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Westervelts, The

THE WESTERVELTS (or Von Westervelts, as they once called themselves) are another of the very prolific families of Bergen and Hudson Counties. Should the traveler happen to journey through the Province of Overyssel in Holland, about a mile east of the coast of the Zuyder Zee, on the highroad from Deventer to Groningen, he will pass through a considerable town called Meppel. In the middle of the seventeenth century this town was a mere hamlet. Three miles east was the town of Zwolle, where Thomas à Kempis for half a century resided, where he wrote his famous book, In Imitation of Christ, and where he died about 1471. East of Meppel the country for miles was then a desert waste of lowland. To-day this has been bought up by humanitarian societies to secure from beggary able bodied laborers and their families by locating them on these lands and employing them in bringing the lands to productiveness. South and west of Meppel were rich, green pasture lands. Near Meppel lived William and Lubbert Lubbertsen, two sturdy brothers, tillers of the soil, and raisers of cattle.

In April, 1662, these two brothers joined the throng of emigrants which was then heading from Amsterdam to America to better their condition in life. William, with a wife and four children, and Lubbert, with a wife and six children, reached New Amsterdam about the first of May, 1662, in the Dutch West India ship "Faith." William repaired to New Utrecht, L. I., and Lubbert, with his wife, Gessie Roelofs Van Houten, and family, went to Flatbush, where a considerable Dutch settlement had been collected. At Flatbush, Lubbert bought a house and lot December 15, following his arrival, and went to farming, assisted by his boys. He soon became an extensive and prosperous farmer, bought much land, and owned a number of slaves. Upon his death, near the close of the century, his sons Lubbert, Jr., Roeloff, John, and Juriiaen went to Bergen County, N. J., and settled. Lubbert, Jr., who married Hilletje Pouwless, resided for a time in what is now Jersey City, and then removed to the vicinity of what is now Highwood, N. J., where he died and his wife remarried. Roeloff and John (who married respectively, Ursolena Stimets and Magdalena Van Blarcom) bought lands south of Highwood and in the vicinity of Cresskill, N. J. The Indians disputed their titles, but subsequently the sachems signed releases. Juriaen, who married (1) Gessie Bogert, (2) Antjie Banta, and (3) Cornelia Van Voorhis, bought and settled on lands on the Hackensack and Saddle Rivers. Lubbert's two daughters, Margretie and Mary, married and settled at New Hackensack. The descendants of these four sons and two daughters of Lubbert Lubbertsen, intermarrying with the Demarests, Naugles, Harings, Blawvelts, and others, became a mighty host, and are scattered throughout Bergen, Hudson, and Passaic Counties, N. J., and Rockland County, N. Y.

Source: Genealogical History of Hudson and Bergen Counties, New Jersey, Editor, Cornelius Burnham Harvey, The New Jersey Genealogical Publishing Company, 1900, page 99-100.