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This page has:   Krewson pcitures  Symon's Early New Netherlands Days Spectulation of Symon's Military Record (Part one)  Symon's Speculated Ancestry  Sijmon's Speculated Military Record (concluded)  The family left behind  Sijmon or Symon  Visit to Holland  Sijmon's Amsterdam  Surname now even older  Daily life of a 17th century Dutch potter  Sijmon's letter of 1698  House in Goulda  What's in a name?  Some interesting statistics  New Amsterdam as Sijmon Jansz van Aersdalen first saw it  Remembering our family progenitor  Claes Carnelissen van Schouw  Jan Sijmonsz van Aersdalen  The Probasco origins   Simon van Aersdalen of Bucks County PA

Krewson pictures
Simon & Margaret Krewson's Family
Old faded picture of Margaret Krewson & some of
her children at Indianna home.

Right: Orson (son), Elizabeth 9daughter-in-law), Clarissa (Daughter), Margaret (mother)
krewson krewson krewson
Above: Clarissa
Left: Margaret and daughter- in-law Mary
krewson krewson Far left: Clarissa
Left: Orson & Clarissa

Right: Krewsons in 1890
- Clarissa, Margaret, Lola Miliken, Orson, Sarah Miliken
Levi & Catherine Osborn's Family
Levi & wife with daughters & sons-in-law
Sisters: Sarah Elizabeth Krewson, Mary Krewson,
Anna Dickey, Etta Heckman
osborn 4 generations: Mrs. Levi Osborn, Elizabeth Krewson, grand-daughter Bina Leedom, great grand-daughter Kathryn about 1914
Orson & Elizabeth Krewson's Family
krewson krewson Far left: Lois, Elwin, Vira

Left: Elvira, Elwin, Lois, Bina

Right: Orson and Elizabeth Krewson with children in 1890 - Elwin 15, Lois 14, Vira 12, Bina 8
Elwin & Vida
Ernest age 21
Vira & Lois with school friends
Dark picture of Thanksgiving 1900 at OC Krewson house. Baby may be Edna Wight with Lois
krewson Left: Thankgiving 1910 - Ernest, Vira, Bina, Lois with Margaret, friend, Vida with Esther, Guy, Floegan, seated Orson and Elizabeth with Vernon near.
Right: Clarence, Vira, Orson, Elizabeth, Dr Leedom, Bina, unknown man
krewson krewson
Orson & Elizabeth 1926

Vanguard Newsletter - Artsdalen items
I have run across a newsletter for the Airsdalen Family Association that was produced by Charles Vanorsdale betweeen 1998 and 2003. Below are the articles on Simon Jansen van Artsdalen and his family, Krewson ancestors.

(partially excerpted from “Six Hundred Years of Van Arsdale Family History” by Charles R.Vanorsdale (Copyright 1997))
The earliest known record of Symon van Aersdalen in Nieu Amersfoort is dated October 12, 1655. On that Tuesday morning in City Hall, Director- General Pieter Stuyvesant and his Burgomasters and Schepens began collection of a "voluntary contribution and taxation" of the citizens, "each according to his condition, state and circumstances" to erect a wall to safeguard the town from Indians. One of the lower contributions was from "Symon Jansen", who gave 10 florins, and was listed as "dwelling at Clyn Aerts". Symon did not yet own a house, and apparently rented or earned his keep from this Clyn Aerts. Considering that most of those citizens taxed paid anywhere from three to ten times that amount, Symon was not yet on his feet in the New World. (Incidentally, where that wall once stood is now known as Wall Street.)
Who was Clyn Aerts, the man who took in our ancestor? The name "Clyn" is nowhere else to be found in Dutch records except in the same source as the tax record. A scholar of New Netherland history believes this Clyn to be the same as Ryn Aertsen, or Reynier Aertsen who may have emigrated with Symon in 1653, and therefore may have been a friend or master to apprentice Symon.
A problem with early records of New Netherland is the lack of adopted surnames. Typical documentation would list "Symon Jansen" or "Jan Jansen" with little other distinction. Of considerable trouble is the predominance in court records of Symon Jansen Romeyn who appears to have been engaged in law, but who frequently was recorded as "Symon Jansen". Romeyn must have been related to Stoffel Jansz Romeyn, who may have emigrated with Symon. The early Romeyn and van Aersdalen families are often confused as a result.
Around 1658, Symon Jansz married Pieterje Claese van Schouw, sometimes erroneously referred to as Pieterje Claese Wyckoff, daughter of Claes Cornelisz van Schouw, a tobacco shop owner. Symon would be very close to his father- in- law, perhaps in a way he could not be with his own father.
On May 3, 1660, Symon Jansz van Aersdalen was appointed a schepen of Nieu Amersfoort. Symon apparently had begun to make a name for himself within the community and was re- elected to this position in 1661 and 1662. In his magisterial post, Symon was chosen to represent Amersfoort in the "convention holden at New Amsterdam, on July 3, 1663, to engage the several Dutch Towns to keep up an armed force for public protection." Public protection took on new meaning for Symon; his first-born child Geertje Symonse was now 3 or 4 years old.
But not everything is easy for Symon. On Tuesday, August 28, 1663, "Symon Janzen" appears in court against carpenter Jan Teunizen and witnesses Willem Steenhalder and wife, claiming that Teunizen wouldn't release a house to Symon for which he had been paid. The court requested further proof from Symon, and so on September 4th, "Symon Janzen Asdalen" produces testimonials from two witnesses. Upon Symon confirming his statement by oath, and Jan Teunizen refusing to do so, the court rules in favor of Symon and he takes possession of the house.
In February 1664, Symon and his father- in- law became very involved in the building tensions with the British. On the 19th, they and three other witnesses appear before notary Pelgrom Clocq at Midwout (Flatbush) to testify about a public disturbance caused by an English captain. Symon signs his name to the document and attests to being 35. (However, if he was baptised in February 1628, he would have been 36.) Then, on the 27th, Symon and Claes participate in a convention in Midwout which they instigated, bringing together the Director- General and Council of New Netherland "to lay before the States General and West India Company the distressed state of the country." The tormenting by the British had accelerated, and the Dutch found themselves being surrounded.
On September 8th, 1664, the Director- General of New Netherland, Pieter Stuyvesant, relinquished the Dutch colony to the British after four British warships with over 1000 men threatened them from New York Bay. In his attempt to muster the Dutch forces against the British, he soon found himself all alone. New Netherland had grown to a population close to 10,000 people by that date, but some 20- 40 % of those were non- Dutch already.
[Primary source of the data in this article: Berthold Fernow’s "The Records of New Amsterdam 1653-1674", 7 volumes, published by Genealogical Publishing Company, 1976 from the original 1897 printing]

Most of us probably envision New Netherland through the images of Washington Irving – portly, complacent Knickerbockers biding their time, pipe in hand, watching impotently as the years pass and they are assimilated by the English. This is far from the truth! The Dutch were often at odds not only with the English but also the Indians and, believe it or not, the Swedes. In fact, when Symon Jansz van Aersdalen arrived in 1653, New Sweden – located primarily along the west bank of the Delaware River – had built Fort Christina, Fort Goteborg, and Fort Elfsborg to defend Swedish interests from the Dutch.
In 1651, Pieter Stuyvesant, after several years of taunting by the Swedes, and realizing that the Swedish emplacements more effectively controlled the river inlet, decided to erect Fort Casimir between the Swedish forts Christina and Elfsborg, near present-day New Castle, Delaware. The Swedish governor, Johann Printz, chose to do nothing to stop the Dutch. However, in May 1654, Printz’s replacement Johan Rising took a different view of things. As he was arriving in New Sweden, he ordered his ship to set anchor at Fort Casimir. Rising sent an officer and a contingent of musketeers to the Fort, demanding its surrender. The Dutch resisted diplomatically, but after several volleys of Swedish cannon fire, the poorly-manned fort yielded.
Amsterdam’s directive was delayed due to an unannounced and unauthorized trip by Stuyvesant to Barbados. Upon his return, they sent a warship De Waegh (The Balance) with some 200 soldiers and 35 cannon to assist in the retrieval of the fort. It arrived on August 13, 1655. Stuyvesant conscripted an army of about 317 New Netherlanders and six more ships. (These are said to be the yachts Hollanse Tuijn (Dutch Frontier), Prinses Royael (Princess Royal), Dolphijn (Dolphin) and Abram’s Offerhande (Abraham’s Offering), a galiot called the Hoop (Hope), and a flyboat called the Liefde (Love) as per Bogaert’s 1655 account.) On September 5, 1655 (N. S.), they set sail for Fort Casimir. Greatly outnumbered this time, the Swedes gave up without a fight. To the south, Fort Elfsborg had been abandoned, but to the north lay the heart of the Swedish defenses, Fort Christina. Stuyvesant's orders were to "do his utmost to revenge this misfortune ... by driving the Swedes ... from the river". It was time to bring New Sweden’s history to a close.
Stuyvesant and his men headed on to Fort Christina, arriving on September 15th. The fleet was divided into three units and enlisted the services of the nearby yacht Eendraght (Union). Two days later, the Liefde ferried away the prisoners from Fort Casimir while the Dutch prepared for battle. On the 23rd, having been blockaded for about a week, Rising agreed to discuss terms of surrender with Stuyvesant. The next morning, Fort Christina fell, and with it New Sweden, to be absorbed by the Dutch as the Dutch would be by the English nine years later.
Was Symon among the troops mustered by Stuyvesant? In 1655, Symon was about 28 years old, healthy, and had no family in New Netherland – a prime candidate for conscription. The population of New Netherland in 1650 was about 5000, stretching from the borders of Connecticut to Virginia. If two-thirds were concentrated in the New Amsterdam area, and two-thirds of these were men, and two-thirds of these were young enough to fight, then Symon was among a pool of about 1480 men. If the army was actually closer to 400 (as some have said), then 1 in 4 able-bodied men were conscripted. Although no records have been found by CRV listing the Dutchmen who served in that “war”, it is highly likely that Symon was one of them.
“Letter of Johannes Bogaert to Hans Bontemantel, 1655" in Narratives of New Netherland, 1609- 1664, J. Franklin Jameson, editor, reprinted 1953 by Barnes & Noble, Inc.
A New World: An Epic of Colonial America from the Founding of Jamestown to the Fall of Quebec, by Arthur Quinn, 1994, Faber and Faber.
The Swedish Settlements on the Delaware, 1638-1664, Vol. II, by Amandus Johnson, 1969, Genealogical Publishing Company.

A little over a year ago, CRV “published” on the internet his own web page with an extensive family tree. Entitled “Descendants of Joosten van Haesdale”, the report contained the speculated ancestry of Symon Jansz van Aersdalen as pieced together using studies prepared by the Centraal Bureau voor Genealogie (Netherlands) and correspondence with the Rijksarchief te Ronse (Belgium). Recently, people who have not corresponded previously with CRV have detailed their “Van” ancestry back to Symon Jansz and then back to Joosten van Haesdale. Realizing how this information can proliferate, CRV has deleted the report from his web page.
Why? Simply put, the report does not meet CRV’s current standards concerning primary documenta-
tion. Circumstantial evidence was used to develop the lineage, based primarily on chronological tax records of particular locales and the identification of those taxed as being "X, son of Y". Given the small population of "Vans", this approach appeared to extend Symon's lineage back to a great-great grandfather. When originally developed, it was not anticipated that the material would be quoted without a reference. Without a reference, some genealogical work has been passed along as “gospel”. Although Symon’s ancestry appears well-defined back to his grandfather (his father was identified as Jan Pauwelsz van Aersdal in the Gouda Notarial Records, vol. 292, of May 10, 1652, hence Symon’s grandfather was named Pauwel), until sufficient documentation is secured to prove the additional two generations, CRV has deleted the report.
In the meantime, CRV has retained a Belgian genealogist, Gaston Roggeman, to uncover information on the medieval Vans in an attempt to shore up Symon’s lineage. Of interest: the oldest record (so far) of any Van is from the List of Inhabitants of Nukerke (Belgium, Symon’s hometown) – ARENT VAN ARISDALE is listed for the year 1396. More to follow!

