Act now to resolve longstanding issues related to Van Voorhees, Vorees, etc.

+5 votes
164 views

The 1984 book Van Voorhees Family, published by the Van Voorhees Family Association, is now available for unlimited one-hour checkouts from the Internet Archive. This book corrects a number of errors in the genealogy published by the same association in 1888 that have been propagated through other books and family trees and have been problematic for the New Netherland Settlers Project.

Access to the book is provided because of the COVID-10 debacle, and it will not last. Descendants should seize the opportunity to access the book (see the Space page for access details) and clear up uncertainties and conflicts in your genealogy. enlightened

I have been busy adding information from this book to some problem profiles, and I have corrected some errors here. One longstanding question that the book resolved for me (your mileage may vary) is the identity of the Petrus Voorhees who married Sophia van de Bogart. I am now convinced that her husband was Voorhees-273, not Voorhees-335 (who probably died without issue). I intend to disconnect the wife and children from Voorhees-335 unless serious objections are raised (so speak up now...).

WikiTree profile: Space:Van_Voorhees_Family
in Genealogy Help by Ellen Smith G2G Astronaut (1.2m points)

The Petrus and Sophia I refer to are important ancestors for Low Dutch Settlements in Kentucky.

I personally have an interest in this family and would appreciate the unmergjng not occur just yet. While I appreciate you want this cleaned up asap, I like most of us, have many things on my plate and can’t get to this in the time frame you are wanting. As well from my impression, any sources I’ve located in the past to profiles is considered questionable from your point of view so frustrating to say the least.

Melona, if I remember correctly, the source that you have mostly used for this family is Seven Bogert-Bogart families in Canada; whose ancestors were among the early Dutch settlers of New Netherland. by John Albert Bogart, 1962. The information about the Peter Voorhees who married Fetje van Bogert is on this page: https://archive.org/details/sevenbogertbogar00boga/page/224/mode/2up .

That page says that the Peter who married Fetje was the son of Roelof Van Voorhees and Debora Cortelyou. That is the information given by the 1888 Van Voorhees genealogy, which is readily available for free online -- and remarkably is still being reprinted and sold by Amazon and other publishers. The 1888 genealogy has been a major source for WikiTree profiles of this family, mostly because it has been maddeningly difficult to get access to more recent publications or to find records. It is likely that the author of the Bogert-Bogart book (who was mostly interested in Bogerts and Bogarts) used the 1888 van Vorhees book as his source for information about the Voorhees who married Fetje,

The 1984 book says that the 1888 book made a mistake regarding the parents of the Peter who married Fetje. Now that I have looked up Roelof in the two books, I wholeheartedly agree. Roelof died in 1782 and left the bulk of his [apparently large] estate on Long Island to his son Peter, who was still living to receive it. But the Peter who married Fetje had removed to Pennsylvania several years before that, and had died before 1780. So they cannot possibly be the same person.

WikiTree used to have a bunch of competing profiles for the Peter who married Fetje, but there is no longer a profile that makes him the son of Roelof and Debora. The only ones left are (1) Voorhees-273, which has him born in 1718 as a son of Jan Janse Van Voorhees and Neeltje Nevius, and (2) Voorhees-335, which has him baptized in 1730 as a son of Koert Gerrits Van Voorhees and Grietie Wyckoff. That theory may have been invented by WikiTreers; I have not run across it in a published source. The 1984 book states pretty clearly that there was no further record of that man after his baptism. Also, reasoning from birth dates and the names of the children of Peter and Fetje provides good evidence for Jan Janse and Neeltje Nevius being the parents of that Peter.

1 Answer

+3 votes
Is there somewhere you are laying out your case for doing so? And what does "speak up now" mean? In the next 24 hours? In the next week? Only if nobody speaks up with objections?
by Jonathan Crawford G2G6 Mach 9 (91.6k points)
I have added sourced information and discussion to the text section of some of the various profiles that I linked in my question, particularly Voorhees-273. Also, I added profile messages on some pages, such as Voorhees-335. You will note from those pages that discussion of these profiles has been going on for a long time. If a person responds to me here or on one of those pages, I will see it.

