Settlers of Rensselaerswyck - Biographies A-I
New Netherland and Beyond
New Netherland
Delaware River
Colonial New York
New York State

Immigrants, First Settlers

Settlers Appearing in the Colony
of Rensselaerswyck 1630-1656

Not Recorded as a Ship Passenger
First Name A - H

Abraham Clock
Was a carpenter and perhaps also a mason by trade and is credited in the accounts with various amounts for work done between 1644 and 1646, notably on the house of Adriaen van der Donck on Castle Island, which burned down in January 1646.

Abraham Pietersz Vosburgh
(Vosburch, Vosburch, Vosbergen, Vosberghen)

Was in the colony in August 1649, and from Easter 1651 is charged with f16 a year for a house lot, north of the patroon's house. Sept. 30, 1656, he and Hans Jansz, from Rotterdam, jointly leased a mill on the creek south of the farm occupied by Jan Barentz Wemp, for six years, at f100 a year.

Adriaen Dircksz
Van Bil, (from 't Bildt, in Friesland?). On the complaint of Thomas Chambers that he refused to stay with him and fulfill his contract of March 4, 1651, he was sentenced on Sept. 28, 1651, to two weeks' imprisonment and the payment of expenses incurred by Chambers in hiring another servant during his absence. At the request of friends, he was released on the seventh day on condition that he faithfully perform his service.

Adriaen Jansz
Schoolmaster; appears first under date of Nov. 23, 1651, when the court, upon his petition, granted him f50 towards the payment of his house rent. He came probably soon after Sept. 9, 1650, when the council of the colony, in response to a petition from the inhabitants for a competent schoolmaster, appointed Arent van Curler and Goossen Gerritsz trustees of a fund to be raised for the building of a school. He was still schoolmaster in Beverwyck in 1657, and may have been the same person as Adriaen Jansz Croon, who Aug. 20, 1660, was about to sail for Holland.

Adriaen Jansz
From Leyden; also referred to as Adriaen Janssen van Leijden alias Appel; appears in the records of the colony as early as 1649. Feb. 19, 1655, he bought from Thomas Coningh a house, brewhouse, pigpen and fence which on Feb. 1, 1655, were acquired by Thomas Coningh from Juriaen Teunisz and which had formerly been in the possession of Jacob Hevick. He was a tavern keeper in 1656. From May 1, 1655, to May 1, 1657, he is charged with an annual rent of f24 for a garden, formerly used by Jacob Hendricksz.

Adriaen Pietersz
From Alckmaer, (province of North Holland); leased in 1651 a house, north of Fort Orange, which the authorities of the colony and Charles van Bruggen, commis of the fort, had been forced to allow an Indian, named den uijl (the owl) alias stickstigeri, to build, and which, being found a nuisance, was bought of said Indian by Mons'r Labatie with the consent of the court of Rensselaerswyck, Nov. 28, 1650.

Adriaen Willemsz
Was sentenced to banishment from the colony, Aug. 13, 1644, for having stolen some beaver skins from the house of Arent van Curler.

Aert Jacobsz
Occupied, apparently as early as 1648, a farm at Bethlehem which was destroyed by fire before May 1654. He then leased for 12 years a farm in Greenbush, north of Cornelis Hendricksz van nes. About 1661 he moved to the Esopus.

Aert Otteerrspoor
Also referred to as Aert gerntsz van Otterspoor; was at Bethlehem, in 1649, 1650 and 1651. He came probably from Otterspoor, in the province of Utrecht.

Albert Gerritsz
Carpenter; was at his request granted a lot north of the house of Laurens Jansz, Nov. 7, 1651, the rent to begin at Easter 1652.

Andries Christensz
From Flecker (Fleckero, Norway); entered into a contract with the patroon for the erection of a sawmill, July 2, 1631, but did not come to the colony.

Barent Gerritsz
Worked, apparently in 1646, for seven and a half months on the farm called de Vlackte.

