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August 19, 2017

Hans Coenradt & Barentje Straetsman in New Netherland

The exact date of Hans Coenradt’s arrival in New Netherland is not known but we know he would have been among the refugees fleeing Recife Brazil in April 1654. Presumably the family continued on to New Netherland soon after arriving safely in the Netherlands. The first record found indicating he was in New Netherland is dated in Albany (Fort Orange) in early December 1655.  [i] So sometime between April 1654 and December 1655, Hans (and probably his entire family) arrived in New New Netherland.

As New Amsterdam came into view with its gallows and weather beaten wooden houses dominating a raw, windswept landscape, the Barheit family must have had mixed feelings. New Amsterdam in 1654 was a frontier outpost filled with brawling sailors and rough-looking fur traders. Over fifty grog houses catered to a never-ending stream of men dropping in for a little fun on their way to or from Massachusetts or Virginia. [ii]

Many researchers believe that Barentje stayed behind in the Netherlands and arrived in New Netherland for the first time in 1660. Records reveal that Barentje and two children left Amsterdam between 22 December 1659 and 8 January 1660 on board the ship de Trouw. The ship sailed into the harbour at New Amsterdam some time before 6 June 1660.  [iii] However it is unlikely that this was her Barentje’s first trip, since it occurred at least five years after her husband’s arrival. Barentje more than likely returned to the Netherlands on either business reasons or to visit family, and this 1660 arrival is her return voyage.

We find records of Barentje in New Netherland as early as August 1658 when she was called a whore by Pieter Jansen. Her sister defended her vigourously and Pieter took her sister to court in New Amsterdam. [iv] This suggests that the 1660 voyage was not her first time to New Netherland.

The late Pim Nieuwenhuis’ abstracts from notarial documents in the Amsterdam Archives reveal that on 16 August 1659, Barentje was in Amsterdam conducting business on behalf of her sister Teuntje. [v] It seems obvious that Barentje, her legal affairs in order, then booked passage on the next ship to New Netherland – de Trouw leaving after 22 Decemember 1659.

This is an excerpt from my book

The Barheit Family Revealed: A Genealogy of Hans Coenradt and Barentje Jans Straetsman, the Immigrant Ancestors of the Barheit Family of Albany New York available  on CreateSpace and

Publication Date: Apr 21 2016
ISBN/EAN13: 1987938062 / 9781987938067
Page Count: 60
Trim Size: 8.5" x 11"
[i] CFOB V1.1920 p.242 Hans was called as a witness in a case about stolen sugar cookies
[ii] They Came From Recife: the First Jews to Settle in America 1654. Dr. Kenneth Libo Ph.D and Michael Skakun
[iv] RNA. Vii p 427. 27 August 1658. Pieter Jansen pltf vs Teuntje Straaatmans [sic] deft. Pltf delivers in court certain written complaint for the insults and abuse given him, pltf, by the deft. Deft. Admits having done so, but did not threaten him with a knife, and says the pltf abused her sister for a whore and her as one who steals. Plft denies it and says she, the deft., abused his wife as a thief, and threatened him with a knife, which Leuntje Pieters knows. Deft says the pltf abused her three times in the first instance. Parties charged by the Court to keep themselves quiet and peaceable and whichever of the two should begin again, shall pay 25 gl as a fine to the Schout
[v] NNC. V. 5 No. 3. 2000 p 78. 16 August 1659. Not. H. Schaef, 1359/106. Barentje Straetsmans, housewife of Hans Coenraets from Beerhey, now a free baker near Fort Orange in New Netherland, being a sister of Theuntke [sic] Straetsmans (the wife of Thielman Jacobsz from Caerick who sailed in 1646 on the ship Rhee van Zeeland to Brazil and who died later in Gaudeloupe, now declares in the name of her sister Theuntje Straetsmans now living in Manhattan, that she has received a full account of the wages earned by her late husband. (Note that in fact Thielman had not died in Gaudaloupe and reappeared some years later after Theuntje had remarried as his widow)

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