The Gerritse family in Albany begins with Beverwyck pioneer Ryer Elbertse and his wife Maria Barents, the widow of Gerrit Van Schaick. His son, Gerrit Ryerse, became an Albany resident. Spellings of the name vary widely after the first three letters.
Mainstays for much of the first half of the eighteenth century, by 1750s the Gerritse family name had disappeared from the city rolls as the census of 1756 listed only tailor "Hend Garrison" as an Albany householder. However, the name of "Fredrick Garrison" also appeared on that community survey.
The descendants of Ryer Elbertse are distinct from the family of Marte Gerritse (Van Bergen)!
By 1790, only the name of Frederick Garrison appeared on the Albany census. However, we suspect that his origins lie elsewhere. Statewide, the "Gerritsen" surname no longer was found among the heads of households.
After 1700, the frequently encountered patronymic "Gerritse" characteristic of a number of early Albany families eventually was replaced by surnames such as "Lansing," "Van Schaick," "Vanderpoel," "Van Wie," and others. None of those people were descendants of the first Albany Ryer Elbertse as noted above.
first posted: 10/20/02; last revised 9/27/10