Brant Aertsz van Slichtenhorst
From Nykerck, (province of Gelderland). According to O'Callaghan, History of New Netherland, 2:69, van Slichtenhorst was appointed director of the colony Nov. 10, 1646, and sailed with his family and servants for Virginia Sept. 26, 1647. The records of the colony show that he arrived March 22, 1648, and held the office of director till July 24, 1652, when he was succeeded by Jan Baptist van Rensselaer. Between June 29, 1651, and July 24, 1652, van Slichtenhorst was most of the time at the Manhatans and J. B. van Rensselaer acted in his stead, for the first two months apparently in conjunction with Capt. Slijter. April 4, 1650, de Hooges complained to the council that Director van Slichtenhorst had thus far rendered no accounts. The director replied that hy weel wat souwde ontfangen dan dat het Antonij de Hooges heeft opjesnapt (that he would have received something if Antonij de Hooges had not gobbled it up). Van Slichtenhorst was still in the colony in July 1655 and lived in Holland in 1660.

Burger Jorisz
Was at New Amsterdam in 1637 and was secured as smith of Rensselaerswyck to take the place of Cornelis Thomasz, who had been killed by his helper Hans van Sevenhuysen, on the voyage out at Ilfracombe, Dec. 8, 1636. The terms upon which Burger Jorisz was engaged are as follows: "Inasmuch as Cornelis Tomassen died and Arent Steveniersen, who married the widow does not understand smith's work, the council of the colony have decided to turn the iron and coal and all the tools over to Burger Jorisen Smit at 50% advance in price, and to let him do the work at the rates paid by freemen at the Manhatans, to wit: pound work at six stivers, nails at 10 stivers a hundred, braces at 12 stivers, double braces at 28 stivers and other work proportionately, and this till the patroon makes different arrangements. In the year 1637, the 26th of May, and was signed, Jacob Albertsen Planck, Pieter Cornelissen, X the mark of Dirck Jansen." Burger Jorisz' account in the colony runs from June 4, 1637, to Aug. 18, 1639, when he turned over his tools to Reyer Stoffelsz and moved to the Manhatans. Dec. 18, 1639, he married at New Amsterdam, Engeltje Mans, from Sweden. In the marriage records of the Reformed Dutch church of New York, Burger Jorisz is given as fromHersberg, in Silesien Hirschberg, in Silesia).

Captain Slijter (Slijtter)
Is charged with f114 for 9 1/2 weeks board for himself and his son, at the house of Director van Slichtenhorst, by order of the codirectors of the colony, from June 27 to Sept. 2, 1651. During this period van Slichtenhorst was at the Manhatans and Capt. Slijter appears to have had the management of the colony in conjunction with Jan Baptist van Rensselaer. July 30, 1651, Capt. Slijter made an agreement with Gijsbert Cornelisz as to the tithes of the farm called de Hoogeberch.

Carsten Pietersz
Came before 1646, being in that year referred to as the deceased maet (partner) of Jacob Hevick.

Casper Jacobsz
Obtained a lease of a hofstede (house lot), in 1651. He was apparently a day laborer.

Christoffel Davids
Also referred to as Kit davitsz; according to his own statement, he was born in England and on Sept. 3, 1658, was 42 years of age (Mortgages, A, p. 93, Albany county clerk's office). He appears first in the colony in 1638 and between 1642 and 1647 is various times credited with tobacco furnished to Arent van Curler and Antony de Hooges. Till stubble time 1649, he was with Crijn Cornelisz in possession of six morgens of land in Greenbush, and July 22, 1650, he leased the Dominees Hoeck, on the west side of the river, opposite Papscanee Island, for six years, at an annual rent of f50, in addition to tithes, Christoffel Davids to build his own house and fences and the patroon to furnish the live stock. March 3, 1650, an action was brought against him for striking Rijck Rutgersz on the head, for beating his servant and for wounding Jan Dircksz, from Bremen.

