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Evert Pels 1585-1661: I00678

databaseflag Evert Pels  was born to Dutch parents, Schepen Evert Pels and Jannetje Schepmoes while they were resident  in Stettin in what was German Pomerania, an area which was ceded to the Russians after WWII and has since been Poland.

31 November 1641: Evert Everts Pels [born in] Statijn, sailor, aged 25 years, living in the Hasselaersteeg, having no parents [living in Amsterdam], accompanied by his uncle Pieter Smit, and Jannetje Sijmon’s daughter, aged 18 years, living in the same place, accompanied by her mother Claertje.1Michelle Boyd presents convincing arguments to support her supposition that Jannetje was Pels’s wife: Pels freed her sister,  Marritje, from ...continue

Compareerden als voren Evert Everts Pels van Statijn varensgezel out 25 jaren wonende in de Hasselaersteeg, geen ouders, geassisteert met zijn oom Pieter Smit, en Jannetje Sijmonsdr. out 18 jaren wonende als voren geassisteert met haer moeder Claertje. Den 31 November 1641.


5 June 1642: Engaged by Kiliaen Van Rensselaer as a brewer for the Dutch colony of New Netherlands for a term of six years. That same month, he sailed from the Texel, Holland, on the ship den Houttuyn with his wife and servants. He paid his own passage and bought with him four large barrels, containing two “lasts” and eleven “muds” of malt for brewing.

4 August 1642: Arrival in New Amsterdam.

Business Practices

From Michelle Boyd:

The Pels family later left Rensselaerwyck and settled in Wildwyck (later caller Kingston, Ulster, New York) .

On 1 September 1659, Evert is reported as being a member of a scout party that attacked a group of Native Americans involved in a drunken brawl near Wildwyck.

Evert was appointed as one of the first Schepens (magistrates) of this settlement in 1660. In 1662, his appointment as a commissary was continued by Peter Stuyvesant. In 1665, Evert was appointed a commissary of Kingston by the English Governor Richard Nicolls. Evert was again selected as a commissary in 1667. In 1669, Evert applied for and was granted the position of corn-measurer and watchman at the Rondout. He was reappointed to these positions in 1670.

Evert had a small part in the transition of Esopus, New Netherland to Kingston, New York. In 1664, the Governor Stuyvesant handed the colony over to the English. The English, eager to gain control, over the region sent troops to various areas, including Kingston. There were a number of abuses by these soldiers and great number of fights between them and the Dutch burghers.

Finally, in 1667, Captain Broadhead arrested
databaseflag Cornelis Barentsen Slecht.210x great grandfather of EEG

The burghers felt that it had been done unjustly. Evert and Thomas Chambers were selected to ask the captain to release Slecht from arrest and go through the proper channels of the court to redress any offense. The captain refused and stated that he would be ready for anyone who tried to fetch Slecht from prison. This, among other grievances, lead to the Esopus Mutiny, in which the burghers openly rebelled against the soldiers.
Later, during the summer of 1672, rumors reached Kingston that Dutch ships had arrived at New York City to retake the colony from the English. Evert was one of two men dispatched to investigate the truth of the rumor. They were indeed true and the colony of New York temporarily became a possession of the Netherlands once more.
It was recorded that a son of Evert Pels was captured by Native Americans during the outbreak of the Second Esopus War (just prior to the surrender of New Netherland to the English). The son was adopted by and married into the tribe. He and his wife, who became pregnant, were unwilling to part. Unfortunately, I do not know the name of this son or of his wife.

Court Appearances

There is a lot of documentary evidence about Evert Pels and Jannette Symons available through the records of the colony that have been preserved in the NY State Library. See the Van Rensselaer Bowier Manuscripts for detailed information Pels’s business dealings and multiple appearances before the courts for violence and unapproved ‘borrowing’ of neighbors goods and property, as well as more mundane but highly entertaining lists of property and farm animals.  See Reprobates, Renegades & Rebels.

Farming and Livestock

Inventory of animals in the colony sent over by Johan Baptist van Rensselaer 1651:  Animals found on the farm of Evert Pels, the 10th of February 1651

Horses Years Cattle Years
1 bay gelding, called _ 1 old cow with a blaze
pingsterblom 1 ditto called Kromhoorn
1 stallion, called konning I red cow with a star 8
1 black stallion, called dick kop 1 red heifer 2
I old mare, called de valck 1 bull 3
2 bay mares 3 3 heifer calves 1
I black filly 1 8
“Literally translated, the names of these animals are: Pinkster Bloom, King, Thick Head, The Falcon, Crooked Horn.’

page 735, Animals found on the farm of Gijsbert Cornelissen van breuckelen on the hill [ande berch; from its situation this farm was called de Hoogeberch see page 769] 14th of February 1651
Horses Years Cattle Years
1 brown mare with a star 7 1 brown cow, 8
1 bay ditto 7 1 brindled ditto 8
1 black stallion with a star 10 1 red ditto 6
1 ditto 6 1 brindled ditto 5
1 brown ditto 5 1 red heifer 3
1 bay mare with a star 2 ___
1 stallion colt with a blaze 1 6
page 736, Animals found on the farm of Aert Jacobsen, 14th of February 1651
Horses Years Cattle Years
1 bay mare, called block 16 1red cow, with a star about 10
1 brown mare with a star about 10 1 brindled cow 7
1 ditto called raeuen [raven] 6 1 cow with a blaze 6
1 black stallion with a star 7 2 red heifers 2
1 brown stallion 2 1 red spotted ditto 2
1 bay mare with a star 2 2 bull calves with blazes 1
1 bay stallion with a star 1

Notes   [ + ]

1. Michelle Boyd presents convincing arguments to support her supposition that Jannetje was Pels’s wife: Pels freed her sister,  Marritje, from an indenture; Marritje is recorded in the church index as a daughter of Sijmon Floriszen and Claertje Arents;  Jannetje was attended by her mother, Claertje, at her wedding in Amsterdam; and Jannetje and Marritje have the patronym of Simons, implying that her father was named Sijmon.
2. 10x great grandfather of EEG

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