Monday, March 19, 2012

Letters to the Old Country – Jan Van Arsdalen

B. 1676 in Flatlands, New York
M. 1695 in New Lots, New York
Wife: Lammertje Probasco
D. 1756 in Jamaica, New York

Jan Van Arsdalen was a second generation colonist and a leading member of the Flatlands (Brooklyn) Dutch Church. He was born in 1676 in New Amersfoort, later known as Flatlands, New York. His parents were Simon Jansen Van Arsdalen and Pieterje Claese Van Schouw. Jan sometimes used variations of the surname Symonsen, which meant "son of Simon." 

In 1695, Jan married Lammertje Probasco. Between 1696 and 1720, they had 11 children. Jan was mentioned in a 1698 letter his father wrote as being 22 years old and having two sons. He bought a farm from his brother Cornelius in Gravesend (now part of Brooklyn), New York on May 7, 1700. He was an elder of the church in Gravesend in 1714, and in 1715, he was listed as a soldier of the Regiment of Militia in Kings County."

Sometime after this, Jan moved to Jamaica, in what is now Queens, New York. He and his wife appear on many church records there. On September 22, 1731, Jan and his brother Cornelius wrote to a cousin in Gouda, Holland regarding the will of another cousin. In 1733, along with Cornelius and their brother-in-law Philip Volkers, Jan wrote again to their cousin saying that there were over 200 Van Arsdalens living in America and they were “living on plantations of their own, breeding cattle and growing corn, maize, etc.” 

Jan wrote his will in 1736 and named all of his children in it. He left instructions that if his estate was sold, sons Jurian and Nicholas woud receive 150 pound each, son Simon would get ten pounds, and the other money would be divided equally amongst the remaining children. Jan died in 1756 in Jamaica.

Children:
1. Christoffel Van Arsdalen – B. about 1696, Flatlands, New York; D. about 1772; M. Magdalena Van Henglen (~1698-?), New Brunswick, New Jersey

2.  Simon Jans Van Arsdalen – B. about 1697, Flatbush, New York; D. 1770, Bucks County, Pennsylvania; M. Jannetje Romeyn, 30 Oct 1716

3. Cornelius Van Arsdalen – B. 1698; M. Tryntje Bergen

4. Ida Van Arsdalen

5. Peternella Van Arsdalen – M. Volkert Sebring

6. Jan Van Arsdalen – B. 1705; M. Magdelena Dorland (~1714-?)

7. Maria Van Arsdalen – B. about 1710; M. Garret Snedeker (1708-?)

8. Heletje Van Arsdalen – B. about 1712

9. Nicholas Van Arsdalen – B. about 1716, Jamaica, New York; D. 1784, Jamaica, New York; M. (1) Geertje Lott (1720-?), about 1740; (2) Jane Brinkerhoff, 26 Nov 1761

10. Jurian Van Arsdalen – B. about 1720; M. Altie

11. Sarah Van Arsdalen

Sources:
"Jan Sijmonsz," Mark Allen Thomas, The Vanguard: The Newsletter of the Van Aersdalen Family Association, Vol. 1, No. 2, December 1998
Letter from Cornelis Simonsen van Aersdal, Jan Sijmonsen van Aersdalen and Mettie Sijmonsen van Aersdalen to Harmanus van Homberg of Gouda, Netherlands, 22 Mar 1733

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