James H. (James Hadden) Smith.

History of Duchess county, New York : with illustrations and biographical sketches of some of its prominent men and pioneers online

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streams, in addition to Wappingers Creek, are
small, and, like it, empty into the Hudson. The
principal of these are Fall and Casper's Kills. The
former was called by the Indians the Wynogkee or
Winnikee ; but the Dutch gave it its present name
from the cascades, which formerly made it a good
mill stream. It rises in the town of Clinton, and
enters the town near the center of the north border,

* Schoolcraft, says Ruttenber, a critical student, derives the name from
Atoktepsing, signifying safe harbor ; but, he adds, the interpretation is
open to question. He further states that the name was applied to a pond
of water, lying in the vicinity of the city, to which was given the significa-
tion of " muddy pond ;" "an explanation which accords with the ac-
cepted interpretation of Ramepogh—^ simple generic term for pond, or
ponds, modified by locality or character." Authors generally conform to
this oxWiOpztf'a-j—Apokeepsing; though Mr. Lossing (Pictorial Field-
Book of the Revolution, I, 383, note,) says the name ( Poughkeepsie, ) is
a corruption of the Iroquois word Ap'O-keep-sinck, to which he attaches
the same signification— J<i/i harbor; while French, (State Gazetteer,
174, note,) adopting very nearly the same orthography (Apo-keep-sink,)
makes it signify " pleasant harbor."

flowing thence in a south-westerly direction to the
Hudson, and passing in a circuitous course through
the city of Poughkeepsie. Casper's Kill flows in a
south-westerly direction through the central part of
the city. Hudson River and Wappingers Creek
have previously been described.

The town is wholly underlaid by the rocks of the
Hudson River Group. Limestone was formerly
extensively quarried and burned on the river, at
Clinton Point, and proved a valuable fertilizer on
the sandy soils of New Jersey, to which State it was
mostly shipped. The soil is composed of sand,
clay and loam, underlaid by limestone, clay pre-
vailing on the west border. It is made fertile by
the use of gypsum. In 1874, this town surpassed
all others in the county, not only in the value of
farms, in proportion to the area of cleared land, but
in the value of its farm products, in the same pro-
portion ; a fact, however, which is largely influenced
by its proximity to the city and the ready and fa-
vorable market thus opened to it. The soil is
adapted to a wide range of crops, but these are de-
termined perhaps more by the demands of the
market than by adaptation.

The town is traversed along its entire west bor-
der by the Hudson River Railroad, and in the
northern portion by the Poughkeepsie, Hartford &
Boston Railroad, Which connects with the former
at Poughkeepsie. Thus the town is abundantly
supplied with railroad facilities, no point within its
borders much exceeding four miles distance from a
railroad station.

It is one of the most populous towns in the
county, being exceeded in that respect only by
Fishkill and Wappinger. Its population in 1880
was, according to the census of that year, 4,628, a
gain of 619 during the last decade. This gain is
doubtless to be attributed mainly to the overflow
from the city and the thriving manufacturing vil-
lage of Wappingers Falls. In 1875 the popula-
tion was 4,496; of whom 3,416 were native, 1,080
foreign, 4,391 white, 105 colored, 2,162 males,
2,334 females, and 429 aliens.

The following table shows the population of the
town at different periods : —





1830 7,222.

1835 8.529-


1840 10,006.

184s 11,791-

1850 13.944-

1855 *i5,873.

i860 3.122.

1865 3,073.

1870 4.009-

1875 4,496.

. ..4,628.

* Up to this year the population of the city is included.



In area it is the smallest town in the county, with
the exception of Wappinger. In 1875 it contained
16,596 acres;! of which 14,057 were improved,
1,428 woodland and i,iii otherwise unimproved.
The cash value of farms was $2,853,825 ; of farm
buildings other than dwellings, $324,400 ; of stock,
$202,019; of tools and implements, $59,810; the
amount of gross sales from farms in 1874, $175,-
804. In the value of its farms it was exceeded
only by the town of Fishkill, which then embraced
the town of Wappinger. It is one of the towns in
the county which has no bonded indebtedness.

