Willem Teller
Stefan Bielinski

According to family-based resources, New Netherland pioneer Willem Teller was born in Edinburgh, Scotland about 1620. His father was a German-ancestry Dutch minister. In 1638, young Willem was sent to New Netherland by the West India Company. He served in several capacities at Fort Orange.

His first wife was Margaret Donchesen - the mother of at least nine of his children. Family resources state that he was a Scot from the Shetland Isles and that he married Margaret in Amsterdam on February 6, 1639. On April 9, 1664, he married the widow Maria Verleth Van Schrick in the New Amsterdam Dutch church. At that time, he was identified as the widower of "Margariet Dunces."

Official duties soon gave was to private enterprises. In 1660, his name was on a list of principal fur traders petitioning the Beverwyck court.

In 1661, he was one of the original patentees of Schenectady. Each of the principals received a village lot and a farm on the "Great Flat" - on the south side of the Mohawk and west of what became the village of Schenectady.

He was well-known in both communities. In 1679, his Albany property was accorded one of the highest assessments on the Albany tax list.

By the early 1690s, he had shifted his focus to New York City - leaving son Andries in charge of his Albany holdings. Willem Teller made a deposition in 1698. It stated that he was seventy-eight years old. He may have died in New York in 1701.

page under development - expect much more!


the people of colonial Albany >Sources: The life of Willem Teller is CAP biography number 6606. This profile is derived chiefly from family and community-based resources.

According to family-based sources, Romanus Teller (1588-?) also emigrated to New Netherland and is said to have been at Fort Orange as well. We seek more definitive documentation.

Online resources. See also an article on Margaret's family in NYGBR, January 1997 (128:1)

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first posted: privately 11/15/03; re-cast online 4/20/15