Three Rivers
History From America's Most Famous Valleys


Donated by Margaret Johnson

In the name of God, Amen. "God's Will must be done upon Earth as in Heaven, and this is my last Will and Testament." I, EVERT WENDELL, of the city of Albany, Attorney at Law. I leave to my oldest son Johanes all my surveying instruments, as Compass, etc., Also my Law Books, in bar of all claims as heir at law and eldest son, and I do hereby exclude him from all my real and personal estate, "And I quit cut him out of all, nothing excepted I have in this world, and my reasons are to me best known." "However, I give and bequeath to his dear, pretty children, and the heirs of his body, all my real estate in the Town of Schenectady, as house, lands, pastures, gardens, and lots." "I give to my dear, trusty, faithful, beloved, honest son, Abraham Wendell, all my lands and premises in Albany, on both sides of the kill or creek, called the Beaver Creek, or Kill, as by several deeds made over to me, Together with the stream of water, and all buildings, saw mills, grist mills, brew house, etc., and all my carpenter and joiners' tools, log sledge and log chains, and all that belongs to my saw mills," "Also my Large Holland Gun, marked with my name on the lock," Also two lots of ground in the south part of the city, being Lots 10 and 5, as by deeds from the children and heirs of my father, Jeronimus Wendell may appear, Also another lot of ground in the north part of the city, next to the Pasture ground of Jesse De Vrest, "and have been allways used for a Term pitches or Yards," as by the deeds of the heirs of my father may appear. "Dear son Abraham, my will is that you dispose of the said three lots, and the money shall go towards paying my just debts, or you may keep them yourself, and pay the value to my creditors." It is my will that the farm or tract of land at the Normans Kill, which Killian Van Rensselaer and his wife Elizabeth have given to me, I give it to my son Abraham, "and humbly desire the Lord of the manor to confirm his ancestor's gift and give you an ample title," "And you shall let your brother Philip have two acres, he paying the tenth of the produce, according to the custom of the manor of Rensselaerwyck." I leave to my dear youngest son, Philip Wendell, all that my dwelling house and lot of ground in the first Ward of Albany, as made over to me by several deeds, and also my pasture land on both sides of the kill or creek, called the Rutters Kill, adjoining to my lot, as the same was made over to me by my father in law, Jan Lansingh, by his deed. But my son Philip shall not sell the same while my wife is living and his two sisters Elizabeth and Engeltie remain unmarried, But they shall remain and dwell in the said house, except as they may agree in writing. My son Philip shall have pasture for a horse in my pasture and free grinding for his bread corn, And my sons Abraham and Philip shall build a Chocolate mill for the use of my son Philip. I also leave to my son Philip my wearing apparell and a gun. I leave to my three daughters, Ariantie, Elizabeth, and Engeltie, "all my lot of pasture ground in the south part of the city, just behind the city Stockadoes." Which lot I purchased from my brothers Dirck and Daniel Brett, as by their deeds. I leave to my son Philip my large Clock, which I will shall remain in my dwelling house. I leave to my son Abraham all my negroes after my wife's decease. All the rest of my estate I leave to my 5 children, Abraham, Ariantie, Elizabeth, Engeltie, and Philip, and I make my son Abraham and my daughter Engeltie executors.

Dated July 29, 1749. Witnesses, John H. Lydius, Tielman Schellwyne, Peter Lansingh. Proved before Myndert Schuyler, Esq., in Albany, July 20, 1750.


