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God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
- Romans 5:8
JOHANNES LA MONTAGNE and RACHEL DE FOREST
Johannes la Montagne was born in France and was among the early settlers of New Amsterdam, what his now New York City.
Since he was very active in the government of the Dutch colony, his name appears in numerous records. Compiling his history is an intense and time-consuming endeavor. Until I have enough time to devote to the task, I will provide the following note on his life, which come from various sources.
+ Johannes La Montagne born in 1592.
+ Nov. 18, 1619: Johannes Monerius Montanus registered as a student of medicine at the university in Leyden, Netherlands.
+ July 1, 1623: Jesse de Forest – identified in the expedition journal as “our Captain” – leads a group of settlers who embarked on the “ship Pigeon to make the voyage up the Amazons.” According to at least one scholar, the journal appears to have been kept by Johannes de la Montagne, who ended up marrying de Forest daughter, Rachel, after returning to Holland.
+ Dec. 23, 1623: The expedition entered “the River Scapome to visit the settlement of the Indians, who brought us 3 pigs, a rabbit, and a partridge. All pronounced the place good and convenient for forming a Colony.”
+ March 1624: The settlers enjoyed excellent relations with the Native Americans – the Yaos – who apparently included at least one man who had spent some time in Holland and spoke Dutch. On March 20, members of the Carib tribe from Cayenne arrived at the settlement and, two days later, members of the Aricoures tribe from the Cassipoure River arrive. While the Caribes and Aricoures were enemies, the Yaos were friendly with both. As “they were preparing to fight, peace was made between them by the intervention of our Captain and the said Yaos, on condition that the Aricoures should ask for it. … This done, the Caribs, throwing down their arms, rushed into the canoes of the others and embraced them. On the occasion of this peace the Yaos entertained them together for eight days; peace having never been known between them before.”
+ October, 1624: Jesse de Forest was turning from an expedition to Carippo Mountain on Oct. 13, when he suffered “a sunstroke, as the sun was very strong that day, so that he fell fainting into the canoe and arrived this day seized with a severe fever.” On Oct. 15, de Forest was bled, but “being impatient of keeping quiet, he wished to go on the sea again, returning from which he again had a sunstroke which redoubled his fever.” On Oct. 22, “our said Captain died, much regretted by the Christians and Indians who had taken a great liking to him.”
+ March 10, 1625: The Yaos asked the settlers to help them fight the Mays, “the common enemies of all the other Indians.” Five of the settlers go with the Yaos. The force ended up with 150 canoes and 500 men.
+ March 23, 1625: As the force approached the Mays around 9:30 that evening, “we saw an eclipse of the moon, which so much astonished all our Indians that they were like men mad and out of their senses, for they leapt and danced in the water and told us that it was a forewarning that the Mays would kill them all. We assured them of our power and at last they expended their frenzy by shooting arrows (at the end of which were live coals) towards the moon and calling it wicked.”
+ March 24, 1625: At daybreak, they attacked a village, whose inhabitants were defiant. “We set fire to one house, but the others were so well defended that we could never get into them. They were surrounded by galleries made of palmetto and very well protected, but what I marveled at greatly was that in spite of our musket shots they [the Mays] advanced fearlessly to discharge their arrows at us within a pike’s length. We approached in small canoes under cover of their houses, witnessing their eagerness to defend the liberty of their wives and children at the expense of their own lives, which they risked with unconquerable courage. I even saw five of them in a canoe who, quite unmoved, allowed themselves to be killed one after the other, the last of whom, after having his leg cut off by a chain-shot, seated himself in the canoe and shot his arrows as long as he had a drop of blood left. Towards nine o’clock three large canoes arrived to help their neighbors, who, in spite of the arrows of our Indians, passed through half the canoes of their enemies; and had it not been that an Englishman, by two discharges of muskets loaded with pistol balls, wounded four of them and killed four others, they would have passed through, but these two shots which did so much execution astonished those in the other two canoes so greatly that they fled, leaving fourteen people that were still living at the mercy of their enemies, who massacred them all. This done, seeing the cruelty of our people and the courage of the others, we informed our Indians that we had no more powder, which induced them to come away, after cutting off the heads of the dead and carrying them away in triumph on the end of their spears. We brought away three Indians as slaves, leaving of the enemy more than 120 dead and many wounded. Of our force one was killed and 50 wounded.”
