share the same goals as the Holland Society, "founded in New York City in 1885 to collect information respecting the settlement and history of New Netherland" and the Holland Dames, "Descendants of the Ancient and Honorable Families of New Netherland"? They definitely include the New Sweden patrons as ancestors, and more:

As it is, I can't prove that my Quackenbosch ancestor arrived so he may be excluded. :)

by Carrie Quackenbush G2G6 Mach 7 (74.0k points)
edited by Carrie Quackenbush
short answer to this part of your post - "Do we not share the same goals as the Holland Society,...?"

no. We are more inclusive.

If you want simpler, then it would be:

Did you settle the area called New Netherland? If yes, you're a New Netherland Settler.
More inclusive how, with the Huguenots that arrived after 1674?

For the definition of New Netherland Settler, I like the idea of a simplified version of the first two criteria that Carrie quotes, specifically:

  • resided or was born in New Netherland  (or lands that became New Netherland) prior to 24 Oct 1674 (the date of the Treaty of Westminster)

To my mind, that wording could include Dutch West India Company officials and military personnel who were stationed in New Netherland prior to 1674. I don't see the need to mention officials separately from residents -- and if they were officials who never set foot in New Netherland, I don't think they should be called "New Netherland Settlers."

However, I also note that the "resided in" wording would include military personnel of any nationality (such as the British garrison at Albany after 1664), who are not included under the current WikiTree criteria. If the purpose of the project is related to Dutch patriotism, that could be a concern, but I submit that our purpose is to facilitate good genealogy, and I think that including those military personnel would help with that. A couple of my New Netherland ancestors were British military, and I've noticed that their family names were rendered in at least as many creative ways (if not more) as the names of Dutch settlers, so project participation makes sense.

resided is in NNS Project criteria? I missed that. Should be settled. And I thought some soldiers did settle New Netherland, not just come for their tour & go home.
The words "resided in" are not currently in the New Netherland project criteria. The current criteria focus on whether the people were born in or embarked  from a place under Dutch control. Carrie and I are suggesting that the "resided in" language be substituted for the current criteria, as it would be much simpler to understand, easier to apply (we can't always figure out where a settler embarked from), and more inclusive.
the project is for settlers, not soldiers who did not settle & not for officials who came in/officiated/left, although the project does include the directors - see

The project does include French, German, English etc. who settled New Netherland.
another ah-ha moment. I think a nuance got lost along the way. The intent was not to exclude known settlers simply because we can't find them on a passenger list or know where they boarded a ship that they are listed for.

I am way over my WikiTree time today & still have a couple of hours I need to put in on other stuff. I'll take another look tomorrow. In the meantime, I'm going to add the New Sweden wording, as it appears that objections are to the criteria in general, not to including New Sweden.
As I read the project criteria, the project scope does not include my ancestors who arrived as occupying British soldiers and remained as settlers. I note that my ancestor is not tagged for the project (that's due to my decision; I'm the only person who has touched that profile since 2012) but my ancestor is flagged as a New Netherland Settler and is project-protected.

That differential categorization seems ironic, since Yates was apparently a rank-and-file soldier who married a Dutch woman and  "went native," while Brodhead was a captain of grenadiers who was resented by the Dutch and who brought a wife from England.
I'll need to look around tomorrow, but he should be NNS project through marriage.

that didn't take long:

This sub-category New Netherland Settlers of the New Netherland Settlers Project includes only the immigrants to New Netherland, 1624 through October 1674, their spouses, and their children who were born in New Netherland before that end date.

Yes, our criteria should be focused on residency, not arrival. We're settlers.

It would really be helpful for me and probably others to be aware of any special inclusions in the generally accepted definition of a New Netherland Settler. How are we different? Who are we including that isn't included by New Netherland genealogical societies and why?

And it would be beneficial to have a short, Cliff-Notes style reference guide for who is covered by the project. It should be easy to point out that the New Sweden Settlers did become New Netherland settlers, which would be covered by

* resided in New Netherland [including any lands that became New Netherland] prior to the Treaty of Westminster, 24 Oct 1674*;

Perhaps it would be better with the subcategorization to first put everyone in the [New Netherland Settler] category and then add any sort of special group of which they were a part, like [New Netherland Native American], but any profile like that will probably span a few projects, like Isaac Allerton, and clogging up their profile may not be beneficial to the tree. Maybe one category might be all we could ask?

Yeah, Ellen, I'm not sure either. Daniel Brodhead is definitely considered a settler. The Yates surname is included but I think there were several potential settlers with that name.


I've only run across one Yates among the settlers of New Netherland.

Clarke's New Netherland Settlers website does have trees for three men named Yates, but two of those trees start off well into the 1700s, and are headed by men whose ancestry traces to Joseph Yates, the soldier from West Yorkshire. His page on the Clarke website is , and there was an article about him in the NYGBR in 1983. (On my list to download and read!)

There was a Francis (William?) Yates at Heemstede but I'm not sure where he fits into the picture, what others he was related to. That's the only one I am aware of but have only just started to explore the other settlements.

Interesting that the man in Hempstead was also probably from Yorkshire. Thanks!
+3 votes

I'm bothered by the fact that the criteria for identifying a "New Netherland Settler" have been mislabeled as "New Netherland Settlers Project Criteria" (at and in the Criteria section on the page). In practice, our project scope includes not only people who qualify as New Netherland Settlers, but also other people who lived in New Netherland (for example, including immigrants who weren't Dutch and whose place of embarkation isn't clear), as well as some New Netherland Ancestors (many of whom also qualify for the Dutch Roots project) and anyone who qualifies for the New Netherland Community 1674-1800 category. We need to revise the criteria to distinguish between the criteria for identifying a person as a New Netherland Settler and the criteria for the project scope.

