Radcliff - Radley


The Radcliff - Radley family of early Albany is descended from John Radcliffe who was a soldier at the fort and who married the daughter of the Albany watchman about 1680. By the time of his passing during the early 1700s, his large family was ready to establish the name (however variably spelled) in Albany and its hinterland.

In 1742, Lambert, Johannes, and Jacobus "Rallif" were identified in a list of Albany freeholders in the first ward.

With one or more named households on community survey documents, particularly after 1760, the Radcliffs maintained a consistent but modest presence in the eighteenth century city. The men mostly pursued service activities in the economy and in community service while Radcliff women married into Albany families of modest means. Marriage partners often were found among the Radcliffs' first ward neighbors.

In 1790, the Albany census listed five Radcliff/Radley-named households residing in the first ward and another in three families in surrounding Watervliet.

In 1813, six Radcliff households were listed in the first Albany directory. In 1830, the Radlcliff name still defined six Albany addresses.

During the nineteenth century, the Radcliff/Radley family spread out into eastern and northern New York State. Long-lived Rachel Van Valkenburgh, the first Radcliffe wife and its matriarch, is perhaps the family's most notable personage.

biography in-progress


the people of colonial Albany Sources: This sketch is derived chiefly from family and community-based resources. Chief among the genealogical materials is a series of articles on the family by William Laimbeer. Entitled "The Radcliffe Family of New York State," and published in the NYGBR, they appeared in four installments in volumes 80-81 (1949-50). Our work on the Radcliffs has benefitted from a family reconstitution completed by intern Glenn Griffith in 1988. We also acknowledge with thanks the comprehensive, family-based material compiled and provided by the late family genealogist Larry House. We are thankful that he was able to put his extensive work and notes on the family online. Whenever I go to that resource (he left us so much), I remember Larry fondly and am grateful for his diligence, dedication, and ever-questioning need-to-know.

Follow this link to more information on the Radcliffs name and this link to the Radley name on this website.
Radcliffs in the index.

first opened: 10/15/08