+ May 23, 1625: A boat from a Dutch ship commanded by Gelyn van Stapels arrived and “Gelyn told us that he was charged by the Directors of the West India Company in the Zeeland Chamber to take us with him, which gave us great joy.”
+ Nov. 16, 1625: After sailing through the Caribbean, the settlers “arrived at Flushing — for which God be praised.”
+ July 7th, 1626: Montagne was again listed as student of medicine at Leyden’s university.
+ Nov. 27, 1626: Jean Mounier married “Ragel de Foree” – the daughter of Jesse de Forest – in Leyden, Netherlands.
+ October 1631: Rachel des Forest is received into the church in Leyden, Netherlands, upon returning from the Caribbean island of Tobago, “where he husband remains.”
+ 1637: Montagne and his family sail to America, and Marie is born aboard the ship on Jan. 26, 1637.
+ April 8, 1638: Director Kieft find it necessary to choose an “experienced person” to join the council and “in consideration of the ability of Doctor Johannes, the said Montagnie has therefore been appointed by us a political councilor of New Netherland.”
+ 1639: New Netherland’s director general Dieft tried to tax the nearby Native Americans. “The demand was indignantly spurned, and served only to arouse a hostile feeling toward the Dutch. Montagne’s prediction was well made when, seeing the folly of this measure, he said, ‘A bridge has been built, over which war will soon stalk through the land.’ ”
+ June 6, 1641: Because the English “commit great depredation and violence against our people,” the New Netherland government “resolved to send thither Dr. Johannes la Montagne, councilor of New Netherland, with 50 soldiers and some sloops, in order to fortify” Fort Hope at what is now Hartford, Conn.
+ 1643: Tension with surrounding Native Americans prompted Dutch officials to consider attacking nearby tribes. However, Montagne “urged his objections with unusual warmth. ‘We ought first to consider well,’ he insisted, ‘whether we shall be able to give protection to those who are living at a distance.’ But this pertinent suggestion was unheeded, evil counsels prevailed, and Kieft, set in his mad purpose, rashly issued orders. On the night of February 25th 1643, a party of Dutch soldiers sailed forth from the streets of New Amsterdam and made a savage onslaught” on several tribes. The Native Americans responded by attacking the Dutch.
+ March 21, 1643: Maryn Adriaensen, a former member of the crew of the freebooter Claes Gerritsen Compaen, became angered when he was called a “murderer” and criticized for signing a petition urging attacks on nearby Native Americans, who responded by killing a number of Dutch settlers. Adriaensen “left his house in a rage, armed with a sword and a loaded and cocked pistol, and came to the house of the director and went to his bedroom. Pointing his pistol at the director to shoot him, he said: ‘What devilish lies are you telling of me?’ Monsr. La Montagne, being at the time with the director, caught the pan with such quickness that the cock snapped on his finger, preventing thus through God’s mercy this atrocious design. Meanwhile, the fiscal and several others having come into the chamber, they disarmed Maryn”
+ 1643: Montagne “was sent to Staten island with three companies to put down the Indians, from which he returned laden with the spoils of several hundred bushels of corn.”
+ 1644: Montagne “headed an expedition against the Indians of Long Island, where one hundred and twenty savages were killed.”
+ 1645: Montagne “accompanied Kieft on his first voyage to Fort Orange, to secure the friendship of the Mohawks, on which occasion he conducted an analysis of the war paint of the natives, and discovered gold therein, to the great comfort of Kieft.”
+ Aug. 30, 1645: “La Montangne” is among the signers of a peace agreement between the Dutch and the “River Indians.”
+ Aug. 28, 1647: Johannes de La Montagne, widower of Rachel Defour, married Agnietie Jilles, widow of Arendt Corszens Stam.
+ 1648: Montagne “was dispatched to the South river to secure the Dutch acquisitions there, which was successfully done.”
+ 1652: Officials establish a school in the city tavern and appointed Montagne as schoolmaster for a time.
+ March 2, 1654: Johannes La Montagne serves as “High Councillor” during the absence of New Netherland’s director general.
