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SCHENECTADY DIGITAL HISTORY ARCHIVE

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Hudson-Mohawk Genealogical and Family Memoirs:
Teller

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[This information is from Vol. II, pp. 912-913 of Hudson-Mohawk Genealogical and Family Memoirs, edited by Cuyler Reynolds (New York: Lewis Historical Publishing Company, 1911). It is in the Reference collection of the Schenectady County Public Library at R 929.1 R45. Some of the formatting of the original, especially in lists of descendants, may have been altered slightly for ease of reading.]

William Teller, of Holland, founder of the Teller family in America, was born in 1620, died in 1701. He arrived at New Netherlands in 1639, and in the same year was sent by Governor Kieft to Fort Orange, now Albany, and subsequently was quartermaster at the fort. He lived in Albany from 1639 until 1692, when he returned to New York where he was a merchant. He was one of the five patentees of the town of Schenectady in 1684; although he never lived there. The Teller family is prominent in the history of Albany and Schenectady counties, where they had large interests. William Teller married (first) Margaret Donchensen, and had six children; (second) Maria Varleth, and had three additional children.

(II) William (2), son of William (1) and Margaret (Donchensen) Teller, was born in 1657. He married, in New York City, November 19, 1686, Rachel, daughter of Dr. Hans and Sarah Roleoff (Jansen) Kierstede. Dr. Kierstede was one of the earliest physicians and surgeons who settled in New Amsterdam, arriving there in 1638 with Governor Kieft. He married Sarah Roleoff, daughter of Rudolf and Anneke Jans Jansen, of Trinity property fame. Rachel (Kierstede) Teller was wonderfully proficient in the signs and language of the Indians and acted, May, 1664, as interpreter for Governor Stuyvesant during an interview with Indian chiefs. Among the children of William and Rachel (Kierstede) Teller was a son, Johannus or John.

(III) John, son of William (2) and Rachel (Kierstede) Teller, was born March 12, 1693, died in 1767. In his will, dated February 25, 1763. he called himself "John Teller of Tellers Neck in the Manor of Cortlandt." He married Alida (Aeltje) Vermilye. Among his ten children was John.

(IV) John (2), son of John (1) and Alida (Vermilye) Teller, was born in April, 1734, died at Rhinebeck, New York, January 15, 1818. He married Margaret Stoutenburgh, born at Hyde Park, April 14, 1734. Children, (baptisms recorded in the Dutch Church in Poughkeepsie, New York): John, Jacobus, Tobias, William.

(V) William (3), son of John (2) and Margaret (Stoutenburgh) Teller, was born in Hyde Park, New York, December 29, 1775, died at East Greenbush, June 31, 1862. He carried on farming on an extensive scale in East Greenbush. He married, February 21, 1808, Caroline M. Conklin, born at Clinton, New York, November 28, 1781, died March 3, 1871. Children: Margaret, Jacob Van Benschoten and Tobias.

(VI) Jacob Van Benschoten, son of William (3) and Caroline M. (Conklin) Teller, was born October 12, 1811, died February 6, 1892. He married, June 17, 1835, Martha Taber Akin (see Akin V), born in Greenbush (Rensselaer), April 30, 1813, died July 16, 1893. Children:

  1. William, died in 1893;
  2. Margaret;
  3. David Akin, see forward;
  4. Anna Mary, see forward;
  5. Elisha Pratt.

(VII) David Akin, second son of Jacob Van Benschoten and Martha Taber (Akin) Teller, was born at the Teller homestead, "Rose Hill," near Rensselaer, New York, December 19, 1839, died unmarried, January 13, 1907, and is buried in Greenbush Cemetery. He was educated at the Boys' Academy, Albany. He enlisted, May 29, 1861, in Company A, Captain Cuyler Van Vechten (known as the Albany Zouave Cadets), Tenth Regiment, New York National Guard, and on December 6, 1862, was commissioned second lieutenant. It is worthy of note that sixty members of the Albany Zouave Cadets received and honored military commissions during the civil war. Lieutenant Teller was mustered in as second lieutenant of Company A, One Hundred and Seventy-seventh New York Volunteer Infantry, November 21, 1862, to serve nine months, and was mustered out with his command, September 10, 1863, at Albany. Lieutenant Teller was in every battle in which the One Hundred and Seventy-seventh participated while he was in service, and was a volunteer in the "Forlorn Hope" to make a second assault on Port Hudson, which was not made owing to the immediate surrender of Vicksburg. He was appointed, with the rank of lieutenant-colonel, on the staff of General Woodhall, commander of the Third Brigade, New York National Guard.

(VII) Anna Mary, daughter of Jacob Van Benschoten and Martha Taber (Akin) Teller, was born October 9, 1842. She married, November 23, 1864, William Patten Irwin (see Irwin IV). She survives her husband and resides in the Irwin Homestead on Greenbush Heights, opposite Albany, New York.

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