The Zeelandic roots of the presidents
The forefather of the Roosevelt family of New York was a man named Claes Martenszen van Rosevelt. Between 1650 and 1658 five of his children were baptized in the Reformed Dutch Church in New Amsterdam, a trading post of the West-Indian Company in America. In 1655 Claes bought a farm there in Manhattan. His wife is reported to have died in 1660 and was already a widow by that time. Several years later New Amsterdam was conquered by the British, and eventually grew into the city of New York.
Claes Martenszen probably left the Republic of the United Netherlands for the “New World”, as the American colony was called at the time. Possibly he came from the Zeelandic island of Tholen, where a piece of land located in between Poortvliet, Tholen and Oud-Vossemeer had been known as the Rosevelt since 1481. This piece of land is situated North of the Vijftienhonderdgemetenpolder, set against the Kadijk and Roolandsedijk. In the first quarter of the seventeenth century the Rosevelt was home to the farm of Pieter Jorisse. His father lived on the farm Hoogkamer, in the countryside around Oud-Vossemeer. In 1648 Pieter’s son Joris Pieterse bought a farm here. A younger brother of Joris was a notary in Tholen and was made steward of Vossemeer towards the end of the seventeenth century.More info on the presidents