Vanished Empires

My recent trip to Scotland meant that I missed blogging about the 350th anniversary of the conquest of New Amsterdam in 1664, and the subsequent establishment of New York and New Jersey. When I came to think about writing a new post on this, looking at the odd coincidence of the ‘Bedfordshire connection’ behind the foundation of both states, I realised that I’d already presented the material in a post from over two and a half years ago. As a lot of new followers have come on board since, I thought I’d reblog that post now to mark the 350th anniversary. Enjoy!

J D Davies

‘The Journals of Matthew Quinton’ are set principally during what are known as ‘the Anglo-Dutch wars’, but like most generalisations used to describe historical periods, that label actually conceals a much more complex picture. For one thing, the wars were not exclusively Anglo-Dutch: the second, from 1665 to 1667, also involved France, Denmark-Norway and even the Prince-Bishop of Munster, while the third, from 1672-4, was part of a much larger conflict that the Dutch regard as effectively their second war of independence, fought overwhelmingly against the French.

The same is true of the colonial conflicts that form the backdrop of The Mountain of Gold, the second book in the series. Anglocentric sources have sometimes seen the colonial conflicts of the early 1660s as being primarily between the English and the Dutch, especially in West Africa, but in reality many European powers, including some pretty unlikely ones, were scrabbling desperately…

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  1. Jeremy Daccarett says:

    Hello! I am a new follower and a history lover. I am from Miami and ran into your book Gentleman Captain somehow, possibly a local bookstore. (If I knew how to italicize here I would have!) I was intrigued by the first few words and new that I had to purchase the book. It took me a while to pick it up but during a recent trip to California, I started reading the book and was enveloped by the story and its sense of history and adventure. This may be the wrong medium in which to tell you this but I just finished the book after 4 hours of reading. It is 6:18 AM and did not want to spend more time looking for ways to post this. I did not want to forget to write and thank you. I can’t wait to get my hands on The Mountain of Gold.


    • Thanks, Jeremy, for such a positive and enthusiastic response to my book! I’m really glad that you enjoyed it so much, and hope you’ll love the rest of the series too. Best wishes, David Davies


  2. Daniel Caramagno says:

    Found a link giving the history of the house:


  3. Daniel Caramagno says:

    As a new follower thank you for posting the old blog entry. I live in NJ and the Town of Cateret is our reminder of the period. I am not aware of any place names honoring Nicholls however. I guess the tomb makes up for it.

    In my town is an original home from the Dutch period. It was originally in Jersey City but moved piece by piece to its present location to avoid destruction by developers. It is large for a home of the period and imagine it was owned by an official or wealthy Dutch merchant. Must see now if I can find out for myself.


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