There are ten common school districts in the
town. The number of children of school age
residing in the districts September 30, 1880,
was 1,467. During the year fifteen Kcensed
teachers were employed at the same time, seven of
whom were males and eight females. The num-
ber of children residing in the districts who attended
school was 735 ; the average daily attendance dur-
ing the year, 42Z,2r2; the number of volumes in,
district libraries was 1,830, the value of which was
$970; the number of school houses was ten, four
frame and six brick, which, with the sites, valued
at $4,760, were valued at $23,800; the assessed
value of taxable property in, the districts was $1,-

The following is a statement of the receipts and
disbursements for school purposes during the year
ending Sept. 30, 1880 : —


Amount on hand Oct. i, 1879,
" apportioned to districts,
" raised by tax,
" received from other sources,

Total receipts.

$ 769.61






Paid for teachers' wages, $6,554.24
" " libraries, 43-25
" " school apparatus, 96.49
" " school houses, sites, fences, out-
houses, repairs, furniture, etc., 2,310.35
" " incidental expenses, 582-59
Amount remaining on hand Sept. 30,

1880, 547.34

Total disbursements, $ i o, 1 3 4. 2 6

The settlement of the town was commenced

about the beginning of the eighteenth century by

* Census of 1875. The published Pioceedings of the Board of Super-
visors ^Duchess County for the year 1880, state the number of acres to
be 17,781. the equalized value of which was ^1,134.611, which was ex-
ceeded only by the town of Fishkill.

the Dutch ; but there is little definite and authen-
tic information regarding these first settlers to be
gleaned, even from their descendants. That they
were a sturdy, enterprising, thrifty, inteUigent and
progressive people is evidenced by the associations
which have clustered around the little village then
planted, which soon became and has continued
during the interval of nearly two centuries the
agricultural and political center of the county,
though geographically far distant therefrom.

From the records of early land transfers and
other similar documents we glean some interesting
facts. That portion of the town lying west of a
line extending from the mouth to the source of
Casper's Creek, avoiding the eastern curvatiure of
that stream, was included in the patents granted
to Col. Peter Schuyler, June 2, 1688, and to Henry
Ten Eyck and eight others. May 7, 1697 ; and the
remaining portion, in the Rombout Patent, which
was granted to Francis Rombout, Jacobus Kipp
and Stephanus Van Cortland, Oct. 17, 1685.

On page 278, Book A., Duchess County Deeds,
is recorded the following transfer from the origi-
nal proprietor : —

" To ALL Christian People, to whome this Pres-
ent writteing shall come Peter Schuyler of the
Citty of Albany Gentn. Sendeth Greeting Know
yee that for Diverse Good Causes and other Con-
siderations him thereunto moveing hath Granted
Bargained Alienated Enffoeffed Conveyed and
Transported and these Presents doth Grannt Bar-
gain Alienate Enffoeffe Convey & Transport unto
Robert Sanders and Myndert Harmense* both late
of Albany, All that Certain Tract or Parcell of
Land Scituate Lying and being on ye East side of
the Hudson's River in Duchess County at A Cer-
taine Place Caled ye Long Reach Slenting Over
Against Juffrows Hook At a Place Called the Rust
Plaest. Runs from Thence East Ward into the
wood to a Creek Caled by The Indians Pietawick-
quasick Knowne by the Christians for Jan Cas-
perses Creek Northwarde to a Water fall where the
Saw Mill belonging to Myndert Harmense Afore-
said ^ands Upon and so Southwarde Alongst
Hudson's River Aforesaid to said Rust Plaets with
all and singular his Right Title Property Claime
and Interest and other the Profiles Commodities
Appurtenances Whatsoever to ye said Tract or
parcel of Land belonging or in any wise Apper-
taining To HAVE AND Ttt HOLD the Said Tract or
Parcell of Land unto the said Robert Sanders and
Myndert Harmense There Heirs and Assigns to
the only Proper use Benefite and behooffe of the
said Robert Sanders and Myndert Harmense their
Heirs and Assigns for Ever, which said Tract or
Parcell of Land the said Pieter Schuyler doth con-

* This a name of varied orthography in the early records ; but its
bearer was doubtless the progenitor of the Hermances, who now form a
highly respectable family in the county.



vey unto ye said Robert Sanders * * * and
Myndert Harmense by Virtue of A Patent unto
him Granted By the Late Governor, Thomas Don-
gan, Dated the 2d of June 1688 In witnesse
WHEREOF the said Pieter Schuyler hath hereunto
sett his hand and Scale in Albany this 30th Day of
August and in ye Eleventh of ye Reigne of Souver-
eign R. Lord William ye 3d by ye Grace of God
King over England &c. Defender of ye faith
annoq Do. 1699.