It seems to me that anyone who settled in New Sweden could be included in the project scope, even if there is some understandable reluctance to call them New Netherland Settlers.

Also, like Carrie, I have some concern that there are some important groups of New Netherland-related people who fall through the cracks in the definition of the project scope. In particular, most of the Huguenots and Dutch settlers who arrived after 1674, together with their descendants, were culturally very much part of the New Netherland Community (and their profiles need project-protection to protect LNAB choices), but they may not be eligible for the project because they aren't descended from someone who arrived earlier. This is illustrated by my ancestors Marinus van Aaken (Dutch) and his wife Pieternelle du Pre (a Huguenot) who arrived in the 1680s. It seems to me that their lives in America were indistinguishable from those people who are classified in the New Netherland Community, and their profiles and those of their children benefit from project-protection in order to regularize the LNABs, but they aren't technically eligible for the New Netherland Community category due to their date of arrival. (Ironically, though, because their children married New Netherland Settlers or settler descendants, the grandchildren of Marinus and Pieternelle are eligible for the "Community".)

by Ellen Smith G2G Astronaut (1.3m points)

Ellen, I think I'm missing a point. You say that you're 'bothered by the fact that the criteria for identifying a "New Netherland Settler" have been mislabeled as "New Netherland Settlers Project Criteria"'... but it was never the intent of the project to do anything but define who was eligible to be included in the project. Perhaps this is what I'm missing in Carrie's posts too. The definition(s) of a New Netherland Settler provided by the NNS project on its Criteria page (and elsewhere, if it's elsewhere) is the project's definition/criteria for the purpose of identifying profiles to be included in the project.

The other point you bring up, about groups falling through the cracks... well, there's a safety net for them: If you think they should be included, rather than excluded from or have their own category, please start another G2G discussion about that. Personally, I think the better option is to include them in the existing category, but I don't recall the thought process for specifically excluding those who arrived post-1674. It was probably to keep the scope at a managable level... which would argue that the better option is a new category for post-1674 arrivals. Perhaps they (post-1674 to 1800?? immigrants who otherwise meet NNS project criteria) could be a subcategory under and that subcategory would also their children who would otherwise be eligible for the Community category?

Does that address your concerns? Carrie? Am I still missing the point(s)?

Liz, the Category pages for he project do have appropriate definitions of the categories in the New Netherland Settlers project. However, the project criteria page at only describes the members of the New Netherland Settlers category as being within the project scope. It says:

The New Netherland Settlers project admits three main groups:

  • immigrants who embarked for New Netherland no later than October 1674 from the United Provinces of the Netherlands, including Dutch colonies (regardless of where they were born), provided they settled in New Netherland upon arrival
  • immigrants who were born in the United Provinces of the Netherlands, including Dutch colonies, and embarked for New Netherland (regardless of port) no later than October 1674, provided they settled in New Netherland upon arrival
  • anyone born no later than October 1674 to a New Netherland settler

The same language (or very nearly the same -- I haven't done a precise comparison) appears on the project page at

And regarding that "Project Collateral" category, the category name is not real informative (I sometimes think of "collateral damage" when I see the name), and it seems odd for people who clearly lived in the society referred to as "the New Netherland community" to be labeled as Collateral.
so you would prefer they be included in a separate subcategory of the Community category or within the Community itself?
I think that people who appear to have been culturally a part of the New Netherland Community should be eligible for inclusion in the New Netherland Community 1674-1800 category. Maybe it would make sense to define the added group as people who arrived between 1674 and 1700, and their descendants, if they resided in the New Netherland region and appear to have retained a strong cultural identification with the New Netherland community. (Aside: The descendants of Marinus and Pieternelle were numerous in the Minisink area, where it appears to me that the New Netherland community culture was still a strong presence even after 1800.)

1700 is a totally arbitrary cutoff, but it would include those ancestors of mine, and I believe the other Huguenots that Carrie commented on. I do think the cutoff should be no later than 1700 in order to clearly exclude the Palatine German settlers who arrived in 1709-10. An earlier date than 1700 might also make sense.
give me a bit. I just realized that the NNS category has been narrowed from what it was created as, to include only immigrants & a start date. NOT restricting the project to immigrants was a big reason why setting the criteria originally was such a difficult process. Let me do some research.

I think I'm on to something. It seems an additional category for immigrants only was desired for "gateway ancestors" and it somehow simply narrowed the project's main New Netherland Settlers category rather than being a subcategory of it.

The immigrants-only concept aligns with the criteria for PGM and Huguenot Migration projects, but was not the original intent of the New Netherland Settlers project.

Give me a few days to look a bit closer.
maybe longer than a few days. The information posted at project creation was not as clear as I thought & needed clarification during my year-long sabbatical. It was clarified to be narrower than intended.

I'll start a new discussion in a few days. I think that if we clarify the project's categories, we'll have clarity on criteria & can maybe leave the criteria page with just the q/a section (to serve as Carrie's Cliff notes).

Thanks for being patient with me everyone. My memory has never been good, & I'm discovering daily how much worse it's getting!

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