Sunset at Gowanus Bay

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

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Annetje Jans / Antje Berge (Part II)

In the post of October 8, 2013, evidence was laid out to support the notion that Annetje Jans, the wife of Pieter Jansz Brouwer, was one and the same with Antje Berge, who was described as the widow of Peter Brouwer in a list of member of the Reformed Dutch Congregations of Freehold and Middletown, from 1731. This post will propose a set of parents and family for Annetje Jans Berge.

We start with the obvious. Assuming that the notion that Annetje Jans and Antje Berge are one and the same (as I believe they are), we have an instance in which she is recorded by her patronymic, "Annetie Jansen," and an instance when she is recorded with her surname, "Antie Berge." This is simple enough and we now have that Annetje/Antie's father was named Jan, and his surname was Berge. The surname "Berge" is a variation on the more commonly seen surname, BERGEN. Instances of the Bergen surname being recorded as"Berge" are numerous. One example being the baptism record of "Annetje, child of Hans BERGE, and Saartje Rapalje, Jur." on 12 March 1710 at the New York Reformed Dutch Church. Now, combining the patronymic with the surname, it is apparent that Annetje Jans/Antie Berge is a daughter of a Jan Bergen.

The marriage banns of Pieter Brouwer and Annetie Jansen was dated 15 February 1687. The couple had at least six children and the eldest, a daughter named Lucretia, was born 12 August 1688. Pieter Brouwer was baptized in October 1660, and so probably age 26 when he was married. A typical age range for a young woman living in the communities of the New York City area in the late 1600s, one in which the Reformed Dutch Church was dominant, to get married, would be between 16 and 25 years. We have no record of baptism for Annetje Jans, but we can certainly state that she was likely born between 1662 and 1671. Of the potential persons named, Jan Bergen, during this time frame (1662-1671), old enough to be a father, there is only one. He would be Jan Hans Bergen, son of Hans Hansen and Sara Rapalje.

Hans Hansen was an early settler at New Amsterdam. He is stated to have been there by 1633, and was a ship carpenter. He married Sarah Rapalje, a daughter of Joris Rapalje and Catalina Trico. Sarah is often claimed to be the first child of European ancestry born in New Netherland. Their marriage likely took place in 1639, probably just before the time that marriage records of the Reformed Dutch Church at New Amsterdam are found. Their first child, daughter Anneken, was baptized 22 July 1640 at the New Amsterdam Reformed Dutch Church. The record records Anneken's father as "Hans Noorman," a name that Hans Hansen was often called. In fact there is no record of Hans, himself, being referred to with the surname, BERGEN. That surname was adopted by descendants later on, well after the English takeover of New Netherland in 1664. The surname, BERGEN, did not become commonplace until about the time when the grandchildren of Hans Hansen became adults. Hans Hansen, often referred to as "Hans de Noorman," or "Hans Hansen de Noorman," died by 30 May 1654, some twenty years before the surrender of New Amsterdam. The Bergen Family or the Descendants of Hans Hansen Bergen one of the Early Settlers of New York and Brooklyn, L.I., by Teunis G. Bergen, was published in 1876. This genealogy can be consulted as a guide to reconstructing the descendants of Hans Hansen, but must be used with caution. There are numerous errors in Teunis G. Bergen's work. (An updated, although unrefined, journal report of three generations of descendants of Hans Hansen is now online).

The first son of Hans Hansen was named, Jan, and he was baptized on 17 March 1644 at the New Amsterdam Reformed Dutch Church. The record names Jan's father as "Hans Hanszen de Noorman." As with the vast majority of baptism records of the New Amsterdam Reformed Dutch Church from this time period, the name of the mother of the child being baptized is not stated. This son, Jan, would be the father of our Annetje Jans/Antie Berge. Jan is most often referred to in records as Jan Hansen. It appears that the first mention of him as "Jan Hansen BERGEN," is with the baptism record of his daughter, Adriaantje, at Brooklyn in 1681. Jan Hansen's wife was Jannetje Teunis. T. G. Bergen incorrectly identified her as "Jannetje Teunis, daughter of Teunis Denyse (Nysen, Nyse, Nyssen) of Gowanus." This incorrect identification was corrected in 1988 by Phyllis J. Miller in, "Jannetje Teunis Nyssen and Jannetje Teunis Covert," New York Genealogical and Biographical Record, vol. 119, no. 1 (1988), page 6. This article correctly identifies Jannetje Teunis, the wife of Jan Hansen, as the daughter of Teunis Covert and Barbara Lucas. Jannetje Teunis Covert would be the mother of our Annetje Jans/Antie Berge.