+ Oct. 16, 1656: Johannes De La Montagne says he is “in the service of the Privileged West India Company, Clerk and Vice Director at Fort Orange and the village of Beverwyck.” He became vice director and deputy at Fort Orange, 28th Sept., 1656.
+ Sept. 15, 1657: Directors of the West India Company in Amsterdam wrote to Director General Petrus Stuyvesant in New Amsterdam, saying that La Montgne could continue as commissary of Fort Orange and the village of Beverwyck and vice director of New Netherland because of “the satisfaction apparently felt by the resident community.”
+ Aug. 15, 1658: Johannes de la Montagne wrote to the French governor of Three Rivers in New France, which is now Canada, on behalf of the Maquas tribe. The tribe sought to release a French captive and gain the return of members of their tribe who were being held.
+ Oct. 8, 1658: Chief from “the three Maquas castles, having with them Saciadego, as their spokesman,” meet with the Dutch, asking them to write to the French in Canada about the captive situation. The also ask whether “Commissary La Montagne” would go with them to Canada to speak with the French.
+ Fall of 1659: La Montagne presided over several meetings with the Maquaes, who complained about maltreatment by the Dutch and sought help in obtaining the release of the captives in Canada.
+ 1664: The English took control of New Amsterdam and Fort Amsterdam on Sept. 8, 1664, and then sent a small body of troops to Fort Orange. “Vice-director La Montagne, when the order of Governor Nicolls was presented to him, quietly surrendered Fort Orange to Colonel Cartwright on the twenty-fourth of September.”
WILLEM DE LA MONTAGNE and LEONORA DE HOOGES
Willem de la Montagne was baptized April 22, 1641, in New Amsterdam, the son of Dr. Johannes la Montagne and Rachel de Forest. (1)
Married Leonora de Hooges in 1673. She was the daughter of Anthony De Hooges and Eva Alberts Bradt, and was born in Rensselaerswyck, near what is now Albany, N.Y. (2)
Ragel Montagne, or Rachel Montagne, baptized July 21, 1674. Married Hermanus Decker.
Johanna Montagne, born 1676.
Willem Montagne, baptized Dec. 15, 1678.
Maria Montagne, born 1680.
Johannes Montagne, baptized Feb. 19, 1682.
Eva Montagne, baptized Sept. 23, 1683. Probably died young.
Jesse Montagne, baptized Sept. 21, 1684.
Eva Montagne, baptized Nov. 7, 1686.
Catherina Montagne, baptized July 28, 1688.
Contemporary records bear Willem’s name in a wide variety of spellings and constructions. Interestingly, William himself kept many of those records. In court records, he calls himself “W. Montagnie” or “Wilh. La Montagnie.” In many early church records, he refers to himself as “Willem Monjeur de la Montagne.” The “Monjeur” is probably a reference to an old family name. “Revised History of Harlem” notes: “After he came to his county, [Willem’s father] Dr. Montanye, previously signing his name ‘Mousnier de La Montagne,’ invariably wrote it ‘La Montagne,’ omitting his family name Mousnier or Monier, which, however, was sometimes used by all of his sons, and even grandsons, before it was finally dropped.” Indeed, later church records drop “Monjeur” from Willem’s name, but these seem to be written in another hand. (4)
Willem was born into a well-connected family. His father was a high-ranking official in the Dutch colony of New Netherland, which later became New York. When William was baptized, one of the witnesses was Willem Kief, the colony’s director. And in 1656, Johannes la Montagne was appointed vice director of the colony and placed in charge of Fort Orange, which later became Albany, N.Y. So by the time Willem struck out on his own in the 1660s, it seems likely that a solid education and family connections helped smooth his path.
