Monday, May 2, 2016

The Prall Family Updates: Jan Arentsen van Heerde [Gen 1]

Once again life interrupts the blog! After a four day layoff, I'm back.

My Prall updates are going to be a bit out of sequence. I need to make some changes to Arent Jansen Prall [Gen-2] and Isaac Rittenhouse Prall [Gen-7], so they will follow the rest of the family.

First Generation
1.  Jan Arentsen van Heerde [Prall]13 immigrated in May 1650 to Staten Island, Richmond Co., New York.4 Member of Yoncker Hendrick van der Capellen toe Ryssel's settlement on Staten Island. He was born in probably Heerde, Gelderland, The Netherlands.1 Was Jan Arentsen van Heerde, a 1650 settler of Staten Island, the immigrant ancestor and father of Arent Jansen Prall?
Prior to the Prall Family Reunion in July 2000, the author met with Larry Van der Laan, founder of the Holland America Historical Society, at the Ulster County Genealogical Society in Hurley, New York. Mr. Van der Laan had been researching the families that had settled on Staten Island in 1650 and survived the "Staten Island Massacre" in 1655. He came to the conclusion that one of the survivors, Jan Arentsen van Heerde was the progenitor of the Prall family.

The information and sources provided were very convincing. The following is a synopsis of the information provided at that meeting [which included e-mail exchanges between Mr. Van der Laan and Prall descendant, Joseph Mullane], subsequent e-mails from October 2000 - July 2002 and various historical records.

Cornelis Melyn had been granted a patent to settle Staten Island in July 1640. Melyn was critical of Director Kieft and his handling of the Indian War in 1643 and was banned from New Netherland. Both Kieft and Melyn sailed for The Netherlands aboard the "Princess" in 1648 when Peter Stuyvesant took control of the Dutch colony. The ship wrecked and Kieft drowned. Melyn survived to return to America.

Melyn made a deal with the mayor of Zutphen, Hendrick van der Capellen toe Ryssel, to finance another attempt to settle Staten Island. People were hired to meet the quota of 50 souls in order for Melyn and the mayor to qualify as patroons. "Bouw meesters" [or "bowery masters" who were the heads of farmsteads] were hired to manage the farms and responsible to the patroon in Zutphen. The bowery masters were generally hired for a term of six years; then were paid and renewed their contracts, returned home, or went independent.

Among the families brought to Staten Island in 1650 was that of Jan Arentsen van Heerde. Jan was possibly one of Melyn's bouw meesters. The settlers established their farmsteads and worked the land on Staten Island until Indian trouble erupted in 1655.

The "Peach War" was the result of Hendryck van Dyck, former attorney general of New Amsterdam and Oude Dorp [Old Town] resident, arising one morning to discover an Indian woman stealing peaches from his orchard. Van Dyck promptly shot and killed the woman. Several neighboring tribes united to avenge Van Dyck's action. The Indians entered New Amsterdam on 15 September 1655 under the pretense of searching for "hostile Indians from the North."
  A meeting between Indian leaders and local officials erupted into further violence and the natives driven from the city. The Indians then attacked Staten Island and burned Oude Dorp, killing 22 settlers and taking captive those who were unable to escape. Among the dead was Hendryck van Dyck.
The surviving families fled to Fort Orange [Albany] and Manhattan. A list of survivors of the "massacre" was compiled and sent to Zutphen with the wife of Captain Adriaen Post and Jan Arentsen van Heerde, farmer. The report on the massacre and its 67 survivors was made at Zutphen on 14 November 1657. The fifth family listed among the survivors was that of Jan Arentsen van Heerde with his wife and eight children now living at the Manhattans.

After meeting with his former patroon in Zutphen, Jan Arentsen probably took a river boat down the Ijssel River [a branch of the Rhine River] to Kampen, the last stop before the Zuider Zee. He returned to New Amsterdam aboard the 'Brownfish', 19 June 1658 listed as Jan Aerensen van Kampen, farmer.

In 1658 Claes Hendricksz van Schoonhoven, carpenter of Fort Orange, employed several people from Heerde. Among his employees were Jan Aertsz, Gerrit Gysberts and Jan Willems. Gerrit Gysberts, a wheelwright, was a progenitor of the Van Gorden family in Kingston and may have helped train Arent Prall, who also turned up in Kingston, in the business.

