Sunset at Gowanus Bay

Sunset at Gowanus Bay
Sunset at Gowanus Bay, Henry Gritten, 1851

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Hill Manuscript

The document known as the "Hill Manuscript" was produced in 1923 or 1924 by Fred Hill of Ontario, Canada. You will occasionally find reference to it in published accounts of both the descendants of Adam Brouwer and in reference to Anneke Jans. The document appears to be an attempt at recounting what was then considered to be the facts surrounding the claims to property in Manhattan that was believed to have once belonged to Anneke Jans (1605-1663). She was the widow of Roeloff Jansen (d. ca. 1637) and Dom. Everardus Bogardus (1607-1647).
I am bringing attention to the manuscript here because among its contents are a number of genealogies, most of which are terribly incorrect especially with regards to the earlier generations. However, genealogies of later generations (1800s to 1923) are probably more correct as they were related to Fred Hill by persons who in many cases were describing their immediate families. For this reason it may be a valuable tool for some. It can also serve as an interesting look at the atmosphere that surrounded all the hype and excitement surrounding the quest by many to "recover" their perceived share of the inheritance due the descendants of Anneke Jans.
Much of the descendant information that has some value involves the Hill family, who were descended from the couple Thomas Benjamin Hill and Jane Brouwer. It had been believed that  this Jane Brouwer, born about 1734, was a descendant of Anneke Jans through her granddaughter Annetje Bogardus and her husband, Jacob Brouwer. Jane Brouwer is not a descendant of this last couple. She is instead, a daughter of Nazareth Brouwer and Anne Rozell, and is descended from Adam Brouwer through his son Nicholas Brouwer, a younger brother of the just mentioned Jacob Brouwer. I have used the accounts found in the Hill Manuscript to produce a genealogical chart of the descendants of Jane Brouwer and Thomas Benjamin Hill. It is available online, and it comes with the caveat that I have not researched the accuracy of the accounts presented in the Hill Manuscript. I make it available simply as tool for anyone who is interested in further research of this branch of descendants of Adam Brouwer. It is essentially a "genealogical summery" in chart format of the Hill section of the manuscript.
I also have online PDF documents of the Hill Manuscript itself. It is broken up into seven parts and was created by scanning images of the manuscript's pages, which were mimeographed copies (remember that purple ink). The manuscript was on legal size paper (8x14). My scanner, however, only accommodates pages that are 8x11. As a result you will find "short" pages within the PDF documents. These are online in a Google Docs account and those interested are probably best off downloading each PDF to your own computer for easier and better viewing. Part 1 is very light and can be difficult to read. Parts 2 through 7 are darker and you should have no trouble with them. The copy that was scanned was obtained from William B. Bogardus.

Hill Manuscript Part 1: Contents, Trinity Church Story, House of Orange, Anneke Jans and her Farm
Hill Manuscript Part 2:  The Lawsuits
Hill Manuscript Part 3: Genealogy Section - Showers Connection, Van Every Connection, Scott Genealogy, Bogardus Genealogy
Hill Manuscript Part 4: Brower Connections, Genealogy of James Maxwell, Mathewson Genealogy, Daniel Brower of Brockville, Ontario
Hill Manuscript Part 5: "Quackenbus" Line, Webber, Hill
Hill Manuscript Part 6: Webber Genealogy, Brouwer or Brower Genealogy, The Estate of Robert Edwards, Information regarding the Law Cases against Trinity Church
Hill Manuscript Part 7: Law cases continued, List of Correspondants

A reminder: Please use the genealogy sections with extreme caution. They are largely incorrect, and parts are best described as fictitious. For titles of the best current published accounts regarding Anneke Jans, the story of the Trinity Law suits, and her descendants, please see the Bibliography page.

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