Michiel Paulus Vandervoort

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Michiel Paulus Vandervoort

Also Known As: "Michail", "Michael Pauluszen Van Der Voort", "/Vander Voort/", "Mahail Pauluzen /Vandervoort/"
Birthdate: (77)
Birthplace: Dendermonde, East Flanders, Flanders, Belgium
Death: circa September 20, 1692 (73-81)
Talbot County, Province of Maryland (Unk)
Immediate Family:

Husband of Marritje Joris Rapalje
Father of Michiel Michielse Vandervoort; Josyntie Michielse Vandervoort; Jocyntie Michielse Vandervoort; Jan Michielse Vandervoort; Maria Michaelse Vandervoort and 7 others

Occupation: surgeon, taphouse owner, innkeeper, Real estate, shipping, tobacco, Unk
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Michiel Paulus Vandervoort


Records of the Reformed Dutch Church in New Amsterdam and New York -Samuel S. Purple

  • 1640 18 Nov; Michiel Paulus, jm van dermonde in Vlaenderen; Maria Rappalje, jd van N. Nederlt


NA DRC Baptisms 1639-1730

  • 1642 Jan 19; Michiel Paulusz; Michiel; Pieter Loockermans, Hans Noorman, Catharina Trico
  • 1643 Dec 20; Michiel Paulusz; Josyntie; Joris Rappalje, Jan Aertszen, Tryntje Everts
  • 1647 Jun 02; Michiel Pauluszen; Josyntje; Adriaen Tienhoven, Maryken Lievens √
  • 1649 Jan 03; Michiel Pauluszen; Paulus; Joris Rapalje and his wife √
  • 1650 Dec 11; Michiel Pauluszen Van der voort; Jan; Adriaen Dirckszen, Hendrick Pieterszen, Grietie Gerrits, Hester Jans √
  • 1653 Jul 27; Michiel Pauluszen Van der Voort; Maria; Pieter Van Neste, Abraham Martenszen, Engeltie Mans √
  • 1655 Aug 22; Michiel Pauluszen, Marritie Joris; Hendrick; Sara Joris
  • 1656 Oct 18; Michiel Pauluszen Carman; Joris; Lysbeth Jans
  • 1658 Oct 27; Michiel Paulus; Claertie; Hillegond Joris


Michael Paulus Van Der Voort came from East Flanders region of Dendermonde prior to the year 1640 and located in the Dutch city of New Amsterdam, now New York. The records show that he was married to Marie Rapalye or Rappelyca November 18, 1640. Their marriage is the fifth on record in New Amsterdam. Among their children was one whom they called Paul, who was born in Bedford, Long Island, and was baptized January 3, 1649. In the course of time Paul was married to Lysbeth Paulus Dinckensen. T

Source: History of the Venderford Family Originating in New York (Website) http://www.vanderfordfamily.com/html/newyork.htm


Michael Paul Vanderford, the first Vanderford to settle in America, was the founder of the Vanderford, Vandervoort, and a branch of the Vandeveer families. While in New York Michael went by his Dutch name Michiel Pauluszen (Michael son of Paul). Around 1650 he added Van der Voort to his name, Michael first appears in the written record when he married Maria Rapalje on December 18, 1640. Her parents, George Rapalje and Catalina Trico, were among the very first settlers in New York.

In 1626, Manhattan was selected as the official Company site in New Netherland and all Albany families were ordered to move there. The Albany settlers needed more land, but none was available, the local Indians being unwilling to part with any more of their agricultural land. While in Albany the Rapalje's first child, Sarah, was born. Sarah Rapalje is considered to be the first white, female, child born in New York, and the first of either sex who stayed in New York to become a settler. She was married at age 14, bore 15 children by two different husbands, and lived until age 60. Maria, the Rapalje's second daughter, was born on Manhattan on March 11, 1627. She was married at age 13, bore Michael Paul 9 children, and lived past the age of 60.

Exactly when Michael Paul Vanderford came to New York is undocumented , but it was no doubt some years prior to 1640, when he and Maria Rapalje were married. Considering the shortage of single women, George Rapalje would have had plenty of offers for the hand of his young daughter Maria, and would have selected someone established and a "good match". It is probable that Michael had been employed by the Dutch West India Company in some trade capacity, leaving the Company prior to marrying Maria. This is difficult to verify, however, as all of the early documents and archives relating to the Dutch occupation of New Netherland were sold at auction as scrap sometime around 1820, and were never seen again.

Settlers in Manhatten had a difficult existence. The land was less fertile than at Albany, the clearing and tilling was hard work and there were not enough cattle or horses to help with the labor. The shortage of livestock also meant a shortage of manure for fertilizer. the farmers could raise enough for their families, but there was very little extra to sell. The currency of the town and province consisted of beaver skins and wampum. The settlers did, however, conduct a thriving smuggling trade in furs.

On June 16, 1637, George Rapalje purchased a piece of land called "Rinnegackonck" from two local Indians, identified as Kakapetteyno and Pewichaas, for "a lot of merchandise." This land was located on Long Island in what is now Brooklyn. Six years later the Company granted George the piece of land he had already bought from the Indians. Soon after Michael and Maria were married, Michael contracted to purchase land close to George Rapalje but did not complete the transaction, due to the Indian uprisings.