“Revised History of Harlem” offers a brief sketch of Willem’s career: “William Montanye (he styled himself De La Montagne) joined the church in New Amsterdam October 2, 1661, when he came to Harlem. Called to be a voorleser at Esopus, he held that office till 1678; from 1668 adding the duties of secretary. ... Leisler made him high sheriff of Ulster County, December 24, 1689.” (5)
On Nov. 10, 1657, the 16-year-old Willem appears in the records of Fort Orange. Willhelm Montagne is listed as a witness to a payment. He would appear in many more official records over the next 30 years. (5a)
As mentioned in the brief account from “Revised History of Harlem,” Willem was preparing to settle in Harlem in 1661. His father owned a 200-acre farm called Vredendael – or peaceful vale – which was situated in what is now the northern end of New York City’s Central Park. In 1661, the farm was unoccupied but Willem, his elder brother Jan and his brother-in-law Jacob Kip wanted to change that. On July 4, they asked the colonial government for permission to occupy the property and build a small community of six to 10 families, citing the great benefit they could bring to the village of New Harlem, which was about a mile away. However, the government refused permission, saying it would infringe on Harlem’s rights. A few months later, the government decided to give Jan La Montagne a portion of the land and make the rest available to various residents of Harlem. “Revised History of Harlem” says this action may have been intended to liquidate a debt Johannes La Montagne owed the government.
Willem was offered a share of the property on the same terms as other residents of Harlem. “Revised History of Harlem” explains that the area known as Montagne’s Flat was “laid out into parcels of from four to six morgen each, by an actual survey; running in narrow strips from the little creek due west to the hills, originally some twelve lots, and numbered from south to north. As near as can be told, the first owners were Nicholas De Meyer, Lubbert Gerritsen, William De La Montagne, Simon De Ruine, Derick Claesen, Do. Zyperus, Jean Le Roy, Jacques Cousseau, and Daniel Tourneur. … Montagne had lot No. 4, being six and a half morgen, he having met the required conditions by purchasing, April 7th 1662, from Jan De Pre, who had advertised to sell the same at auction, his ‘house, house-lot (erf), garden, and land.’” Willem paid one cow and 15 guilders for the property. However, it wasn’t long before he sold the property to his brother Jan and returned to Fort Orange, “whence he removed to Esopus, married, and was long the parish clerk.” (5b)
In 1664, Willem began appearing in the records of Esopus – which was renamed Kingston after the English acquired the Dutch colony.
Although Willem may have been called to Esopus to be a “voorleser” – or reader in the church – Willem appears to have held another job to bring in extra money. A 1664 court case mentions that William was a “tapster or retailer” of wine. On Nov. 25, Tomas Harmensen, who was responsible for collecting excise taxes on alcohol, accused Gysbert Van Imbroch of illegally selling wine in Kingston. The court records state that Van Imbroch “denies being a tapster or retailer, and says that his brother-in-law Willem La Montagnie has said business.” William continued in this business through at least early 1666, when his name was again mentioned in a case brought by an excise official. On Jan. 19, Hendrick Palingh – a.k.a. Henry Pawling – complained that his predecessor in the office, William Beeckman, “received ½ aem of wine of Willem Montagnie and that defendant did not pay the king’s excise for the same.” The case pivoted on arcane points of law and personal animosity that didn’t reflect well on the participants but left Willem in the clear. (6)
In September 1665, Willem was appointed to be one of the guardians of the children of his sister Rachel and Gysbert Van Imbroch. Rachel had died in October 1664 and her husband died less than a year later, in August 1665. On Sept. 7, the court appointed Willem, his brother-in-law Jacob Kip and Willem Beeckman – the same “William” who would appear in the excise case a year and half later – as guardians of Rachel and Gysbert’s three minor children. They were Lysbet, age 6; Johannes, about 4; and Gysbert, about 1. The guardians were to “take possession of the aforenamed deceased’s goods, estate and effects as well here as in other sections of the world, sell, keep distribute, administer the same, as they shall think to be to the best interests of the minors.” (7)
It seems likely that Willem had been living with the Van Imbroch family before his brother-in-law’s death. Gysbert’s estate inventory included several items that belonged to Willem. The inventory included: “two new green blankets belonging to Willem Montagnie … a narrow silver and gold band wound around a little piece of wood belonging to W. Montagnie … a half aem (20 gallons) of anisette belonging to W. La Montagnie.” (7a)
