Description of the New Netherlands

7 Nature has secured those positions with firm, high, and accommodated rocky heads and cliffs, which are as perfect formations as the arts and hands of man, with great expense, could make the same. There are many and different sea-havens in the New-Netherlands, a particular description of which would form a work larger than we design this to be. We will therefore briefly notice this subject, and leave the same for the consideration of mariners and seamen. Beginning at the south and terminating at Long Island, first comes Godyn’s bay, or the South (Delaware) bay, which was the first discovered. This bay lies in 39 degrees north latitude, being six (Dutch) miles wide and nine miles long, and having several banks or shoals, but still possessing many advantages ; convenient and safe anchorages for ships, with roomy and safe harbours. Here also is a good whale fishery. Whales are numerous in the winter on the coast and in the bay, where they frequently ground on the shoals and bars; but they are not as fat as the Greenland whales. If, however, the fishery was well managed, it would be profitable. After ascending the bay nine miles, it is termi nated in a river, which we name the South river, to which we will again refer hereafter, and pass on to the bay, wherein the East and North rivers terminate, and wherein Staten Island lies; because-the same is most frequented, and the country is most populous, and because the greatest negotiations in trade are carried on there; and also because it is situated in the centre of the New-Netherlands. Hence it is named, quasi per excellentiam, “The Bay.” But before we speak more at large of this place, we will attend to the places, and their advantages, which lie between this bay and the South bay. Between those two bays, the coast, almost the whole distance, has double forelands, with many islands, which in some places lie two or three deep. Those forelands as well as the islands are well situated for seaboard towns, and all kind of fisheries, and also for the cultivation of grain, vineyards, and gardening, and the keeping of stock, for which purposes the land is tolerably good. Those lands are now mostly overgrown with different kinds of trees and grape-vines; having many plums, hazel-nuts and strawberries, and much grass. The waters abound with oysters, having many convenient banks and beds where they may be taken. Besides the many islands which lie between the aforesaid