In the name of God, Amen. I, HARMANUS WENDELL, of Albany. I leave to my wife Catharine the lot in Schenectady, released to her and myself by the heirs of Jacob Sander Glen. "Also her own bodily clothing and the household furniture I had at the time I married her. I leave to each of my daughters who may not be married at the time of my decease an outset, to be worth the same in value with those that are married." My executors may sell any part of my real and personal estate for the maintainance of my wife during her widowhood and my children, and to collect all debts, "and settle the Company account I have with my son Harmanus, in which my son has paid in for Stock œ350, a statement of which account will be found in my book." "And also the Indian purchase he has made of lands at Canajoharrie, between the two Canada Creeks, of 9,000 acres, in trust for my sons and brothers-in-Law, Lucas and Philip Van Veghten." And I desire my son to settle the Company account and release their shares. My executors are to put all monies at interest for all my children. The real estate that remains unsold when my youngest child is of age I leave to my sons, Harmanus, Cornelius, Johanes, and Jacob, and they are to pay to each of my daughters 1/8 of 3/4 of the appraised value. I make my brothers-in-law, Lucas and Philip Van Veghten, executors, with my son Cornelius. Dated May 31, 1769.

Witnesses, Abraham Yates, Jr., Matthew Vischer, Christopher P. Yates. Proved, April 27, 1771.

In the name of God, Amen. I, TEUNIS BERGEN, of Jamaica, in Queens County, yeoman, being now sick. My executors are to pay all debts and funeral charges, and to sell all real and personal estate. I leave to my wife Mary œ30 and the interest of the rest during her widowhood. I leave to my son Dirck œ25. All the rest I leave to my children, Dirck and Mary, wife of Johanes Hardenbrook, of Jamaica, and to the children of my daughter Jannettie, late wife of John Hegeman, of the Nine Partners, in Duchess County, and to my daughter Sarah, now wife of John Fox, of the Nine Partners, and my daughter Phebe, now wife of Peter Van Kemp, also of Nine Partners, and my daughter Catharine, now wife of John Lamberts, of Jamaica, cordwainer. I make my wife Mary and my son Dirck, and my son in law, John Lamberts, executors.

Dated October 8, 1755. Witnesses, John Bergen, Jr., Tunis Bergen, Jr., Benjamin Hinchman. Proved, February 24, 1756.


Ashuerus Elsworth, chair maker Son, George, chair maker June 17, " John Fox, Ulster Co. Dr. Robert Muirson March 22, " James Foster, mariner, Suffolk Co. Wife, Temperance May 23, " Caleb Wiley, Orange Co. John De Kay, John Carskdan May 29, " Patrick Givens, Orange Co. Wife, Mary May 29, " Ebenezer Cooley, Orange Co. Wife, Mary May 29, " Lucas Voorhees, Queens Co. Wife, Mary July 6, "


In the name of God, Amen. I, JOHANA VAN LAUR, of New York, widow, being aged and infirm, this February 2, 1762. My executors are to pay all debts. I leave to my daughters, Sarah, wife of James Swan, Elizabeth, wife of Richard Robinson, and Mary, wife of John Fox, œ50 each. To my granddaughter, Johana Swan, œ5. All the rest of my estate to be divided into 6 parts. I leave to Daniel, Sarah, James, and Mary Dunscomb, the children of my deceased daughter, Mary Dunscomb, and to John and Edward Dunscomb, children of Edward Dunscomb, deceased (another son of my daughter Mary), 1/6. To my daughter, Eleanor Bane, 1/6. To my daughter Johana, wife of William Ireland, 1/6. To my daughter, Sarah Swan, 1/6. To my daughter, Elizabeth Robinson, 1/6, and to my daughter, Mary Fox, 1/6. I make my son-in-law, James Swan, and my grandson, Daniel Dunscomb, executors.

In the name of God, Amen. I, ELEANOR BAYNE, of New York, spinster, being weak and sick. All just debts to be paid. I leave to my loving sister, Mary Fox, for her kind and tender treatment of me during my sickness, all my rings, buckles, buttons, and all silver and gold plate. I leave to Elizabeth Robinson, Mary Dunscomb, Catharine Haley, and Mary Fox, all my wearing apparell and furniture. Of all the rest of my personal estate I leave 1/5 to Daniel Jones and Mary Dunscomb, 1/5 to James Clark, 1/5 to Sarah Swan, 1/5 to Elizabeth Robinson, and 1/5 to Mary Fox. I make Jacob Tyler and Daniel Dunscomb, executors.