Willem actively guarded the interests of his niece and nephews in court. He filed his first case on their behalf on Jan. 26, 1666, seeking 12 schepels of wheat from Pieter Hillebrants because of a debt he owned Van Imbroch. It’s likely that two other lawsuits filed by Willem that same day were related to the orphans, but details aren’t included on the cases. Over the next few years, Willem filed a number of lawsuits seeking money owed to the orphans. These included one filed in January 1669 seeking to force the government to pay rent owed to the children because soldiers were staying in a house they owned. (8)
In mid-1666, William took on another responsibility. On June 7, he asked the court for permission to “keep a day and evening school here” based on the request of many residents. His petition also asked that no other school be permitted and that he be exempt from lodging English soldiers. The court granted his requests on condition that he charge reasonable fees and that he maintain the school for at least a year. (9)
As time passed, Willem’s standing in the community continued to increase. By early 1667, the court was appointing him to arbitrate disputes and curate estates of deceased residents. Later in the year, he started acting as an attorney for various residents. (10)
By the end of the summer, Willem also took on additional responsibilities with the town’s church. In the session for Aug. 2/Sept. 6, 1667 – dual dated because the court recognized both the Dutch Gregorian calendar and the English Julian calendar – Willem La Montagnie petitioned “for a salary because in the absence of a preacher he is filling both places that of fore-readers and fore-singer in the church here.” The court awarded him an annual salary increase of 500 guilders, free rent and permission to “occupy the front part of the village-house and one-half of the upper floor.” (11)
That December, Willem filed another petition. It appears that the town failed to provide his promised salary so he requested payment. He also asked “to be invested with the office of secretary and vendue-master.” The court said it would see to the payment but put Willem’s other request on hold. A vendue-master was an official responsible for pubic auctions. (12)
The following April, Willem tried again. He asked “to be favored with the office of secretary and vendue-master, because he cannot remain on his small salary as Voorleser.” This time, the court appointed Willem secretary, with a provisional salary of 100 guilders in sewan – a form of Native American currency made from seashells strung together. (13)
Starting in September 1668, Kingston court records are entered in Willem’s handwriting. And about a month later, Willem’s handwriting can be identified in the records of the village’s church. (14)
It appears that Willem also maintained his roles as a “tapster and retailer.” On April 27, 1669, the court granted W. Montagne a place where he could build a distillery near the water. (15)
On Feb. 1, 1670/1, Willem again asked to be appointed vendue-master, noting that the previous secretary held the position. This time, the court agreed and appointed him to the position. (16)
About this time, Willem entered a partnership with Tierck Claus de Witt to build a sawmill about five miles north of Kingston. On April 9, 1670, the partners petitioned a special session of the court that was looking into property matters and asked to be granted a 70-acre plot of land called “Dead Men’s Bones.” Debate on the petition was delayed “till Munday next,” but no decision is recorded. No mention is made of Willem owning a mill in subsequent records. (16a)
It’s apparent that Willem’s role as secretary went far beyond recording the minutes of court meetings. In early 1672, a number of personal and political disputers came to a head in Kingston and threatened to turn violent. The worried court decided to seek advice from New York’s Lord Governor General Francis Lovelace and deputized Willem and Isaac Grevenraedt, the local schout, to carry a letter. At its session on Feb. 27, 1671/2, the court wrote: “[W]e humbly request of your honor that we may receive full instruction, in accordance with which we shall have to act. … We have, for this purpose, delegated from our midst Schout Grevenraedt and Willem Montagne, in orders to humbly request your honor very reverentially to take measure in regard to the same as soon as possible, because, under existing condition, justice cannot be maintained.” (16a) One of the disputes involved Harmen Hendricksen Rosecrans and his sword-wielding friend Henry Pawling, both of whom were ancestors of our family.
In an interesting turn of events, the Dutch colonists started preparing for war against the Netherlands in early 1672. Their English rulers warned that the Dutch were gathering a fleet in an effort to regain their former colony. On July 27, a list was made of Kingston residents who “voluntarily subscribed toward repairing the fort.” W. Montaigne contributed 10 schepels of wheat. (17)
A little more than a year later, in August 1673, Kingston officials received word that the Dutch had recaptured New York and they submitted “to the authority of their High Mightinesses the Lords States General of the United Netherlands and his serene Highness the Prince of Orange.” On Aug. 26, the Kingston court appointed Secretary W. Montagne as one of two delegates “to the Noble rigorous council of war concerning any business which should be necessary and of service to this place.”
