Michael Family Genealogy Forum
I am not related to this family; just had ancestors who lived in the same area. I wondered why he was listed as being associated with Holland. From the book "The Formation of a Society on Virginia's Eastern Shore, 1615-1655" by James R. Perry:
"In the same way that Stephen Charlton was a focal point for much of the trade with New England, John Michael was one for trade with Holland. The major and important difference was that, in his first years of contact, Michael did not live on the Eastern Shore, but instead was himself a Dutch merchant. The first definite reference to Michael was an April 1649 lett of attorney in which he and Peter Peterson, both identified as merchants from Graft in Holland, appointed two friends on the Eastern Shore as agents in heir absence. Five days later Michaels witnessed a lett of attorner from two Dutch merchants to John Stringer. Apparently Michael left the Eastern Shore and returned the following winter, a pattern conforming to that of other merchants. He appeard at court in November and December 1649 and January 1650. During the summer of 1652, he and his kinsman John Johnson (also from Graft) became involved ina controversy with Rowland Savery, a merchant from Amsterdam, and John Clawse de Boll, master of the ship 'Farewell.' This case involved the refusal of the shipmaster to comply with articles of agreement that bound the ship to a schedule convenient to Johnson in his efforts to load tobacco in Northampton Couty and shi to Holland. The commissioners referred the complex case to James City. But before they did, Savery insulted Michael, who petitioned the court that the slander called into 'question the reput and credit of you(r) su;;oiant. Not only in Virginnia But also in oher parts beyonde the seas, Those which have instrusted your petitioner maye have notice of this aspersion.' Protesting that his 'Actions and dealings have bine Knowne to bee honest and with fayre Correspondency,' he forced Savery to retract his insult."
"Michael's concern for his reputation was not misplaced. Trust formed the foundation for the system of exchange.....When John Michael became a full-time resident cannot be determined. He may have been one as early as March 1652, when he signed the engagement to the Commonwealth of England. In May 1653 Governor Richard Bennett, recognizing him as an inhabitant, as a subscriber to the...." (I did not copy further information.)
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