Pa: Schuyler.

Signed Sealed & Delivered )
in presence of j

Evert Wendel

Rt. Livingston Junr."

Acknowledgment of the above was taken before
Jacobus TerBoss, Judge of the Inferior Court of
Common Pleas of Duchess County, May 18, 1738.
Jan. 28, 1698, Henry Ten Eyck, of New York
City, mariner, conveyed to John Rodman and Will-
iam Huddleston, both of New York City, one-
fourth part of his undivided ninth part of a tract of
land " called Pokepsink," which was granted to
him and eight others May 7, 1697 j and May 31,
1699, Rodman and Huddleston conveyed to Thom-
as Rathbon, of Block Island, yeoman, this same
tract of land.

July 20, 1702, "Myndert Harmonse," of Duchess
County, and Robert Sanders, of New York City,
conveyed to "Barent Van Cleeck," of Duchess
County, a tract of about eighty-five acres lying " to
the south of land of Jan Oosterom, adjoining the
lands of Baltus Van Kleeck on the north-east, along
the east bounds of Baltus Van KleecK," thence east
to a bridge " called the Sparr bridge Slinck," thence
south along said "Sparr bridge slinck" as it runs
" to a certain fountaine Creeke, and along said
Creek easterly and northerly as ye Creek Runns to
ye marked trees of the eastern part of said l^and
commonly Called or Known by ye name of
f'Vlackie or small plaine. "

June 17, 1707, " Myndert Harmcen, of Pogkeep-
sink,'' yeoman, and Helena, his wife, Elsie San-
ders, widow of Robert Sanders, then " late of ye
Citty of New Yorke, Deceased," and Thomas
Sanders, " of ye Citty of New York, mariner,
Eldest son of ye said Robert Sanders," conveyed
to " Jan Oosterom of Pogteepsink," husbandman,
a tract of land north of the land of Barent Van
Kleeck and on the south bank of the " ffall Kill,"
receiving in consideration ^£^6. June 8, 1708, the
same parties, in consideration of ;^4S, conveyed to
Peter U. Ziele, of Duchess County, yeoman, a
tract of land on the Fall Kill, to the south of and
adjoining the lands of Michael Palraentier, and ex-

tending to the river. Ziele was required to pay,
when demanded, a yearly quit rent of half a bushel
of good winter wheat, commencing Sept. 5, 1700.
In July, 1709, " Myndert Harmonse" and Hel-
ena his wife, " for divers good causes and consid-
erations them thereunto moving, but more especially
for and in consideration of ye Love and affection
which they bare unto their Eldest Sunn Jacobus
Vandenbogaert of Pogkeepsink/' conveyed a tract
of land "formerly in possession of Jan Buys to
Runn from the River to ye Land of Baltus Van
Kleeck;" another tract "which formerly was in
possession of Jan Oosterom and likewise to Run
from ye River to ye land of said Baltus Van Kleeck ;
likewise another Lott which was formerly in pos-
session of Ariaen Buys and to run from said River
Easterly as farr into the woods as ye east bounds
of ye Land of said Baltus Van Kleeck."