Claes Brunsteyn
From Straelsundt (Stralsund, in Pomerania); entered into an agreement with Marinus Adriaensz, May 27, 1631, but did not sail for the colony.

Claes Cornelisz
Mentioned in 1652 as the servant and brother of Gijsbert aende berch (Gijsbert Cornelisz, from Breuckelen).

Claes Jansz
From Bockhoven, (near Bois-le-Duc, province of North Brabant); also referred to as Claes de Braebander. In 1651 and 1652 he was summoned before the court for having, out of spite against Director van Slichtenhorst, caused his servant to haul wood for Hendrick Westerkamp and Lambert van Valckenburch, contrary to ordinances of Oct. 16, 1648, Nov. 23, 1651, and Dec. 28, 1651.

Claes Kalf (Claes Jansz Calff)
Appears to have been in the colony about 1647, when de Hooges charges his boy Mathaens with two pairs of shoes from Claes Kalf. He was a son in law of Brant Peelen.

Cornelis de Vries
His name occurs but once, under date of Sept. 28, 1651, when Willem Fredericksz asked that he be summoned before the court. He may have been an inhabitant of Fort Orange or a free trader and not a colonist.

Cornelis Goverts (Gerritssz)
From Flecker (Fleckero, Norway); was engaged to sail by de Eendracht in 1631, but failed to go.

Cornelis Jansz
Is first mentioned in the court records under date of Sept. 9, 1648, in connection with the purchase of a musket belonging to the inventoried effects of the farm formerly used by Crijn Cornelisz. Aug. 2, 1649, Director van Slichtenhorst notified him and other skippers not to transport colonists out of the colony without his consent.

Cornelis Spierinck
Charged with supplies in 1642 and 1643 and credited with f107:15:8 for copying and other work in the service of Arent van Curler, in the course of 1 1/2 years, previous to the arrival of Antony de Hooges in the spring of 1642.

Dirck Jansz (Croon)
From Amsterdam; was a carpenter by trade and apparently in 1650, built with Harmen Bastiaensz a house in Beverwyck, which was transferred to his name January 25, 1652, on condition that he enter into a contract with the authorities of the colony and pay the patroon's dues. He is entered in the accounts as Dirck jansz timmerman, but is well identified with Dirck Jansz Croon, from Amsterdam, who in 1655 became one of the magistrates of Beverwyck.

Dirck van Hamel
Succeeded Antony de Hooges as secretary of the colony in Oct. 1655, and served as such till his death on July 2, 1660. June 5, 1660, Jeremias van Rensselaer writes to his brother Jan Baptist van Rensselaer that van Hamel is unfit for the office of secretary and very fond of brandy; that last winter he was for two months unable to attend the meetings of the council; and that since the arrival of his wife he has been very ill, apparently the result of drinking. His wife was Sophia van Wyckersloot; shortly after van Hamel's death she married Anthony Toinel.

Egbert Doyszz (Dojesz)
Servant of Sander Leendertsz Glen, mentioned in the court records of the colony under dates of April 3, 1649, and March 11, 1652.

Eldert Gerbertsz Cruyf (Cruijff, Kruyf)
From Hilversum, (in Gooiland, province of North Holland); also referred to as Eldert de Goijer; is charged from 1654 to 1658 with an annual rent of f400 for (two?) sawmills; from May 1, 1655, to May 1, 1658, with an annual rent of f275 for a farm formerly occupied by Pieter Winne; and from 1658 to 1671, with an annual rent of f100 for a mill, apparently at Bethlehem. Feb. 20, 1659, Jan Dircksz, from Bremen, conveyed to him his farm at Catskill in exchange for a house in Beverwyck. A brother of Eldert Gerbertsz Cruyf, by name of Cornelis Gerbertsz Cruyf, was living at Hilversum in 1661.