In the book “List of Inhabitants of Colonial New York”, being excerpts from E.B. O’Callaghan’s “Documentary History of the State of New York”', there is a section entitled “Administration of Lieut. Gov. Leisler”. This is a list of commissions issued by the Lt. Governor, and number 115 on that list was a “Symon Janse”, who held the office of lieutenant in “Flackbush” commencing December 27, 1689. Was this “our” Symon Janse? If so, he would have been almost 62 years old; is that likely? A review of others on that list suggests that it is likely. Some of Sijmon’s fellow passengers from 1653 appear on that list, too (Joost van Brunt of New Utrecht, Jan Teunisz van Dyckhuyse of Flatlands, and Joachim Gulick of Gravesend), and some 36 years later, these men would certainly be in their fifties and even sixties. Why would someone issue commissions to these older men, and who was this Lt. Gov. Leisler?
Jacob Leisler was a German from Frankfurt who came to New Netherland in 1660 at the age of twenty. He began his life in New Netherland as a fur and tobacco trader and became very wealthy, both on his own account and through his having married the widow of a wealthy merchant. Having come from an influential family also, Leisler acquired a fairly powerful status, first with the Dutch and then with the English after the English after their takeover of New Netherland. Voorhees notes that Leisler “served as secretary to Sir Edmund Andros’s New York council in 1680", and “after 1686 Leisler served as the agent representing Suffolk County to the provincial government”. In early 1689, England’s Roman Catholic King James II was overthrown in favor of Protestants William and Mary. Considerable unrest developed in New England, particularly as it related to Governor Edmund Andros and Lt. Governor Francis Nicholson. In April, Andros was imprisoned, leaving New York in the hands of Nicholson. On May 31, 1689, a group of rebels seized the fort of New York City, and none other than Jacob Leisler was selected to serve as the captain of the fort. Nicholson later fled to England to seek support, and in his absence Leisler was chosen to be the commander-in-chief of the province of New York. On December 11, 1689 Leisler assumed Nicholson’s previous position, naming himself Lt. Governor of the province with the support of a ready militia.
However, England eventually chose a new governor, Henry Sloughter, who arrived in New York in March 1691. He demanded the surrender of the fort Leisler had commanded, but Leisler refused to yield, supposedly because it was contrary to military custom to surrender a fort after dark, according to one author. Aside from his previous activities, this was considered an act of treason, and when he did surrender the fort, Leisler was arrested. He was executed in May along with his son-in-law, a co-conspirator, in today’s terminology. The English Parliament later reversed its decision and returned the confiscated property of Leisler and his son-in-law to the rightful heirs.
Their remains were exhumed from beneath the site of the gallows and very ceremoniously buried before a crowd of up to 1500 at a Dutch churchyard in 1698.
So, what was this commission list? Leisler knew that his staunchest supporters were the “old Dutch”, those who had lived in New Netherland before the coming of English rule in 1664. These were the people who trusted him and, likewise, whom he trusted. According to historian Kammen, “ all of Leisler’s close associates were Dutch ...” and “... the significant upheaval involved an effort by prominent older settlers, supported especially by the Dutch populace, to displace the insecure, newly emerged Anglo-Dutch elite. Although the rebels identified themselves politically (and expediently) with English whiggery, their program, such as it was, sought a restoration of traditional corporate liberties for communities rather than an enlargement of personal liberties for individuals and social groups.”
Was this our "Symon Janse", and not SijmonJansz Romeyn, with whom he is often confused in the New Netherland literature? Yes; Romeyn was living in New York City at the time, not Flatbush, and so this commission shows that Sijmon Jansz van Aersdalen was, indeed, a valued member of the Dutch community even after it had been absorbed by the English. Did Sijmon participate in any military action, as he may have done against the Swedes (see Vanguard v. 1, no. 2) at Ft. Christina? No, as there does not appear to have been any need for Leisler’s militia after the seizure of the fort in May, 1689. This list may constitute little more than Leisler’s acknowledgment of his supporters, and that includes financial benefactors. The commissions themselves, probably honorary for the most part, could have entailed financial remuneration for contributions toward his “rebellion”, e. g. a captain’s pay for a £50 contribution but an ensign’s pay for a £5 contribution. Had Leisler stayed “in power”, these benefactors may have profited further, but to what extent we’ll never know. Fortunately, there also does not appear to have been any retribution on the part of the new English government toward those granted commissions by Leisler. Had there been, life could have been quite different for some of “Lieutenant” Sijmon’s children, and that includes us! "
Evjen, John O. : Scandinavian Immigrants in New York 1630-1674 with Appendices on ... German Immigrants in New York 1630-1674, Genealogical Publishing Co., Baltimore, MD, 1972; pp. 422-424. (Originally published by K. C. Holter Publishing Co., Minneapolis, MN, 1916.)
Kammen, Michael : Colonial New York, A History, Charles Scribner’s Sons, New York, NY, 1975; pp. 120-127.
O’Callaghan, E. B. : List of Inhabitants of Colonial New York, Genealogical Publishing Co., Baltimore, MD, 1979; pp. 53-60. (Excerpted from O’Callaghan’s four volume Documentary History of the State of New York, published between 1849 and 1851.)
Voorhees, David W. : “European Ancestry of Jacob Leisler”, New York Genealogical & Biographical Record, vol. 120, no. 4, October 1989, pp. 193-202.

This is the first of a series of articles concerning the origins and the circumstances surrounding the immigration of Sijmon Jansz van Aersdalen to this country. We will attempt to prove ... or debunk ... some of the legends that have passed down through the centuries, and which have formed the family’s mythos. The first study concerns Sijmon’s so-called family left behind.
“The account which is possessed by various members of the family in manuscript, reads as follows ... “The Van Arsdale who was the ancestor of that family in this country, arrived at New Netherlands from Holland at an early period in the ship ‘Dynasty’, empowered by the government, or some Company, in Holland to examine the country about New York to ascertain whether it was practicable to establish in this country a pottery for the manufacture of China ware. After fulfilling the object of his mission and with his baggage on board the vessel awaiting the day to set sail for his native land, he received a letter from his father stating that a pestilence was then raging there, and that his wife and two children had departed this life. This sad news changed his design of returning to Holland, and he settled at Flatland on Long Island. There he married a Miss Jansen. His son, his only child as far as ascertained, Simon Jansen Van Arsdalen, became a man of standing in his native town.”
In Ege’s “Pioneers of Old Hopewell,” the above substantial facts appear, but there the name of the first ancestor is interpolated as “Isaac”. The fact seems overlooked, however, that as his son was “Symon Jansen,” it should prove that, if the story be otherwise accurate, the man who first came over was Jan Van Arsdalen and not “Isaac.” Mr. Ege (now deceased) says that “all the family records have been preserved for a period of two hundred and fifty years,” but no clue is given as to by whom.”
This is how A. Van Doren Honeyman summarized the circumstances of the arrival of our “first ancestor” in his article “The Van Arsdale Family - Pluckemin Line” which appeared in the SCHQ, vol. 8, no. 1, pp. 96-119 in January 1919. He quoted Ralph Ege’s 1908 book “Pioneers of Old Hopewell, with Sketches of Her Revolutionary Heroes”.
What “family records” are being quoted? The one record which has found its way into print is the Marya Van Arsdalen 1741 Bible (see the Delta Project biography of her husband, Abraham, in this issue of The Vanguard). Entries from this Bible first appeared in The Register of the Kentucky Historical Society, vol. 31, no. 97, p. 348 of October 1933. As transcribed therein, the Bible stated “Vanarsdalen, Symon Janson, married in Holland. (Came to New Netherlands to examine the country about what is now New York to see if it was practical to establish in the New World a pottery for the manufacture of chinaware. Just as he was ready to return to Holland he received word that his wife and two children had died of a plague. He decided to stay in New York.)”
Considering that this Bible entry and Ege’s version are almost identical, we can assume that he had some knowledge of its contents. For years, this recounting of the family left behind in Holland was little more than a curious anecdote. Accompanying details, such as the first ancestor being named “Isaac” and that his son was Simon Jansen, being found inaccurate damaged the credibility of the remainder of the tale. Consequently, the story of Sijmon’s first family became nothing more than a legend.
Then in 1991, in a report prepared by the Centraal Bureau voor Genealogie at the request of several “Vans”, the CbvG hinted at some information supporting the myth: “Meanwhile we are already in a position to let you know some very interesting facts: in the first place the entry of marriage for Simon Jansz van Arsdale and his (probably first) wife and the entries of baptism for two children
substantial facts appear, but there the name of the born from that marriage (whop [sic] probably died at an early age).” A subsequent report dated May 17, 1993 provided the actual details.
“Simon Jansz van Aersdal .... married 1st in Amsterdam (banns published 26 March) 1650 to Marijtje Baltus, from Amsterdam, born approx. 1629, buried there (St. Anthony’s churchyard) 26 Nov. 1655 “Maria Baltus, huijsvrouw van Syme Jans van Asdal op ‘t Bleeckvelt” (Maria Baltus, wife of Syme Jans van Asdal in Bleeckvelt); ...entry of publication of banns, Amsterdam 26 March 1650: “Compareerden als vooren Simon Janss. van Niekerck, pottebacker, out 22 jaer, vertoon. Acte van vaders consent, woonen. Opt Pottebackerspadt ende Marritie Baltus van A., out 20 jaer, woon. int Lelystraetje, geen ouders hebbende” (appeared as before Simon Janss from Niekerck, a potter, aged 22 years, producing a letter of consent from his father, living in potter’s path and Marritie Baltus, from Amsterdam, aged 20 years, living in Leliestreet, having no parents (parents deceased).
Issue by the first marriage:
1. Sijlijntje Simons (van Aersdal), baptized in Amsterdam 26 Feb 1651 (sponsor: Grietje Phlips)
2. Jan Simonsz (van Aersdal), baptized in Amsterdam 19 Nov. 1652 (sponsor: Vroutje Jansdr)
N.B. On 18 Nov 1655 a child of Simon’s was buried at St. Anthony’s churchyard (“een kind van Seymen Jansen Pottebacker op het Bleeckvelt” - a child of Seymen Jansen the potter in Bleeckvelt).
Probably the other child died in childhood as well.”
Further research performed for CRV by Dutch genealogist Dr. Peter Nouwt has determined that Sijmon and Marretje were married on April 19, 1650 at Amsterdam’s venerated Oude Kerk (“Old Church”) by “Rev. Borsius” . A copy of this marriage record, as well as the banns, the baptisms, and the burial record of Marretje and the one child, have been obtained and preserved by CRV.
Much of the legend of the “family left behind” is now documented. That the lives of Sijmon’s wife
and children were claimed by a plague is not so certain; however, we do have statistical data which strongly suggest that this is very likely. In his book “The Dutch Republic: Its Rise, Greatness, and Fall 1477-1806" (Oxford University Press, Inc., NY, 1995), Jonathan Israel states “The growth of all the main Holland towns between 1647 and 1672 is all the more remarkable when we consider that, until 1670, outbreaks of plague continued to be a major negative factor. The epidemics which struck were both virulent and prolonged ... the Leiden outbreak of 1655 was among the worst of the Golden Age, reportedly carrying off 11,000 people, nearly 20 per cent of the population in six months ...” He further presents a table of data showing the number of plague deaths by year and by city. That table shows that Amsterdam was free of plague in 1652, 1653, and 1654, but was then hit with a vengeance in 1655, whereby 16,727 people or about 12.5% of the populace were killed (op. cit., pp. 624-625). Considering further that Marretje and one of her children were buried in the same cemetery only eight days apart, they were likely victims of the plague.

Our immigrant ancestor's Christian name has been spelled several ways: Simon, Sijmon, and Symon, mostly. But what was it really?
In today's spelling, it would be "Simon". When we look at his signature, it looks like “S˙mon” or Sijmon. (The following is his signature from a 1652 document he signed in Holland.)
Rarely has it been spelled Sijmon in published literature, but we can resolve the issue finally by noting that the “Dutch” language has no letter “y”! Therefore, our ancestor signed his name “Sijmon”. We shall use this spelling henceforward in The Vanguard.

During June of this year, my wife and I took a deserved vacation. We chose to visit Holland, and embarked on a week-long escorted tour which encircled the country. Of course, CRV did his homework before leaving the U.S. and, with the help of some maps prepared by Dr. Peter Nouwt, a Dutch genealogist, and Cor Snabel, an "amateur" genealogist on the Dutch-Colonies email list, was able to pinpoint several Amsterdam sites important to our ancestor Sijmon Jansz van Aersdalen.
amsterdamThis photo shows Sijmon's Amsterdam neighborhood as it exists today. The building on the left is the Amstelhof, which was erected in 1681 as housing for the elderly poor women of the city. On this site for at least sixty years earlier was a "bleaching field" used to bleach linen in the sun. Also nearby were several potteries. Sijmon was a potter who lived at the "bleekvelt" or bleaching fields near "potter's path". The bleaching field was just outside the city-gate in what was then extreme southeast Amsterdam, and was bordered by the Herengracht (gentlemen's canal) on the north and the Amstel River on the west. The Amstel can be seen on the right in this photograph.
I cannot adequately express the feeling I had as I walked through Sijmon's neighborhood, looked out over the river and canal he had to traverse, and stood at the spot nearby where his family found their final resting place. Part of the area was little changed from Sijmon's day. I was, at the same time, both excited and at peace, having reached my quest in Amsterdam, and I can't help but wonder if Sijmon's presence wasn't watching over my shoulder. To the best of my knowledge, armed with the information gathered over the last ten years on Sijmon's life in Holland, I think I was the first descendant to have deliberately sought out and trod through our ancestor's neighborhood in 350 years.
Down the river in the photo is Amsterdam's amed "Skinny Bridge" which did not exist in Sijmon's time. A bridge which did exist in Sijmon's time but which has been rebuilt on essentially the same spot is the Blue Bridge or Blauw Brug. Rembrandt sketched a view of the Amstel looking in this direction from the Blauw Brug in about 1650, and CRV took a picture from the same spot. In the next issue of The Vanguard, both the photo and Rembrandt's sketch will be placed side by side for an eerie comparison. As it turns out, Rembrandt lived up the street on the other side of the canal from Sijmon! Rembrandt used to walk along the Amstel in the 1650s during his landscape sketching period and probably walked past Sijmon's house from time to time. Did they ever converse? One can only wonder!!