There is no further record of Jan Arentsen van Heerde after 1658. It is possible that Jan returned to Staten Island as new families began to settle there.

In his research for the Prall Family Association in 2002, Dr. Peter Nowt uncovered a marriage between Jan Arentsen van Heerde and Baetje Jans at Oldebrook, Gelderland in 1637. The names of the couple are a perfect fit for the parents of Arent Jansen Prall. Arent named a daughter Barentje. Baetje could well be a nickname for Barentje.

If Jan and Baetje are indeed the parents of Arent, the couple had at least nine children. Eight were born prior to the 1655 Staten Island Massacre, the ninth in 1657.

Kenn Stryker-Rodda, a noted genealogist, had theorized several years ago that Arent Jansen Prall, Wolfert Jansen Prall, Magdalena Jans and Marritje Jans [van Heerden] Prael were siblings. To this list are added the following: Hendrickje Jans [bp. 1657], Barentje/Baetje Jans [van Haerdt],
  Jacob J. Prall, Elizabeth Jans, and Jan Jansen. All but Jan and Elizabeth can be accounted for in New York records.

Jan Arentsen van Heerde [Prall] and Barentje Jans were married on 12 Oct 1637 in Oldebrook, Gelderland, The Netherlands.1,5 Barentje Jans was also known as Barentje [Prall].1,5
Jan Arentsen van Heerde [Prall] and Barentje Jans had the following children:
                              i.   Wolfert Jansen Prall610 died before 30 Oct 1702 in Staten Island, Richmond Co., New York.11 He had his estate probated on 30 Oct 1702 in Staten Island, Richmond Co., New York.12 Nephew Peter Prall was appointed administrator of estate of Wolfert Prall, who died intestate. He had his estate probated on 3 Apr 1703 in Staten Island, Richmond Co., New York.13 Inventory included an estate of £ 25.7.3. Wolfert was born in The Netherlands. Both John E. Stillwell and Kenn Stryker-Rodda came to the conclusion that Arent Jansen Prall and Wolfert Jansen Prall were brothers. This was based on the fact that both men appeared in the Kingston/Esopus records at about the same time and both relocated to Staten Island during the mid-1670s. Records for Wolfert are not plentiful. The strongest pieces of evidence for his sibling relationship to Arent is that both men took the uncommon surname of Prall and that Arent's eldest son Peter was called his nephew in 1702. Terms like "cousin" and "nephew" had a much less formal connotation in colonial times, but may well apply here.
In 1663 Wolfert Jansen [Prall] was a settler at Esopus.

On 21 July 1674 at Wygerdt Jansen was a witness to the baptism of Maria, daughter of Arent Jansen Prall and his wife Maria at Kingston.

Wolfert Prall was granted patent by Governor Andros at Karles Neck on Staten Island on 29 September 1677.

On 14 July 1678 at New Utrecht, New York, Wofferd Janz was a witness at the baptism of Matthys Swaim, son of Barent Swaim and Magdalena Jans. [It is believed that Magdalena was Wolfert's sister.]

8 August 1682: Woulford Prall vs. John Kingdom [Kingdom owed Prall owed 48 guilders].
On 26 June 1688 Wolfert mortgaged property on Fresh Kill to Pawles Richards.
In 1694 Woolford Praull was deeded land on Karle's Neck by John Dupuy.

In 1695 Wolford Praule was a freeholder on Staten Island.