The new Dutch governor, Anthony Colve, arrived in Manhattan in September 1673 and the new government immediately started making cosmetic changes to the area. Kingston was again renamed, this time to Swanenburgh. Local governments were pretty much left in place and Willem was appointed secretary of Swanenburgh and neighboring Hurley and Marbletown. (17a)
However, Colve held office for only nine months before a peace treaty was signed in Europe and the area was returned to English control. On Dec. 20, 1674, Kingston officials were informed that they were officially released from their oath to the High Mightinesses and the Prince of Orange.
Despite this flip-flop in allegiance, the turmoil seems to have had relatively little impact on Willem’s career aside from putting a hold on his pay. On May 11, 1674, Willem asked the court to pay him “for his services as secretary, it having now been in arrears for upward of one year.” (18)
While all of this was unfolding, Willem got married. In mid-1673, he married Leonora de Hooges. Although the church records don’t list their wedding date, it probably occurred soon after May 19, when the banns were recorded. Like William, Leonora was the child of a Dutch colonial official. Her father, Anthony de Hooges, was secretary for the colony of Rensselaerswyck, which was in the area that later became Albany. For a few years, he had even served as the colony’s business manager. After Anthony died, Leonora’s mother married Roeloff Swartwout, who served as an official in Kingston and was occasionally mentioned beside Willem in village records. (19)
Also in 1673, Willem acted to collect 300 guilders from the orphan’s court in Leyden, Netherlands. Willem’s mother, Rachel De Forest, had died about 1646, when he was about 5 years old. For some reason, the orphan’s court in Leyden controlled funds due to her children. This is outlined in documents found among Gysbert van Imbroch’s papers when he died in 1665. These included “the separation, division, settlement and valuation of the estate and income belonging to the orphans of Rachel De Foreest, deceased. Further account and declaration of the receipts and expenditures before the orphan chamber of the city of Leyden, had and made in regard to the effects of revenues belonging to the children left by Rachel De Foreest, procreated with Jan Mony De la Montagne.” (20) Almost three decades after his mother’s death, Willem decided to collect the money he was owed from her estate. None of the records indicate why he waited so long but it seems likely his looming wedding date provided some impetus. It’s even possible that Rachel De Forest had stipulated that he be married before he collected the money. On March 27, 1673, Wilhem Monsjeur De la Montagne went before the court to execute an agreement with New York merchant Gabriel Minville. The merchant would travel to Leyden and contact Johannes Panhuysen and Davidt DeGoy, who were granted power of attorney to collect the $300. (21) The court records don’t say whether Willem ever collected the money.
At least one official duty performed under the brief Dutch resurgence did come back to haunt Willem. The court record for Jan. 12, 1674/5, mentions that he was punched by a woman in a dispute over a cow. While acting as vendue-master for the Dutch governor Willem sold a cow to Magdalena Dircks, one of the most colorful – and cantankerous – residents of Kingston. When Willem reminded Magdalena of the debt, “she hit him with her first on his chest and said she did not intend to pay.” Her husband, Harmon Hendrix Rosencrans, also said he wouldn’t pay – until he received orders. The court then ordered the defendant to pay. Interestingly, Willem’s granddaughter married Magdalena’s grandson four decades later, making them both ancestors of our family. (22)
After this, the available records from Kingston start thinning out. Willem stopped keeping the Kingston church records in September 1678, as indicated by a change in handwriting. “Revised History of Harlem” indicates that he no longer served as the church’s voorleser after that. However, he and Leonora continued to have their children baptized at the parish until 1688.