In the last issue of The Vanguard, CRV briefly discussed his trip to Holland and tracking down Sijmon Jansz van Aersdalen’s neighborhood. We will now look at this “homecoming” in more detail not only to entice the readership to go on a pilgrimage but also to preserve the location of Sijmon’s neighborhood for posterity.
First, it has only been within the last ten years that we knew for certain that Sijmon even lived in Amsterdam. The Centraal Bureau voor Genealogie released a report in May, 1993 in which they transcribed and translated a marriage bann dated March 26, 1650 for Sijmon and bride-to-be Marritje Baltus. The bann read, “Appeared as before Simon Janss. from Niekerck (van Niekerck), a potter, aged 22 years, producing a letter of consent from his father, living in potter’s path (Pottebackerspadt) and Marritie Baltus, aged 20 years, living in Leliestreet, having no parents” (items in parentheses from Dutch version). In the same report, we find that poor Marritje died only five years later, her burial noted in the St. Anthony’s churchyard records as “Maria Baltus, wife of Syme Jans van Asdal in Bleeckvelt”.
Here we have two points of reference - Pottebackerspadt and Bleeckvelt. In the course of conducting some research for CRV, Dutch genealogist Dr. Peter Nouwt located Pottenbakkerssteeg or Potter’s Lane near which were located two “potter’s paths”. However, there was found nothing to do with “Bleeckvelt”.
mapFurther communication with Cor (Cornelius) Snabel, a resident of Amstelveen, Holland, on the Dutch-Colonies email list revealed a relationship between Bleeckvelt, Pottebackerspadt, and St. Anthony’s Churchyard. Mr. Snabel graciously sent CRV a copy of a street map of Amsterdam drawn in about 1625. CRV has determined that this map was an engraving prepared by Balthasar van Berckenrode, and is now in the possession of the British Museum in London. A copy of the pertinent section is shown above.
Mr. Snabel also forwarded a translated copy of some material dealing with the pottery business in Amsterdam in the 1600s which mentioned that, due to fire hazards, many potteries were moved outside the city walls. In particular, a number of them were set up near the city gate known as St. Anthoniespoort (St. Anthony’s port). Also near this port was the linen bleaching fields, where linen was laid out in the sun to brighten. In Dutch, the bleaching field was “t’Bleeckvelt”. Voila! Further, Dr. Nouwt’s research pinpointed the location of the St. Anthony’s churchyard; again, due to the rapid population growth of Amsterdam and the recurring waves of plagues, the old city
graveyards were filling up by the early 1600s and provision had to be made for new graveyards. So, in 1640, St. Anthony’s churchyard was established near St. Anthoniespoort.
Armed with Dr. Nouwt’s maps from the 1640s (which he superimposed on a modern-day Amsterdam map) and the van Berckenrode map, CRV embarked on locating Sijmon’s surroundings in present Amsterdam. With some tenacity, the general area was identified. The bleaching fields, which appear as the roughly triangular shape in the upper left hand side of the map (containing five plots of land), were located along the Amstel River and the Heeren Gracht (Gentlemen’s Canal), running approximately east- west and north-south, respectively, in the map. (In reality, the directions are reversed, as the map is oriented with 'north' on the right hand side.) Today, the Amstelhof, which was erected in 1681 as housing for the elderly poor women of the city, occupies this space. The “potter’s path”, however, has not been identified on the 1625 map, but must be very close by. St. Anthony’s port is just below the middle of this map section, and connects with Breestraat. “Bree Straat” can be seen at the extreme lower right corner of this map section. Rembrandt van Rijn bought a house on this street (just off the lower right hand corner) in 1639. Near the St. Anthoniespoort but across the canal was the St. Anthony’s churchyard. On the map section shown, the graveyard would later be located in the lower left hand side just below the Bleeckvelt. Today, this is approximately where the Hortus Botanicus garden park is located. According to Mr. Snabel, the gardens were built near the graveyard in 1682 and in 1878 they annexed the cemetery land. The graveyard had closed to further burials on January 1, 1866. Sadly, it does not appear that the dead were relocated, as Mr. Snabel notes that in 1962, while preparing the land for building, dozens of bodies were uncovered. The remains of Sijmon’s first wife and two children are likely beneath the botanical gardens or the park adjacent to it.
drawingCRV became aware of Rembrandt’s residence in this area while perusing “Rembrandt” by (Thames and Hudson, Ltd., London, 1984; reprinted New York, 1992). A section of van Berckenrode’s map appears in this book on p. 86. In the map, a bridge appears across the Amstel and is marked “Blauwe Brugh”. White, a scholar of the Dutch master, states that Rembrandt frequently walked from his Breestraat home and strolled along the Amstel for inspiration. In White’s book on p. 107 can be found plate 86, which he lists as “View of the River Amstel from the Blauwbrug, riverAmsterdam, c. 1650”. It became apparent to CRV that Sijmon’s neighborhood could be found in this etching on the far left. CRV made a point of photographing the Amstel from the “new” Blauw Brug for comparison to Rembrandt’s view. The comparison is seen on the previous page.
Due to nightmarish flight delays, my wife and I missed almost a full day of our Amsterdam itinerary. It was not until the night before our departure for the States that Fate put us within walking distance of Sijmon’s neighborhood. The time I was able to spend near the Amstelhof and Hortus Botanicus was all too brief, but I solemnly paid my respect to Sijmon and the family he lost and pledged that I would return. Tot ziens,

In a recent letter from some French cousins, CRV has received the following marriage record from the archives at Renaix (Ronse), Belgium:
Laurent vander Haghen X Kateline van Aretsdale 16.1.1366 n.s. (new style)
Kateline's marriage predates the Arent van Arisdale citizenry record by thirty years. More later.

In the last issue of The Vanguard, we noted an early marriage record (January 16 1366!) for Kateline van Aretsdale near Ronse, Belgium. This was sent to CRV by friends Paul and Christiane Van Haetsdaele of Honnecourt-sur-Escaut, France. They are doing extensive research in the Ronse archives as well as for the Nukerke area, where Sijmon Jansz van Aersdalen was born. The family "over there" is much smaller than it is in the United States; in fact, a letter written by CRV exactly ten years ago continues to be referenced by relatives in Belgium and France!
For the most part, it appears that the family is concentrated along the common border of the two countries now. The name is found as "Van Haetsdaele" and CRV has corresponded with relatives in Ronse, Brussels, and Oudenaarde, Belgium as well. One is a psychologist who says to understand his patients he must usually look back 2 or 3 generations which, he adds, "must be microscopic to you." Let's hope we can keep these lines of communication open and connect our ancestors to theirs.

Our ancestor Sijmon Jansz van Aersdalen was engaged as a potter in Amsterdam before he sailed to New Netherland in 1653. Family legend says that he was sent here to study the native clays to determine their use for the pottery business in Holland. To shed some light on what the life of a 17th century Dutch potter in Amsterdam was like, Cornelius (Cor) Snabel of Amstelveen, The Netherlands sends us a transcribed synopsis from the book “Volksaardewerk in published in 1965.
There were two important pottery centers in Amsterdam; the oldest was concentrated on they had freedom of religion here and because the both sides of the Singel (west side) and the other (after the extension of 1612) in the Jordaan. In the west side neighborhood we find the Anjeliersgracht, with the Pottenbakkersgang on the north side. Potteries were not only found inside the city-walls, like the Pottenbakkerssteeg near the Reguliersdwarsstraat, but also along the river Amstel and outside the old Sint-Antoniespoort (city-gate), where the Pottensbakkerspad was situated. In addition to these alleys there was another Potterbakkerssteeg, which was called Korte-Kolksteeg until the end of the 17th century.There is also a Pottebakkersbrugh, the last bridge over the Nieuwezijds Achterburgwal, what now is the Spuistraat. On the Nieuwezijds Achterburgwal near the Lijnbaanssteeg, across the “Geleysteechien” (or clayman-steeg) was the house called “Ses-Steenen Kruycken” (six stone bottles) and at the other north-corner of the Lijnbaansteeg “De Vijff Cruycken” (the five stone bottles).
During the big extension of Amsterdam in 1612 all potteries were banned out of the city, because they often caused big fires. Not only did the potters have to move, but also shoemakers and furriers had to leave too. The big fire of 1421, which demolished three-quarters of the city, was probably caused by a pottery. Already in 1536 the Amsterdam Council decided potteries had to leave town, because “within the last few days pot-ovens caused three fires” on d’Burchwalle at the New Side.

Around 1600 a lot of potters from the Southern Netherlands moved to Amsterdam, partly because they had freedom of religion here and because the pottery business in, for instance, Antwerp was falling apart. Jacques Verham moved in 1591 from Mechelen to Amsterdam and in 1594 Samuel de Meulenaere came from Antwerp. The potters from the South-Netherlands were very skilled in faļence-pottery, with the bright colors green, yellow, orange, blue and white. Italian potters had left their influence in the South-Netherlands as well as the Spanish (against whom the eighty years war was fought). Amsterdam became an important town for pottery.

One inconvenient circumstance for the Amsterdam potters was the lack of good clay in the surroundings of the town, which was a financial disadvantage. It even had to be brought the in from abroad. Not only the supplier had to be paid, but also the shipping-agent and last but not least the “Aertmeter”. He was a civil servant, who had to “measure” the cargo and collect the appropriate taxes. The following document provides examples of where the potter had to get his clay.

Willem Hendricks, “toebackspijpenmaker” (tobaccopipe-maker) age 46 and Hendrick Claesz. potter within this town, the document produced by Arie Andiesz. profession aardemeter. Hendricks declares to use for making pipes Syberse, Frettense and Suitberchse clay, all from Köln and also Frederikse earth from Münster and clay from Hessen (all in Germany). Furthermore Hendrick Claesz. needs for his pottery red or brown earth and for fine glazing pots English earth, Doornikse and Delftse clay and some black variety, called Woerdense clay. They declare they paid the Aertmeter his fee and also paid their supplier.

It is obvious that the Amsterdam potters had more expenses than their colleagues from Delft, Woerden and Makkum, where part of the clay they needed could be found in the surroundings.

Another remarkable fact is that the Amsterdam potters never had a guild. The pottery-sellers in Amsterdam had their own guild. Dordrecht had a pottery-guild since 1649, as did Gouda and others.

The faļence-painters belonged to the St. Lucas- guild for sculptors and painters.

Cooking- and frying-pans were mostly of simple pottery. These pans often had hollow handles, so a stick could be put in it, in order to avoid burning ones hands. Although the painted bowls, plates, cups, etc. were often called “porcelain”, they were all made of clay, so they were imitations of the imported Chinese, French and English porcelain. The real porcelain was made of kaolin-earth, which becomes very hard if it is heated to 1000 to 1200 degrees Celsius.

One of the most cherished documents in the family history is a letter written by family progenitor Sijmon Jansz van Aersdalen in 1698. It was discovered in the Gouda Orphan's Court in 1991 after some research by the Dutch Centraal Bureau voor Genealogie on behalf of some family members. It had been filed there in connection with the will of Geertruyt Joosten van Haedsdaele, Sijmon's niece, the daughter of his brother Joost. This letter was addressed “to the respectable and very modest Joost Jansen van Aerdsdalen living in the Egelantierstraat next to ‘De Gekroonde Roomolen’ in Amsterdam”. The translation below was made by the CBvG.

Praise the Lord above all, in the bay on September 9th, 1698.
My kindest regards be written to my so much beloved brother and sister; I let you know I received your letter from Aendries Wandelaer and that I understand the contents of it, I am pleased to say, however, that the accident your daughter has met with causes us sorrow, however, it is the work of God, that we ought to bear patiently; farther I let you know, that I, your brother, and my wife and children are in good health yet thank God for His grace and we hope to learn from you the same in due time; I wonder you didn’t write about our niece; farther I let you know all my children are married and each of them is living in a farmhouse that Earns their livelihood; I sold my farm to my eldest son Cornelis, 33 years of age, has got five children, three sons, two daughters; my son Jan, 22 years of age, has got two sons; my daughter Geertje has got eight children; Janneken has got five children; Mettegen has got three children; they are comfortably off but they have to work which God commanded Adam; as for me, I stopped working since I am 71 years old now, my wife is 58 years of age and you, my brother, are, if I remember rightly, 60 years of age; God be pleased to give us a blessed end;
I am in receipt of your son Jan’s drawing which pleases me very much;
I gather from your letter your daughter’s (size?) causes you sorrow and I can well believe it and if I knew you would be pleased I would come to your assistance; please let me know;
I do not know anything more to write;
I will send this letter along with Pieter Berrij; he is our son Jan’s (nephew/cousin), who knows us very well; you can send your reply along with him; as for dries Wandelaer: he is not acquainted with us and for this reason he cannot inform of us;
God be with you and be saluted heartily by me,
Sijmon Janson van Arsdalen, your brother.