September 9, 17 10, Myndert Harmense and
Helena, his wife, in consideration of ;^i4o, con-
veyed to Leonard Lewis, a merchant of New York
City, parts of two tracts, one of which was the
tract conveyed by Col. Peter Schuyler to Harmense
and Robert Sanders, August 30, 1699, as previ-
ously recited, and the other, containing 12,000
acres, which was granted to the same parties by
Gov. Thomas Dongan, October 24, 1686, which
was "called Minnesinck," and was situated "on the
East Side of the Hudson's River, to the North of
the land of Soveryn Alias, called the Bakers, with
Arrable lands. Woodlands and marshes with the
creek called Wynagkee, with Tree Tones, Range
and out-drift for cattle and the fall of waters called
Pendanick Reen, and another" marsh lying to the
north of the fall of waters, called Wareskeehin."
The lands thus conveyed to Lewis are thus de-
scribed: "the one beginning at the South Side of a
certain Pond on the Partition Line of Baltus Van
Kleeck, with a west Line to the Water Side, and so
along the water side to the land of John Kips to
the Northward of the Creek having Water Falls,
and so east along John Kips land to the hill unto
the Pine Trees, and thence southerly to the east of
the Pond to the place where it began, with the
whole creek and all the waterfalls thereof, as well
without as within the boundaries aforesaid, as also
one other tract beginning on the north side of a Piece
of meadow that lyes by the River Side, and runs
easterly along the meadow and marsh to the Sprout
called the first Sprout which makes the bounds on
the south side of Peter Viele and Runns along the
said Sprout Easterly unto the most Easterly Part
of the first Sprouts Plain, and thence East North



East to the Greek Having Waterfalls, and so along
the said Creek Southward to the Land of John
KipSj and so by the said Land Westerly to Hud-
son's River, and so along the River Northerly to
the meadow where it began."

Dec. 27, 1712, " Jacobes Van den Boogert, Myn-
dfert Van den Boogert and Neeltie Van den Boogert,
of Duchess County, in consideration of ^24^ con-
veyed to John De Graef of the same county, ' cord-
winder,' " a tract of land bounded on the west " by
Myndert Harmesos," north by the fence of "Baltes
Van Kleeck," east "by the bounds of Leonard
Dewis," and south " by John Kip," " excepting
any right to the mill kreeck, which belongs to * * *
Leonard Lewis." The same date, Thomas Sanders
and his wife, Jacobes Vandenboogert, Myndert
Vandenboogert and Neeltie his wife, of " Pogh-
kepse," in consideration of ^go, conveyed to
Johannes Van Kleeck, of the same place, "about
42 morgain"* at " Poghkepsen," adjoining on the
south the land of " Barendt Van Kleeck."

April 25, 17T3, Pieter U. ZioUee, of Duchess
county, yeoman, and Corneha his- wife, in consid-
eration of ;^i40, conveyed to William Fietsoor,
blacksmith, of Orange county, a tract of land with
" dwelling house, Baern orcherd Cottage and fens-
eng," situated " on the east side of hutching
Rever," extending from the river on " the south
Bounds of the Land of Magiel Palmetier," into the
woods to the Fall Kill. March 8, r772-'73,
" Neltye Tietsoor," widow of " William Tietsoor,"
then late of Duchess county, deceased, and
"Abram Tietsoor," of Raritan, N. J., eldest son of
William Tietsoor, conveyed this property for the
same consideration, to Abraham De Graffe, of
Duchess county, " cordwyner.''

Dec. 2, 1716, Thomas Sanders and Aeltie his
wife conveyed to "Isack Fietsoort," blacksmith, a
tract of land in " Pokkepsen '' on "John Casperses
Kill," containing "by computation forty morgin
more or less." Oct. 12, r7i7, Fietsoort conveyed
the same tract of land to " Marck Van Boomelen,"
of Duchess county, yeoman ; and the latter, to Dr.
Peter Vass, of Kingston, Feb. 2, 17 19.

March 7, 1716, Thomas Sanders, High Sheriff of
Duchess county, in consideration of ^^20, con-
veyed to "Baltes Van Kleeck, of said county,
yeoman, 27 acres adjoining on the east the land
of "Baltes Van Kleeck" in " Pochkeepse."

June 14, 1718, Thomas Sanders and Aeltie his
wife conveyed to "Aret" or "Aert" Masten, of
Duclaess county, y eoman, in consideration of ;^8o,

* A " lEorgain " equals two acres.

a tract containing "by computation forty-two mor-
gin more or less." March 12, i724-'5,* Masten
conveyed the same tract to Simeon " Frare," of
Ulster county, yeoman, in consideration of ;^i4o.