As for how long I will wait for comment, if no one says anything within a few days, I will do the disconnecting.

It seems that at least one person believes that more research is needed on parentage for Voorhees-273 according to comments. The discussion seems to have been going on for a few years, but with few participants.

In addition, you are over-stating your case. 

Ex. 1 - You say in the notes that “Stokes noted [...] the erroneous identification of him as the husband of Fetje van der Bogaert has been repeated in other secondary sources [...] and should be rejected.” 

Stokes does not use such strong language, and simply says “The 1888 genealogist was in error [...] Peter is not a Voorhees name and appears infrequently in the earlier generations” without references as to why he believes the error to exist. The fact that the word “infrequently” is used indicates that the name is indeed in use.

Ex. 2 - You state “ Stokes concluded that this Peter Voorhees (the son of Jan Janse Van Voorhees and Neeltje Nevius, born 25 January 1718 and baptized at New Brunswick) must be the man who married Sophia. ”

Stokes does not say “must have been”, Stokes uses uncertain language and says “On the other hand, Jan, no. 44, did have a son Peter [...]  we may not have all of his children, only those who survived to adulthood. It is presumed [...] We do not know the exact date of his marriage. There could have been children born before the first one on record. [...] This church has several gaps in the record. We do not know. “

There are references given to other sources, but not which facts belong to which, and without access to those, it is impossible to form a qualitative opinion. They include such ambiguous references as “ Research by Mrs. Donnan B. Harding, Ms. in files of Van Voorhees Association”. While Mrs. Harding was in the associations employ, we do not know of the quality of her research to trust it implicitly. 

Lastly, this volume was published almost 40 years ago, it is possible that more records have come to light or will in this digital age. 

I suggest that if there is no pressing need to perform this action, that it be postponed until more evidence is available or the sources from the Van Voorhees volume can be examined directly for more information. Perhaps there are DNA tests that can assist in this matter?

Has anyone reached out to the Van Voorhees Association to ask if they have any additional information?

I have emailed the preident of the association (vanvoorhees.org)  in the hopes that additional information can come to light, and I will respond here if the Association does not do so directly.
And of course the email bounced, the association contact seems defunct and the facebook page has not been updated since 2011. I did find that 33 boxes of records were donated to the NY state library in 2011-2012, http://www.nysl.nysed.gov/msscfa/sc23157.htm
It also appears that familysearch has multiple sources published by the association, including a volume for the first 6 generations published in 2000 and others. (https://www.familysearch.org/search/catalog/results?count=20&query=%2Bcall_number%3A%22929.273%20V379*%22)

Thanks for your sleuthing, Jonathan. It’s interesting about the Van Voorhees Association. The vanvoorhees.org website is still functioning, so somebody must be paying the domain renewals and hosting fees. And I find plenty of recent activity on their Facebook page, particularly at https://www.facebook.com/vanvoorheesassociation/?ref=page_internal and https://www.facebook.com/vanvoorheesassociation/community/?ref=page_internal . The Van Voorhees descendants in our midst (not me -- I have no known relationship to the immigrant ancestor) may want to connect with the Facebook page.

You had me going there for a minute or so with your comment about the 6 generations book. (What’s this?? FamilySearch has the 6-generations Van Voorhees book online!?!?!) But all they have is a couple of paper copies of the book, in the Family History Library. (It is in other libraries, too, according to Worldcat.) I have a strong suspicion (based on how these projects typically are done) that the new content in the 6-generations book, which was published in 2000 (just 16 years after the book I highlighted in this thread) was almost entirely about the numerous members of generations 5 and 6, and the content about generations 1 through 4 probably is almost entirely identical to the 1984 book. Since 2000, the association has published some content on later generations, but they did not attempt to compile it into a consolidated book, presumably because each successive generation is so much larger than the one before it.

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