Assuming this identification of Annetje Jans/Antie Berge as a daughter of Jan Hansen Bergen and Jannetje Teunis Covert is correct (as I believe it is), she would be a previously unknown, or unclaimed child, of this couple. Teunis G. Bergen, in 1876, did not identify a daughter named Annetje, or Antie, for Jan Hansen and Jannetje Teunis. To my knowledge, no other published account places a daughter named Annetje in the family of Jan Hansen. There is no simple direct evidence that supports the idea that Jan Hansen had a daughter named Annetje. There is no surviving record of her baptism. Jan Hansen did not leave a will, and a clear record of the settlement of his estate has not been located (a date of death is not known, but he was deceased by 9 April 1730). In addition, the marriage banns of Annetje Jansen (to Pieter Brouwer) state that at the time they were published, she was living at Amersfoort (in Kings County, on Long Island), while Jan Hansen is not known to have lived there himself (he is found on a rate list at Brooklyn in September 1676 and was living at Jamaica, Queens County, in 1681, where he appears to have remained for the rest of his life). There is no instance in which Annetje/Antie is found as a sponsor for the baptism of a child of one of the known children of Jan Hansen. And there is no instance in which a known child of Jan Hansen is recorded as a baptism sponsor for a child of Annetje Jans/Antie Berge. The placement of Annetje Jans/Antie Berge as a daughter of Jan Hansen Bergen, is based primarily on her very name, "Annetje Jans Berge (Bergen)" which by definition tells us that she is a daughter of Jan Bergen.

There is, however, some supporting onomastic evidence among the names found in the families of Jan Hansen Bergen and Jannetje Teunis Covert, and Pieter Jansz Brouwer and Annetje Jans Berge that can be considered. Pieter and Annetje had sons named Jan and Hans. The older son, Jan, would have course been named for his paternal grandfather (who would be JAN Brouwer). In this case, however, the given name, Jan, would also satisfy the need to name a son for maternal grandfather (who would be JAN Hansen Bergen). A second born son (in the family of Pieter Brouwer and Annetje Jans) would then likely be named for a sibling of one of the parents. In the family of Pieter and Annetje, the second son is named, Hans. He was most likely named for HANS Bergen, the eldest son of Jan Hansen Bergen and Jannetje Teunis Covert, and most probably the oldest brother of Annetje Jans Berge. Pieter Brouwer and Annetje Jans Berge's daughters are named, Lucretia, Jannetje, Catharine and Annatje. The given name, Lucretia, is relatively uncommon among the families of Dutch, Scandinavian or German heritage found in New York in the late 1600s. In this case, "Lucretia" could be a feminine variation of LUCAS*, and the child may have been named in remembrance of the Lucas ancestry of Jannetje Teunis Covert who's mother was, Barbara LUCAS. Hans Bergen (the son of Jan Hansen and Jannetje Teunis) named one of his own sons, Lucas (b. 1715). The daughter Jannetje, would have been named for both her maternal grandmother, Jannetje Teunis Covert, and for her paternal grandmother, Jannetje Jans. It is presumed that Pieter Brouwer and Annetje Jans Berge had a daughter named Catharine. The basis of this belief, and thus far the only evidence of her existence, is the presence of a Catharine Brewer as a witness (with a Peter Johnson) at the baptism of Lucresia (Lucretia) the daughter of Abraham Lane and Annatje Brouwer (the Harlingen Reformed Dutch Church records the parents as "Abraham Lowe and Hannah Brewer"). Jan Hansen Bergen and Jannetje Teunis Covert had a daughter named Catlyn (Catlyntie) who is also referred to as Catharine, or Catherine.

