|Myths & Legends
(fact or fiction)
Van Petten Origins
Over the centuries and through the 16 plus V.P. generations, a constant story
has been handed down from parent to child - that the Van Petten name
originates from European royalty. I am not writing this to disprove or prove
(although I wish that I could verify) this story. I am writing this to share the
story among some V.P. families that may not have heard the tale.
The truely amazing part of this tale is that it has survived through the years and
has been handed down through different V.P. family branches that have been
seperated since the early 1700's. As in any legend, there is usually basis in fact.
It starts in the northern Holland region called Noord (North) and in the tiny
fishing and trading village of Petten. The present village of Petten is yet the
fourth to be located on the present site (weather & fire disasters). From the
History of Zijpe, written in Dutch comes... "The beginning of the 15[E] age
was there talk of [Petten]. The [Zijpe] it is from before 270 after [Chr] we are
able to date it with certainty. The Earl of Holland [Gaf] in 1388 gave his first
license for the diking of the [Zijpe] out of ['Recht] the water. Beginning 1438
[Kregen] the inhabitants of [Petten], [Groede] and [Scuffle] were given by the
Earl, all of [Poldermolen] that resulted [Windrecht]. In 1317(?), Lord Wouten
Van Egmond gave it (this land) to Claes Janz Van Petten. [Leefden] Deserving
the Van [Pettemers]?"
History of Petten and the Zijpe: http://www.zijpe.nl/
The [Aelbrecht] of Bavaria, granted to a (nephew?) the land that made up 'Old'
Petten. This bestowed upon him the title of [Count/Earl]. Claes Jansz van
Petten was his 'title' and the time period was about 1450 to 1500 (although we
are not sure of the exact year).
"In 1610, the [Countess] divided the manor's land between her four sons,
Albert, Claes, Phillepe and Simon." Albert's name is given as 'Albert, born in
the Spring' (the Dutch did not use surnames).
Now is where the stories and fact get tangled. According to tradition, only the
eldest son would inherit the land, and of Albert, Claas, Phillepe and Simon; we
do not know who was the eldest, although Albert was named after his father,
Albert of Petten (usually bestowed in Dutch tradition to the first son). Family
legend has it that the eldest of Albert's (Albert, born in the Spring) three sons
stayed in Petten, to inherit the land and where he was a beer brewer and the
town's Bergermeister. The other two sons made their way to the new Dutch
colony in America of New Netherlands (New York), landing in New
Amsterdam (New York City) about 1641. From New Amsterdam, the two
brothers split up to seek their fortunes, one settling in upstate (Schenectady &
Albany), New York and the other in Kingston (Usopus), New York or in
Records have the family name of Van Petten (Claas Frederickse) and that of
Van Putten (Johannes) arriving in America at or about the same time, and our
Van Petten patriarch is Claas Frederickse Van Petten (1641-1728), son of
Frederick Albertse Van Petten (ca 1610), son of Albert Albertse Van Petten (ca
1580), son of Albert of Petten (ca 1550).
Could the Van Putten (Johannes) be a sibling of our Claes Frederickse Van
Petten and possibly be of direct line royalty and we may be grandchildren of
royatly (not of the first son?).
Food for thought !
This is the 1510 Coat of Arms for/of Putten
This is the Coat of Arms for the village of Petten
depicting three wells of a fresh water spring