In exchange for 60 guilders of brass buttons, scarlet cloth and trade goods, Manhattan Island was purchased from the Manhattan Indian tribe on MAY 6, 1626, by Peter Minuit, Dutch Governor of the New Netherlands Province. Naming the Island New Amsterdam, it was later taken over by the British and renamed New York City.
The colony’s original Charter of Freedoms and Exemptions, June 1, 1629, stated:
Patroons and colonists shall in particular, and in the speediest manner, endeavor to find out ways and means whereby they may support a Minister and Schoolmaster, that thus the service of God and zeal for religion may not grow cool and be neglected among them, and they shall, for the first, procure a Comforter of the sick there.
In 1665, the Colonial Legislature of New York stated:
Whereas, The public worship of God is much discredited for want of…able ministers to instruct the people in the true religion, it is ordered that a church shall be built in each parish capable of holding 200 persons; that ministers of every church shall preach every Sunday, and pray for the king, queen, the Duke of York, and the royal family….Sunday is not to be profaned.
The Moral Liberal contributing editor, William J. Federer, is the bestselling author of “Backfired: A Nation Born for Religious Tolerance no Longer Tolerates Religion,” and numerous other books. A frequent radio and television guest, his daily American Minute is broadcast nationally via radio, television, and Internet. Check out all of Bill’s books here.