Posts tagged ‘cross-cultural’

To Do Justice to Him and Myself: Evert Wendell’s Account Book of the Fur Trade with Indians in Albany, New York, 1695-1726 (includes cd-rom with original Dutch text) (ISBN: 1606189123)

To Do Justice to Him and Myself:
Evert Wendell’s Account Book of the Fur Trade with Indians in Albany, New York, 1695-1726

by Kees-Jan Waterman (American Philosophical Society, ISBN: 1606189123)
(Paperback, 310 pages and CD-ROM with original Dutch text, 2008, $50.00)

To Do Justice to Him and MyselfThis translated Dutch account book of the fur trade with Indians yields essential data for understanding workings of intercultural fur trade in colonial North America.

It contains accounts of hundreds of Indians, many listed with their own names, who purchased merchandise on credit from Evert Wendell (1681-1750) and his relatives in Albany, NY. Over 2,000 credit transactions and payments are recorded. This book has been praised as a major addition to the literature on the fur trade which challenges many widely held interpretations.

Illustrations. Tables. The book also includes a CD-ROM with transcription of the Dutch manuscript (searchable).

“The introductory essay and the tables put together from Waterman’s detailed reading of the account suggest an active trade between the Evert family and a wide range of Indians from many different tribal groupings,” writes Ann M. Carlos in the Journal of Economic History (70:2). “One has to be particularly impressed with the level of detail extracted from the accounts after looking at the photographs of the original documents.

“Waterman argues that these accounts with about 300 different individuals give us an unprecedented glimpse into intercultural exchanges in the upper Hudson River valley. He points to the role played by women in this trade; to the nature of the goods exchanges; to the range of different tribal groupings; to the mention of “white” and “black” individuals and to the descriptions of naming practices and tattoos or lack of same.

“Not too many family account books from the early eighteenth century exist. This one documents commercial exchanges between an important Dutch trading family and native traders. Waterman provides an incredible level of detail about the people in these transactions [in this] interesting primary source.”

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July 8, 2010 at 12:07 am Leave a comment


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