Barent Visscher


Barent Visscher was born in March 1737. He was the son of Johannes and Anna Staats Visscher. He grew up as a younger son in the large family of a trader-turned-businessman and civic leader who died when Barent was just twelve.

In 1744, he was named in the will filed by his father. His widowed mother later married newcomer John Roorbach and lived in Albany until the late 1780s.

In April 1765, Barent married Albany native Sara Visscher at the Albany Dutch church. By 1776, six children had been christened at the church where he was an occasional baptism sponsor.

Perhaps he was the "B. Visscher" who signed the Sons of Liberty Constitution during the winter of 1766.

During the mid-1760s, his house and property in the first ward were valued on city assessment rolls.

Barent Visscher a characterized himself as an "Indian Trader" - following a path taken by his father and other Visscher family members. At the outbreak of hostilities in 1775, he was among the third ward residents who contributed to the American cause. However, he would not live through the impending conflict.

Barent Visscher had filed a will in 1769. It named his wife as primary heir and his children to inherit his estate after her passing or re-marriage. Barent probably died sometime in or after 1776. His widow first was identified as the property owner of record in 1779.

Barent Visscher was dead by November 1785 when his will passed probate. Living with her son, widow Sara Visscher maintained their home on lower Columbia Street until her death in 1822.

biography in-progress


the people of colonial Albany Sources: The life of Barent Visscher is CAP biography number 4101. This sketch is derived chiefly from family and community-based resources.

first posted: 3/20/11