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Peter Minuit
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    (circa 1580-August 5, 1638)
    Born in Wesel, Germany
    Director-General of New Netherland (1626-31)
    Governor of New Sweden (March 29-June 15, 1638)
    Reportedly purchased Manhattan for $24 (1626)
    His birth year is given anywhere between 1580 and 1585.
    His last name is also spelled Minnewit
    The calculation that he bought Manhattan for $24 was made back in 1846. If you adjust for inflation since then, it turns out he bought the island for a little over $1,000, which would still be a bargain except for….
    ….he may have bought Manhattan from a tribe that lived on Long Island and only hunted on Manhattan, and thus had no claim to the island.
    For that matter, the Indians may have believed that they were being paid merely to guarantee safe passage to the Dutch.
    As a result of all the confusion, Peter Stuyvesant would buy Manhattan again in 1649.
    He had been a diamond cutter and merchant in the Netherlands before going to the New World.
    He played an important role in the founding of both New York City and Wilmington, Delaware.
    He died when his ship sunk in a hurricane off the coast of St. Kitts.

Credit: C. Fishel

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