Dutch West India Company Military & Kieft's War - 1640s

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Dutch West India Company Military & Kieft's War - 1640s

Post by Volyn » 28 Aug 2022 22:44

My 11th great-grandfather, Pvt. Adam Brouwer, was born in the free city of Köln (Cologne), Holy Roman Empire on/about 18 JAN 1621. After his 20th birthday he enlisted as a soldier or private, in the Dutch West India Company (WIC) in FEB 1641.

His unit was sent to the New World aboard the ship Swol in 1641, and they captured the French built fort of St. Louis de Marinhan (de Marangan), Brazil from the Portuguese; afterwards they were garrisoned there. On 28 FEB 1644 the island and fort were taken back by the Portuguese, and 450 WIC "Company Servants" left for the island of Curaçao.

In March 1644 Capt. Jan de Vries travelled to New Amsterdam so he could secure a contract from Governor Kieft to bring men to defend the colony during Kieft's War (1643-1645). In his absence the garrison remained on Curaçao until 14 JUL 1644 when the ship De Blauwen Haen set sail to New Amsterdam with 200 people, including 130 soldiers. Pvt. Brouwer remained in New Amsterdam after he completed his military service on 21 FEB 1645 when he collected a back pay of 189 guilders, the money was used to purchase a home and garden for 25 guilders in lower Manhattan.
*Snedeker, Jeff "The Men Who Fought the Manhattan Indian War, Part I, The Background," New Netherland Connections, vol. 4 (1999).

Is there any information available about the life of a WIC soldier, especially in Brazil?

What was the WIC uniform and equipment load for a soldier in this era?

What was the standard pay rate for a WIC private?

Which of these 3 currency conversions is accurate?

According to this site, a 17th Century guilder is valued at (60:1) to the US Dollar, or 100 guilders in the 1600s equals $6,000 USD. http://vanosnabrugge.org/docs/dutchmone ... s%20money.

Another site provided studies from 2013 and 2014 - https://lensonleeuwenhoek.net/content/w ... lder-worth
The Historic Currency Calculator (no longer available) at DutchAncestryCoach.com returned the following results in 2013:
314 guilders in the year 1660 was equivalent to 1.1 yearly wages of an unskilled worker. This roughly corresponds to 29,927 USD today.
5,000 guilders in the year 1655 was equivalent to 18.3 yearly wages of an unskilled worker. This roughly corresponds to 514,670 USD today.

The International Institute of Social History (IISH) has a calculator that returns different results when queried in mid-2014:
400,000 guilders (about Delft's annual budget) in 1680 has a "purchasing power" of about 4,390,000 EUR or 5,980,000 USD
5,000 in the year 1680 has a "purchasing power" of 56,927.00 EUR or 77,419 USD
Geoctrooieerde Westindische Compagnie
Dutch West India Company in Brazil - 1641-JUL1644.jpg
St. Louis de Marinhan, Brazil
Fort Saint-Louis de Marangan.jpg
New Amsterdam 1642
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