Two: "I Came to the United States with My Father"

In late 1818 or early 1819 Levi Moses Kokernot, the Amsterdam kruijer, brought his thirteen year old son, David, with him to New Orleans to establish his business in a city much like the one he left: cosmopolitan and maritime. His wife and older son were temporarily left behind in Holland and the man and boy moved into a building on St. Ann Street, in the city's French Quarter. The father became a dry goods merchant, not a trade he was trained for as a porter in Amsterdam. He probably imported goods from Europe with the help of his wife's family. David could easily find work, even with no knowledge of English, as the city was always busy bulding canals and levees, and the constant stream of sailing vessels arriving at the waterfront needed loading and unloading.

These first years in New Orleans would be the only years in David's youth when he was stable and subject to his father's influence and therefore likely to attend school. He probably picked up English easily, as youngsters do, and achieved about a third grade education before the appeal of adventure lured him away from home for the first time.


David Reminisces
War Again!
To the Waters of Peach Creek
Tories Strike Back
Tory Chase
Revolution!
David and Caroline Kokernot's Children
Finest Looking Man I Ever Saw
Well Nigh Dead
Barbarous Strife and Drunken Debauch
"I Came to the United States with My Father"
"I Was Born in the City of Amsterdam"
Who Was David Kokernot and Why Should You Know Him?
The Author