Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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JORDAENS, Melchior, Dutch physician, born in Leyden in 1751; died in Dort in 1829. He entered the service of the company of the Indies, and was for several years surgeon in Batavia, and afterward in Surinam. He became deputy lieutenant-governor of the island of Saint Eustache in 1783, president of the board of health in Dutch Guiana in 1792, and deputy lieutenant-governor of Surinam in 1795, which post he held till 1806, when he retired to Dart. Jordaens not only promoted many sanitary measures in Guiana, but greatly exerted himself in improving the country, drying some formerly inundated lands, encouraging emigration from Europe, and obtaining from the home government the decree of homestead that brought the country to the prosperity it enjoyed at the beginning of the 19th century. Napoleon appointed Jordaens chief surgeon of the kingdom of Westphalia in 1809, and afterward president of the board of health of Hamburg, which post he held till 1813. He then retired again to Dart, which he never left afterward. Jordaens is the author of many treatises, some of which are yet consulted. Those relating to America include "Guianaland, geognostisch und geologisch dargesteht" (2 vols.. Hamburg, 1811); "Geognostische Bemerkungen tiber die basaltischen Gebilde des westlichen Guianalandes" (2 vols., Leipsic and Dort, 1816).
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