John C. Ten Broeck


John C. Ten Broeck was born in July 1740. He was the only son of the marriage of Cornelis and Maria Cuyler Ten Broeck. His father was a businessman and community leader. This Johannes sometimes was known as "John C. Ten Broeck" - probably to prevent confusion with his prominent but aged city-based uncle and also with a slightly older Claverack-based, but same-named kinsmen.

In June 1762, John C. married Albany native Sara Gansevoort at the Albany Dutch church where he was a member and regular baptism sponsor. The marriage produced eleven children. But only three of them would live to raise their own families.

These Ten Broecks made their home in the third ward near the houses of their parents. His Albany property was valued on every Albany assessment roll until after 1790.

In 1763, he served as firemaster for the third ward. From 1766 to 1770 he was elected and re-elected assistant alderman. From 1771 to the outbreak of hostilities, he was chosen annually as alderman for the third ward. While on the city council, he was active in its deliberations - particularly where they involved the Albany waterfront.

During the 1760s, he had held commissions in the Albany company of the county militia - beginning a military career that matured during the next decades. In 1766, he joined in signing a constitution of the Albany Sons of Liberty. At the outbreak of hostilities in 1775, he was elected a member of the Committee of Correspondence representing the third ward. He served on the committee until mid-1777. In 1776, he was appointed to the New York Provincial Congress. Throughout the war, he maintained his militia commission.

In 1780, he was elected to his old seat on the city council. He resigned the next year to become sheriff of Albany County. Throughout the 1780s, he served in one of those offices.

In 1790, his home on the east side of Market Street was configured on the census. In 1792, he was elected to represent Albany in the New York State Assembly. In 1798 and in 1800, "John C. Ten Broeck" was identified as "Grand Marshall" of a convention of the State Royal Arch Masons in Albany. But before 1800, his name had dropped from Albany rolls. After that, he probably moved south to Columbia or Ulster County.

we are being especially cautious here!

John C. Ten Broeck died in December 1822 at the age of eighty-three. A newspaper obituary noted his passing:

Dec. 26. John Ten Broeck died, aged 83. He was one of the patriots of the revolution, and together with Abraham Yates, formerly mayor of the city, were the last representatives under the colonial government from the city and county of Albany. Mr. Ten Broeck was also a member of the convention of this state, which in 1777, framed our constitution. During the arduous struggle of the revolution he held several responsible stations, and discharged the duties thereof with fidelity. After the organization of our state government, he at different times received distinguished marks of public confidence; and in every situation in which he was placed, he acquitted himself as an upright and meritorious public servant.

biography in-progress


the people of colonial Albany Sources: The life of John C. Ten Broeck is CAP biography number 55. This sketch is derived chiefly from family and community-based resources. We cannot complete his biography as some of his exploits have been confused with those of Johannes C. Ten Broeck of Kingston.

first posted 10/30/06; updated 6/26/15