In 1683, Willem got caught up in a dispute involving members of the local government. “The History of Kingston, New York” describes a prolonged period of friction, primarily involving by a member of the court named Louis Du Bois. In October 1682, Thomas Chambers was appointed justice of the peace and soon afterward Du Bois was removed from his post. However, strife continued into the spring. It appears that Chambers took additional action against members of the court – including Willem de la Montagne. Chambers’ high-handed efforts prompted a scolding letter dated April 6, 1683, from his superior, Capt. Anthony Brockholls. In addition to citing the need to preserve the peace and order, distribute justice equally and acquiesce when outvoted, Brockholls told Chambers to return Willem to his post. Brockholls wrote: “I see noe Cause for the Removeall or Suspending of Mr. Mountagne but as he hath been an Officer for many yeares Amongst you see must Continue, and hope he will not now be wanting in any parte of his Duty.” (23)
The next cause of turmoil in Kingston was sparked a few months later when a new English governor arrived and set about reforming the colonial government. In October 1683, Gov. Thomas Dongan convened New York’s first representative assembly. The new assembly set the pattern for future governance, instituted a number of reforms and even established a number of counties, including Ulster County, where Kingston was located. Willem was appointed the county’s clerk, though this was simply a continuation of the position he already held. (23a)
The taste of democracy afforded by the general assembly probably emboldened Kingston’s residents. So when they learned that certain towns had been granted the right to elect their own local officials, Kingston decided to ask for the same. In early 1684, Willem helped draft a petition to Gov. Dongan and signed it along with most of the town’s men. However, English officials didn’t recognize the right to petition and quickly acted against the effort. “The History of Kingston, New York” describes their reaction: “Upon their order the petitioners were all arrested and indicted for a riot, under an English law, at the succeeding June term of the court. Upon being arraigned, they pleaded guilty of signing and presenting the petition. They were then respectively fined and gave bail. At the following September term, upon appearing in court, and acknowledging that they had been ill-advised, they were released and their fines remitted.” (24)
Willem’s tenure as Ulster County clerk lasted only until Aug. 27, 1684, when he was replaced by James Graham. It’s unknown whether his role in the petition incident precipitated his departure. However, it seems unlikely since other officials seem to have kept their jobs.
On Dec. 24, 1689, Willem was appointed sheriff of Ulster County, N.Y., by Lt. Gov. Jacob Leisler. (25) However, he held the position only until July 30, 1690, when Johannes Hardenbergh was appointed sheriff. (26)
It’s very likely that Willem died just before he was replaced. Not only does Willem disappear from the records at this point, but it appears that his wife Leonora married a second husband in 1692. The records of Kingston’s church list the baptism of Margriet, the daughter of Cornelis de Duytser and Leonora de Hoges on April 23, 1693. Since the records don’t indicate that Margriet was illegitimate, it seems certain that Willem was dead and Leonora had remarried by this point. (27)
“The Revised History of Harlem” from 1904 says that Willem “had removed to Mombackus, town of Rochester, and was living 1695.” However, it doesn’t cite a source for this information.
At some point before his death, Willem must have acquired land in Mombackus. A 1729 list of quit-rents from Rochester, Ulster County, indicates “Heirs of Wm. de Lamontanye” were credited with owning land there in 1703. (28)
Some researchers state that Leonora died about 1703, but I have been unable to fine confirmation so far. It seems fairly certain that she died before Jan. 20, 1712, when her husband and their daughter, Margrietje, served as the baptismal witnesses for Cornelius Krom, the son of Eva de la Montanjen. Another grandchild of Leonora was also baptized that day, Maria, the daughter of Rachel Montanjen, for whom no female witness is listed. It seems certain that if Leonora had been alive at the time, she would have served as a witness for one of these births. (29)