30 October 1702: Peter Prall, nephew and heir-at-law of Wolfert Prall, deceased, was appointed administrator of Wolfert Prall's estate.
              2             ii.   Magdalena Jans, born probably The Netherlands; married Barent Thyss, abt 1664, Staten Island, Richmond Co., New York.
                            iii.   Jan Jansen [Prall]1 was born in probably The Netherlands.1 There is no official record of the names of the children of Jan Arentsen and Barentje Jans. It is almost certain, based on the traditional Dutch naming system used at the time, that the couple would have named a son for the father. Based on that supposition, a son named Jan [or Johannes] should be included here.
              3            iv.   Marritje Jans Prall, born probably Heerde, Gelderland, The Netherlands; married Laurens Hendrickzsen, 27 May 1677, Reformed Dutch Church, New York, New York.
              4             v.   Barentje Jans [Prall], born probably Heerde, Gelderland, The Netherlands; married Pieter Meyer, 30 Dec 1677, New York Dutch Church, New York City, New York.
                            vi.   Jacob Jansen Prall14 was born in possibly New Netherland. Jacob Prall's only appearance to date is in the account books from Asser Levy's estate. Levy was a Jewish merchant in New York City. He had settled in New Amsterdam in 1654 and became the town's first recorded Jewish property owner in 1662. Jacob J. Prall's name was recorded in Book 14, p. 10 owing £49.10 [covering the years 1680-1681.] Arent Prall also had business with Levy. He was listed in Book 13, p. 17 [£40.10; 1677-1679], and Book 11, p.3 [£283.17; 1675]. Interestingly, there is also an entry for a Jan Aertsen in Book 13 [1677-1679].
                           vii.   Lysbet \ Elizabeth Jans [Prall]1 was born in probably The Netherlands. Elizabeth was thought to be the mother of Antje Staats, wife of Arent Prall, Jr. However, the date of marriage to Peter Staats and birth dates of the Staats children - all taking place from the 1680s on - makes it impossible. Elizabeth would have been born during the 1640s or early 1650s. Peter Staats would have been ten to twenty years her junior.
              5          viii.   Arent Jansen Prall, born abt 1646, probably in Naarden, Holland, The Netherlands.; married Marie \ Maria Billiou, 3 Jun 1670, Dutch Church, Kingston, Ulster Co., New York; married Tryntje Barents Blom, bet 1690 and 1693, probably Staten Island, Richmond Co., New York; married Madlenor [Prall], bef 1721, probably Staten Island, Richmond Co., New York; died abt Oct 1725, Staten Island, Richmond Co., New York.
              6            ix.   Hendrickje Jans [Prall], married Pieter Barentsz Cool, 3 Nov 1680, Dutch Church, New York City, New York; died bet 10 Jul 1687 and Feb 1688, probably Albany, Albany Co., New York.

        1. Larry Vander Laan, Jan Arentsen Prall Report, Recipient: Terry Prall, Author Address: The Netherlands / New Jersey, Recipient Address: Arcadia, FL (2000-2002).
        2. Dr. Peter Nouwt, The Prall Newsletter: Report From Holland, Recipient: Richard D. Prall, Author Address: The Netherlands, Recipient Address: Albuquerque, NM (Summer 2002).
        3. Harriet and Kenn Stryker-Rodda, A Staten Island Lineage, Record Type: genealogy, Subject: Staten Island Families, File Number: none (unknown).
        4. Compiler: B. Fernow, Documents Relating to the Colonial History of the State of New York: History and Settlements of the Towns Along the Hudson and Mohawk Rivers from 1630 to 1684 (Weed, Parsons and Company, Albany, NY, 1881), p. 74 -75.
        5. Dr. Peter Nouwt, The Prall Newsletter: Report From Holland, Recipient: Richard D. Prall, Author Address: The Netherlands, Recipient Address: Albuquerque, NM, p. M21-M22.
        6. Richard D. Prall, The Prall Family (Richard D. Prall, Albuquerque, NM, 1990).
        7. John E. Stillwell, M.D., The History of Captain Nicholas Stillwell, son of Lt. Nicholas Stillwell and His Descendants (not recorded, New York City, NY, 1930).
        8. Compiler: Roswell Randall Hoes, Baptismal and Marriage Registers of the Old Dutch Church at Kingston, Ulster County, New York, Subject: Church Records, Translator: Roswell Randall Hoes, Volume: 1 (DeMinne Press, New York, 1891).
        9. Charles W. Leng & William T. Davis, Staten Island and Its People, A History, 1609 - 1929 (New York, New York: Lewis Historical Publishing Co., 1930).
        10. The Prall Family with Ties to the DuBois & Poillon Families of Staten Island, New York and Extracted material from Volume 1 of the Swaim-Tysen Family History, Record Type: Family History, Subject: Joseph F. Mullane [author], File Number: none (September 2000).
        11. John E. Stillwell, M.D., The History of Captain Nicholas Stillwell, son of Lt. Nicholas Stillwell and His Descendants, p. 220.
        12. John E. Stillwell, M.D., The History of Captain Nicholas Stillwell, son of Lt. Nicholas Stillwell and His Descendants, p. 220 [NY Historical Society Wills, Vol. I, p. 228].
        13. Richard D. Prall, The Prall Family, p. 32.
        14. Harriet [Mott] Stryker-Rodda, "Asser Levy," The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record 102 (July 1971 & October 1971):.

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