Cornelis Wendell was born in September 1745. He was the son of Harmanus and Catharina Van Vechten Wendell. He grew up in a merchant's home on Market Street. In 1769, he was named heir and co-executor of the estate of his father.
In 1766, he joined with other Albany men in signing the constitution of the Sons of Liberty. By the 1770s, he had begun to take his place as a contractor in city-based activities. In 1775, he was named ensign of the third ward watch. In August 1778, he was identified as an Assistant Deputy QMG and was on duty at Halfmoon. Afterwards, he was accorded a land bounty right in conjunction with the Albany militia regiment.
This Wendell family made their home in the third ward where he operated a store with his brother John. In November 1784, the Albany paper advertized that the Wendells were "selling imported goods from London, opposite the post office near the Market house." Perhaps Cornelis engaged in the river carrying trade as well. In April 1793, he witnessed the will of his brother.
During the 1770s, 80s, and 90s, his third ward home and property elsewhere were valued on city assessment rolls. In 1788, he joined in signing a community-based document objecting to the proposed Federal constitution. In 1790, his household was configured on the census. But, by 1800, he seems to have moved in with one of his brothers - although he retained his lots and dock rights.
Cornelis Wendell died in January 1814. He had lived sixty-eight years.
Sources: The life of Cornelis Wendell is CAP biography number 2766. This sketch is derived chiefly from family and community-based resources.
first posted: 11/15/06