Sunset at Gowanus Bay

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

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Register of the Provincial Secretary, 1642-1647

Volume 2 of New York Historical Manuscripts: Dutch, is the Register of the Provincial Secretary, 1642-1647, translated and annotated by Arnold J. F. van Laer, edited and indexed by Kenneth Scott and Kenn Stryker-Rodda (Baltimore: Genealogial Publishing Co., Inc., 1974). As with volume 1, hard copies are difficult to come by, but digital versions have been placed online by the New Netherland Institute at their website.

Four links to PDFs are made available at the bottom of the above page. The first link will take you to the digital version edited by Charles Gehring. There is no index to this version. The second link is for a PDF of the original published volume. This version is indexed. The third link is to a PDF of the original transcribed pages. There are 751 pages here and it can take some time before they all load on to your computer. For each version I do recommend downloading the PDF to your own computer. It should be much easier, and faster, to work with offline compared to online. The fourth link will take you to the digital collections page at the New York State Archives website. Here you can see images of the original documents that were transcribed by van Laer.

There is no introductory material here. For background information please see the opening pages of Volume 1. Instead the volume goes right into the records, the first being a bond of Govert Loockemans and Cornelis Leendersen for goods brought over in the ship Coninck David

There are five documents in which Adam Brouwer appears - 141a, b, c, 142a, and 149j. 

Document 141a is found at pages 290-291 in the original published version (hereafter van Laer), and at page 170 in the newer digital version (hereafter Gehring). This is an important document for those researching Adam Brouwer. It is dated 21 February 1645, and to date is the earliest known record of Adam Brouwer to have been found. It tells us that he was from Ceulen (Cologne, Germany), that he was employed by the (Dutch) West India Company as a soldier, and that he sailed to Brazil in 1641 aboard the ship Swol, whose supercargo was Willem de Haes. Adam Brouwer states that he is owed one hundred and eighty-nine guilders as pay for his service, and "assigns and transfers in full and free ownership," his wages earned to one Geurt Servaesz, living in Amsterdam in Papenbrugh alley. The witnesses to the document are Willem Bredenbent and Pauwlus Van der Becke. The later had married Maria Badie in October 1644, the former had married Aeltie Braconie in September 1644. In one month from the date of this document, Adam Brouwer would marry Magdalena Verdon, the daughter of Maria Badie and granddaughter of Aeltie Braconie. Adam Brouwer signs this document with a mark, AB. A note in both the van Laer and Gehring versions tells us that this document was then canceled.

Document 141b is at pages 291-292 (van Laer) and at page 171 (Gehring). The document has the same date as the above, 21 February 1645, and is otherwise the same except that here Adam Brouwer is authorizing Geurt Servasz "at Amsterdam, in Papenbrigh alley, in 'The Whalebone,' to demand and collect in his name from the honorable directors of the General Charted West India Company, chamber at Amsterdam, all such sums of money as are still due him." This is an important technical clarification from the prior document in which it could have been construed that Adam Brouwer was giving Geurt Servaesz his earnings due from the WIC. Adam signs with his mark, AB. The witnesses are again Willem Bredenbent and Pauwlus Van der Becke.

