Silver Dutch Daalder
This silver daalder was struck by the Dutch
in Leiden when it was under siege from the Spanish in 1574. On
its face is the city’s shield encircled by the legend “God
Preserve Leyden”. The production of coins by cities under
siege was common in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.
Some of these coins issued by the provinces and cities of the
Netherlands circulated in the American colonies during the time
of the New Netherland Colony (1609-1664). New Netherland was a
company owned and operated business, run on a for profit basis
by the directors of the West India Company. The intent of the firm
was to make a profit for the investors who had purchased shares
in the company. The business center of New Netherland was along
the Hudson River from New Amsterdam (New York City) northwest to
Fort Orange (Albany) and its operations spread west of Greenwich
Bay (similar to the present day border NY-CT border), through all
of New Jersey and parts of Delaware.
Unlike New England, the merchants largely
responsible for exploiting New Netherland's resources were from
the home country. Secure in
their Amsterdam countinghouses, they tightly controlled the colony's
lifeline to Holland and deposited their profits to their accounts
in Amsterdam, thereby depriving New Netherland of capital and the
opportunity to develop a viable, colony-based merchant community.
The American word “dollar” is derived from “daalder”.