Zacharias Sickles


The first of several generations of Albany residents named " Zacharias Sickles" probably was born about 1630. He originally was from Vienna, Austria.

According to traditional sources, he was an employee and/or soldier of the West India Company and is said to have either accompanied or met Petrus Stuyvesant in Curacao in 1655. They subsequently removed to New Amsterdam and Sickles had taken up residence at Fort Orange by the late 1650s where he witnessed a sloop sale and was a witness in a court case. At the same time, however, his name is absent from the lists of fur traders who petitioned the court of Beverwyck in 1660.

Within a few years, he had married Anna Van Valkenburgh. Beginning about 1666, the marriage produced a large family - several of whom became Albany residents.

During the 1670s and 80s, he was an Albany mainstay. He was said to have been a carpenter and was paid for work done on the property of the Albany Dutch church - where he also received alms. He was known as the "town herder," "watchman," and "cryer." However, his name was not found on the census of Albany householders made in 1679 nor on a number of other likely community-based rolls.

He also acquired lands in what became Bergen County, New Jersey where his son Robert established a farm.

In 1693, he left Albany and spent his final years in New York City where he may have witnessed a will as late as October 1700. His life is sometimes confused with that of his son and namesake.

biography in-progress


the people of colonial Albany Sources: The life of Zacharias Sickles is CAP biography number 5648. This sketch is derived chiefly from family and community-based resources. Chart.

first posted: 5/20/09