After the English victory in the First Anglo-Dutch war (1652–54), the Dutch ‘New Netherland’ colony came into English possession in 1664, when Charles II appointed his brother James, Duke of York, to take the Dutch governor’s surrender. When James II ascended to the English throne in 1688, the Province of ‘New York’ became a crown colony, and its capital ‘New Amsterdam’ on Manhattan Island, was renamed New York City. Also in 1664, in settlement of debts, James gave the area between the Hudson and Delaware Rivers to ‘Proprietors’ Lord Berkeley and Sir George Carteret, who came from the British Island of Jersey. The Province of ‘New Jersey’ was created, but its borders were fought over and not finalized until 1769. English law was introduced throughout the region, and English administrators started adjudicating the numerous territorial tussles between the adjoining rival provinces. New York Province was to include the Mohawk and Hudson River valleys and the area that later would become Vermont. George III’s 1763 Proclamation Line, which designated territories to its west ‘Indian Reserves’, was largely ignored, leading to disputes with the indigenous Iroquois and with the French, who were settling eastern Canada. New York was one of the original thirteen provinces which first formed the ‘United States’ and fought the successful War of Independence begun in 1776. On 25th November 1783, ‘Evacuation Day’, the British army finally left its base in Manhattan and sailed home, leaving Washington’s triumphant ‘Continental’ troops to capture the city.
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