Dated October 28, 1772. Witnesses, Samuel Maghee, Henry W. Vandewater, John Rogers. Proved January 1, 1773.

THOMAS CHAMBERS. In the name of God, Amen, the 5 April, 1694. I, Thomas Chambers, Lord of the Manor of Fox Hall, in the County of Ulster, being sick in body. I leave to my wife's daughter, Jacomintie Gaasbeck, and to her heirs and assigns, a certain tract of land, situate, lying and being in the Manor of Fox Hall, called and known by the name of Brandywynes Hoek, and likewise out of my estate herein bequeathed unto Abraham Gaasbeck Chambers, a corn mill is to be built for the use of her and her heirs, where I have already begun to make a dam. And all the water out of my meadow or Vly is to be drawn there to drive said mill. Also a free path to said mill and land. Also 2 acres of land to the southward of said dam, where it may be most convenient to build a house on. I leave to my wife's daughter, Maria Salisbury, and to her heirs and assigns, all that certain tract of land now in possession of Dirck Hendricks de Gayer, and commonly called and known by the name of Wiggwansinck. I leave to my wife's son Abraham Gaasbeck Chambers all my other estate, to wit, the Manor of Fox Hall, with all the appurtenances (except what is above bequeathed), likewise my mill and house at the Strand, with all that wood or upland as it is mentioned in my General Patent, for the Lordship of Fox Hall. And all the movable goods. My will is that the said estate shall be kept whole and entire, to the next heir of him the said Abraham Gaasbeck Chambers, (He and his heirs always using the surname of Chambers,) and to be entailed from generation to generation. In default of male heirs the estate is to go to his eldest sister Jacyntie Gaasbeck, with this proviso, that she take the name of Chambers, and whoever marries her shall take the name of Chambers. If she should die without issue, then the estate is to go to her sister, Maria Salisbury, on the same conditions. My wife is to remain in full possession of all the estate until her son Abraham Gaasbeck Chambers is of age, and then she is to have the use of one half for life. I will that Dirck Hendricks shall have the use of the tract of land called Wiggwansinck, he paying 65 scheppels of wheat yearly, as long as he or his wife lives. But if he goes off, then the house and barn are to be valued, and the value allowed to him. I will that Cornelius Wouterse shall have maintenance during his life, out of my estate, likewise lodging, and whatever else is needful for a man of his quality. I leave to my wife Laurentia my house and lot in Kingston, for life, and then to her children. I appoint my wife Laurentia executor, and William De Meyer, of Kingston, to be her assistant. In testimony I have set my hand and seal in Fox Hall.

Witnesses, Henry Beekman, Wessell Ten Broeck, W. De Meyer. Sworn to by Colonel Henry Beekman, Captain Wessell Ten Broeck, Justice of the Peace, and Mr. William De Meyer, before Teunis Gorton, Judge of Common Pleas, May 18, 1694. Entered in Records of Ulster County, No. A, fol. 301-5 by me, W. De Meyer, Clerk. Proved before Governor Hunter, May 23, 1713, upon oath of Henry Beekman, the other witnesses being deceased, the original will being in the handwriting of William De Meyer, And Letters of administration are granted to Abraham Gaasbeck Chambers, the widow of Thomas Chambers having died without having proved the will.


In the name of God, Amen. I, WILLIAM HARRISON, of sound mind and in good health. I leave to Anne Stilwell œ100. To my kinsman, Richard Asbridge, œ100, to be paid to him in installments, at the discretion of my friend, Robert Fox. All the rest of my estate I leave to my friend, Robert Fox, for his own use and benefit. I make Jacob Mott and Mrs. Elizabeth Stilwell, executors.

Dated May 7, 1797. Witnesses, John Ferrers, Daniel D. Reynolds.


