(Parentage Unknown)

In A Description of New Netherland, Adriaen van der Donck had poured his knowledge of the colonies, people, its natives, plants, winds, insects, mountains, snows, dangers, and its promises. He died in 1655 but his book became a best seller and went into a second publishing the following year. It fueled a passion for the New World colony of Manhatten.

Picardy, FranceIn R.D. Owen’s Lineage of the Caverlys, (see note below), he says that “Jean Cavalier, born 1644, Picardy, France, came to
New York before 1670. ....... He died in 1699 and had served as a clerk in a law court.” But tax records seem to indicate he died in 1696 as noted later.


The following entry places Jean Cavalier’s birth date as 1644: New York City Wills of 1665-1707, page 150

“The deposition of Hartman Wessels, aged 54, or thereabouts, and John Cavalier, aged 45, deponents being sworn upon the Holy Evangelists, that on or about the 9th day of July, 1689,.....”

Per New York Marriages Previous to 1784 by the Genealogical Publishing Co whose source was NY general Entries, Vol. IV, pg. 99, we find a marriage license dated Feb. 6, 1671 for John Cavlier and Eleanor La Chare. Other references show her as Eleanor de la Chaire or Heyltie Salomons. New Amsterdam (NYC) was heavily Dutch and they had their own naming conventions. Eleanor de la Chaire would have been the more formal usage. In the familiar usage an “ie” or “je” was often added to indicate a child or young person. In the use of Heyltie Salomons it would indicate daughter of Salomon. Her father Saloman La Chair was listed as a member of the Dutch Reformed Church in 1660-65 and was one of the few attorneys at that time. Her mother, Annette (Jacobs) Salomon became a member in 1660 and Heyltje became a member on Nov. 4, 1670. The following baptisms prove Eleanor and Heyltie are the same person.

City Council Minutes
Neiuw Amsterdam in 1653

New Amsterdam

(Parentage Unknown)


The baptisms of the Dutch Reformed Church of New Amsterdam 1639-1730 lists two of their children: 2 Jun 1675; Anna Catharyn born to Jean Cavalier, Heyltie Salomons; witness Magdaleentie Van Couwenhoven. 4 Feb 1682; Magdalena born to Jean Cavalier, Heyltie Salomons; witness Magdaleentie Vandyck.

 Proof of Jean and Elinor’s six children can be found in New York City Wills, 1665-1707 on page 149 as follows: "MAGDALENA VAN DYCKE. "In the name of God, Amen, this 3d day of February, 1693, I, Magdalena Van Dycke, widow, of the city of New York, being sick, do make this my last will." I leave to Ellinor Cavalier, the now wife of John Cavalier the elder, that parcel of ground which the said John Cavalier's house stands on, the breadth of the whole lot, as broad as the house stands but no further. If she die before her husband, then it is to go to my heirs, but if she outlive her husband then to her absolutely. The rest of estate is left to Peter, Katharine, John, Magdalena, Mary, and Elizabeth Cavalier, and to Kathrina Arnouts Van der Weyde. Makes Peter Cavalier and his mother, Ellinor Cavalier, executors. --Witnesses, Evert Van Hook, Olphert Shwarts, Wm. Huddlestone. Proved, before Colonel Stephen Van Cortlandt, February 3, 1696, by oath of witnesses, and Peter Cavalier take the oath as executor.”

On page 178 is “Recorded for Peter Cavalier. Account of the estate of MAGDALENA VAN DYKE, of New York, widow. 1 house sold, £120. Total amount, £133. July 27, 1697. --Witnesses, Peter Cavalier, John Watts, Thomas Carrs. Proved, before Colonel Stephen Van Cortlandt, November 24, 1698.” (Note: Magdalena Ryssens was first the widow of Jacob Couwenhoven and then second of Henricus Van Dyke.)

don't know 

Above from 1683, Sept 15, Minutes of the Common Council of City of New York, Page 98

On page 42 in Chapter 5, of Historic Homes and Institutions and Genealogy and Family History of New York by Wm. S. Pelletreau, the author reproduced a 1686 membership list made out by Rev. Henricus Selyns of the Dutch Church in New Amsterdam. This list gives the names of the church members and their spouses. It happened in many cases that husbands were church members, while the wives were not, and vice versa. Listed is Heyltje Delachair, house wife of John Cavalier, living on Lang De Wal (Wall St., South Side.) There were no houses on the north side as that is where a wooden staked wall had been built for protection of the city.

In Long Island Colonial Patents by Frederick Van Wyck (1935), page 81 says “The Catholics in the city of New York in or about June, 1696 were officially reported to be Maj. Anthony Brockholes, Mr. Thomas Howarding, Mr. William Duglas, John Caveleir, Peter Cavileir, John Cooly, John Patte, Christiane Lowrance, John Fenny, Phillip Cunningham.” Van Wyck listed New York Colonial Documents, Vol. IV, p. 166 as his source.

In chapter XX of History of the New York Fire Department, there was only one public well in 1658. In 1677 six were to be constructed, one across the street from John Cavalier’s house. See the full size map on the page after next.



(Parentage Unknown)

Jean/Jan must have died in 1696 because the Tax Assessments for his West Ward house in Feb. 1697 show “the Widdow of Jan Cavelier house &c.” There were multiple assessments through the year. Some were for maintenance of the minister and the poor, some for support of local government, and some to “Secure the Frontiers at Albany and for Recruiting his Majesties three Companies posted there”. These early tax assessment records can now be found on the internet at

Of the six children of Jean and Elinor, Peter Gerardus was our direct ancestor and a page on him follows. Dutch church records give us some information on some of the other children. Anna Catharyn was baptized in 1675 as mentioned earlier and she married Peter White on March 2, 1697. Magdalena baptized in 1682, married William Chisnell, Dec. 22, 1701 in New York City. Mary may have married Daniel Jouet of New Jersey and I am currently researching this line to prove or disprove this theory. Nothing is known about John Jr. and Elizabeth at this time.

From Colonial New York-A History by Michael Kammer we find some interesting facts regarding the new world to which our ancestor had immigrated. In 1661 New Amsterdam (NYC) was a town of some 300 buildings and 1300 inhabitants. In 1665 it had a population of about 1,470 and in 1676 the city had grown to more than 2,200. And a census was taken in 1698 showing about 4,500 for the city.

Based on the percentage of military personnel able to sign their names versus only make their marks, it was estimated that 79% of adult white males were illiterate.

A Rev. Miller lamented that “Tis in this country a common thing even for the meanest persons, so soon as the bounty of God has furnished them with a plentiful crop, to turn what they can as soon as may be into money, and that money into drink.....There are many couples living together without ever being married in any manner of way; many of whom, after they have lived some years so, quarrel, and, thereupon separating, take unto themselves. . companions.” Even when couples married, complained Rev. Miller, “enjoyment precedes the marriage.”

If you would like to view the PDF format click here
And the map at the bottom here
It may take a minute or two for the page to load.

Home - Chat - Forum - Email - The Family
Copyright 2007 All Rights Reserved.