Number 27 - The Loveridge Patent No. 8 -
The Overbagh Family
Originally published in the Catskill Examiner by Henry Brace between the years 1876 and 1879. Article 27 was published on October 5, 1878. Extracted from the microfilm copies of the Catskill Examiner located at the Vedder Research Library. Transcribed by Barbara Bartley.
“The Examiner”, dated Oct. 5, 1878
LOCAL SKETCHES No.
27. History of the Town of
Catskill, To The Year 1783.By
Several years ago I frequently visited Frederick Overbagh, at his house at the top of Heber’s Hill, on the Old Esopus Road. He was then an old man of seventy-six, but hale both of body and of mind. Our talk was wholly of the past, in which his retentive and accurate memory delighted to dwell, and except for the aid which he then rendered me, this paper could hardly have been written.
Johan Jurry Overbagh, as I have said, died about the year 1759, leaving three sons and one daughter.
(1) Peter, baptized at Old Catskill on the 10th day of August, 1755, married Elizabeth Fiero and died--
(2) John, Jr., baptized at Old Catskill on the 10th day of 1757, married Annaatje Conyn, and died on the 11th day of March, 1815, aged 58 years.
(3) Jeremy, baptized at Old Catskill, on the 15th day of April, 1759, married Sara, a daughter of Ignatius Van Orden, and died a soldier on the frontier during the war of 1812.
(4) Katharina, baptized at Old Catskill in January, 1754, married William DeWitt and died--
During the last century, the sons of many prudent yeomen, lest their lands should not produce enough for the support of themselves and their large families, were made to learn a trade. Peter and John Overbagh accordingly became cordwainers and Jeremy a tailor. I do not know whether these young men, after they became journeymen, pursued their occupations. If they did, it was in the intervals of farm-labor, by going about from house to house among their neighbors, and by working in summer upon the covered stoop and in winter near the great fire place in the kitchen. Their wages were small; they got their board and from four to six York shillings a day.
The materials for the shoes and the garments were supplied to the handcraftsmen. The leather came from the hides of the calves and the oxen, which had lain in the tan-pits of the farm or of the neighborhood for at least a year. As for the cloth, every yeoman kept a few sheep and grew a little flax. The wool and the hetcheled fibres of the plant were spun by the women and by them woven into linsey-woolsey, dyed with butternut, and into coarse but durable linen cloth. I remember the natural pride with which Mistress Annaatje or Hannah, daughter of Abraham and wife of Frederick Overbagh, showed me some pieces of snow-white linen, which, fifty years before, she had spun, woven and bleached, with her own hands.
After the death of Johan Jurry Overbagh, his widow carried on the business of the farm and brought up his infant children. In 1783, John, Jr., the second son, was in possession of the estate, and in this possession he remained until his death in 1815. His wife, Annaatje Conyn, was a German by birth or by immediate descent, and was reared by Frederick Smith in the house which, in our time, belonged to Paulus Trumpbour. She is buried in the graveyard of the Overbaghs, and the inscription upon her tomb-stone is:
Hannah, wife of John Overbagh, died Nov. 23, 1845, aged 81 years, 7 months and 13 days.
In October, 1777, when the British, under General Vaughan, had reached Kingston and the Esopus, the alarm of the few inhabitants of the Inbogt was great. They drove their swine and oxen into the woods upon the Kalkberg, and packed their more valuable furniture for speedy removal. John Overbagh heard the beating of drums at sunrise on the hostile ships at East Camp, and from the top of the Kykuit saw the smoke rising from the burning houses in Livingston Manor. The Tories of the Great Imbocht District, as the region was designated by law, were exultant, and even began to discuss what division of the lands of their Whig neighbors they should make among themselves. The loyalist women were especially bitter. Two of them, stalwart and valiant girls, laid hold of young Jeremy Overbagh, when one day he went over to their father’s house to buy some beef, and would have given him a beating, if he had not run away. No Whig, they said, deserved to have any thing to eat. At another time, John Overbagh, with a party of minute-men, came to search the house in which these girls lived with their father, for an especially obnoxious Tory. Upon the approach of the searchers, the quick-witted maidens put the man between the two feather beds which were upon the bedstead in the corner of the kitchen and carried them and him to the barn, alleging as an excuse the necessity there was of ridding the articles from certain obnoxious insects.
John Overbagh was the type and representative of the Dutch yeomen of his day. He had their characteristic faults of willfulness, obstinacy and implacability. He had also their characteristic virtues of prudence, moderation and contentment. He was an extreme conservative, and took pride in following the ways of his fathers, in food, dress, modes of farming, and all the habits of life. He was slow of thought, silent, of sound judgment, and a firm believer in the tenets of his church. It is remembered of him that he refused to own slaves; such ownership being deemed by him to be sinful. He had three sons and three daughters.
(1) Frederick, born on the 22nd day of March, 1784, married Catharine Mallory, on the 29th of November, 1807, and again Hannah, his second cousin, the daughter of Abraham Overbagh, on the 11th day of March, 1812, and died on the 11th day of June, 1861.
(2) Jacob, born on the 10th day of November, 1788, married Polly, the daughter of Peter Van Orden, on the 30th day of March, 1816, and died on the 29th day of October, 1833.
(3) William, born on the 6th day of February, 1791, married Eve Rockefeller on the 22nd day of March, 1814, and died on the 22nd day of December, 1857.
(4) Rebecca, born on the 8th day of October, 1786, married John D. Dubois on the 15th day of February, 1807, and died on the 14th day of March, 1869.
(5) Hannah, born on the 15th day of May, 1793, married Peter Legg on the 11th day of March, 1817, and died on the 28th day of November 1855.
(6) Rachel, born on the 9th day of December, 1801, married Isaac Decker on the 15th day of January, 1833, and is now living at Flatbush, near Kingston.
Of the brother of John Jurry, Johannes Overbagh, who took the farm on the west side of the Kykuit, all remembrance has been lost. The house in which he lived was a wooden building of one story, and had two rooms, with an addition of one room which was used as a kitchen and was occupied by the slaves. A covered stoop extended along the
southern front of the main building. The cellar and foundation are the cellar and foundation of the house which now stands on the farm.
Of the seven children of Johannes three were sons and four were daughters.
(1) Abraham, baptized at Old Catskill in November, 1753, married Rachel Freligh, of Kaatsbaan, and died on the 20th day of November, 1800, aged 47 years.
(2) Johannes, baptized at Old Catskill on the 28th day of December, 1755.
(3) Peter, who died a bachelor.
The daughters were---
(1) Maria, baptized on the 9th day of June, 1758.
(2) Catryna, baptized on the 25th day of January, 1761.
(3) Hannah, baptized in 1763.
(4) Betsey, baptized on the 3rd day of Nov. 1765.
The children of Abraham, the son of Johannes, were---
(1) Maria, baptized in 1776.
(2) Peter A., baptized on the 30th day of October, 1779, married (1) Sally, a daughter of Peter Overbagh; (2) ---Van Luven; (3) Helen Tappan, and died---. He was a minister of the Dutch Reformed Church.
(3) John A., born on the 29th day of December, 1781, married Sally Dederick, and died Aug. 17, 1838.
(4) Abraham, born on the 17th day of Sept. 1795, married, on the 4th day of Sept. 1816, Deborah Voorhees, and died Sept. 23, 1852.
(5) Rachel, baptized on the 6th day of March, 1788.
(6) Sara, baptized on the 14th day of December, 1788.
(7) Annaatje, (Hannah,) baptized on the 18th day of December, 1791, married, March 11, 1812, Frederick Overbagh, and died April 6, 1864.