The SIMON CORTELYOU Homestead Erected previous to the Revolution

In the Memoirs of the Long Island Historical Society, Volume I, is a "Journal of a Voyage to New York in 1679-80, by Jaspar DANKERS and Peter SLUYTER of Wiewerd in Friesland, and translated by the Hon. H. C. Murphy" An account of a visit made by them to Jacque CORTELYOU, the founder of New Utrecht, at his home at Najack (Fort Hamilton) is given. It tells us, "Jaques is a man advanced in years. He was born in Utrecht, but of French parents, as we could readily discover from all his actions, looks and language." They tell us "that the village had been burned, including his house," which was half an hour's distance from it. They say, "It was now almost all rebuilt, and many good stone houses were erected, of which Jaques's was one." Jaques came to America in 1652, and was Surveyor General of the Colony in 1657. He represented his town in the Hempstead Convention of 1665, and was Vendue-Master in 1672. He had issue: Jaques, born about 1662; died in 1726; was twice married. He owned a part of his father's farm. Pieter, born about 1664; married before November 15th, 1694, to Diewertje De WIT; died April 10th, 1757. He also owned and cultivated a part of his father's farm at Najack, and was also a surveyor. Of his children we will trace the line of Peter, born September 25th, 1699. Of the other issue of the common ancestor, Cornelius died before him. And of Maria and William I have no further trace. Another daughter, Helena, married August 19th, 1688, Nicholas Rutgersz VAN BRUNT. On his death, she married Deonys TEUNIS; and on his death, she married third, Hendrick HENDRICKSEN. BERGEN says of her, in the VAN BRUNT Family, "On the division of the real estate of Jaques CORTELYOU, after his decease, Helena obtained as her portion all the land along the Narrows and bay of New York, from and including that occupied by Fort Hamilton to the land formerly of George DURYEA, deceased. Her son, Jaques DENYSE, by her second husband, appears to have obtained possession of this property, to the exclusion of her son by her first husband. "Having seen how this tract of land was divided, we find Jaques CORTELYOU, son of Peter and Diewertje CORTELYOU, died October lOth, 1757. On April 25th, 1718, he married Jacomintie VAN PELT. He was a farmer, occupying, we suppose, his father's farm. He had issue two daughters and a son, Peter, born October 3rd, and married Agnes, daughter of Simon De HART. They had issue two sons, Jaques and Simon CORTELYOU. Jaques CORTELYOU was born October 16th, 1748, and died September 14th, 1815. He was twice married, first, to Mary HEWLET on November 1st, or 15th, 1767. She was born June 16th, 1787; died October 23rd, 1771. She was the mother of one child, Peter J. CORTELYOU, born November 28th, 1768; died September l2th, 1804. He followed his father's example and married twice, first, to Femmetje, daughter of Adrian VOORHIES, and second to Mary ALSTINE. Jaques CORTELYOU married for a second time July 28th, 1778, Sarah TOWNSEND, of Queen's County, who was born July 16th, 1746; died September 17th, 1829, by whom he had one son, Timothy Townsend CORTELYOU, born November 19th, 1774; died May 1st, 1829; married July 28rd, 1801, to Anna, daughter of William KOUWENHOVEN, of Flatlands, born November 5th, 1785; died February 28th, 1848. Timothy Townsend CORTELYOU occupied a part of his father's farm. He lived in a house located on the site where the big gun formerly stood when it was in active service. This gun was the largest ever cast, and was more of a curiosity than an useful weapon. My uncle (Mr. VAN BRUNT) has often told me how he climbed into it when a boy. It stands now in Fort Hamilton Park. Timothy T. CORTELYOU had issue : -Sarah T., who married Isaac, a son of John CORTELYOU; -Johanna, who married Simon J. BERGEN; -Ruth and Peter, both died single; -Anna Maria, died in babyhood; -Anna Maria married John L. VAN PELT; -Timothy T. married Ann, daughter of Rutgert I. STILLWELL; -Freelove Jane, who died young, and -Freelove Jane, who died single; -Ida, William, and Mary E. died single. The younger brother of Jaques, Simon CORTELYOU, was born March 11th, 1746; died August 15th, 1828. He married first, May 20th, 1768, Sarah VAN WYCK, who died March 3rd, 1816. He married second, September 5th, 1817, Maria BOGERT, widow of Jaques BORKULOO. She died September 9th, 1841. We will return to this family after lineating another branch. When the British soldiers landed upon Long Island on August 22nd, 1776, they landed along the shore at Bath, upon the