Jan “van Arsdal” was confirmed as a member of the Dutch Reformed Church in Gouda on July 20, 1642 accordin
Goudag to records discovered by the Centraal Bureau voor Genealogie at The Hague. Jan Pauwelsz van Aersdalen and his family fled religious oppression/persecution in East Flanders between October 2, 1638 (when son Judocus/Joost was baptized in Nukerke) and July 20, 1642. The CBvG located among the Gouda judicial records, volume 351, a deed dated November 21, 1642 stating “Jacob Joosten Dammelaer sells a house in Naaierstraat at Gouda to Jan Pauwelsz van Aertsdael at ƒ 600 ... “
The subject house is shown on the cover as the house in the center (red brick). In 1642, Jan's son Sijmon would have been 14 years old, and so we can assume that he lived at this house as a teenager. Jan made a living here as a mustard-maker. Another report by the CBvG notes that Jan purchased the house adjacent to his (the dark brown brick house) on April 8, 1650 (the two houses were later consolidated). However, he did not live there long. Jan died in January 1654 while his son Sijmon was in New Netherland.
This house now carries the street address of No. 26 Naaierstraat. The CBvG report goes on to say that “the house is in Goudaprinciple still the same although it is not known how much of the original house was saved”. This view was photographed by Dr. Peter Nouwt for CRV in November 1999. Another view from the book “Goudse Straatnamen” included in one of the CBvG reports shows the houses as they were around 1900 (see below). The canal shown in front of the houses was filled in in 1954.
On April 24, 1654, Philip Jansz van Aersdalen representing himself and his brother Sijmon overseas and still as guardian of his youngest brother (Judocus/Joost) sold the two houses and the land to Pieter van Stompwijk for 1130 guilders. The larger of the two houses had a mortgage of 500 guilders while the smaller one was free and clear.

Just for grins, here’s how the top “Van Arsdale” names ranked in frequency of occurrence on the 1990 U.S. Federal Census. The data for 2000 is not yet available. This is a “popularity ranking”; the most popular or common surname was, of course, “Smith” (i.e. ranked 1st). Also, the rankings cluster all names of similar spelling, e.g. Van Arsdale and Vanarsdale.
Van Arsdale 11,132nd
Van Ausdal 29,505th
Van Orsdale 30, 956th
Van Arsdall 53,663rd
Van Osdel 59,432nd
Van Artsdalen 59,464th
Van Osdol 66,836th
Van Orsdol 76,657th
Vannorsdell 76,662nd

From our good friend Cor Snabel courtesy of the Dutch-Colonies email group comes these interesting statistics concerning literacy in 17th century Holland.
“At the end of the 17
th century Holland had the lowest percentage of analphabets in Europe. In 1968 the Amsterdam archivist S. Hart calculated that in 1630 57% of the grooms and 32% of the brides were able to sign their names. In 1680 these numbers were 70% and 44%, and in 1780 85% of the men and 64% of the women signed their marriage certificate.”
As you know, our ancestor Sijmon Jansz van Aersdalen (1628-1710) could sign his name, but his father Jan Pauwelsz van Aersdalen (c. 1600-1654) could not.

This is the "Prototype View" of "New Amsterdam, now New York on Manhattan Island", a watercolor made sometime after the Dutch surrender, now in the Dutch archives. Taken from An Album of New Netherland by Maud Esther Dilliard, Bramhall House, NY, 1963, it "shows the city between the autumn of 1650 and the summer of 1653".