Nov. 2T, 1 7 19, Thomas Sanders and Aeltie his
wife, and Henry Van Derburgh and Magdalen his
wife, in consideration of ^^i, los., conveyed to
" Elias Bunschotten," of Duchess county, yeoman,
a Certaine Slith or angel of Ground," containing
by computation one acre, adjacent to "a Spring or
fountain Called or known by the name of Seeker
fountain," " at a place called pockepsing."

Sept. 7, 1721, Thomas Saunders and wife, in
consideration of ;^27, conveyed to Jonathan Oglee,
of "Pockepsink, Teller," thirty-eight acres and
sixteen roods, bounded on the north and west by
the land of Thomas Sanders, on the east by " a
Lane of Tow Rodd in wedeth that Thomas San-
ders has Given for the use of the Naberhood," on
the south by the land of Barnardus Swartwout.

July 30, 172 1, Thomas Sanders and wife, in
consideration of ;^3o, conveyed to Anne Crego
and her sons Stephen and John, of " Pockepsink,"
land lying in the angle formed by the junction of a
small stream with the Hudson, " oposit against
Juffrous Hook." May 8, 1727, Josias Crego and
Anna his wife, and their sons Stephen and John,
all of " Pakeepson," conveyed the same tract to
Jacob Low, of Kingston.

March 8, 1722, "Neltye Tietsoor," widow of
" William Tietsoor " or " Fietsoor," deceased, and
Abraham Tietsoor, eldest son of William Tietsoor,
conveyed to Abraham De GraeflF, of the " Precinct
of Poghkeepsie, cordwainer," a tract of land ex-
tending east from the Hudson River along the^
south bounds of the landing of Magiel Parmentier
to Fall Kill, which tract was conveyed by Wyndert
Harmance and Helena his wife, Elsie Sanders,
widow of Robert Sanders, deceased, and Thomas
Sanders, oldest son of Robert Sanders, to "Peter
Uziele," then late of Duchess county, June 3,
1708, and by Uziele to William Fietsoort, April
5, i7r3. Feb. 27, 1739-40, De Graeff and his
wife Elizabeth conveyed to John Emmons, of
Jamaica, N. Y., this tract and another tract whic|i
was conveyed to De Graeff by " Pieter Damon and
Magiel Parmentier,'' Feb. 2, 1735-6, and is
described as lying on the east bank of the
Hudson, beginning six yards north of what was

* It is not Unusual, in documents bearing date subsequent to the year
1582, the epoch of tlie Gregorian year, and prior to 1752, when the Gre-
gorian year was alone officially used, to observe this system of double
dates betweet. December Jist and March isth, the former being the end
of the Gregorian year and the latter of the civil year..



commonly called "Abraham De Graeff' s Land-
ing," and extending thence east to a small run on
the north side of said De GraefF's orchard, and
thence directly east to the Fall Kill.

April 30, 1722, Evert Van Wagoner, of Duchess
County, yeoman, and Hellegont his wife, in con-
sideration of £^ 6, conveyed to Josias Crego, six
acres of land bounded west by the King's highway,
north by the land of Evert Van Wagoner, east by the
land of Thomas Sanders, and south by the land of
Stephen and John Crego.

February 8, 1682, Governor Thomas Dongan
granted to Francis Rombout and Gulian Verplanck
license to buy a tract of land of the Indians, and
on the 8th of August, 1683, they purchased under
that license the land covered by the Rombout
Patent ; but before the patent was issued Ver-
plahck died, and Jacobus Kipp was substituted
as the representative of his children, while
Stephanus VanCortland joined with Rombout in
proprietorship of the patent. Kipp subsequently
married Henrica the widow of Gulian Verplanck,
and on the 6th of March, 1695, Kipp and his
wife conveyed to the children of Verplanck, (Sam-
uel, Jacobus and Hannah, the wife of Andries
Teller,) one-third part of that tract. About the
20th of March, 1722, the representatives of Ver-
planck's children divided that third part, which
had been previously surveyed and laid out into
lots, by casting lots.

