Person:Pieter Wyckoff (2)

m. Bef 26 Aug 1648
  1. Hendrick WyckoffBet 1628 & 1671 - 1744
  2. Claes Pieterse WyckoffAbt 1646 - 1714/15
  3. Annetje Pieterse van Wycoff1650 - 1698
  4. Margrietjie or Marretje WyckoffAbt 1652 -
  5. Mayken Pieterse Wyckoff1653 -
  6. Cornelius Pietersen WyckoffAbt 1656 - 1746
  7. Willemptje WyckoffAbt 1658 - 1693
  8. Geertje WyckoffAbt 1660 -
  9. Garret Pieterse Wyckoff1662 - 1691
  10. Marten Wyckoff1663 - 1697
  11. John Pieterse Wyckoff1665 - Abt 1692
Facts and Events
Name[1] Pieter Claessen Wyckoff
Alt Name[2] Pieter Claesen van Norden
Alt Name Pieter Claeszen Wyckoff
Gender Male
Birth[2] Norden, Aurich, Weser-Ems, Niedersachsen, Germany(then in the County of East Frisia [Oost-Friesland])
Emigration[5] 25 Sep 1636 Amsterdam, Noord-Holland, Netherlands
Immigration[5] 4 Mar 1637 New York City, New York, United States(then New Amsterdam)
Residence[5] 3 Apr 1637 Albany, Albany, New York, United States(then Fort Orange)
Marriage Bef 26 Aug 1648 Albany, New York, United States(then Colony of Rensselaerswyck)
to Grietje Cornelis Van Ness
Death[6] Bef 30 Jun 1694 Flatlands,Kings, Long Island, NY
Other[4]  Refuted Father?: Claes Van Schouw (1) 

For the most recent and scholarly research available on the origins of Pieter Claeszen [Wyckoff], please see M. William Wyckoff, PhD (, What’s in Name? History and Meaning of Wyckoff, (Rochester, NY; 2014); iv and 58 pages with maps and illustrations; available at For a book review of the same by Harry Macy, Jr. FASG, FGBS, please see The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record (146[October 2015]:312); the review concludes with the statements that “…Pieter Claeszen was a Frisian from Norden and derived his name from the Wykhof farmstead. Wyckoff descendants will want to purchase this book to better understand the evidence that this is their ancestor’s correct ancestry.”

Now within Germany, from 1464 until 1744, Norden lay within boundaries of the County of East Frisia. Although it has become landlocked due to Dutch-like land reclamation efforts, Norden was a major North Sea trading port until the 19th century, as illustrated by this map. And here is a view of the port of Norden from 1590.

A. J. F. Van Laer gives a brief biographical sketch of Pieter in his work "Van Rensselaer Bowier Manuscripts" which outlines the early career of Pieter Claessen.

"Pieter Claesz (Niclaesz), from Nardingen, or Norden, is credited with six year's wages from April 3, 1637, and in Aug. 1644 is mentioned as servant of Symon Walichsz. He probably arrived with the latter on the Resselaerswyck. He is charged with rent, at F11 a year, from 1643 to 1645, and in 1648-49 appears to have occupied a farm at Bethlehem. He left the colony before June 5, 1649. He was the son in law of Cornelis Hendricksz van Nes." (A. J. F. van Laer, Van Rensselaer Bowier Manuscripts (University of the State of New York, Albany:1908), p. 810).

In Nov 1650 and again in Oct 1653 Pieter baptizes children in the New Amsterdam DRC. From this it is thought that Pieter and Grietje were living in New Amsterdam. Other evidence suggests that they were already living in the area of Flatlands by March of 1653, perhaps as early as 1652 (Hoppin, 3:105). In July 1655 Pieter contracted with Pieter Stuyvetsant to tend Stuyvetsant bowery located in the Flatlands area. Occupying the house that was on the property, Pieter and Grietje appear to have remained there for the remainder of their lives.

During that time they raised eleven children to adulthood. Pieter was active in the civil affairs of his community, being appointed Magistrate for the first time in April 1655, signing petitions and participating in the boundary disputes of Flatlands with its neighbors as well as disputes among the inhabitants of Flatlands, paying his taxes, buying and selling land and as a member of the Flatlands church. In Sept. 1687, he took the oath of allegiance to the British, stating that he had been in the colony for 51 years. (O'Callaghan, DHNY 1:661)

Pieter Claessen is thought to have died prior to 30 June 1694 as the Flatlands Dutch Reformed Church records contain a reference of a charge to Pieter Claessen for a grave and shroud which Hoppin believed were for Pieter himself. (Hoppin, 3:116.)

