About Us

NY 400th

We have come together as one to embark on a series of events to commemorate our past, celebrate the present and aim to unify the future.

The mix of many is our focus, and the diversity of groups from the original people, to European settlers, enslaved people, and the multiple groups of those who have traveled from around the world and now call New York City home, is our celebration.  As the 400th anniversary of the establishment of the City of New York nears, several societies of descendants have come together to lead the celebrations of the long legacy of our forebears.

On July 11, 2022, the Committee for New York’s Quadricentennial formed. Their purpose is to enhance and inform public understanding of key historic events that occurred in the years 2024, 2025 and 2026, and the roles played by the original indigenous people, the early Dutch, French and other European settlers and those indentured or enslaved people brought here during that period of history.

Our purpose is to affiliate and collaborate with historic, genealogical, and research associations whose purpose is to preserve the heritage of those who settled in Niew Amsterdam, Mannahatta, the South River, and Hudson River valleys and those who welcomed them.

The Holland Society of New York, The Saint Nicholas Society of the City of New York, and the Society of First Families of New York have joined together to lead this initiative. Many other genealogical organizations have been invited to join and contribute to this great time in our city’s history. Others are welcome to contact us for further information.

It was said that eighteen different European languages were spoken on the lower tip of Manhattan, not to mention various Indigenous Native American dialects

The Founding people of New York
"Fort Amsterdam" by historical artist, Len Tantillo
Arent Van Curler's bark passes Fort Amsterdam, Manhattan, 1650
Fort Amsterdam had a long and peculiar history. In 1626, the Dutch West India Company directed Kryn Fredericksen to construct a fort at the tip of Manhattan Island. Fredericksen was instructed to build a substantial stone fortification following the specifications of the prototypical 17th century Dutch design. This design took many years to complete. Along the way the fort underwent numerous alterations. The painting depicts this fort as it may have appeared in its final iteration under English control as a stone structure.

Several European explorations came to the New York area from 1524 with Giovanni de Verrazano to 1609 with Henry Hudson and onward with Adrien Block to 1614 with Hendrick Christiansen. In 1623, a group of Dutch traders established Fort Orange in present-day Albany, and on May 31, 1624, at Governors Island, First Director-General, Cornelius May and 31 families established a trading post. In July 1625, Fort Amsterdam was established by Second Director General, Willem Verholst, and on May 17, 1626, the lease between Peter Minuit and the Indigenous American Tribe was negotiated ushering in the large economic enterprise which boomed between the tribes and the Europeans for the fur trade.

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