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Hudson-Mohawk Genealogical and Family Memoirs:
Conover

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[This information is from Vol. II, pp. 871-873 of Hudson-Mohawk Genealogical and Family Memoirs, edited by Cuyler Reynolds (New York: Lewis Historical Publishing Company, 1911). It is in the Reference collection of the Schenectady County Public Library at R 929.1 R45. Some of the formatting of the original, especially in lists of descendants, may have been altered slightly for ease of reading.]

Wolfert Gerretsen Van Couvenhoven, the common ancestor of the Couvenhoven, Kouwenhoven or Conover family in this country, emigrated from Amersfoort in the province of Utrecht in Holland in 1630, with the colonists who settled Rensselaerwyck, near Albany, where he was employed by the patroon as superintendent of farms. He afterward resided on Manhattan Island, where he cultivated the company's "Bouwery," or farm No. 6, and in 1657 was enrolled among the burghers of New Amsterdam, and there are land transfers that include his name, showing he acquired considerable property. His children, who were all born in Holland and came to America with him, were:

  1. Gerret Wolfersen, see forward;
  2. Jacob Wolfersen, born 1612; and
  3. Peter Wolfersen, born 1614.

(II) Gerret Wolfersen Couvenhoven, first son of the emigrant ancestor, Wolfert Gerretsen Van Couvenhoven, was born in Amersfoort, Holland, in 1610. He came to America with his father in 1630, and settled with his father and family at Flatlands, Long Island, 1636, and died there 1645. He married, about 1635, at Flatlands, Altie Cornelis, daughter of Cornelis Lambertse Cool, of Gowanus, and settled on a farm in Flatlands, where he was a magistrate in 1644. His widow married, prior to 1647, Elbert Elbertse Stoothoff. Children:

  1. William Gerretse, see forward;
  2. Jan Gerretse;
  3. Neeltje Gerretse;
  4. Marretje, married Coert Stephense Voorhees.

In 1646, after his marriage to the widow of Gerret Wolfersen Couvenhoven, by an agreement with the guardian of the latter's children, Elbert Elbertse Stoohoff took the whole of Gerrett's estate, consisting of one hundred and twenty-three morgens of land, on condition of paying the debts and bringing up and educating Gerrett's children to read and write.

(III) Willem Gerretse, first son of Gerret Wolfersen Couvenhoven, was born in Flatlands, Long Island, 1636, and was living in 1727. He resided in Brooklyn, where he was a deacon of the Reformed Dutch church, and afterward on a farm in Flatlands, Long Island, which he conveyed to his son William in July, 1727, which is about the date of his removal to Monmouth county, New Jersey. He married (first) at Flatlands, in 1660, Altje, daughter of Joris Dercksen Brinckerhoff, a widow; she died June 3, 1663. He married (second) at Flatlands, February 12, 1665, Jannetje Jonica Montfort, daughter of Pieter Montfort. By both wives he had twelve children, eleven by the second wife.

  1. Gerret Willemse, of Montgomery county, New Jersey.
  2. Neltje, married Cornelis Symonse Van Arsdalen.
  3. Neeltje, married Jan Pieterse Wyckoff, of New Jersey.
  4. Peter, of Montgomery county, New Jersey.
  5. Cornelis, of Middletown, New Jersey.
  6. Sarah, married John Roelof Schenck, of New Jersey.
  7. Albert Willemse, see forward.
  8. Jacob Willemse.
  9. John Conover.
  10. Annetje, twice married.
  11. William, of Flatlands, where he purchased the family homestead and resided until his death.
  12. Jacobnina, married Elbert Williams, of New Jersey.

(IV) Albert Willemse, seventh child of Willem Gerretse Couvenhoven, was born in Brooklyn, New York, December 7, 1676. He removed to Monmouth county, New Jersey, where he died in September, 1748. He was a member of the Freehold Reformed Dutch church as early as 1709. He married, 1701, Neeltje Roelofse Schenck, born January 3, 1682, died July 7, 1751, daughter of Roelof Martense Schenck. Children:

  1. William Albertse, married Libea Van Cleef.
  2. Roelof Albertse, married Antje Stryker.
  3. Antje or Anna Albertse, married Abraham Polhemus.
  4. Jane Albertse, married Joseph Coernel.
  5. Alka or Alice, Albertse, married Hendrik Hendrickson.
  6. Margaretta Albertse, married Daniel Polhemus.
  7. Sarah Albertse, married Joseph Van Cleef.
  8. Peter Albertse, born in Freehold.
  9. Neeltje Albertse, unmarried.
  10. Garrett Albertse, born in Freehold.
  11. Jan Albertse, married Catherine Voorhees.
  12. Cornelis Albertse, see forward.