Evert Jansz
Tailor; Oct. 13, 1648, the court of Rensselaerswyck granted Evert Jansz Cleermaecker (tailor), living on the island of Manhatans, permission to move to the colony and to exercise his trade, on condition that he build a house at his own expense. Nov. 7, 1651, he obtained a lot next to that of Abraham Pietersz, opposite the garden of Sander Leendertsz, being lot No. 2, on condition that he enter into a contract like other settlers and build a house at least two boards long. He was at New Amsterdam as early as February 1643.

Evert Nolden (Noldingh)
Received permission to establish himself as a schoolmaster by resolution of the court of the colony of April 30, 1648. Nov. 16, 1651, he was prosecuted for having crushed Adriaen Dircksz' nose with a pair of fire tongs. He seems to have left the colony in 1660.

Frans Jacobsz
Testified in 1649, being then 17 years of age, as to a fight which took place at midnight Oct. 20, 1649, in Greenbush, before the house of Evert Pels. He may be the same as fransoijs jacobsen de bruijn, referred to in an account of 1656, or perhaps as Frans Jacobsz Coningh, who was in the colony in 1657.

Frans Jacobsz Coningh (Koningh)
Charged, May 1, 1658, with f24 for one year's rent of a garden which he took over from Adriaen Jansz Appel.

Gerard Swart (Gerret Swardt)
Entered into a contract to serve as schout, or prosecuting officer, of Rensselaerswyck, at an annual salary of f400, April 24, 1652. He acted as schout of the colony til 1665, when the courts of Rensselaerswyck and Albany were consolidated and he became sheriff of Albany. According to his contract, Swart was to proceed to the colony with his wife, maid and servant, and to occupy "the house in which the former minister (Megapolensis) lived, standing in 't grenen bosch." The name of Swart's wife was Anthonia van Ryswyck.

Gerrit Jansz
From Haerlem; also referred to as Gerrit Jansen Cuyper and Gerrit Jansz Kuijper (the cooper); seems to have done cooper's work in the colony as early as 1640, and is mentioned in the court proceedings under date of July 16, 1648. May 4, 1647, Antony de Hooges gave him a promissory note for f28, being the balance of money due to him for 'thaelen vant Geschut (bringing the ordinance).

Gerrit (Gerardus) van Wencom
Was assaulted by a Mahikan Indian at Bethlehem, Dec. 8, 1649, and Sept. 23, 1650, was chosen to go with others on an embassy to the Maquaes. He was still in the colony in 1653.

Gerrit Vastrick
Was one of the Gecommitteerden (commissioners) of the colony in 1650, and on Aug. 15, 1650, was suspended from his office till he had cleared himself of the accusation of having given out a false statement regarding Domine Wilhelmus Grasmeer. He was at New Amsterdam as early as July 16, 1644.

Gijsbert Cornelisz
From Breuckelen, (near Utrecht); farmer on the farm called de Hoogeberch, hence frequently referred to as Gijsbert Cornelisz van den Hoogenberch, or aen den Berch. He is charged in the accounts of the colony with an annual rent of f300 from 1648 to 1653, and with an annual rent of f340 and tithes from May 1, 1653, to May 1, 1675.

Gisbert Cornelisz
From Weesp, (near Amsterdam); commonly referred to as Gijsbert Cornelisz waert, or weert (tavern keeper). He appears at New Amsterdam as early as June 1639, and in 1646 is credited with wine and beer furnished at the departure of Arent van Curler, showing that he must have been in the colony of Rensselaerswyck in the fall of 1644. He is charged from 1647 to 1652 with f32 a year for the right of the fur trade and with f 40 a year for license to sell liquor. He married Lysbeth, the daughter of Cornelis Segersz van Voorhout, and died between Oct. 25, 1653, and Aug. 22, 1654. August 24, 1654, Antony de Hooges gives a promissory note to Francois Boon, husband and guardian of Lysbeth Cornelis, formerly widow of Gijsbert Cornelis; Ouwerkerck, deceased, for wine and beer consumed at public leasings of farms, comunion service, in household of patroon, etc. Ouwerkerck, or Oudekerk, is a small place on the river Amstel, a few miles west of Weesp.