In 1640 Director-General Kieft tried to collect tribute in corn or services from the Indians. The Indians did not cooperate, and soldiers were dispatched. The final result was a period of Indian wars from 1641 to 1645, during which time the settlers were forced to abandon their farms and flee to the protection of the fort. Cattle were killed, houses destroyed, women and children taken captive and men tomahawked, including George Rapalje's son Jacob.

On October 24, 1643, a council of citizens sent an appeal to the West India Company:

The fort is defenceless and entirely out of order and resembles .. rather a molehill than a fort against an enemy .. (the Indians) threaten to attack the fort with all their force, which now consists of about 1500 men.. all the outside places are mostly in their power... the freemen (exclusive of the English) are about 200 strong, who must protect by force their families now skulking in straw outside the fort .. most of the houses have been fired and destroyed.3

The fort was not large enough to shelter all the inhabitants or protect their houses, so in 1653 it was decided to construct a palisade , or wall, along the upper limit of the town of New Amsterdam. On April 20th, it was resolved that "the Citizens without exception" should begin "immediately digging a ditch from the East River to the North (Hudson) River, 4 to 5 feet deep and 11 to 12 feet wide at the top sloping in a little towards the bottom" and that carpenters should "be urged to prepare jointly the stakes and rails..." 4 The labor for this task was provided by all "Burghers, Merchants, Mechanics, or crews of ships, sloops in harbor or to come," working in four three-day shifts. The palisades, completed early in July, protected the southern tip of Manhattan Island, running from the Hudson to the East River. It was a line of solid planks, tapered at the top and set close together, held together by cross timbers, with an earthen ramp behind. The road next to this wall became Wall Street, the financial center of New York. Michael used his sloop to deliver 14 loads of lumber to be used in the construction of the palisades. In September, his wife, Maria, had to go to court to demand payment from the city. Michael was awarded 10 guilders for each load.

The selction of town lots in Manhatten was somewhat haphazard. Each settler, in an attempt to get as close to the fort as possible, simply "squatted" wherever he chose. After a period of six years the settler was granted a patent (deed) for his house and garden. On January 21, 1647 Michael was granted Lot 2 of Block N Castello Plan, on which was built a large stone brewery. He later obtained part of Lot 7, and built the house in which his family lived, now 49 Stone Street. George Rapalje's family lived on Lot 5 of Block G, right next to the Wall of the fort.

Later, Peter Stuyvestant took steps to organize the town. He hired surveyors to define the property lines and required that anyone intending to build submit plans for approval by the surveyors.

In 1655 there was another Indian uprising when a farmer killed a squaw for taking peaches from his orchard. At that time, Stuyvestant had taken every able-bodied soldier from the fort on an expedition against the Swedes on the Delaware River. Two thousand Indians gathered on the Hudson River and over 700 landed on Manhattan. The Indians killed 100 people, took 150 captives and left 300 people without homes or belongings.

In 1657 Stuyvestant raised considerable monies to rebuild the city's defenses by introducing the title of "burgher." Michael became one of the 204 small burghers, at a cost of 25 florins. There were also 20 "great Burghers", who held positions in the government, Company or military, and paid 50 florins. Being a burgher gave you the right to engage in trade and hold office.

By the end of the 1650's, New Amsterdam had been marred by two major Indian uprisings, rising taxes and the confused and conflicting economic policy of the Dutch West India Company. Stringent laws were instituted against the sale of intoxicants except at specific times. An excise tax was placed on wines and liquors to raise money to complete the Church. Tavern-keepers were required to take out a license and pay six guilders each quarter. A 1% tax was levied on the value of houses and lots and a 5% tax on the rents from houses. These taxes and restrictions made life more difficult for someone like Michael who was running a tavern and inn, renting houses and letting rooms.

In contrast to the Dutch, the British, with the development of an agricultural economy, were doing well, expanding rapidly and bringing in many new settlers. The British colonists from Massachusetts and Virginia were settling on Long Island, the Connecticut River and Westchester County on land once considered to be Dutch.

At this time Maryland offered land for settlement, and Michael decided to move. In 1658 and 1659 he sold most of his holdings in New Amsterdam and in 1660 his entire family sailed for the eastern shore of Maryland. Four years later, Peter Stuyvestant surrendered New Amsterdam to the British.

Paul and John, two of Michael's sons, returned to New York under their Dutch family name "Vandervoort", continuing the Vandervoort line in New York.

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Alternate death date 9/29/1692

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Michiel Paulus Vandervoort's Timeline

Dendermonde, East Flanders, Flanders, Belgium
March 29, 1641
Age 26
New Amsterdam, New Netherland Colony


1641 Mar 29; Joris Rappalje; Catharyn; Michiel Pauluszen, Sara Rappalje

The two witnesses are the husband of her sister Maria and her eldest sister, Sara.

January 20, 1642
Age 27
New Netherlands
December 20, 1643
Age 28
New Netherland
June 2, 1647
Age 32
New Netherland
June 2, 1647
Age 32
Manhattan, Kings, New York, USA
January 3, 1649
Age 34
New Netherland Colony
December 2, 1650
Age 35
New Netherland
July 27, 1653
Age 38
Brooklyn, Kings, New York, USA