(1) Willem’s baptism appears in “Collections of the New York Genealogical and Biographical Society, Vol. II, Baptisms from 1639 to 1730 in the Reformed Dutch Church, New York,” by Thomas G. Evans, 1901, reprinted by The Gregg Press in 1968, page 12. His parents are also identified in “New York Historical Manuscripts: Dutch; Kingston Papers,” translated by Dingman Versteeg, edited by Peter R. Christoph, Kenneith Scott and Kenn Stryker-Rodda, Vol. 2, pages 733-734. (2) The marriage and Eleanora’s birthplace are listed in “Baptismal and Marriage Registers of the Old Dutch Church of Kingston, Ulster County, New York, 1660-1809,” transcribed and edited by Roswell R. Hose, 1891, page 503. Her parents are identified in the marriage contract between her month Eva and her second husband, Roeloff Swarthout. It appears in “Collections on the History of Albany, From Its Discovery to the Present Time,” published by J. Munsell, 1870, Vol. 3, pages 49-50. Her father also is identified as Anthony de Hooges in “Revised History of Harlem,” by James Riker, 1904, page 785. (3) The baptisms are listed in “Old Dutch Church of Kingston,” pages 9, 11, 16, 20, 22, 27 and 32. Rachel’s marriage is recorded on page 511. Neither Johanna, nor Maria, is listed in the church records. They appear in “Revised History of Harlem,” page 785. It’s not surprising that they were skipped because the church records are spotty during that period. The book lists the husbands of the daughters as: Nicholas Westfall, husband of Maria; Derick Krom, husband of Eva; and John Bevier, husband of Catharine. (4) “Monjeur” appears in “Old Dutch Church of Kingston,” pages 9, 11 and 16. The explanation in “Revised History of Harlem” appears on page 784. (5) “Revised History of Harlem,” page 785. (5a) “Collections on the History of Albany, From Its Discovery to the Present Time,” published by J. Munsell, Vol. 3, page 60. (5b) The account of the Harlem property appears in “Revised History of Harlem,” page 181-192. (6) “Kingston Papers,” Vol. 1, page 187 “New York Historical Manuscripts: Dutch; Kingston Papers,” translated by Dingman Versteeg, edited by Peter R. Christoph, Kenneith Scott and Kenn Stryker-Rodda, 1976. The 1664 case appears in Vol. 1, page 179. The 1666 case appears in Vol. 1, page 270-271. (7) “Kingston Papers,” Vol. 1, page 246-247. It is interesting to note that Henry Pawling is also an ancestor, although on the Moyer/Zielger branch of the family tree. (7a) “New York Historical Manuscripts: Dutch; Kingston Papers,” translated by Dingman Versteeg, edited by Peter R. Christoph, Kenneith Scott and Kenn Stryker-Rodda, Vol. 2, pages 566-558. (8) The Jan. 26 cases appear in “Kingston Papers,” Vol. 1, page 273. The rent case appears in Vol. 2, page 422. (9) “Kingston Papers,” Vol. 1, page 298. (10) “Kingston Papers,” Vol. 1, pages 337-338, 341, 373-374 and more. (11) “Kingston Papers,” Vol. 1, page 360. (12) The petition appears in “Kingston Papers,” Vol. 1, page 384. (13) “Kingston Papers,” Vol. 2, page 409. (14) A note on the handwriting in the court papers appears in “Kingston Papers,” Vol. 2, page 409. The note on the church records appears in “Old Dutch Church of Kingston,” page 6. (15) “Kingston Papers,” Vol. 2, page 433. (16) “Kingston Papers,” Vol. 2, page 455. (16a) “Kingston Papers,” Vol. 2, page 478. (16a) “Documents Relating to the Colonial History of the State of New York,” Vol. 2, by B. Fernow,1881, page 451. (17) The local actions during this period are recorded in “Kingston Papers,” Vol. 2, pages 482, 500, 501 and 522. (17a) “The History of Kingston, New York,” by Marius Schoonmaker, 1888, page 66. (18) “Kingston Papers,” Vol. 2, page 514. (19) “Old Dutch Church in Kingston,” page 509. (20) “Kingston Papers,” Vol. 2, pages 566-558. (21) “Kingston Papers,” Vol. 2, pages 733-734. (22) “Kingston Papers,” Vol. 2, page 523. (23) “The History of Kingston,” pages 73-74. The letter appears in “Documents Relating to the Colonial History of the State of New York,” Vol. 2, page 569. (23a) Willem’s appointment and replacement as Ulster County clerk is noted in “History of Ulster County, New York,” by Nathaniel B. Sylvester, published in 1880, page 98. This book says he served as county clerk starting on April 4, 1671, but the county didn’t actually exist for another dozen years. (24) “The History of Kingston, New York,” pages 78-79. (25) “The Leisler Papers, 1689-1691: Files of the Provincial Secretary of New York Relating to the Administration of Lieutenant-Governor Jacob Leisler,” by Peter R. Christoph, Syracuse University, 2002, page 345. (26) “History of Ulster County, New York,” by Sylvester, page 98. (27) “Old Dutch Church of Kingston,” page 40. (28) “History of Ulster County, New York,” by Sylvester, page 210. (29) “Old Dutch Church of Kingston,” page 97.