Johannes Roseboom
Stefan Bielinski

Johannes Roseboom was born during the mid-seventeenth century. He was the eldest son of New Netherland and Albany pioneers Hendrick Janse and Gysbertje Lansing Roseboom.

As early as 1679, he was identified as an Albany householder. He seems to have spent considerable time as a young man in pursuit of furs in the French and Indian territories to the north and west. He led one of the Albany trading groups that was captured and interred in 1687. In this and other trading ventures he was associated with Johannes Bleecker, Jr., another Albany native, who would marry the sister of Roseboom's bride-to-be!

In November 1688, he was approaching middle age when he married Gerritje Coster at that Albany Dutch church. By 1706, nine children had been christened in Albany where he was a member, church officer, and baptism sponsor.

But like other family members, Johannes eventually settled down in Albany to become a mainline fur trader. His home near "Roseboom's gate" was a Pearl Street landmark. In 1697, his home was configured on the Albany census. Two years later, he signed a petition swearing allegiance to the king of England. Subsequent assessment rolls valued his Albany holdings comparable to those of other prominent merchants.

After serving as assistant alderman for the second ward, he was elected alderman in 1700 - beginning a tenure on the city council of more than twenty years. During that time, he was particularly active as one of the Commissioners of Indian Affairs.

Johannes was in his seventies or eighties when he filed a "Dutch" language will in November 1737. It named his wife and six living children as heirs to property in Albany, Schenectady, and "along the Mohawk." As late as 1742, his name (or that of his two younger nephews - his same-named son was listed separately) was still on the list of Albany freeholders.

Johannes Roseboom died in January 1745 and was buried beneath the Albany church. His estate still received inquiries as late as 1765.

biography in-progress


the people of colonial Albany Sources: The life of Johannes Roseboom is CAP biography number 1671. This sketch is derived chiefly from family and community-based resources. An account of his days in the Indian country is available online.

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first posted: 12/15/04