Johannes M. Beekman
In February 1754, he was almost thirty-two when he married Maria Nicolls of Rensselaerswyk. She died after only one child. A decade later in January 1764, he married Elizabeth Douw, a younger sister of the mayor of Albany. That marriage produced four children who were christened in the Albany Dutch church where he was a member and pewholder.
These Beekmans also lived in the third ward where his holdings were accorded moderate assessments. He seems to have earned a living as a contractor and served the community as firemaster (1753), constable, watch captain, and finally was elected alderman - first in 1778.
In May 1776, he stood up for American liberties when he was elected to represent the third ward on the Albany Committee of Correspondence. Previously, he had signed the "General Association". He was active in committee work for the balance of its life. First in 1778, he was elected to the Albany Board of the Commissioners for Detecting and Defeating Conspiracies and served thru 1780. During that time, he also sat on the Albany city council. Afterwards, he was awarded a bounty right in conjunction with the Albany militia regiment.
At the close of hostilities Beekman was into his sixties and seems to have withdrawn from public life. In 1790, five slaves attended his household - tying this Beekman household for the tenth largest number of slaves in the city.
Sources: The life of Johannes M. Beekman is CAP biography number 3863 This sketch is derived chiefly from family and community-based resources.
first posted: 1/30/06