In 1628, Flanders was besieged. The rolling hills and verdant plains of Europe's arguable wealthiest province was one of the main theaters in the Eighty Years' War, pitting Spanish, French, and Dutch troops against one another in a war of political advantage and religious freedom.
Flanders had been part of the Spanish Netherlands since 1516, when Charles V, a scion of the Habsburg Empire, ascended the throne. Charles was the son of Philip I of the Low Countries and Princess Joanna of Spain, Philip being the heir of the Habsburgs from his father Archduke Maximilian and Joanna being the heir of Castile and Aragon from her parents Ferdinand and Isabella (the noted royal financiers of Christopher Columbus). Charles V ushered in an era of prosperity for Flanders but at the expense of widening the gap between the upper and lower classes. In 1555, he abdicated the throne in favor of his son, Philip II.
Philip II had little interest in preserving the existing ruling class in the Low Countries and was particularly intolerant of the lower classes. At about this time, the fledgling spirit of Calvinism was spreading throughout the Low Countries and Philip II, a fervent Catholic, resolved himself to crush the religion before it resulted in any further subversion to his rule. Suspected Calvinist “Protestants” were arrested, interrogated, tortured, expelled, and even executed as the King sought to root out the evil influence. This tinderbox erupted into flames when, in 1566, Protestants pulled down and destroyed statues they considered idolatrous at several Catholic churches. King Philip responded by imposing martial law, sending troops under the merciless Duke of Alva to squelch the uprising. Instead of smothering the fire, the action only fanned the flames, and the Eighty Years’ War began.
In 1573, after seven of the bloodiest years in Flanders’ history, the Duke of Alva was replaced by a more moderate “governor” who facilitated the signing of a peace accord for the southern provinces of the Low Countries. The diplomatic process was, nevertheless, enforced militarily. Flanders and neighboring Brabant province became effectively Catholic in 1579, but the Protestants could either worship in secret or emigrate to the northern provinces which had become officially Protestant. Many chose the latter option.
The remaining Protestant population of Flanders had been greatly diminished and over the years the Protestant-Catholic rift widened irreparably. Protestants were now being hunted down, tried as heretics and witches, and burned at the stake.
Beneath this cloud of political and religious upheaval, a child is born in Nukerke, East Flanders. He was baptized on Sunday, February 27, 1628 to Jan Pauwelsz van Aersdalen and Gerarda (Geertje) Philipse Haelters, and named Sijmon, possibly after one of the witnesses, Sijmon de Keyser [1]. Dutch tradition – and probably Flemish as well - dictated that a mother not go out in public for six weeks after childbirth, and only then for the purpose of the child’s baptism. If this custom was followed, then we can assume that Sijmon was born in the first half of January 1628.
Sijmon was the third known son of Jan Pauwelsz, a carpet or cloth-weaver, which was a popular vocation in East Flanders at that time. It is possible that another son had been born before Sijmon but baptized at a different church. Sijmon’s siblings eventually included brothers Philip (Philippus, baptized June 24, 1624; [1]), possibly a Pauwel, Jan (Joannes, baptized March 22, 1626; [1]), Pieter (probably born about 1630 in Flanders), and Joost (Judocus, baptized October 2, 1638; [2]), as well as sisters Egidia (baptized April 10, 1633; [2]) and Joanna (baptized December 4, 1635; [2]). It is likely that Sijmon also had a sister named Fiermijne named for their paternal grandmother.
The last known baptismal record for a child of Jan and Gerarda’s was that of Joost. However, bringing more children into a war-torn world was a logistically if not morally questionable act. Tensions escalated in the area and troops routinely ebbed and flowed through Flanders. Oudenaarde, just three miles across the Schelde River from Nukerke, was the scene of several bloody skirmishes. Around 1640, Jan decided to abandon Nukerke and seek out the relative stability of the Protestant-dominated Northern Provinces. Jan took his family to Gouda (where, it appears, his parents were married in 1588) and likewise abandoned his vocation as a carpetweaver to become a mustard-grinder. On July 20, 1642 Jan was confirmed (as “Jan van Arsdal”) as a member of the Dutch Reformed Church at Gouda [3]. He bought a house for his family on November 21 of that year [4] and eight years later purchased the adjacent one as well [5].
Sijmon had an itch to strike out on his own. Barely in his twenties, he moved away from the rest of the family in Gouda to seek his fortune in the metropolis of Amsterdam. This is probably the first evidence of the drive of this young man who would dare to venture into a New World and become the patriarch of a large and successful family. In Amsterdam, he pursued a career in pottery-making, which had become so prolific an industry that several streets in the city were dedicated to the trade. Starting around 1600, many potters from the Southern Netherlands (Belgium) fled to Amsterdam to escape religious persecution and the fragmentation of the local pottery industry. Consequently, Amsterdam blossomed into a major supplier of pottery, especially faļence and Delftware styles. However, the proliferation of so many pottery shops resulted in widespread and occasionally devastating outbreaks of fire, and when Amsterdam expanded in 1621, all potteries were banned to the outside of the city. One important center was located along the river Amstel, just outside the St. Anthony’s port city-gate [6]. It was there that, by 1650, Sijmon had taken up residence on a street called Pottebakkerspad or “potter’s path”.
On March 26, 1650, Sijmon produced documentation of his father’s consent in order to marry Marritje Baltusdr, an orphan two years his junior. “Compareerden als vooren Simon Janss. van Niekerck, pottebacker, out 22 jaer, vertoon. acte van vaders consent, woonen. opt Pottebackerspadt ende Marritie Baltus van A., out 20 jaer, woon. int Lelystraetje, geen ouders hebbende (appeared as before Simon Janss from Niekerck, a potter, aged 22 years, producing a letter of consent from his father, living in potter’s path and Marritie Baltus, from Amsterdam, aged 20 years, living in Leliestreet, having no parents (parents deceased).”
They were wed at the Oude Kerk, the oldest church in Amsterdam, by Rev. Borsius on April 19, 1650 [7]. Sijmon was young, had a beautiful bride and a promising, stable job; the future looked bright.
The couple’s first child, daughter Sijlijntje, was born in January 1651. She was baptized at the Zuiderkerk on February 26, 1651 [8]. Sijlijntje was probably named after Marritje’s mother, while Sijmon’s mother served as a witness. According o Dutch tradition, the next daughter would be named for Sijmon’s mother, Gerarda or Geertje, but Sijmon’s mother would not live long enough to enjoy that honor. In October, she passed away and was buried on the 30th of that month at St. Jan’s Kerk in Gouda [9]. Not long thereafter, widower Jan Pauwelsz began courting widow Margarieta Philipsdr. They were married in Haastrecht near Gouda on August 20, 1652, some ten months after Geertje’s passing [10].
Sijmon’s first son, Jan Simonsz, was baptized on November 19, 1652 at Nieuwe Kerk [11]. He was obviously named for his paternal grandfather. With his family growing, Sijmon - again seeking opportunities - began looking for a better way of life, a house inside the city walls, a better income. Opportunity soon finds him. For years, there had been a strong recruiting effort to populate New Netherland with young, energetic “fortune-seekers”. In fact, the Secretary of the New Netherland colony, Cornelis van Tienhoven, wrote a pamphlet dated March 4, 1650 entitled “Information Relative to Taking Up Land in New Netherland, in the Form of Colonies or Private Bouweries” [12]. This “brochure” was an explicit enticement for would-be colonists and was circulated throughout Holland. It is possible that Sijmon, now almost 25, read some of the persuasive literature printed by the Dutch West India Company and became enamored by the lure of the New World. Family history states that Sijmon, a potter, was sent to New Netherland to study the utility of the native clays for pottery making. If so, no evidence has yet been uncovered to substantiate this assertion. No potters’ guild existed in Amsterdam at that time, so if Sijmon was an apprentice to a New Netherland-looking master potter, we cannot corroborate such motivation. Further, Sijmon’s name does not appear on any of the almost fifty Amsterdam notaries’ records of 1653, settling any business (such as signing a contract with an employer or paying debts) prior to embarking on his journey [13]. There is no documentation regarding who paid for Sijmon’s way to New Netherland, whether by himself or by a patron. The average cost to sail to New Amsterdam at that time was about 36 florins [14]. Whatever instigated his plan, Sijmon Jansz van Aersdalen decided to venture to New Netherland in 1653.
When did Sijmon leave? Sijmon’s older brother, Philip, was married in Gouda on May 13, 1653 [15]. It is believed that the two brothers were close, and so it is likely that Sijmon wished to attend his brother’s wedding. Consequently, we can assume that he left Amsterdam after May. Recently, it has become known that two ships made the journey from Amsterdam to New Netherland that year, both departing at the same time [16]. These ships were the Coninck Salomon and the Geldersche Blom (King Solomon and the Flower of Gelderland). (Family history states that Sijmon sailed aboard the Dynasty. No vessel by that name was known to have made the journey to New Netherland.) The two ships left Amsterdam on Saturday, August 23, 1653 for the Dutch island of Texel, there to begin the trans-Atlantic voyage.
Amsterdam was not situated on a coastline of the ocean or a major sea, such as the North Sea. What today is reclaimed polderland around Amsterdam was, in the 17th century, open water - the Zuiderzee. Some 60 miles of the Zuiderzee had to be traversed before reaching Texel and the North Sea. Once at the harbor of Texel, weather conditions dictated any further sailing. Consequently, due to the capricious nature of the North Sea, many ships had to wait – sometimes for weeks - for the weather to improve satisfactorily. Additionally, Texel was a vital source of fresh water for the long journey. Many wells on the island had been dug specifically for the travelers, and the water bought from them was used to finance a local orphanage [17]. The water in Amsterdam was notoriously foul even in those days, as effluents from tanneries and linen- bleaching fields found their noxious ways into the Amstel.
The Coninck Salomon was a WIC (West India Company) ship while the Geldersche Blom was a “galjoot”. A galjoot, or galliot, was a long, narrow light-draft Dutch merchant ship carrying a mainmast and a jigger with a mainsail having a long foot and short gaff. It is known that the Geldersche Blom carried passengers as well as cargo.
From Texel, the Dutch ships embarked on the journey following one of four well-established routes. Although we may never know the exact route Sijmon took, we can narrow it down to the two most likely crossings.
From Holland, the ships first sailed past the southern tip of England, on occasion stopping for supplies or repairs at Portsmouth or Plymouth. This was not the case in 1653, however, as the First English War was raging, and docking a Dutch ship at an English harbor was ill-advised. Otherwise, the ships continued on along the coasts of Spain and Portugal destined for a stopover either at the Canary or, further south, Cape Verde Islands.
If Sijmon’s ship went to the Cape Verde Islands, they sailed past the west coast of Africa on their way to Brazil along the North Equatorial Current, aided by the Northeast Trade Wind. This took them to the Leeward Islands of the Caribbean (probably Curaēao or perhaps Tobago). From that locale, they caught the Antilles Stream to the Gulf Stream along the eastern North American coast to their destination, the mouth of the Hudson River.
If Sijmon’s ship instead enjoyed a stopover at the Canary Islands, they would then turn west to either the Leeward or the Windward Islands (the Netherlands Antilles) of St. Kitts, St. Eustace, St. Maarten, or St. Saba. From either archipelago, the ships would then follow the Antilles Stream north to the Gulf Stream and then on to the Hudson River.
The Geldersche Blom anchored at New Amsterdam on Sunday, November 2, 1653 with the Coninck Salomon arriving one day later. The trans-Atlantic trip had taken a little over two months, an average time in those days.
Where did Sijmon go upon his arrival? It can be assumed that employment was waiting for him; if he had been sent to New Netherland to study the native clays, he would have a potter’s shop to report to and, probably, a master potter under whose wing he would be taken. Sijmon would undoubtedly live near this potter’s shop, either with the potter or at a boarding house close by. Even if he had not been sent, i.e. he had gone on his own free will, he would have to work as a potter, as there is no reason to assume he could make a living doing anything else, initially. Because Sijmon intended to return to Holland, we must assume he did not buy a house during his early years in New Netherland. It is unclear whether Sijmon lived in New Amsterdam upon his arrival or moved to New Amersfoort (Flatlands) on Long Island.
Not long after his arrival, Sijmon received bad news from home. In January 1654, Sijmon’s father Jan died in Gouda. He was buried in St. Jan’s Kerk on January 12, 1654 [18]. Sijmon’s brother Philip appeared in court on March 10, 1654 to attest that the minor children of their father would have a guardian: “Philip Jansz Aesdael certifies he will assume guardianship of the minor children of the late Jan Poulissen van Aesdal and Geertje Philips” [19]
Shortly thereafter, Philip again goes to court to seek permission from the Gouda town council to sell his father’s houses in order to provide for the minor children. This is granted on April 24, 1654.
“Philip Jansz Aersdaalen, on behalf of himself acting as a guardian to his minor brother Pieter Jansz and as a proxy to his brother Sijmon Jansz van Aersdale who is staying abroad, being the children and heirs to Jan Pauwlesz van Aersdael sells two houses and land in Naaierstraat at Gouda to Pieter van Stompwijk at ƒ 1130, -, -.” [20].
Family history relates that Sijmon was about to return to Holland when he learned of the death of his wife and children. Although the timing of his intended return has not been corroborated, it is now known that his wife, Marritje, and at least one but probably both of his children were, indeed, victims of the plague. (Plague deaths in Amsterdam in 1655 were tallied at 16,727 or roughly 12.5% of the city’s inhabitants [21]). On November 18, 1655 “a child of Seymen Janssen, potter” [22] was buried in St. Anthony’s churchyard, Amsterdam, followed by its mother only eight days later [23]. This information probably reached Sijmon by late summer/early fall 1656. In a little over a four-year period, Sijmon had lost his parents, his wife, and his children. Devastated, Sijmon had little to return to, and seeing before him his home away from home for the last three years and a land with limitless possibilities, he decided to cast his lot with the enterprising Dutch New World.
Again as a young man in another thriving community, Sijmon’s prospects were propitious. He began courting Pieterje Claese van Schouw, a daughter of tobacco merchant Claes (Nicholas) Cornelissen van Schouw. Sijmon and Pieterje married about 1658, presumably in Flatlands. Their first child was born probably in the next year, and named Geertje in honor of her paternal grandmother.
In the meantime, perhaps with the help of his father-in-law, Sijmon began gaining civic prominence. On May 3, 1660 Sijmon was appointed a schepen of New Amersfoort (Flatlands) [24]. A schepen was a magistrate who presided over cases in town court and was a combination of sheriff and alderman in addition to a magistrate. One of his responsibilities was the review and passing of local laws and ordinances. In the words of Hoppin, Sijmon “seems early ... to have possessed an ability and influence in matters political that caused him to be selected over older men of longer residence ... to represent Amersfoort” [25]. Indeed, at the age of 35, Sijmon was chosen to represent Amersfoort in a “Convention Holden at New Amsterdam, on July 3, 1663, to engage the several Dutch towns to keep up an armed force for public protection” [26].
But not everything is easy for Sijmon. On Tuesday, August 28, 1663, "Sijmon Janzen" appears incourt against carpenter Jan Teunizen and witnesses Willem Steenhalder and wife, claiming that Teunizen wouldn't release a house to Sijmon for which he had been paid. The court requested further proof from Sijmon, and so on September 4th, "Sijmon Janzen Asdalen" produces testimonials from two witnesses (whose identities were undisclosed in the published transcription). Teunizen is still unmoved, so Sijmon challenges him to take an oath before the court regarding the terms of the sale. Teunizen refuses, but Sijmon agrees to go on record with his own oath. Finding this satisfactory, the court rules in favor of Sijmon and he takes possession of the house [27].
(This appears to be the same Jan Teunizen who may have accompanied Sijmon to New Netherland in 1653. If so, this would be Jan Teunizen van Duykhuis, also a resident of Flatlands. In The Journal of Jasper Danckaerts [28], Danckaerts held Jan Teunissen in low esteem. “He welcomed us, but somewhat coldly, and so demeaned himself all the time we were there, as to astonish my comrade at the change, but not me entirely, for I had observed this falling off while we were yet at sea ...”. Jan Teunizen had apparently returned to Holland for some business and had come back to New Netherland on the same ship as Danckaerts in June 1679.)
In February 1664, Sijmon and his father-in-law become further involved in the building tensions with the British. On the 19th, they and three other witnesses appear before a notary at Midwout (Flatbush) to testify about a public disturbance caused by English captain John Scott. Sijmon signs his name to the document and attests to being 35. (However, if he was baptized in February 1628, he would have been 36.)
“Before me, Pelgrom Clocq ... and the undernamed witnesses, appeared Claes Cornelissen, aged 67 years, Symon Janse, aged 35 years, both residents of the village of Amesfoort ... who declare and testify ... at the request of Mr. Adrian Hegeman, Sheriff, residing in the village of Midwout, by and in the presence of Pieter Claesen and Roelof Martens, Schepens of Amesfoort, that it is true and truthful that Captain John Schot, an Englishman, came into their, the deponents’ village, on the 12th of January last, with a troop of horse and making a great noise. And first the abovenamed Claes Cornelissen declares that he heard John Schot declare at the time that this place, in The Bay, was a free place because it was bought and was not Company’s property; also, that he, John Schot, said that he would return on the first of April, Old Style, and then open and exhibit his commission; forbidding him, the deponent, to pay the Company any Tenths, as the place belonged to the King.” [29]
Then, on the 27th, Sijmon and Claes participate in a convention in Midwout which they instigated, bringing together the Director-General and Council of New Netherland "to lay before the States General and West India Company the distressed state of the country" [30]. The tormenting by the British had accelerated, and the \Dutch found themselves being surrounded.
On September 8th, 1664, the Director-General of New Netherland, Pieter Stuyvesant, relinquished the Dutch colony to the British after four British warships with over 1000 men threatened them from New York Bay. At first, the defiant Stuyvesant cursed the English when confronted with a document agreeing to surrender the colony, tearing the paper to shreds and stomping upon it with his wooden leg. However, in his attempt to muster the Dutch forces against the British, he soon found himself all alone. New Netherland had grown to a population close to 10,000 people by that date, but some 20-40 % of those were non-Dutch already.
Beginning in 1665, Sijmon's attentions turned to acquiring land as evidenced by numerous entries in the Flatlands Town Records. Many lots and parcels of "land and meddow ground" were purchased by Sijmon between 1665 [31] and 1686 [32], thereby establishing farms to suit his likewise burgeoning family. In addition to daughter Geertje (born ca. 1659), Cornelis Sijmonsz is born about 1665 and Sijmon’s only other son, Jan Sijmonsz, is born in 1676 [33]. Daughter Jannetje Simonse is born about 1668, Metje Sijmonse is born about 1670, and his last child, Maritje Simonse, is born in 1678 [34], but is believed to have died young.
His eldest daughter, Geertje, married Cornelis Pietersz Wyckoff at the Dutch Reformed Church in New Utrecht on October 13, 1678 [35]. On December 11, 1681, Sijmon and Pieterje were present when their first grandchild, Marije, is baptised at the Dutch Reformed Church in Breuckelen [36]. Sijmon is 54 years old at that time. Geertje and Cornelis' second son, Sijmon, named for Sijmon Jansz, is baptised in Amersfoort on November 23, 1683 as witnessed by “Simon Jansz” and “Pietertje Klaas” [37].
On March 23, 1686, Sijmon purchases from Cornelis Willemsz (van Westervelt) "Nos. 30, 31, and 32 of the 15 acre allotments of Gravesend, with the right of commonage on the beach and on Coney Island" [32]. This appears to be Sijmon's last purchase of land. A year later, on March 16th, Sijmon's oldest son Cornelis Sijmonsz married Aeltje Willemse van Kouwenhoven at the Dutch Reformed Church of Flatbush [38]. It would not be until October 20, 1695 before his other son, Jan Sijmonsz, would marry Lammetje Probasco [39].
One of the more important documents related to Sijmon was the Oath of Allegiance taken September 30th, 1687. This record indicates that Sijmon, listed as "Simon Janse Van Aerts Daalen", had been in this country for 34 years, thus establishing his time of arrival, while his son "Cornelis Simonsen Van Aerts Daalen" was recorded as a native, i.e. born here [40] . This oath also tabulated other Dutchmen who had been in this country for 34 years, hence potential shipmates of our ancestor, these being: Reynier Aertsen of Flatbush; Ruth Joosten Van Brunt and Jan Van Cleef of New Utrecht; Jan Teunisz Van Dyckhuyse, Willem Davies, and Ruth Bruynsen of Flatlands; and Stoffel Janse Romeyn and Jochem Gulick of Gravesend. By this time, Sijmon had become prosperous and an outstanding member of the religious and civic communities.
Sijmon spent more of his latter years in church pursuits and keeping up with his family in North America -- although not with the family back in Holland. In 1698, Sijmon received a letter from his brother Joost which informed Sijmon of the death of his niece Geertruyt. Geertruyt remem bered her uncle Sijmon and his family in her will, and in a letter dated September 9th, Sijmon wrote back to Holland [33] and his brother for the first time in many years, if ever before.
" ... I let you know that I, your brother, and my wife and children are in good health yet, thank God for His grace and we hope to learn the same from you in due time; I wonder you didn't write about our niece; farther I let you know all my children are married and each of them is living in a farmhouse that earns their livelihood; I sold my farm to my eldest son Cornelis, 33 years of age, has got five children, three sons, two daughters; my son Jan, 22 years of age, has got two sons; my daughter Geertje has got eight children; Janneken has got five children; Mettgen has got three children; they are comfortably off but they have to work which God commanded Adam; as for me, your brother, I stopped working since I 
am 71 years old now, my wife is 58 years of age and you, my brother, are, if I remember rightly, 60 years of age; God be pleased to give us a blessed end ..."
The same year, a census was taken for Kings County, New York and in the town of "Fflatlands" or New Amersfoort were listings for "Simon Jantz Van Aersdaelen" and "Cornelis Simontz Van Aersdaelen". Sijmon's house contained 2 men, 3 women, and 1 slave, while Cornelis's house contained 1 man, 1 woman, 6 children, and 1 slave [41]. It can be assumed that the other man in the household was son Jan, then 22 years old.
On May 10, 1700, Sijmon sold the three 15-acre lots he'd bought from Cornelis Willemsz van Westervelt in 1686 to his eldest son Cornelis Sijmonsz [42]. Cornelis now had a sizeable farm on which to raise his large family.
Sijmon continued to be physically active at least into his eightieth year. Riker [43] notes:
“Mortgage dated May 11, 1699 to Simon Janse Van Aersdale of Amersfoort on a house in Broad St. given by Joost Leynsen of N.Y. baker & Elizabeth his wife. A memorandum in the margin states that Simon Jansen Van Aersdale of Amersford in Kings Co. Yeoman, person ally came on Apl 2, 1707 into the officeof the Town Clerk of N.Y. & cancelled the mortgage.”
The last record of Sijmon's good deeds occurred around February 23, 1710. In the Deacon's Book of the Flatlands Dutch Reformed Church is a note tabulating the donations given by twenty contributors. The largest sum, 40 guldens, was donated by Sijmon [44].
Received from Cornelus Van Arsdale for a grave and shroud for Symon Van Arsdale, 24 guldens" [44]. Hoppin further states that Sijmon’s grave “was in the churchyard of the Flatlands Dutch Reformed Church, from which the gravestones of the early residents of the town have disappeared”. And so our ancestor passed into history at the age of 83.
1. Parochie Register, Nukerke nr. 1.
2. Parochie Register, Nukerke nr. 2.
3. “Voorts weet ick niet meer te schrijven [I don’t know what else to write]”, E. Th. Unger, Jaarboek van het Centraal Bureau voor Genealogie, vol. 50, den Haag, 1996: p. 188; originally from a report issued by Dr. Unger through the CBvG in August 1991.
4. Gouda Judicial Records, vol. 351.
5. Streekarchiefdienst Hollands Midden [Regional Archives for Central Holland], RAG inv. nr. 352.
6. Volksaardewerk in Nederland 1600-1900, J. de Kleyn, 1965
7. DTB Amsterdam 971, p. 208.
8. DTB Amsterdam 94, p. 97.
9. Archives, St. Janskerk, account 1651.
10. DTB Gouda 17, folio 146vso.
11. DTB Amsterdam 43, p. 234.
12. Documents Relative to the Colonial History of the State New York, E.B. O'Callaghan, Vol.I, pp. 365-371
13. Gemeentearchief [Municipal Archives] Amsterdam, Notarial Archives nr. 5075
14. Emigrants to New Netherland, Rosalie Fellows Bailey, NYGBR, vol. 94, no. 4, pp. 193-200.
15. DTB Gouda 17, folio 154vso.
16. “De Scheepvaart en handel van de Nederlandse Republiek op Nieuw-Nederland 1609-1675 [The Shipping and Trade from the Dutch Republic to New Netherland, 1609-1675]”, Jaap Jacobs, Masters Thesis, University of Leiden, 1989.
17. The Isle of Texel, Willem Rabbelier and Cor Snabel, olivetreegenealogy.com/nn/mm_2.shtml.
18. Archives, St. Janskerk, account 1654.
19. Gouda Orphan’s Court records, v. 27, dated March 10, 1654.
20. Gouda Judicial Records, v. 355, dated April 24, 1654.
21. The Dutch Republic: Its Rise, Greatness, and Fall 1477-1806, Jonathan Israel, Oxford University Press, NY, 1995: pp. 624-625 .
22. DTB Amsterdam 1192, p. 127.
23. DTB Amsterdam 1191, p. 437.
24. The Register of New Netherland: 1626-1674, E. B. O’Callaghan, Genealogical Publishing Company, Baltimore, 1995 [originally published 1865]: p. 79.
25. The Washington Ancestry and Records of the McClain, Johnson, and Forty Other Colonial American Families, vol. 3, Charles A. Hoppin, privately published, Greenfield, OH, 1932: p. 168.
26. The Register of New Netherland, p. 143.
27. The Records of New Amsterdam 1653-1674, Berthold Fernow, vol. 4 of 7, Genealogical Publishing Company, Baltimore, 1976 [originally published 1897]: pp. 291 & 295.
28. The Journal of Jasper Danckaerts [part of Original Narratives of Early American History Series], Barnes & Noble, reprinted 1959: pp.59-62.
29. Documents Relative to the Colonial History of the State of New York, vol II, Weed & Parsons, Albany, c.1856: p.
30. Hoppin, p. 168.
31. Flatlands Town Records, Deeds, Miscellaneous 1661-1831, p. 57.
32. Gravesend Town Records, Deeds, Leases, No. 5, 1672-1686, p. 99.
33. Sijmon’s Letter of 1698, Jaarboek van het Centraal Bureau voor Genealogie, vol. 50, den Haag, 1996: p. 182.
34. Records of the Reformed Protestant Dutch Church of Flatbush, Kings County, New York, vol. I (1677-1720), David W. Voorhees, Holland Society of New York, 1995: p. 384.
35. Ibid., pp. 216-217.
36. Ibid., p. 412.
37. Ibid., p. 426.
38. Ibid., pp. 258-259.
39. James Riker Papers, Manuscripts & Archives Division, The New York Public Library, (Astor, Lenox and Tilden Foundations), Box 17, Vol. 1, p. 421. (Riker states that this information was “copied by Mr. Bergen from an old Bible of John A. Voorhees of Flatlands Apr. [18]59” and further includes a transcription of the letter he received from Teunis Bergen which documents the marriage in Dutch.)
40. “The Roll of Those Who Took the Oath of Allegiance in King’s County, 1687” in List of Inhabitants of Colonial New York, E. B. O’Callaghan, Genealogical Publishing Company, Baltimore, 1979: p. 39 [being an excerpt of O’Callaghan’s The Documentary History of the State of New York, vol. I, p. 429].
41. “Census of King’s County - About 1698” in List of Inhabitants of Colonial New York, E. B. O’Callaghan, Genealogical Publishing Company, Baltimore, 1979: p. 178 [being an excerpt of O’Callaghan’s The Documentary History of the State of New York, vol. III, p. 115].
42. Gravesend Town Records, Deeds, Leases, No. 5, 1672-1686, p. 253.
43. James Riker Papers, p. 419.
44. Hoppin, p. 171.

