Lansingburgh


This exposition is intended to place Lansingburgh in its Albany context. It is NOT a definitive community history but, for our purposes, a part of the history of the city of Albany.

Defined here as the land on the eastern side of the Hudson River and about eight miles north of the city of Albany. The land was granted to Albany resident Robert Sanders during the seventeenth century. In 1683, he sold it to Johannes Wendell whose detail from 1767 map showing Lansing's househeirs left it mostly dormant for the next seventy years. The land was known variously as "Steen Rabe" or "Stone Arabia." Concentrated European-style settlement on those lands dates from the period following the end of the Seven Years War.

In 1763, Albany native and resident farmer Abraham Ja. Lansing purchased the land from the Wendells. He is credited with dividing his farm into lots that could be laid out into a village. Abraham Jacobse called the tract "Lansingburgh." Anticipating a grand future, for several decades local boosters also would refer to the settlement as the "New City."

Following a survey of the land made in June 1771 by Yankee surveyor Joseph Blanchard, building lots were sold to both settlers and investors. A list of the owners of the original lots within it has appeared in a number of traditional sources. The owners included a number of Albany city residents. A composite of that list follows:

Among those who purchased lots in 1770 and 1771 were the following: William Adams, Evert Bancker, Flores Bancker, John Barber [not 7202], Abram Blaau, Waldran Blaau, Jonathan Brewer, Abram Brinkerhoff, Peter Curtinus, John Dunbar, Benjamin French, Aldab Funda, John D. Fonda, Samuel Halstead, Anne Hamersley, Moses Holt, Isaac Lansingh, Isaac H. Lansingh, Jacob A. Lansing, Alexander McLean, Mayckie McCoy, Charles Meal, Anthony Rutgers, Eleanor Taylor, Jonathan Wickwire and Robert Yates.

Other purchasers from that time up to 1790 were: James Abeel, James Boggs, jr., Joshua Burnham, James Caldwell, Caleb Carr, Joy Chambers, Jeremiah Comstock, William Conklin, Ebenezer Cooley, Cornelius Cooper, Volkert Dawson, Barnet De Clyn, Peter Goewey, Amos Graves, Thomas Hiatt, Ezra Hitchcock, Lyman Hitchcock, Peter Hogel, Jeremiah Hoogland, Horace Seymour, Nathaniel Jacobs, Ignis Kipp, Thomas Knight, Francis Lansingh, Franciscus Lansingh, Hendrick Lansingh, Levinus Lansingh, Hugh McCarty, William McGill, Patrick McNiff, James MeMurray, James Moran, Agnes Murray, William Nichols, Abram Nelson, Aaron Noble, Joseph Norris, Abram J. Ouderkirk, Platt & Williams, Charles Reed, Maria Rosa, William Scott, Cornelius S. Sebring, Jonathan Sewers, John Skiffington, Patrick Smith, Smith & Whitney, Benjamin Snyder, Barent Ten Eyck, John Tibbit, John Tillman, Margaret Tillman, James Thomson, Robert Thompson, Henry Van Arnum, John Van Cortland, Cornelius Vandenburgh, John Van Rensselaer, James Van Varick, Abram K. Van Vieck, Gerrit Van Wie, Catharine Van Wie, Aaron Ward, Ralph Watson, Frederick Weaver, Peter Weaver, John De Witt, Jonathan Wood, Wynkoop & Ten Eyck, Peter W. Yates, and Joseph Young.

At the first town meeting in 1771, Ebenezer Marvin was elected moderator and Thomas S. Diamond clerk. The first committee comprised Abraham Jacob Lansingh, Isaac Bogart, John Barber, Ebenezer Marvin and Benjamin French. Abraham Wendell was chosen pathmaster, and Robert Wendell, Levinus Lansingh, and Isaac Van Arnhem were named fence viewers.

In 1774, future Albany resident Maus R. Van Vranken is said to have opened a bi-lingual school there.

By 1791, the village of Lansingburgh was a well-known part of newly created Rensselaer County. It was erected as a town in 1807.

In 1791, future Albany resident Silvester Tiffany was publishing a newspaper in Lansingburgh called the American Spy.

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notes

Sources: Students may begin with these traditional resources: Timeline; Landmarks - provides a list of "original" property owners including a number of Albany residents; Wikipedia; LHS; Weise online; Rittner online and developer's map; and the Lansingburgh Historical Society

Detail from a map of the Manor made by John R. Bleecker in 1767. It shows the northern edge of Rensselaerswyck. Across the water from where the Mohawk flows into the Hudson, the "New City" (aka village of Lansingburgh) soon would be established. Abraham Ja. Lansing's home is #78 while #80 marks the property of Robert Wendell - the name of the individual from whom Lansing had purchased the larger tract a few years earlier.


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first posted: 9/10/09