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First,  did you watch the Who Do Think You Are episode on NBC last night, featuring country music singer, Tim McGraw?  It was really interesting.  I especially liked the finding of his family’s name in George Washington’s diary.  If you missed it, you can watch the entire episode here on NBC.com, or if you have Time Warner, you can watch it using your Primetime on Demand feature.

Some of you have asked how you find another website that I mention here on my blog.  If any of the words are highlighted, just click on the word and the website will open in another window.  I try to highlight and direct you to anything I think might be pertinent to the subject I am blogging about.

I would like to make a quick mention of another blog.  My cousin, Elaine Gast Fawcett, owner of Four Winds Writing, has started a blog called Philanthropy Writing.  Her newest post, 16 Charitable Ways to Celebrate Valentine’s Day is definitely food for thought.  Her posts take you from your inner self, outward into the community at large, reminding you how we’re all part of each other in more ways than just genetically.  Word Press chose her blog for their homepage.  Way to go, Elaine!  I am so proud!

Also, I wanted to tell you that my blog has been added to Geneabloggers.com, a genealogy website featuring over 1,700 genealogy blogs.  My blog will also be highlighted as a new site today.  So cool!  I look forward to reading the blogs of others and making new connections.  Which brings me to today’s post, inspired by fellow Geneabloggers.

Surname Saturday!  I want to share the surname Van Patten. This is my husband’s surname.  Simply, this Dutch name means “from Putten.”  Whether your surname is Van Patten, Van Putten, Van Petten, Van Putte, Van Patter, or any other variation, you are most likely part of the same family.

Dutch River View, Aelbert Cuyp, early 1640sWikipedia states, “Putten is a municipality and a town in Gelderland province in the middle of the Netherlands. In 2007 it had a population of 23,024.  Putten is surrounded by a great variety of landscapes. To the east of Putten lies the Veluwe, the biggest national park of the Netherlands. To the north, east and west, Putten is surrounded by farmlands, and further to the west the ring-lake around Flevoland can be found.”

I’ve heard that Putten means “draw water from a well.”  I found Albert’s translation on his blog, My Dutch Roots, interesting.  Click the title and you will be taken to his page where he explains further.

The first Van Patten ancestor to immigrate to New Amsterdam (now New York)  in the New World, was Claas Van Petten.  Collections on the History of Albany states,

“Claes Frederickse Van Petten was in Schenectady as early as 1664, when with Isaac Corn. Swits, he hired Willem Teller’s bouwery, No. 5, on the Great Flat. Subsequently he purchased Sander Leendertse Glen’s bouwery, No. 3. By his wife, Aeffie Arentse Bratt, he had three daughters and two sons, Andries and Claas, both of whom lived in Schenectady and left families. He died Oct. 3, 1728, aged 87 years 5 months. His wife died January 23d, 1728, aged 78.”

New Amsterdam, ca. 1651

Information taken from Austin A. Yates’ Schenectady County, New York: Its History to the Close of the Nineteenth Century:

“Catalina Bradt, widow of Arent Andreas, sent down the following posterity so that the blood of the old proprietor, Arent Andries, still courses in the veins of many of Schenectady’s sons and daughters.  For, of their remaining children, Aeffie (Eve) married Nicholas (Claas) Van Patten, who came to Schenectady in 1664, and in 1668 purchased the bouwery of Cornelise Van Esselstyne, lying next west of the farm of Ryer Schermerhorn, who was his brother-in-law. This farm remained in the Van Patten family for several generations. They each lived to an advanced age. He died October 3d, 1728, aged eighty-seven years and five months; she died January 23d, 1728, aged seventy-eight years. In 1690 he was appointed a justice of the peace by Leisler.

Arent, the oldest son of Nicholas, April 10th, 1703, married Jannetje, daughter of Philip Coyn of Albany.

Andries, another son of Nicholas, December 26th, 1712, married Muike, daughter of Jacob Ten Eyck of Albany.

Nicholas, also a son of Nicholas, Sr., April 20th, 1712, married Rebecca, daughter of Simon Groot, Jr.

Deborah, another daughter of Nicholas, Sr., April 1st, 1700, married Cornelius Viele, Sr., who was the first Viele settled at Maalyck, on the north shore of the Mohawk River, about two miles above the Reform church in Scotia.

Catalynje, also a daughter of Nicholas, Sr., November 8th, 1694, married Teunis Dirkse Van Vechten of Lunenburg (now Athens), Greene County.

Gertrude, also a daughter of Nicholas, Sr., April 17th, 1687, married Lourens Class Van Der Volgen. At the destruction of Schenectady, in 1690, he was carried away captive to Canada by the Indians, with whom he remained several years – so late as 1699 – acquiring a perfect knowledge of their language. After his return he was appointed interpreter for the province for the Five Nations, at a salary of 60 pounds per annum, which office he held until his decease in 1740.”

There are still many Van Pattens in the Schenectady area.  My husband’s Van Patten ancestors remained there until just after the beginning of the last century.  His grandfather, Irving Van Patten, went to Elmira, New York to start a plumbing business.  He met his wife, the former Maude May Barnum, and there in Elmira they raised their family.  Van Patten Plumbing & Heating is still in business in Elmira today.

More about this family in the near future!

To find more about the roots of this family, click on the following links.

Schenectady History

Van Patten Genealogy Forum

Van Petten Page

The Van Petten Journey

The Olive Tree Genealogy