Jan Hansen Bergen and Jannetje Teunis Covert had four known children baptized (either at Brooklyn or New York) between 1677 and 1685. In addition, they had a daughter named Sarah, who, since she would have been named for her paternal grandmother, Sarah Rapalje, was likely born prior to 1677 (no record of baptism is found for Sarah). As mentioned above, Jan Hansen Bergen's older sister, Anneken (Annatje, Antie) was baptized in 1640. She had been married first, in 1661 to Jan Clercq (no known children) and second, in 1662, to Dirck Jansen Hoogland. Anneken Hanse (Bergen) and Dirck Jansen Hoogland had three known children. There are no records of baptisms for the three, but the youngest, William Hoogland, was born by 1669 (he took the oath of allegiance in September 1687 at Flatbush). Dirck Jansen Hoogland married as his second wife, some time between 1670 and 1677, Annetje Feddens. It is probable, although not documented, that Anneken Hanse (Bergen) died at about the time her youngest child was born, probably around 1669. It was mentioned above that Annetje Jans Berge, based on the date of her marriage banns, was probably born between 1662 and 1671. If correct, this would place her as one of the first, and possibly the first, child of Jan Hansen Bergen and Jannetje Teunis Covert. If born around 1669, she may well have been named for her father's recently deceased older sister, Anneken Hanse (Bergen).

The evidence derived from the comparison of names in the associated families is not claimed to be sufficient for conclusive proof with regards to the idea that Annetje Jans Berge is a previously unknown daughter of Jan Hansen Bergen. However, it can be considered as evidence that somewhat supports the idea. We are very much handicapped in this analysis by incomplete baptism and marriage records (especially in the Brooklyn and Flatbush churches) and the lack of probate records for Jan Hansen Bergen and his wife. It is also known that Annetje Jans Berge relocated to Monmouth County, New Jersey by 1715 (apparently moving there as a widow with her adult children), while the known children of Jan Hansen Bergen remained in the area of Jamaica, Long Island. This could account for the lack of records (baptism sponsorships) that would associate Annetje with the other children of Jan Hansen Bergen. The land conveyance records of Queens County, New York and the Jamaica Town records (Jan Hansen Bergen last lived at Jamaica) need to be searched for records that might provide more suitable evidence. For now, the most convincing piece of evidence for the placement of Annetje/Antie as a daughter of Jan Hansen Bergen is her very name, Annetje Jans Berge.

Called "Annetie Jansen":  Voorhees, David William. Records of The Reformed Protestant Dutch Church of Flatbush, Kings County, New York, Vol.1, 1677-1720. New York: Holland Society of New York, 1998, page 257. Marriage banns: "Pieter Brouwer, j.m., tot nieu amersfort met Annetie Jansen, meede woonachtigh aldaar. (Pieter Brouwer, young man at New Amersfort; with Annetie Jansen, also residing there)."

Called "Antie Berge": "Records of the Dutch Congregations of Freehold and Middletown," Genealogical Magazine of New Jersey Vol. 24 (1949), page 22. List of members who signed the declaration recognizing Dom. Gerardus Haeghoort as their minister. "Antie Berge, widow of Pieter Brouwer."

Baptism record of Annetje, child of Hans Berge, Saarthe Rapalje, Jur: Evans, Thomas Grier (Ed.). Baptisms from 1639 to 1730 in the Reformed Dutch Church, New York. Collections of the New York Genealogical and Biographical Society, Vol. 2. New York: Printed for the Society, 1901, page 344. Sponsors were Jeronimus Rapalje and Saartje Rapalje, Zenr. This, Annetje Berge, was married to Gerrit Couwenhoven and had two children baptized at New Utrecht in 1743 and 1746. She is described as the wife of Gerrit Couwenhoven in her father's will dated 11 September 1743.

Please consult the Brouwer Genealogy Database website for all other source citations. For the time, Annetje Jans/Antie Berge is linked as a possible daughter to Jan Hansen and Jannetje Teunis. I would like to find additional, and hopefully more conclusive evidence.

*An example of the name Lucretia being used as a feminine variation of Lucas, would be found with Lucretia Rodenburg, who was probably born in late 1655 or 1656 on the island of Curaçao, and who was baptized, posthumously, on 1 July 1657 at New Amsterdam. She would have been named for her father, Lucas Rodenburg, who had died between 22 March 1655 and 8 June 1655 on Curaçao. Lucetia was the only child of Lucas Rodenburg and Trijntje Roelofse (daughter of Roelof Jansen and Anneke Jans) who afterwards married Johannes Pietersz Van Brugge. In the baptism record, Johannes Rodenburg, a brother of Lucas Rodenburg, is recorded in the place of the child's father.

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