According to traditional resources, Aernout Cornelis Viele was born in New Amsterdam in May 1640. He was the son of New Netherland pioneers Cornelis and [reputedly] Maria Du Trieux Viele. His father was, among other things, a landholder at Schenectady.
By the late 1650s, Aernout Cornelise had relocated to Beverwyck to pursue fur trading opportunities. In 1660, he signed a petition of prominent fur traders asking for more regulation of the trade. He served as an Indian interpreter and was known as a merchant. In 1679, his Albany home was included on an assessment of householders. In 1681, he was living in the house of Jan Hendrix de Bruyn. Three years later, he was cited by the Albany court for being in tax arrears.
In 1663, he had married Gerretje Gerrits of Amsterdam. The marriage may have produced eight children. He later became a member and supporter of the Albany Dutch church.
He was accorded some reknown as an interpeter and Indian agent and spent considerable time among the Iroquois. During the 1680s and 90s, his name appreared on lists of Albany merchants. His daughter and her children were killed and his son taken prisoner during the attack on Schenectady in 1690. He was appointed Indian agent by Jacob Leisler.
Aernout Cornelis Viele reputedly died on Long Island about 1704. However, Viele descendants could be found across New York colony and state.
Sources: The life of Aernout Cornelis Viele is CAP biography number 6777. This sketch is derived chiefly from family and community-based resources. He is the subject of a largely eroneous but online biographical profile.
first posted: 10/10/04