farms of Captain Adrian VAN BRUNT and Isaac CORTELYOU, a force estimated at from 15,000 to 80,000 men. From the area of the ground covered, I believe the latter number the nearer correct. Isaac CORTELYOU was a son of Jaques and Mary CORTELYOU, of New Utrecht. It would seem that his farm had been a part of the original Najack tract. He was born August 11th, 1736, and died October 3rd, 1811. He was a third cousin of Jaques and Simon CORTELYOU, whom we are directly chronicling. Isaac married Altie RAPALJE and had numerous issue, of whom Martha, Jaques, Isaac, Daniel and Hendrick. died single, and Aletta married Albert O'BLENIS, Angletie married Lefferts MARTENSE, of Flatbush, father of Judge Garret L. MARTENSE, and John or Johannes married Catharine, daughter of Peter LEFFERTS, of Flatbush. Simon CORTELYOU had four daughters. He left in his will to each one, They were as follows; Hannah, then widow of Isaac CORNELL, whom she married in 1783, and died in 1825. She had issue: (A). Isaac, married Maria RYERSON or RAPALJE. (B). Simon, married Maria CORTELYOU. (C). Daniel, married Catherine RAPALJE. (D). Anna, died unmarried. (E). Hannah, married Dr. Nelson L. HURD, and had two daughters. (F). Peter, died unmarried. (G). Margaret, who married Teunis JOHNSON, has numerous issue. (H). Whitehead, died unmarried. (I). John, lost at sea. (J). Sarah, unmarried. (K). Ruth, no further trace. (L). Peter, died young. Sarah, widow of John CORNELL, whom she married May 6th, 1787. She was born May 13th, 1767; died August 3rd, 1858. In 1782, she married Charles CONRADI. He shot himself in "a term of Insanity." She had children as follows: -Sarah, George, Catherine, Margaret, Simon C., Agnes, and Mary, who died unmarried. -Ann, who married Arthur J. HIRST, -Whitehead J. married Juliet HICKS, -George L. married Isabel SHELDON, -John S. married Mary Fitz Randolph LEWIS, -Peter C. married Elizabeth BUNCE, -Isaac R. married Elizabeth M. DUYCKINCK, and -Samuel G. married Sarah DOUGLASS. Agnes CORTELYOU, wife of Russel TOMLINSON, had several children, and resided in Connecticut. He leaves the largest part of his estate to his two grandsons, Peter and John. He names them and their brother, Simon CORTELYOU, executors, and states that they are the children of his son, Peter S. CORTELYOU deceased, and directs them to care for their sisters, Eliza and Agnes. He also names a daughter, Mary, deceased, wife of John S. GERRETSEN. Simon and Jaques CORTELYOU were Tories, strong adherents of the King from the first, and many interesting tales are told of this Simon's home. At the time of the landing of the British, three houses stood upon the shore where Fort Hamilton now stands. These were the BENNET House, Denyse DENYSE's stone house and ferry, and at what is now the south side of the reservation stood this house. Lossing in his Field Book of the Revolution shows a picture of it. In ONDERDONK's Revolutionary Incidents, he gives an account of a bombardment which damaged the BENNET and DENYSE House. But incident 867 is of particular interest. I quote it in full. "Trenton Nov. 11, '78. The 3d inst MARRENER, with 7 men of Lord Stirling's division, landed at N. Utrecht and brought off Simon and Jaques CORTELYOU, two famous Tories in the enemies' lines and specie and other property, to the amount of $5,000. The prisoners are on parole at Brunswick, and are to be exchanged for two citizens of Jersey, in captivity with the enemy. "Capt. MARRENER took Simon CORTELYOU, of N. Utrecht to N. Brunswick as a return for his uncivil conduct to the American prisoners. He took his silver tankard and several other articles. Gen. JOHNSON. "On Tuesday night, Nov. 3d. between 11 and 12, Simon and Jaques CORTELYOU were carried off by a party of rebels, from the Narrows. The house of the former was robbed of cash to the amount of L200, besides a large quantity of linen, blankets &c. The marauders behaved with their usual insolence and inhumanity, and frequently threatened the terrified children of the family, then in bed, with immediate death. Gaine Nov. 8, '78." ROSS, in his History of Long Island, says that General HOWE slept in this house the night after the landing of the British. In the Memorial History of the City of New York, of which General James Grant WILSON was editor, it is said it was supposed to have been Lord Howe's headquarters. I am told it was burned down about four years ago. Mrs. Townsend CORTELYOU VAN PELT loaned me the original photograph from which the picture shown in this book was taken.

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