March 20, 1722, Gulian, Mary and Anne Ver-
planck, children of Samuel Verplanck, deceased,
and William and Phihp Verplanck, children of
Jacobus Verplanck deceased, conveyed to Andrew
Teller, a merchant of the city of New York, lot
No. 3, containing 1,337 acres, on the north side
of Wappingers Creek. March 28, 1730, Teller
conveyed to Mattliew Debois, of Ulster county, the
same tract, except two hundred acres, previously
sold by him to Barnardus Swartwout, of " Poch-
keepsy," yeoman, September 13, 1723, and sixty-
three acres of upland and seven acres of swamp-
land, which Teller bargained Sept. 16, 1723, to sell
to Henry Vanderburg. The consideration in the
latter transaction, between Teller and Dubois, was

February 1, 1722-3, Thomas Sanders and
Aeltie his wife conveyed to " Jacob Fitsoort, " in
consideration of £ 24, eighty acres on the west side
of "John Kaspers Kill," south of and adjoining
the land of Marcus VanBomel, and bounded west
by the land of Thomas Sanders, south " by a run
of water," and east by "John Kaspers Kill."

March t6, 1726, "Jacob Titsort" and wife, in
consideration of ^^123, conveyed the same tract
to Evert Van Wagoner, of " Poeghkeepsink, "
"cordwiner, " who, in conjunction with his wife,
"Helegont," in consideration of £,is°, conveyed
the same to Marcus VanBomel, of the same place,
yeoman. May 27, 1730.

September 15, 1723, Catharyna Brett,* "of the
Fishkill in the County of Duchess, " in considera-
tion of ;^4S, conveyed to Barnardus Swartwout, of
"Pochkeepsey," forty-five acres, with improvements,
on "Jan Kaspers Kill," adjoining on the north the
land conveyed by Andrew Teller to Barnardus
Swartwout, September 13, 1723, mines and miner-
als being excepted, as was customary in these
early deeds.

January 12, 1726, Jacobes VanDenBogert,
Sheriff of Duchess County, " for and in Good will
Love and afecksion to my Bloved Brother Myn-
dert VanDenBogart * * * hie beeing an
Equall partoner thereof as may appier by a Diety
gift signed by our father to us * * * about
fourtien years paest," conveyed a tract of land
"Lieing and beieng att poghkepse butted and
bounded at the west seid of the Land of Capt.
Barent VanKleeck on the out seid of the Land of
Omie DeLagransie beginning on the noort corner
of said Legransie from thens sudderly to an East
Corner of a meddow that Lies on the fotpath that
goes to FranSois VanDenBogert and thens to the
East seid of a smael water [a word illegible] sud-
derly and thens sudderly to the Land on the
flackte and soo Round the Said Land as the fens
now stand to the Sout Cornor from thens sudder-
ly to a Small Run on said vlackte from thens west
to Capt. Barendt VanKleeks Beieng in all about
fifty morgen more or Less. "

August 31, 1726, Catharyna Brett, in consider-
ation of ;£96, conveyed to Adrian VanVUet, of
Fishkill, yeoman, eighty acres contiguous to a
tract of land owned by her "and commonly
called the Steen Vlackte or Stoney plaineadjoyne-
ing upon " and north of Wappingers Creek.
Sept. I, 1726, the same lady, in consideration of
jQi 10, conveyed to Christofel Wambone, of Ulster
county, 1 20 acres of land, contiguous to a piece of
land owned by Andrew Teller, " commonly called
Cuylers Flat," adjoining and north of Wappingers
Creek,and east of land conveyed by her to Bar-
nardus Swartwout.

* Catharyna Brett was sole daughter and heir of Francis Rombout,
the patentee of the Rombout tract, and her name figured prominently
in the early conveyances of Fishkill.



April 23, 1726, Thomas Sanders and Aeltie his
wife, conveyed to their son-in-law, Adolph Swart-
wout, of Duchess county, yeoman, 100 acres lying
upon the river, and bounded on all sides, except
the west, by the lands of Thomas Sanders.

June 6, 1727, Thomas Lewis and Anna Mary
his wife, of Duchess county, yeoman, in considera-
tion of ;^ioo, conveyed to Barnardus Swartwout,
100 acres lying "at a place called poghkeepsinck,"
south of the thousand acres of Henry Van Den-
burg, and extending south to the place called " the

Online LibraryJames H. (James Hadden) SmithHistory of Duchess county, New York : with illustrations and biographical sketches of some of its prominent men and pioneers → online text (page 72 of 125)