(V) Cornelis Albertse, twelfth and youngest child of Albert Willemse and Neeltje (Schenck) Couvenhoven, was born in Freehold, New Jersey, October 28, 1728, died there January 23, 1802. He served in the French and Indian war and was with General Wolfe at Quebec. He also served in the revolution, as did, it is said, his five brothers. As the battle of Monmouth was partly fought on the farm of a Couvenhoven, it is more than probable that the entire family was engaged in that battle. Cornelis A. emigrated to Montgomery county, New York, where he had a large tract of land in the towns of Glen and Root, which he sold to his sons, and returned to New Jersey, where he died. He accepted continental money for pay and practically lost all. He married (first) Antje ———— , (second) Mary Logan, born August, 1748, died August 21, 1831, surviving her, husband twenty-nine years. Among his children were two sons, Isaac and Abraham, twins.

(VI) Isaac, son of Cornelis A. Couvenhoven, was a young man at the time the lands were purchased from his father. He helped to clear and improve them and secured a good farm from the estate, on which he is buried. He died at the age of eighty-seven. He was twice married, his last wife being Ruth Frisbie. He had sixteen children, eight by each wife. Among the children of his second wife was Silas, Isaac, Rachel, Hannah and Abraham I.

(VII) Captain Abraham I. Conover (as the name had now become), son of Isaac and Ruth (Frisbie) Conover (Couvenhoven), was born in Glen, Montgomery county, New York, February 18, 1816, died on the farm where his entire life was passed, October 7, 1898. He was a successful farmer and a prominent man of the town. He was captain of the militia company, and the annual muster was a great event in those earlier days. He married, in Chenango county, New York, Mary Horton, born in that county in 1802, died October 3, 1901, daughter of Enoch Horton, of Massachusetts, who died in the west. She had brothers and sisters: Amelia, Louis, Calvin, Cyrus, Naomi, James, Valoris Shadrick, Albert and Elvira Horton. Children of Captain Abraham I. and Mary (Horton) Conover:

  1. Cornelius, resides in Johnstown, New York; married and has issue.
  2. Martha A., married (first) James Ingersoll, (second) Adam D. Frank.
  3. James H., a widower, resides in Gloversville, New York.
  4. Rachel, married William Serviss.
  5. Isaac, see forward.
  6. Alvira, married Edward Grandy.
  7. Francis V., married (first) Emma Rider, (second) Libbie Grandy.
  8. Charles J., died in childhood.
  9. Avis, a resident of Gloversville, New York, unmarried.

These children were all born on the homestead farm, where they grew to maturity.

(VIII) Isaac, son of Captain Abraham I. and Mary (Horton) Conover, was born March 22, 1851. He has followed farming all his days and is one of the substantial men of the town. He owns two farms, one in Glen, the other in Mohawk, and since 1897 he has resided on the farm in Glen. In political preference he is a Democrat. He married, May 22, 1879, Olivia E. Van Valkenburg, born in Root, December 19, 1856. She is a graduate of Hungerford Collegiate Institute, and before her marriage was an instructor in the schools of the county. She is a daughter of George and Mary (Perrine) Van Valkenburg. Her father was born in Schenectady, New York, in 1828, and early settled in Root, where he still resides. He married Mary Perrine, born in Root, November 27, 1826. She was one of the first graduates of the State Normal School at Albany, and for a time was a teacher. The aged couple have a comfortable home in Root, and are very active, considering their years. Child of Isaac and Olivia E. (Van Valkenburg) Conover: Emmett H., born May 16, 1880; married, June 19, 1907, Estelle H. Lasher, born November, 1878, daughter of William and Anna (Taylor) Lasher, of Root. They have a son, Edward L. Conover, born October 13, 1908.

The maternal ancestor of Mrs. Conover was Daniel Perrine, a French Huguenot, who came to the country in 1665, settled on Staten Island, New York. They have lived largely in New Jersey and New York, and have been farmers and mechanics. Her great-great-grandfather, Peter Perrine, was a captain in Third Battalion in Monmouth county militia, and served in war of revolution; fought at battle of Monmouth, New Jersey. The grandfather of Mrs. Conover was Peter Perrine, of Root, Montgomery county, New York.

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