HOUSES AND FURNITURE
EVIDENCES OF LUXURIOUS LIVING
BEFORE 1700, New York already numbered among her citizens man rich merchants. As early as 1674, there were ninety-four burghers whose estates were valued at more than a thousand guilders each; and twenty-two of these estates represented between five and ten thousand guilders. Johannes van Burgh, Jacob Leisler and Johannes de Peyster were each worth about fifteen thousand. The other rich merchants were Cornelis van Ruyven (18,000); Jeroninus Ebbing (30,000); John Lawrence (40,000) Olaf van Cortlandt (45,000); Nicholas de Meyer (50,000); Cornelis Steenwyck (50,000); and Hendrick Philipsen (80,000).
Wealth was rapidly accumulated from the fur and timber trade and from general barter. Twelve years later, Mr. Steenwyck was worth about £16,000, an immense sum in those days. By 1700, there were a good many burghers whose estates amounted to £5,000. John Spratt ( 1697) with an estate of £3,779 and Col. Lewis Morris ( 1691) with £4,928, are instances of opulent Britishers.