From what I've read Sinterklaas' black helpers are either just guys covered in soot, the chimney thing, slaves or servants. I guess Americans aren't the only ones who try to revise embarrassing history.
One of the funniest essays on strange customs like Sinterklaas and black Peter was written and read by David Sedaris.
Click on the link below and enjoy.
6 to 8 black men-David Sedaris