Johannes Van Zandt


Johannes Van Zandt probably was the son of Adam and Jannetje Van Zandt. Traditional sources state that he had been born in Arnhem in 1657 and that he emigrated to America sometime afterwards. Some sources also that he was the brother of Albany mainstay Joseph Janse Van Zandt - but now we are not so sure!

By 1682, he had married Margarita Vanderpoel of Albany. Their eleven children were born before 1704. Some of them were baptized in the Albany Dutch church where both parents were members. During the 1680s and 90s, he was paid by the church for services including making a coffin for a "praying Indian boy."

In 1689, his (Johannes Van Sante) modest holdings were valued on the city assessment roll in the third ward. During that time, he served as a constable and juror. In 1688, he was appointed high constable.

At different times, he was called a turner, carpenter, and yeoman.

About 1693, he moved his family to New York City while Joseph Janse remained in Albany where he would be identified as of Spanish origins.

Over the next years, Johannes Van Zandt became a well known businessman in New York and its environs. Some of his accounts with the province are summarized online.

In September 1724, Johannes Van Zandt was living in Newtown Queens when he wrote a will. Calling himself a Yeoman, and stating that he was sick, he left personal effects and an annuity to his wife and divided his property including his slaves among his living children. Eldest son Wynant was named executor but left only a nominal birthright. The will passed probate on November 9, 1724.

biography in-progress - 2017


the people of colonial Albany Sources: The life of Johannes Van Zandt is CAP biography number 280. This sketch is derived chiefly from family and community-based resources. Sources: Interesting but unsubstantiated material on his background (including a first marriage) is available online. Additional material is cataloged on his Wiki page! More from History of the City of New York.

first posted: 8/25/02; recast and last revised 9/1/17