In the name of God, Amen, November 21, 1764. I, FREDERICK BELLINGER, of Canajoharie, in the County of Albany, being very sick. I leave to my son Thomas my 5 horses, 4 cows, 5 sheep, "as also one iron Stove," and a cross cut saw, "and an instrument called in German a bund ax." "Also an iron chain to roll logs with," and other carpenter tools, and articles of domestic use. I leave to my daughter Elizabeth, wife of Jacob Klock, all the iron belonging to a Grist mill and mill stones, "and a great iron Hoop, that is on one of the mill stones, at present at Christopher Foxes, at the German Flats," Also an iron pot. I make Jacob Klock and Hendrick Frey, executors.

Witnesses, Peter Eigenbrod, Philip Helmer, Johanes Eigenbrod. Proved, January 20, 1768.

In the name of God, Amen. I, JOHANES HESS, of Canajoharie, in Albany County, farmer, being very sick. "I give and bequeath to my dearly beloved wife Margaretta that she shall be master so long till of the children's age, or as long she have my name, if she can live by them, if she remains my widow and cannot live with them, they must give her that she can live among another ten pounds per year." I leave to my oldest son, Johanes Hess, that lot of land with the house and barn where I now dwell, with everything belonging to it. "I leave to my son, Frederick Hess, the lot of land near to Helmer, where Daniel Miller now dwells upon." "Sixty acres he must have more when the land is divided." I leave to my son Dewald the lot next to Philip Fun "and 40 acres in the soft Bush." I leave to my son Daniel the lot in the New Patent, in company with George Klock and others, about 500 acres; if there is any land good for a farm, "and if not, my 3 sons must divide their land, and give their equal share to him, that he can live as well as the rest of my sons, they must share equally that every one can live." My four sons must give to my three daughters each œ50, but my son Daniel is to give for his part œ10.

Dated October 28, 1760. Witnesses, Philip Helmer, Johanes Belling, Andries Reber. Proved, April 30, 1771, before John De Peyster, Esq.

Confirmed, March 30, 1772. There being no executors, Letters of Administration are granted to Johanes Hess, the eldest son.

