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A Tree of Many Branches

The Pieter(2) Pietersen of Amsterdam who married Rebecca(3) Traphagen [Willem(2), Johannes(1)] on or about 19 January 1679 in Kingston, Ulster County, NY was the son of Pieter(1) Carstensen of Husum (or Nordstrand) and his second wife Geesje Jans of Norden. Pieter(2) Pietersen was baptized in the Amsterdam Lutheran Church 3 July 1657 and his father died c1659 in the East Indies (present day Indonesia). He was the only son of his father’s second marriage and the only male member of his immediate family line to come to New Netherland (colonial New York). Consequently, Pieter(2) Pietersen and Rebecca(3) Traphagen are the progenitors of the family that adopted the Ostrander surname around the beginning of the 18th century.

Pieter(2) Pietersen’s widowed mother remarried in Amsterdam 31 October 1660 Arent Teunisen. His stepfather was a blacksmith who was contracted in Amsterdam in April 1661 to sail on the Dutch ship De St. Jan Baptist to New Amsterdam. Arent Teunissen was to select a site near Gravesende [Brooklyn] on Long Island to build and operate a salt kettle with Evert Pietersz for Dirck de Wolfe, a major investor in the New Netherland colony. De St. Jan Baptist set sail from Amsterdam after 9 May 1661, under the command of Captain Jan Bergen, with settlers and supplies for the Dutch colonies along the Hudson River in North America and arrived in New Amsterdam 6 August 1661. Among the 49 passengers on board the vessel was 4-year old Pieter(2) Pietersen who was accompanied by his mother (Geesje Jans), older sister (Tryntje(2) Pieters) and stepfather Arent Teunissen [Pier]. Four days after their arrival his mother and stepfather presented a son Herman for baptism at the Reformed Dutch Church of New Amsterdam on 10 August 1661 and the witness was Mr. Evert Pieterszen.

The family soon settled on Coney Island [Brooklyn] near the village of Gravesende, where Arent Teunissen began to build a salt refinery on land that was used by the predominantly British settlement as a common meadow for grazing their cattle and sheep. This led to opposition, harassment and sabotage of the salt kettle venture by the English villagers and the refinery was ultimately abandoned after a period of about two years. Following their harrowing sojourn on Coney Island, we next find the combined Cartsensen-Pietersen (OSTRANDER) and Teunissen- Arentsen (PIER) family living in Wildwyck (a.k.a. Wiltwyck, later Kingston) from 1663/64 to 1669/70 and in Hurley from 1670 to 1677/78. The family settled in Wildwyck about six months or so after the village was attacked during the Second Esopus War in June 1663.

According to the record of his marriage in early 1679, our ancestor and family patriarch Pieter(2) Pietersen was a resident of Westquansengh, a tract of farmland in Foxhall which was then a 330-acre manorial estate (Fox Hall Manor), located just north of Kingston. His sister Tryntje(2) Pieters, then married to Hendrick Albertse[n] [PLOEG], was also an inhabitant of Westquansengh in 1679 as was his bride Rebecca.

Sometime after their marriage Pieter(2) Pietersen and Rebecca(3) Traphagen removed southwest to the nearby Village of Hurley and one of the first records of his residency in this Dutch settlement was 1 September 1687 when he was one of several villagers who appeared before Major Thomas Chambers of Foxhall to take an Oath of Allegiance. While Pieter(2) Pietersen was certainly Dutch by birth, language, custom and culture, his father’s origin appears to have been Danish or Frisian as Pieter(1) Cartsensen was first reported to be “of Husum” in 1623 and of the island “of Nordstrand” in 1654. Both communities are now part of Germany but in the 17th century they were part of the Duchy of Schleswig-Holstein in the Kingdom of Denmark.