Cleas Cornelissen van Schouw, father-in-law to our ancestor Symon Jansz van Aersdalen, has had a very fanciful background in some published genealogies. However, rather than address these, we will present what is actually known about him, and leave the fanciful interpretation where it lies. Most of what we know of Claes (the diminutive of Niklaas or Nicholas) comes from Charles Arthur Hoppin (references at end). Hoppin’s treatment of van Schouw appears to be sound, having withstood scrutiny by several researchers.
Although no European records have been discovered yet, Claes appears to have hailed from an island called “Schouw or Schouwen, in the estuary of the Ooster-Schelde River, off the west coast of the Netherlands” (Hoppin, vol. 3, p.173). Claes was born about 1605, judging from a deposition he gave on May 5, 1640 (HSNY, New York Historical Manuscripts: Dutch, vol. I, record 200): “This, date underwritten, before me, Cornelis van Tienhoven, secretary in New Netherland, at therequest of Hendrick Pietersen, mason, personally appeared Claes Cornelissen van Schouw, agedabout 35 years ...”
This is also the first known use in New Netherland of his full name. There has been some dispute as to the validity of this age estimate, as on February 19, 1664 Claes gives his age as 67, consequently having been born in 1597 (Hoppin, p. 181). It was the consensus of researchers Hoppin, Hoffman, and Peterson that Claes’ memory was better in 1640 and, so, he was better able to reckon his age.
Claes appears in Land Papers: GG, p. 17 under “GG 54 Patent to Claes Cornelisz van Schouw” concerning a land patent. “We, Willem Kieft, etc. ... have granted to Claes Cornelisz van Schouw a certain piece of land lying upon Long Island opposite Manhattan Island between the ferry and Andries Hudden .... Done 14 November 1642 at Fort Amsterdam in New Netherland.” This land is now part of Brooklyn Heights. Goodwin states “Southward from the Ferry and along the present Heights and East River shore extended the farms of Claes Cornelissen Van Schouw, Jan Manje, Andries Hudde, Jacob Wolphertsen, Frederic Lubbertsen; and ex-Governor van Twiller had himself taken a grant.” The ferry would become a landmark of sorts toward identifying Claes’ family, as when daughter Geertie Claes “from the ferry” and her husband Hendrick Volckerssen baptised Jeuriaen on November 6, 1661 (HSNY, Brooklyn Church Records, p. 110), witnessed by Sijmen Janssen, Hermanus van Bossum, and Trijntie Claes.
Hoffman’s article spells out, in a very convincing manner, seven children of Claes, utilizing “the unfailing method where the genealogy of a family of Dutch descent is concerned; that is, by paying close attention to the sponsors who appeared at the baptisms of the children” (Hoffman, p. 68). Pietertje Claes’ baptism of October 28, 1640 shows her to be a daughter of Claes Cornelissen. [NYGBR, Vol. V, p. 29: “Ouders/Parents ... Claes Cornelis. Kinders/Children ... Pietertje. Getuygen/Witnesses ...Jeurgie Hendrickszen, Hester Simons.”] Either Pieterje, husband Symon Jansz (van Aersdalen), or one of their children (Cornelis Symonsen and Janneke Symons) attended the baptisms of several children of Geertje Claes and Gerbrandt Claes which, combined with the patronymic “Claes-“, signifies that Pieterje was probably a sister to Geertje and Gerbrandt. The sponsors at the baptism of Gerbrandt’s son, Pieter, were Tryntie Claes and Joris Jacobsen, who themselves were married and appear numerous times in the baptismal record. Tryntje Claes appears as a sponsor (along with Symon Jansen) at the baptism of Geertje Claes’ son Jeuriaen, and so must be another sister to Pieterje. Finally, Arien Klaessen appears as a sponsor to the baptism of Gerbrandt’s son Myndert, and Hoffman points out that an “Adriaen Claesz”, unmarried brother of Gerbrandt Claesz, died in 1703 in Bergen, NJ, thus affixing him as another brother to Pieterje. Two other children of Claes Cornelissen (Cornelis and Floris) are offered but have less substantive proof.
So from this we have established the immediate family of Claes Cornelissen van Schouw, particularly as it relates to his daughter, Pieterje Claese, and son-in-law, Symon Jansz van Aersdalen. The name of his wife (or wives) remains unknown; however, Bryan (pp. 136-137) suggests that her name may have been Metje "Harpentse". Peterson (p. 37) expounds on this, noting the occurrence of the name Harpert in subsequent generations of descendants. Additionally, Metje "Harperszen", on May 20, 1652, witnesses the baptism of one of Claes’ grandchildren (NYGBR, Vol. V, p. 98), while on August 15, 1655 Metje "Herberts" and Claes Corneliszen serve as sponsors of another grandchild of Claes’, Volckert (NYGBR, Vol.V, p. 155).
According to Peterson (p. 36), “the last record of CLAES CORNELISSEN VAN SCHOUW isbelieved to be a listing in 1671 in the venue bookof Adriaen Hegeman, sheriff of Flatlands, whichthe historian Teunis Bergen claims to have seen about 1881. CLAES is believed to have died about 1674.”
Frick notes (p. 7) that “Claes was living on Bergen’s Island near Flatlands in 1671. ....On March 13, 1675, Claes made a donation to the church. This was the last record of him.” CRV notes that, in “Kings Co. Wills” (NYGBR, vol. XLVII, p. 165), the will of “Swaentie Janse, widow of Cornelius Depotter” written March 31, 1676 includes, as a witness, a “Claes Cornelinssen”. If this is Claes Cornelissen van Schouw, this may be the last known record of Claes, then about 71 years old. Claes does not appear on the Roll of Allegiance taken in 1687.
Claes apparently left behind an island which bore his nickname, “Mutelaer” or “grumbler”. It was recorded as such on several occasions, such as on May 8, 1697 on p. 134 of Book 2 Conveyances (NYGBR, Vol. LIV, p. 250): “Coert Stevense, Lucas Stevense, John Stevense, Albert Stevense, John Kierstead, Barne Vrianse, Alexander Sympson, and Albert Terhuynen deed Garrett Courte land in Flatlands bounded by that of Simon Janse and Hendrick Peterse also another lot bounded by property of Lucas Stevense, formerly in possession of Stephen Coerte and others and another lot bounded by lands of Lucas Stevense and Helena Aertsen and Claes Peterse also a lot on Mutilaer’s Island (This is now Bergen Island) and also another lot in Flatlands bounded by lands of Tunis Janse, Hendrick Peterse and Cloisse Wyckoff. All sign but Alexander Sympson signs by mark. Wit. by John Terhuynen and John Hansen. Ack. May 8 and Rec’d. May 12, 1697 by Henry ffilkin, Reg.”
Bryan, Leslie: “Immigrant Ancestors Allied to Certain Bryan and Aulls Family Lines”, self-published, Champaign, IL, 1981.
Frick, Franklyn: “Family Tree of Jacob Banta Vanosdol 1788-1872", edited by B. Van Osdol-Schneider, self-published, 1986.
Goodwin, Maud et al: “Historic New York”, G. P. Putnam’s Sons, New York, NY, 1899, pp. 387-391.
Hoffman, William J.: “Claes Cornelissen Van Schouw(en), Meutelaer and the Wyckoff Ancestry”, The American Genealogist, vol. XXII, No. 2 (October 1945), pp. 65-71.
Holland Society of New York (HSNY) : “New York Historical Manuscripts: Dutch”, vol. I, Register of the Provincial Secretary, 1638-1642, Genealogical Publishing Co., Baltimore, MD, 1974.
HSNY : “New York Historical Manuscripts: Dutch, Old First Dutch Reformed Church of Brooklyn, First Book of Records, 1660-1752”, Genealogical Publishing Co., Baltimore, MD, 1983.
HSNY : “New York Historical Manuscripts: Dutch, Volumes GG, HH, & II, Land Papers”, Genealogical Publishing Co., Baltimore, MD, 1980.
Hoppin, Charles Arthur: “The Washington Ancestry, and Records of the McClain, Johnson, and Forty Other Colonial American Families”, self-published, Greenfield, OH, 1932.
New York Genealogical and Biographical Record (NYGBR) : "Records of the Reformed Dutch Church in New York", Vol. V, No. 2, April 1874, p. 98.
Ibid. : Vol. V, No. 3, July 1874, p. 155.
NYGBR: "Kings County, N.Y. Wills", Vol. XLVII, No. 2, April 1916, p. 165.
NYGBR: "Genealogical Gleanings from Book No. 2 of Conveyances, Brooklyn, Kings Co., N.Y.", Vol. LIV, No. 3, July 1923, p. 250.
Peterson, William L.: “Ancestors and Descendants of Garrett Peterson and Nancy Smock”, Gateway Press, Inc., Baltimore, MD, 1987.