"In the name of God, Amen. I, JOHN SANDERS, of Schenectady, merchant, being in good health, January 27, 1779. I leave to my only son, John Sanders, my Large Dutch Bible, which I have of Colonel Glen, and my house clock and one gun, and he is to have his choice of my guns, and my silver tankard, where my father and mother's name stands ingraved on in a seypher, and all my wearing apparell, linnen and woolen, for his Primogeniture. I leave to my wife Debora all my real and personal estate during her widowhood. And she is to bring up, find and keep, my daughter Margrita Sanders, until she comes of age or gets married, and such an outset as my daughter, Maria, wife of John Ja. Beeckman has had, and to give her as much learning and education as possible she can. After the death or marriage of my wife Debora, I leave to my son John all my lowland and upland, meadows, pasture and arable land in the Town of Schenectady, with houses, mills and saw mill and creek dam, excepting twenty-four morgen of woodland, and eight morgen of hay land, and Indian corn land, lying on the east end of the lowland called Scotia, on both sides of the creek of the Lake. I leave to my daughters, Maria, wife of John Ja. Beeckman, and Margrieta, and to Jacob Sanders Glen, son of my daughter Sarah, wife of John Sanders Glen, and to John Sanders Ten Eyck, son of Myndert Schuyler Ten Eyck, twenty-four morgen of woodland, about one mile north from my dwelling house at Scotia. Beginning at the south side of the water of the stone flats, where my north line of woodland crosses said water, which north line is to be run from the west end of the lake, and runs from thence along the south side of the water, easterly to where the old mill road, which goes to Ball Town crosses said water, and running from said road north, and from the place of beginning north, till it makes twenty-four morgens. I leave to my daughters, Maria, wife of John Ja. Beeckman, Sarah, wife of John Sanders Glen, Elije, wife of Myndert Schuyler Ten Eyck, and Margrieta, all the rest of my lands and tenements, reserving two small Islands lying in the Mohawk river opposite Scotia, the one named Spite en Duyvel, and the other Cruysbesse island, which I give to my son John. The lands so left to my daughters, are eight morgen of lowland, hay land and Indian corn land, lying on the east end of Scotia lowland, and being the east point thereof, on both sides of the creek of the Lake, and running along the river and along the hill on the north side till it takes in just eight morgen; Also my dwelling house and lot in Schenectady, lying on the north of the house and lot of Isaac Glen, and on the south of the house and lot of Jellis Fonda; Also my pasture ground east of Schenectady, having to the south Reniers Pot, or a lane of two chains wide, to the east, John Hall's pasture, to the north Garret Abraham Lansing, and containing four morgen. And my half morgen of hay land lying on Jeffrow's land, near Schenectady. Also my bolting house and lot, and the other buildings, having to the north the house and lot of Jacobus Myndertse, east and south the streets and west the river. Also my house and lot in the eastermost end of the town of Schenectady, to the north of the street that leads direct to Canistigajoene, wherein David Rouse now lives. Also my house and lot on the north side of the street that leads direct from the Dutch church to Canistigajoene, and now in possession of James Ellis, having on the west the house of Messrs, Phin and Ellis, south the street, east the Presbyterian church; And twenty morgen of pasture land about one mile east of Schenectady, bounded north by the lane, two chains wide, east by a lane one chain wide, south by land of Jacobus Van Slyck and Adam Van Slyck. Also eleven hundred acres of woodland in Tryon County, on the south side of the Mohawks river, and on the east side of Aries creek, and within the bounds of a Patent granted to James De Lancey and Jacob Glen and others, and being lots Nos. 3, 7, 11, 15. Containing about eleven hundred acres. Also one thousand and sixty acres of woodland on the west side of Aries creek, within the bounds of another patent granted to James De Lancey and Jacob Glen, of four thousand acres, being Lots Nos. 6, 14, 20 and 22, as by map and Release of the Patentees. Also six hundred acres of woodland in Tryon County on the south side of Mohawks river in a Patent granted to Philip Livingston, Walter De Boys, and others, being the north half of Lot No. 37, in the first tract, and half of Lot number one in the second tract, and the south half of Lot No. 38, each half lot is two hundred acres, and was conveyed to me by Coenrat Matyes; And five hundred acres of woodland in Tryon County on the north side of Mohawks river in the Patent granted to Jurrie or George Klock, William Nellis and others, being Lots Nos. 29, 41, 84, 142, and the north half of Lot No. 123, sold to me by Johannes Deygert; And the northeast half of No. 122, sold to me by Robert Nellis; Also three hundred and sixty acres of woodland in Tryon County on the north side of Mohawks river, above the little falls in Glens Purchase, sold to me by Abraham Glen, being the south end of Lot No. 11; Also a tract of land on the north side of Hudson river, on both sides of a creek called White creek, about forty-five miles northeast from Albany. Granted by Patent to Lieut. Henry Farrant, excepting four hundred and ten acres, conveyed to Isaac Vrooman, Esq., and John Todd; Also a house and lot in Albany near the Church of England, in the third ward, bounded north by the street, east by Abraham E. Wendell, west by Mr. Sharp, north by street, as by deed from the Corporation of Albany. I leave to my daughter all my wife's wearing apparell. To my son John a negro man and woman and her children, and the cattle and all farming utensils belonging to my farm called Scotia. My daughter, Margrieta, is to be carefully brought up till of age or married. All the rest of my estate to my five children. I make my wife Deborah, and my son John executors."

Witnesses "in the room where he then was," Alexander Vedder, Peter Van Benthuysen, hatter, Abraham Oothout, Esq. Proved, February 7, 1783.

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