Education

Contract of Jan Karstensen to Serve Remmert Jansen as a Blacksmith, April 16, 1643


Historical Context
Blacksmiths played a key role in the development and success of colonial communities. Blacksmiths were responsible for producing most iron objects like horse shoes, hinges, locks, nails, and keys. In addition to production, these metal workers also were hired to repair items like wagons and sleighs. Individuals learned the blacksmith trade through apprenticeships which they entered into in their early teenage years.
 
Essential Question
How did blacksmiths contribute to the growth and success of the colony?
Check for Understanding
How did blacksmiths contribute to the success of the colony?
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Contract of Jan Karstensen to serve Remmert Jansen as a blacksmith, New York State Archives, NYSA_A0270-78_V2_070a
Document Description
Contract of Jan Karstensen to serve Remmert Jansen as a blacksmith, April 16, 1643.
Questions
  1. What is the purpose of this document?
Translation
[I, Jan Karstensen], acknowledge that I have voluntarily and deliberately hired and bound myself as a blacksmith to Remmert Jansen for the term of eight months, beginning on this date and ending the sixteenth of April 1644; for which he shall receive twelve guilders per month, promising to conduct himself faithfully and diligently in his work as a blacksmith.
Done the 16th of August 1643. This is the X mark of Jan Karstensen Ren Yansen Acknowledged before me, Cornelis van Tienh., secretary
Courtesy New York State Archives