A lengthy and detailed biography of Pieter is given in Hoppin's Washington Ancestry. More importantly, that work gives the details of the proof that Pieter Claessen was not the son of Claes Cornelissen van Schouw (Hoppin, 3:173-175):

"Jacob Wyckoff of Middlebush, New Jersey, in a short statement about Claes Cornelissen on page 49 of Volume VIII, Somerset County Historical Quarterly, asserts: (1) that Margaret van der Goos was the wife of Claes Cornelissen; (2) that they were the parents of Pieter Claesen [van Norden] (afterward surnamed Wyckoff); (3) that these three persons came to America in the ship Rensselaerswyck, arriving at New Amsterdam in March, 1637. We find that the Van Rensselaer-Bowyer Manuscripts, giving the names of the passengers in this vessel and a complete account of the voyage, daily, from the departure from Amsterdam on September 25, 1636, to the arrival on April 3, 1637, of the vessel at the colony of Rensselaerswyck on the Hudson River opposite the present site of the city of Albany, does not mention Claes Cornelissen van Schouw or Margaret van der Goos. It is quite certain that neither one came in the Rensselaerswyck or ever lived in the colony of Rensselaerswyck, or was present in America before 1639."
"That Claes Cornelissen van Schouw, born about 1605, was the father of Pieter Claesen van Norden, who arrived in the colony of Rensselaerswyck with his employer, Simon Walischz, on the arrival of the ship Rensselaerswyck, April 3, 1637, and who on that same day began to draw a man’s wages as an employee on Simon’s farm, is without a particle of record evidence. The idea of any relationship between these two men is untenable guesswork. Nevertheless, Claes has been accepted by some of the Wyckoff family as the father of Pieter, upon the ground that Pieter Claesen’s second name implies that his father’s Christian name was Claes (Nicholas). Claes Cornelissen, found residing in Amersfoort where resided Pieter Claesen van Norden (after 1686 called Wyckoff), has been seized upon as the father of Pieter, notwithstanding that Pieter was at least twenty years old when the first child of Claes was baptized in New Amsterdam in 1640; and if Claes Cornelissen’s solemn declaration that he was born about 1605 was a true declaration, he would have been not over fifteen years of age when Pieter Claesen van Norden was born. Fifteen years before either of these two men came to Amersfoort another man, Claes Cornelissen van Voorhout, was living close to Pieter Claesen van Norden on the island of Papscanee, colony of Rensselaerswyck, certainly without relationship one to another. Norden in German, whence Pieter came in 1636, is about 125 miles from Schouwen in Holland, whence Claes Cornelissen came about May, 1640. A study of the records and associations of both men reveal them to have had nothing in common, and to have been unlike in their characters, social positions, and material circumstances. They never appear in any record in any warranting the suggestion that they were related. No property of Claes Cornelissen van Schouw is found in the possession of Pieter Claesen van Norden, or Wyckoff, at any time, nor did their lands adjoin. Their widely separated homes in the Netherlands and in Germany separate them decisively, and no record in America brings them together as relatives. Notwithstanding these facts, the compiler of a recent work upon the ancestry of Eugene Dorr Felt, has seized upon the published error, and, without investigating it, has repeated it in all solemnity."
  1. Stevens, Bryce Henderson. Vanosdol family outline, 1597-1967. (Salt Lake City, Utah: Genealogical Society of Utah, 1982)
    p. 4.

    See source page for Addendum information

  2. 2.0 2.1 Hoppin, Charles A. The Washington ancestry: and records of the McClain, Johnson, and forty other colonial American families: prepared for Edward Lee McClain. (Greenfield, Ohio: Private printing by Yale University Press for Edward Lee McClain, 1932)

    Gives many references to original sources.

  3.   Van Laer, Arnold J. F. (Arnold Johan Ferdinand). Minutes of the court of Rensselaerswyck, 1648-1652. (Albany [New York]: University of the State of New York, 1922)
    p, 810.
  4. Hoppin, Charles A. Washington Ancestry
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Hoppin, Charles A. Washington Ancestry
  6. Hoppin, Charles A. Washington Ancestry