Matthys Matthysen Van Keuren (van Keulen)

Updated 13 Aug 2000

Family main page | Van Keuren family

Captain Matthys (Mattys) Matthysen Van Keuren was the second son of

Matthys Matthysen was born in 1648 in Fort Orange near Kingston, in what later became New York state, and died in 1730 (1720?). He was an ensign in the Ulster militia in 1670, a captain in 1673; a member of the Committee of Defense in 1674; a patentee and original trustee in 1689; and the first colonial supervisor in Kingston, NY, in 1688-89.

In 1677 in Kingston, Matthys married Tjaitje De Witt, (Tietie, Tjaatje), who was born in 1659 and died in 1724. Tjaitje was the eldest daughter of Tjerck Claessen De Witt, who was appointed one of the commissaries (or magistrates) of the Wildwyck Court by Peter Stuyvestant on 3 May 1662. She was also the aunt of Dewitt Clinton, the first Governor of New York. On 7 Jun 1663, she was carried into captivity by the Indians at the burning of the villages of Kingston and Hurley, but was rescued after a time.

Matthys and Tjaitje had ten boys and three girls, including:

It was the six sons of Matthys Matthysen who, reaching their majority, says an old manuscript, "changed their names of Matthysen to Van Keuren", from which the numerous descendants get their name.

It is not known why they changed the "l" in "van Keulen" to "r" in "Van Keuren".

Send suggestions and corrections to Robert Steven van Keuren at rsvk@adnc.com