Jan Sijmonsz van Aersdalen was born about 1676 in New Amersfoort, on the island Nassauw, in the province of New Yorke, the second son of the immigrant Sijmon Jansz van Arsdalen and the native Pieterje Klaasz (van Schouw). Noew Amersfoort would later by known as Flatlands and is now part of Brooklyn, Kings County, New York. His date of birth, as with that of his brother, is approximated from a letter written in 1698 by Sijmon Jansz van Arsdalen to his brother Joost Jansz van Aerdsdalen living in Amsterdam, Holland ("Jaarboek Van Het Centraal Bureau Voor Genealogie," Deel 50, Den Haag, Centraal Bureau Voor Genealogie, 1996, door E. Th. R. Unger, p. 183).
In a small untitled account book of the church masters of the Flatlands Dutch Reformed Church, the following entry was written in the Dutch language (translated): "August 23, 1686, Subscription List made by Coert Stevens and Jacob Strycker for the Money for a Bell...Pd. f. 24. Symen Jansen's Sons Cornelis & Jan f. 18 [florins]" ("The Washington Ancestry and Records of The McClain, Johnson, and Forty Other Colonial American Families," Prepared for Edward Lee McClain by Charles Arthur Hoppin, Volume 3, Greenfield, Ohio: Privately Printed, 1932, p. 171). {CRV note: This was also printed in the New York Genealogical & Biographical Record, v. 120, #3, pp. 148-149, but erroneously ascribed this family as ROMEYN.}
In about 1695, Jan Sijmonsen Van Aersdalen married Lammetje Probasco, daughter of Christoffel Probasco and Ida Stryker, in New Lotts, in Kings County, in the province of New Yorke (genealogical collection of Edward Vanarsdale).
In about 1698, a Census of Kings County was taken listing all the freeholders, their wives, children, apprentices and slaves. In the Town of Gravesend, "John Simmons" was listed along with his wife and two children. ("Lists of Inhabitants of Colonial New York Excerpted from The Documentary History of the State of New York," by Edmund Bailey O'Callaghan, Baltimore Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 1979, p. 179). These facts were substantiated by the 1698 Sijmon to Joost letter.
In 1698, he signed his name as "Jan Symonsen" in Gravesend. On May 7, 1700 he bought of his father Symon Janse a farm in Gravesend, which Cornelis Simonse sold to his brother Jan Simonse on May 10, 1700 (per Gravesend Town Records according to the book, "Register In Alphabetical Order of the Early Settlers of Kings County, Long Island, N. Y., From Its First Settlement by Europeans to 1700; With Contributions To Their Biographies And Genealogies, Compiled From Various Sources," by Teunis G. Bergen, New York, S. W. Green's Son, Printer, Electrotyper And Binder, 1881, p. 262, 308).
On September 2, 1700 Jan Simonse sold to Barent Joosten and Albert Coerten (Voorhees) 6 acres on the South side of the 12 morgans of salt- meadows he was allotted in 1700 (Liber 2 of Conveyances, p. 261).
On December 25, 1714, John Simonsen (Van Arsdale) was listed as an elder of the Protestant Reformed Dutch Church of Gravesend along with John Lake. From 1690 to 1700, the Rev. Wilhelmus Lupardus preached occasionally at the old "sessions house" in Gravesend, and with his death in 1701 the Rev. Berardus Freeman of Schenectady and the Rev. Vincentius Antonides of Holland both contended to represent the congregation there. An agreement was reached on January 4, 1715 for joint pastorship of the church, and on January 15, 1715 both John Lake and John Van Arsdale signed the agree ment which officially organized the church at Gravesend ("History of the Reformed Protestant Dutch Church of Gravesend, Kings County, N. Y.," by William H. Stillwell, Gravesend: Printed for the Consistory, 1892, pp. 8- 14). In the year 1715, "John Simasin" was listed as a soldier belonging to the "Regiment of Militia in Kings County" in the "Troop" (O'Callaghan, p. 181).
Sometime after this Jan Sijmonsen Van Aersdalen relocated from Gravesend to Jamaica, and his name began to be listed in the records of "the Dutch Reformed Congregation at Jamaica, in Queens Co. on the Island of Nassau in the Colony of New York" (Holland Society of New York, New York County, New York, New York). Records of the Baptismal register include the following, in which Jan is present at the baptism of his grandchildren: 1731 Dec. 26 Jan was baptized, son of Jan and Lena Van Aersdalen, as witnessed by Jan and Lammetie Van Aersdalen. 1733 May 13 Lammetie was baptised, daughter of Jan and Lena Van Arsdale, as witnessed by Jan and Lammetie Van Arsdale. 1734 Dec. 15 Lammetie was baptized, daughter of Cristoffel and Madelena Van Aarsdalen, as witnessed by Jan and Lammetie Van Arsdalen. 1735 March 30 Lammetie was baptized, daughter of Gerret and Marytie Snedeker, as witnessed by Jan and Lammetie Van Aarsdale. 1737 Oct. 27 Jan was baptized, son of Gerret and Marytie Snedeker, as witnessed by Jan and Lammetie Van Aarsdalen. On September 22, 1731 Cornelijs Sijmenijse van Aersdal of Nieuw- Amersfoort in the isle of Nassau and jan Sijmense van Aersdal, acting "as the executors of the last will of (their) father and as the administrators of (his) estate", wrote a letter to their cousin Harmanus van Hombergen candlemaker at Gouda, Holland concerning a legacy in the will of their cousin Geertruij van Aersdal, deceased, for her uncle Simon Janse Aersdal. The letter named four surviving children: Cornelis Simonsz van Aersdal, Jan Simonsz van Aersdal, and Jannetje and Mettie van Aersdal. Their other sister Geertie Symens Wyckof was deceased at the writing of this letter ("Jaarboek" pp. 182,184).
About March 22, 1733 Cornelis Simonsen van Aersdal, Jan Sijmonsen van Aersdalen and Mettie Sijmonsen van Aersdalen wrote another letter to their cousin Harmanus van Homberg concerning the legacy of their father. This letter stated that Jannetje Simons van Aarsdal, who married "to a certain Bogaert", had died about Christmas, 1732 after having been paralyzed (by a stroke) for several years. It also stated that their sister Geertje had died the same way about two years earlier in 1731. The letter included a proxy signed by C'nelis Sijmoen van ardal, Jan Sijmonsen van aersdale and pilip volkers, husband of Mettie Sijmonsen van aersdale which empowered van Hombergen to demand of the Gouda Orphan's Court the legacy plus interest bequeathed to them by the late Geertruij van Aersdal who died in Gouda June 1727. The proxy also contained the signatures of both ministers of Kings County in 1733, V Antonides and Barnardus Freeman, and the signatures of two judges of peace there that year, S. Gerritsen and Coert Voorhees who all gave testimony of the authenticity of the letter ("Jaarboek", pp. 185-188).
In 1736, Jan Van Aersdalen of Jamaica, in Queens County, wrote his will which named his 7 wife Lamitie and his eleven children as: Simon, and for my body I Recommend it to the Earth to be Nicholas, Uriah, Christophel, Cornelius, Ida, Peternella, Maria, Heletie, John and Sarah. The wording of his will indicates that Lammetje Probasco was his only wife from about 1695- 1736. However, the unusual way in which he named his children indicates that he may not have listed them in their birth order with males first followed by females. The will was proved on March 8, 1756, and it was confirmed on April 29, 1756 (Surrogate's Office of the County of New York, New York, New York, Liber 20, p. 1).
(CRV's note: The following is a transcription of Jan's will as provided to The Van Newsletter, vol. VIII, No. 1, February 1990 by Marion S. Craig, M.D., of Little Rock, AR.)

In the name of God Amen. I JOHN VANARSEDALE of Jamaica in Queens County in the Province of New York, being by the abundant goodness and mercy of God in perfect health of Body and of sound disposing mind and memory for which I return to the Almighty hearty praises knowing that all men are mortal and that the hour of death is uncertain and willing (that no trouble may ensue) to settle my estate Do make this my last will and testament manner following principally I recommend and bequeath my soul unto God my Creator trusting in His mercy through Christ my Redeemer for Salvation and my Body I desire may be decently interred at the discretion of my Executors hereafter named and as touching my Worldly Estate I do give and dispose thereof as following: First, I do order and will that all my just and lawfull debts with my funeral charges be duly paid out of my moveable estate by my Executors in some convenient time after my decease. Item – I do order and will that my beloved wife Lamitie shall live on and have the benefit and profit of all and singular my dwelling House, Lands, Meadows and tenements whatsoever which I now possess and enjoy during the time she continues my widow if she see cause to keep the same but if she had rather I do will and order that she shall have and duly paid her the sum of fifteen pounds per year during her natural life by my Executors out of my Estate to be to her own use and to the use and benefit of her Exrs and assigns forever the first of which payments shall be within six months after my decease and if my said wife shall quit her claim to my said Dwelling Houses Lands Meadows and Tenements abovesaid and accept of the said sum of fifteen pounds per year as aforesaid then it is my Will and I do order that all my Estate both real and personal shall be divided and distributed amongst my children as follows. To my son Simon the sum of ten pounds to my son Nicholas one hundred and fifty pounds. To my son Uriah the sum of One hundred and fifty pounds first to be taken out of my said Estate and paid to them and the rest remainder and residue thereof to be equally divided amongst all my children (so that they shall each have an equal share) viz Simon, Nicholas, Uriah, Christophel, John and Cornelius and my Daughters Idah, Peternellah, Mariah, Heletie, and Sarah and shall be to them and each of them and their and eachof their respective Exrs and assigns forever.
Item - in order that my said estate shall be divided and distributed as above said I do will and order that the same shall be sold by Executors whenever it shall fall into their hands unless they with any other Children shall mutually agree otherwise to divide the same.
Item - I do except out of what is above given my wearing apparel and do give and bequeath the same unto my sons above named to be equally divided amongst them.
Item - I do nominate, authorize and appoint all my above named to be the Executors of this my last Will and Testament and I do own and acknowledge this and no other to be my last.
In witness whereof I have hereunto set my seal this ___ day of ____ in the tenth year of his Majesty’s Reign and in the year of our Lord Christ one thousand seven hundred and thirty six.
Jan van aersdalen L.S.
{CRV notes: The will was witnessed by George (Guy?) Youngs, Benjamin Coe, and Benjamin Hinchman. Hinchman alone appeared at the proving, as Coe was, by that time, deceased and Young(s) had moved to Albany. An abstract of the will appeared some time ago in the New York Historical Society Collections, vol. 29, p. 104 which inadvertently omitted the name of son John.}

(CRV notes that there has been considerable confusion as to the background of Lammetie Probasco, daughter of Stoffel Probasco and wife of Jan Simonsz van Aersdalen. To remedy this, Bryce (Henderson Stevens) has written the following article on immigrant Jurrian/Juriaen Probasco, Lammetie's grandfather.)
Juriaen Probasco and his wife Heyltie Aertss, had three children baptized in Brazil. Margariet, baptized 24 March 1647, was sponsored by Abraham van Stricht and Susannah Sweerts. Christoffel, baptized 13 June 1649, was sponsored by Jan Reynierss and Rijckie Janss. Anneken, baptized 17 May 1651, was sponsored by Jan Reynertsen Spits, Dirck Pieterssen Bijl, Geertien Adriaenssen and Margarita Paccen. An earlier date, 6 June 1649, is found for Christoffel in the records of Reverend Bijl, which may refer to his birth date. These baptismal records are the earliest references so far located which mention Juriaen [NJHS 12]
The next record of Juriaen was located among the notarial records of the Dutch West Indies Company, in an entry by notary Hendrick Schaef, dated 17 June 1654, and reported in the New York Genealogical & Biographical Record by Harry Macy, Jr. It reads, “Jurrien Probatski, from Breslau, going to New Netherland as an adelborst on the ship “Peartree” in the service of the West India Company, owes 130 carolus guilders to Henrick Otten, distiller, for his outfit, and will pay it back from his wages.” [NYG&BR 125:4] This entry clarifies two persistent myths about Juriaen’s life; first, that he was a Sephardic Jew from Spain, and second, that he was on the same ship as Reverend Polhemus, which was waylaid by a panish privateer subsequently captured by a French man-of-war.
Breslau, Silesia, is now known as Wroclaw, Poland. While it is possible that the Probasco forebears had migrated from Spain, absolutely no evidence has ever been produced to support those origins. There may have been a Spanish family whose surname bore some similarity to Probasco, but this spelling of Juriaen’s surname appears to have been a simplification adopted in New Netherlands records of Probatski or Probatssey, spellings used in Brazil. The suggestion thaProbasco is a reference to origins in the Basque lands (pro - for; basco - Basque) should be dismissed out-of-hand as idle speculation by a few researchers who wish to preserve the myth of a Spanish origin.
The Dutch yielded their Brazilian territories to the Portuguese 25 January 1654. Settlers were given three months to either evacuate or embrace the Roman Catholic faith and remain as citizens of Portugal. Sixteen ships were provided by the Dutch West Indies Company to transport settlers from Brazil back to Holland. Fifteen ships, including the one Mrs Polhemus and her children were on, made it back to Holland. One, carrying Reverend Polhemus and 23 Portuguese Jews, was captured by a Spanish privateer about March or April of 1654. This ship was then captured by the French man-of-war “St Charles”. The Dutch citizens andJews on board were offered transportation to New Netherlands, which they agreed to, arriving in New Amsterdam in September of 1654 [GMNJ 4]. Shortly thereafter, the Jews estab lished the first Hebrew synagogue in New Amsterdam [Peck]. Meanwhile, in June of 1654, Juriaen was on board the “Peartree,” en route from Holland to New Amsterdam. The chronology of events makes it impossible that he was with Reverend Polhemus.
Juriaen was almost certainly not a Jew. Had he been, there would have been no reason for him to have had his children baptized when they were born in Brazil. He would probably have accompanied those Jews which traveled with Reverend Polhemus, and he would probably have become a member of the synagogue in New Amsterdam. Instead we find him and his son, Henrick Otten, distiller, for his outfit, and will pay Christoffel, as catechumens of the Dutch Reformed Church in Brooklyn, 26 November 1662 [NJHS 12].
The last mention of Juriaen Probasco in New Netherlands was 26 March 1664, when he keeping a cow, half its income being earmarked for relief of the poor. 23 July 1664 the cow is referred to again, but now in Heyltie’s care. Juriaen may have died sometime between these two dates. The last mention of Heyltie Aerts was 10 October 1666, when she witnessed the baptism of Ryck and Jacob, sons of Hyndrick Rycke and Sitie Jacobs in Brooklyn.
GMNJ: Genealogical Magazine of New Jersey, volume 4, pages 107ff: translation of “Voyage de la France Equinoxale,” by A. Biet
NJHS: Proceedings of the New Jersey Historical Society, volume 12, New Series (1927), “American Origin of the Probasco Family,” by W. B. Van Alstyne.
NYG&BR: New York Genealogical and Biographical Record, vol. 125 no. 4 (Oct. 1994), “Juriaen Probasco’s Place of Origin,” by H. Macy, Jr.
Peck: I. H. Peck, “The Rev. Johannes Theodorus Polhemius and Some of His Descendants,” published in the NYG&BR from April 1959 to October 1974, and again in volume I of “Genealogies of Long Island Families,” pages 608 - 724.