Gillis Fonda
About 1646, Pieter Hartgers advanced some money to Gillis, a boy in the service of Antony de Hooges, possibly Gillis Fonda; Oct. 19, 1651, the court gave Gillis Fonda permission to distill liquor in't greenen bos (Greenbush), in a house belonging to Evert Pels, next to the brewery, on condition that he enter into a contract as to the Gerechticheijt vande Heeren Mrs (dues to the patroon and codirectors). Gillis Fonda is at a later period commonly referred to as Gillis Douwes Fonda. To judge from his name, he must have been a Frisian.

Hans Jansz Eencluys (een kluijs, in Cluijs)
By his mark well identified with Hans Jansz, from Rotterdam; appears at New Amsterdam in 1639 and seems to have been in Rensselaerswyck as early as 1641. He was in July 1648, preparatory to Stuyvesant's visit, employed with Jan Dircksz, from Bremen, to clean the colony's cannon, and in the spring of 1650 acted as interpreter for Jacob Jansz Flodder in buying land from the Indians. In 1651 he operated a sawmill for Evert Pels, being under contract till May 1652. Nov. 3, 1651, Hans Jansz and Crijn Cornelisz received permission to erect a sawmill on a creek on the west side of the river, a little north of Beeren Island; Sept. 30, 1656, Hans Jansz and Abraham Pietersz Vosburch obtained a lease of the water power on the creek south of the farm of Jan Barentsz Wemp.

Harmen Bastiansz
Appears first in the accounts of the colony in 1647, but was in New Netherland as early as Sept. 13, 1639, when with Evert Evertsz Bischop and Sibout Claesz he leased a sawmill on Nooten Island, now Governor's Island. He was a carpenter and with Dirck Jansz (Croon), built a house in Beverwyck on the site of the present National Commercial Bank, which he seems to have occupied from 1650 to 1652 and which on January 25, 1652, was transferred to the name of Dirck Jansz. Feb. 9, 1652, Director van Slichtenhorst promised him indemnity for any loss he might incur by proceeding with the building of his house contrary to the orders of Johannes Dyckman. Harmen Bastiaensz was in 1667 surveyor of Albany; Pearson and other writers refer to him as Harmen Bastiaensz Visser.

Hendrick Conduit
From Coninghsbergen (Konigsberg, East Prussia); made a contract with the patroon on April 15, 1634, but failed to come to the colony.

Hendrick Jansz Reur
From Munster, (Westphalia); was appointed Gerechts Boode (court messenger), Aug. 18, 1651, at a salary of f100 per year, in addition to fees for summonses and arrests. Nov. 14, 1658, he complained that his salary was insufficient and the court fixed a rate of fees for serving summonses in the various districts of the colony. Feb. 1, 1652, he obtained permission to occupy a lot "next to Juriaen Teunisz, the glazier, the rent to begin at Easter 1653. He died before Feb. 4, 1664, when his household effects were sold at auction.

Hendrick Jansz Westerkamp (Westercamp)
Received permission on April 2, 1648, to seek a living in the colony by day labor or otherwise and soon seems to have established himself as a baker. In accordance with a resolution of April 1, 1650, he was granted the garden between the first and second creeks formerly occupied by Capitaijn (Willem Juriaensz, the baker). Westerkamp died before January 17, 1655. His widow's name was Femmetje Alberts.

Servant of Andries de Vos; was wounded by Poulijntje, in the brewery, in 1649. He may be the same as Huybert Jansz, who is mentioned in the court proceedings under date of Dec. 11, 1651.

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Extracts from Settlers of Rensselaerswyck, 1630-1658 In A. J. F. Van Laer, Van Rensselaer Bowier Manuscripts, Being the Letters of Kiliaen Van Rensselaer, 1630-1643, Albany, University of the State of New York, (c)1908, p 805-846.
Source #76.

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