Document 141c follows at pages 292-293 (van Laer) and pages 171-172 (Gehring). This document is also dated 21 February 1645. It is a contract of sale from Hendrick Jansen to Adam Brouwer of a house and garden on Manhattan Island. The document reads, "Hendrick Jansen, from Jeveren, locksmith, and Adam Brouwer have in love and friendship, in the presence of the witnesses hereto invited, agreed and contracted about the purchase of a certain house and lot for a garden situated on the island of Manhatans, formerly occupied by Jeuriaen Roodolf. Hendrick Jansen from Jeveren sells the aforesaid house and lot to Adam Brouwer above mentioned, who also acknowledges that he has bought the same, with all that is fastened by earth and nail, in true and full ownership, on which house and garden Adam shall pay within three months from the date twenty-five guilders, which shall be the last payment." Both parties sign the document, Adam Brouwer with his mark, AB, and Hendrick Jansen as "Heindreick Jansz." The contract is witnessed by Willem Breidendent and Pauwlus Van der Becke. This contract is a bit unusual in that the phrase "in love and friendship" (between Adam Brouwer and Hendrick Jansen) is used. It implies that they had a close relationship, but for how long that relationship had been, and where and under what circumstances it began are not known, and can only be guessed at. What we do know from this document about Hendrick Jansen is that he was from "Jeveren," which is the city of Jever. During Hendrick Jansen's lifetime Jever was in Oldenburg. Today it is the capital of the district of Friesland in Lower Saxony, a state in Germany. We also know that Hendrick Jansen (or Heindreick Jansz) was a locksmith. From volume 1 of Register of the Provincial Secretary, 1638-1642, in document 49 (page 67), Hendrick Jansen, locksmith (sloot maker), aged 36 years, and Hendrick Gerritsen, aged 20 years, gave testimony on behalf of Grietje Reyniers. This document was dated 6 October 1638, which would place Hendrick Jansen's birth at about 1602, presumably at Jever. Hendrick Jansen (Heindrick Jansz) is found in later records with the occupation of "smith." In 1656, Hendrick Jansen van Jeveren, was granted a patent on land "beyond Hellgate on Long Island" (Gehring, Charles T. Land Papers. New York Historical Manuscripts, Dutch, Vols. GG, HH & II. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 1980. Page 83). If our assumption that Adam Brouwer was born about 1620 is correct (see Origins of Adam Brouwer), then we can see that Hendrick Jansen was a bit older than Adam. There were other men named Hendrick Jansen living in New Amsterdam during this time, and care must be used when sorting out the records, which individually do not convey a complete story or history of any one person.*

In document 142a, page 295 (van Laer), pages 173-174 (Gehring), Adam Brouwer, signing with his mark, AB, was a witness to directions in which Symon Woutersz, of Nus, soldier, assigned over to Seger Teunisz an account of wages earned by Hans Haen, from Hessenlandt, in the service of the WIC. The document is dated 1 March 1645.

Document 149j, pages 341-342 (van Laer) and page 209 (Gehring) is another power of attorney from Adam Brouwer, this time to Govert Loockermans, to collect one hundred and eighty-nine guilders, earned by Adam Brouwer at Fort St. Louis de Marinhan. The document is dated 21 Sep 1646. Apparently Adam did not receive his wages that he had requested to be collected by Guert Servasz back in February 1645. Adam once again states that he had sailed to Brazil aboard the Swol in 1641. Govert Loockermans is apparently about to set sail for Amsterdam on De Jager.

In addition to the documents listed above for Adam Brouwer, there are documents relating to Magdalena Verdon's grandmother, Aeltje Braconie (18c, 93b, 93f); to Willem Adriaenszen, who was the second husband of Maria Badie (37b, 47c); to Paulus Van der Beeck, who was Maria Badie's third husband (122c, 123a, 139e). 

*For example the various records, published in New York Historical Manuscripts, Register... , Council Minutes, and Land Papers, also include a Hendrick Jansen, tailor (snyder in Dutch) who is often mentioned, as well as a Hendrick Jansen from Oldenborch (Oldenburgh), soldier, age 20 on 12 November 1642. There is also mention of a Hendrick Jansen from Bremen. Care is needed when sorting out records belonging to persons with a common name and a common patronymic like Hendrick, and Jansen.

PDF version of this post

No comments:

Post a Comment

Because of spamming issues, all submitted comments are moderated. Your comment is appreciated, but it will not appear online until it has first been reviewed. All relative comments will be sent through. Comments of a commercial nature will be blocked. It may take as little as a few hours or as long as a few days for submitted comments to appear online. Please do not resend the same comment. Thank you.