With this issue of The Vanguard, we begin our biographies of the children of Jan Simonsz van Aersdalen, youngest son of Sijmon Jansz van Aersdalen. For whatever reasons, the genealogies of these children appear to be less documented than those for the children of Jan's brother, Cornelis. As a result, we have made every effort to contact descendants of these children to help supplement our knowledge of Jan's children. The basic research for these biographies has been conducted by Mark Alan Thomas, Van Arsdale Family Historian, and CRV with assistance as noted.
Simon Van Aersdalen was said to be born on 16 August 1697 ("History of Bucks Co., Pennsylvania," Wm. W. H. Davis, originally printed 1905, reprinted 1975 by Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., Baltimore, MD: pp. 279-280). Unfortunately, Davis had erroneously identified Simon as the son of Cornelis Simonsz van Aersdalen and Marytie Dirkse Ammerman, which he picked up from the earlier work of Teunis Bergen (“Register in Alphabetical Order of the Early Settlers of Kings County, Long Island, New York", New York, 1881 [reprinted 1973 by Polyanthos, Inc.], p. 309). In this book, Bergen stated, "VAN ARSDALEN, Symon (son of Cornelis), b. Aug. 16, 1697; m. Oct. 30, 1716, Yannetje Romeyn. Left Flatlands and settled in Bucks Co., PA., where he was an elder in the R. D. ch.” Bergen did not give his source for this information, and we are left with the impression he was quoting an earlier writer himself, or perhaps found all these dates in a family Bible. Although generally correct, Bergen left out a big part of this story, partially bridged by Davis.
Simon was probably born at Gravesend on Long Island. He was a son of Jan Simonsz van Aersdalen and Lammetje Probasco. From the time of his marriage about 1695, Jan likely was in continuous residence at Gravesend until at least 1722, on his father's property which he purchased from brother Cornelis Simonsz in 1700. After 722, Jan relocated to Jamaica with part of his family. It is also probable that Jan left Long Island prior to 1717, perhaps with his older sons, and purchased land along the Raritan river valley near Six-Mile Run in Somerset County, province of East Jersey.
Simon resided at Six-Mile Run, N. J. until about 1730, judging from the baptismal data of his children. Simon continued to own property in New Jersey, and may have returned there in about 1739 for the birth of his last child. The work of Davis adds significantly to Bergen. It has been written that on 30 October 1716 Simon married Jannetje Romeyn. Jannetje was a daughter of Stoffel Romeyn and Grietje Wyckoff, and she probably married Simon at Gravesend. It appears that Simon and brothers Christoffel andCornelius all relocated to the Raritan property about 1717. In January 1718, Simon and Jannetje's first born son Jan was baptized in New\Brunswick, witnessed by “Jans Van Aarsdale and Sammetie Van Aarsdale” (PNJHS, vol. 11 (1926), p. 206). Their youngest son Peterius was also baptized there on March 25, 1739 (ibid., p. 406).
According to Davis, Simon relocated to Southampton, in Bucks County, in the province of Pennsylvania about 1730. Simon was not on the list of members or heads of families at Six-Mile Run made by Rev. Theodorus Jacobus Frelinghuysen, suggesting that this list was made after 1730 if Davis is correct. However, in 1735, "Lymon Van Aars Dalen," owning 200 acres, 19 cattle, and 13 sheep, was taxed for 2 pounds, 11 shillings, and 3 pence, for real and personal property located in Franklin Township, in Somerset County, in the province of East Jersey (Snell's "History of Hunterdon and Somerset Counties, New Jersey," 1881, pp. 815, 820). Reformed Dutch Church records, tax records, and probate records of Bucks Co., PA, all confirm that Simon’s entire family went there with him.
According to Davis, Simon died in the winter of 1770. His will is dated September 29th, 1766 and was proved December 5, 1770, in Bucks County, Pennsylvania ("Index of Bucks County, Pennsylvania Wills and Administration Records 1684 to 1850," by Richard T. and Mildred C. Williams, Dansboro, PA, 1971, p. 168). Davis records that Simon was buried at "the Buck" in the Old Feasterville Graveyard, located in Lower Southampton, Bucks Co., PA. A transcription of Simon’s will is as follows:
"I Simon Vanasdalen Senr of Southampton in the County of Bucks and Province of Pensylvania Yeoman Being weak in Body But of perfect and Sound Mind and Memory thanks be to God for the Same think it proper and Convenient to Settle my Temporal Estate where with it has pleased God to faviour me with in this Life in manner and form following this twenty Ninth Day of September in the Year of Our Lord One thousand Seven hundred and Sixty Six Imprimis it is my Will and Desire that my Body be Intered in a Christian Decent and plain manner by my Executors hereafter to be mentioned and that all my Just Debts and funeral Charges be as soon as pofsable paid and Discharged
Item I Will and Bequeath to my Son Nicholas Vanasdalen all that my Plantation and tract of land wherein I now Dwell in Southampton aforesaid and with all the houses Out houses Barns Stables Waggons Carts Slays plows harrows And all the Gears and Implements thereunto Belonging and all the Other Implements and Utensils belonging to farming Horses and Mares on [illegible] and of the above to him and his heirs and Afsigns for Ever Except
Item I Will and Bequeath to my Son Jacobus Vanasdalen three horses two Cows and a plow with its Shear Collar and horse gears belonging to the same to him and to his heirs and Afsigns for Ever
Item I Will and Bequeath to my Son John Vanasdalen the sum of Ten Shillings as a token of Remembrance And also Fifty pounds as a Legacy to be paid Out of my Estate and also Black Jude to him and to his heirs and Afsigns for Ever
Item I Will and Bequeath to my Daughter Lamechy Wickof the Sum of twenty five pounds and to her and to her heirs for Ever provided always that neither the Executors of her Late Husband Deceased nor She nor Any of her heirs nor any Other person for them or in their behalf ask or Demand any money on a Certain Note given by me to said Executors ... And if any of them Do Ever Demand the Same then it is my Will and Order that the Said money be all Deducted and taken out of this Legacy of twenty five pounds
But if my Said Daughter Lamechy Should happen to Dye before the time of payment of the Legacy then it is my Will and Order that the Said Legacy Decend to the heirs of her Body to them or their heirs or Afsigns for Ever.
Item I Will and Bequeath to my Daughter Margaret Krewson the Sum of Twenty five pounds to her and to her heirs and Afsigns for Ever but if my said Daughter Margaret Should happen to Dye before the time of payment of this Legacy that then the Said Legacy Shall Decend to the heirs of her Body to them and to their heirs and Afsigns for Ever And I also Will and Bequeath to my Said Daughter Margaret Black Eve my wench to her and to the heirs of her Body and their Afsigns for Ever
Item I Will and Bequeath to the Children of my Son Stophel Vanasdalen Deceased the Sum of Fifty pounds to them and to their heirs and afsigns for Ever that is to Say Every Boy an Equal Share and two Girls Equal to One Boys Shareof the Same.
Item I Will and Bequeath to my Son Jacobus Vanasdalen the Sum of Fifty pounds to him and to hisheirs and Afsigns for Ever
Item it is my will [illegible] that my Son Nicholas Vanasdalen at the End of three Years after my Decease and my wife Jane’s Decease shall begin and make the first payment of the above Legacys and Continue paying Yearly and every Year the Sum of Twenty five pounds to the Legatees until all the Above Legacys be paid of and Discharged
Item I Will and Bequeath to my Son Jacobus Vanasdalen Black Luff my Negro Boy to him and to his afsigns for Ever And to my son Nicholas Vanasdalen Black Harry my Negro Boy and my house Clock to him and to his heirs and Afsigns for ever
Item it is my Will and Order that my Larg Silver Tankard be kept in the name of Vanasdalen and that By One of my Now Liveing four Sons He paying to the Other three and to Each of them an Equivalent Equal in Value to their part or Share of the Same
Item I Will and Bequeath to my Son Jacobus Vanasdalen all that my Weaving Loom and all the Reeds Gears and Other Implements belonging to the weaving trade and my Own Gun (the Other Gun now in my Pofsefsion belongs to my Son John Vanasdalen) to him and to his heirs and afsigns for Ever
Item it is my Will and Order that not One of the Legatees Shall ask or Demand any of their Legacies for three Years after my Decease Nor for three Years after the Decease of my Wife Jane Vanasdalen and that the Legacy money Bear no Interest nor Impost at any time But to be paid at twenty five pounds Yearly till all paid
Item I Will and Bequeath to my Son Simon Vanasdalen Junr my Negro wench Called Poll or Mary to him and to his heirs and Afsigns for Ever
Item it is my Will and Order that after my Decease and the Decease of my Wife that all the Household Goods furnature and movables within Doors and the remainder of my Negroes (Except what has already been Willed away) that belongs to me be Equally Divided among my Children Viz John Vanasdalen, Lamechy Wickof, and the Surviving Children of Stophel Vanasdalen, Margaret Krewson, Simon Vanasdalen Junr Jacobus Vanasdalen and Nicholas Vanasdalen and if it Should happen that any of my Children Should Die before the Division of my household goods be made then it is my Will and Order that the Surviving Children of each Deceased Child Shall Come in for and have their parents Share in the Division of the Same And [ink smeared] and appoint my Sons John Vanasdalen and [ink smeared] this my Last Will and Testament hereby revoking all former Will or Wills, testament or testament whatsoever made by me heretofore And Only Acknowledging this to be my last true Will and testament and no Other
Given under my hand and Seal the Day and Year
Signed Sealed pronounced and Declared by the testator before the [ ]nd or Subscribing Evidence to be his last and true Will and Testament
Syme Van aersdalen
Jacob vansant
Daniel Hogeland
Joseph Davenport"

The children of Simon Van Aersdalen and Jannetje Romeyn included (with dates supplied by Davis):
Jan "John" Van Artsdalen born late in 1717 in Somerset County, province of East Jersey. Jan was baptized in January 1718 at the First (Dutch) Reformed Church of New Brunswick, the son of Symon and Jannitie Van Aarsdale, witnessed by Jan and Lammetje Van Aarsdale. He was named after his paternal grandfather Jan Simonsz van Aersdalen, who witnessed his baptism.
Lammetje Van Artsdalen born 11 August 1720 at Six Mile Run (Franklin Township), Somerset County, province of East Jersey. She was named after her paternal grandmother Lammetje
Christoffel "Stoffel" Van Artsdalen born 15 April 1722/23 on the Raritan, in the province of East Jersey. He was named after his maternal grandfather Stoffel Romeyn. Christoffel was baptized on 26 May 1723 at New Brunswick DRC, the son of Simon and Jannetje Van Aersdaelen, witnessed by Charles Fontein and wife Lena.
Simon Van Artsdalen born 18 April 1726 Six-Mile Run (Franklin Township), Somerset County, province of East Jersey. He was named after his great-grandfather or his father.
Maragritta "Margaret" Van Artsdalen born 12 January 1729 Six-Mile Run (Franklin Township), Somerset County, East Jersey. She was named after her maternal grandmother Grietje Wyckoff.
Jacobus "James" Van Artsdalen was born 25 January 1732, probably at Southampton, Bucks County, PA.
Nicholas Van Artsdalen born 14 July 1736, probably at Southampton, Bucks County, PA.
Peter Van Artsdalen born 02 March 1739, probably in Six-Mile Run (Franklin Township), Somerset County, East Jersey. He was probably named after a member of his mother's family, the Romeyns. Peterius was baptized on 25 March 1739 at New Brunswick DRC, the son of Simon and Jannetje Van Arsdalen, no witnesses. Peter apparently died young, as he is not mentioned in his father’s will.