Over the years many have believed that Anneke [Webber] Jans was the grandaughter of William the Silent - William I, Prince of Orange, 1533-1584 the father of the Dutch Republic. If true, this connection would have been based upon a morganatic relationship between William I and Annetgen Coch. In this arrangement, two children were presumed born: Sara and Wolfert Webber. Anneke was said to be the daughter of Wolfert Webber. The legend has been questioned, thoroughly researched and disproved. It is a good story, however.
It was based upon a tradition that Anneke Jans was the granddaughter of William the Silent, who became Prince of Orange and William I of Holland. He married four times, the last secretly to one Annetgen Coch, a commoner. By Annetgen he had two children: Sarah, born in 1580; Wolfert, who was born in 1582.
These children were called by the surname "Webber". Wolfert married Catherine (Tryntje) Jonas in 1600. They had three children: Wolfert, Martie, and Anneke Webber. Anneke was born in 1605 and died in 1663.
In 1624, Anneke married Roeloff Jans. In 1630, she, her husband and their three daughters went from Holland to New Amsterdam, N.Y. They remained there for a short ime and then moved to Rensselarwyck on the Hudson where Jans served as a farm superintendent for the patroon Killian Van Rensselaer, a Director of the West Indes Company. In 1634 he moved back to New Amsterdam where he received a grant of 62 acres of land on the North (or Hudson) River. This is the land that there has been so much litigation over. It is located on the lip of Manhattan Island and today is valued at billions of dollars. After Jans' death in 1637, Anneke went back to New Amsterdam and in 1638 she married the Reverend Everardus Bogardus (the Latinized form of Bogaert). Bogardus died in 1647. In 1657, Anneke moved to Beverwyck (Albany), N.Y. She died in 1663 and is buried in the Middle Dutch Church Yard on Beaver Street, Albany, N.Y.
In Harpers Magzine for May 1885 is a very full and interest account of Anneke Jan Bogardus' farm.
Genealogy (KindredKonnections Craig Rice) states Born on 15 Jan 1605 in Maaesterland, South Holland. She died on 27 Feb 1663 in Beverwyck, Albany, NY. She has reference number NXGFj-KR She was buried in Beverwyck, Albany, NY
Another comprehensives source: http://usa-ray.com/genology%20docs/shelleydocs/anneke%20BOGARDUS.pdf
Still yet another source: http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~scriven/Scriven2.html
William, Count of Nassau, also known as William the Rich, lived at Dillenbourg, married the Countess of Stalberg. To them were born twelve children, William the Silent, Prince of Orange, born 1533, died 1584, Adolph, Louis, John, Henry, and seven daughters.
William, Prince of Orange, married Anna of Egmont, daughter of the Count de Buren, their children were Phillip William and Mary or Merie, married Count Holenlohe.
William's second wife was Anna of Saxony, daughter of Maurica of Saxony, their children were Maurica, born 1567, Anna married Count William Louis, Amelia married the pretender to the throne of Portugal.
William's third wife was Charlotte de Bourdon, daughter of the Duc de Montpinsier. Their children were Louisa Juliana, married Frederick the Fourth, Elector of Palatine, their granddaughter founded the house of Hanover and Queen Victoria was seventh in line from William, Prince of Orange. The rest of William's children by his third wife were Elizabeth, Catherine Belgica, Flanderine, Charlotte Brobandica, and Emilia the Second.
William's fourth wife was Louisa de Coligny, to them were born Frederick Henry, born 1584. He was also known as William the Second Prince of Orange, father of William the Third, Stadtholder of the Netherlands and King of England.
William's fifth wife was of the Webber family, to them were born Sarah and Wolfert, they were christened Sarah Webber and Wolfert Webber 4 th King of Holland, married Catherine Jonas or known as Annetzie Koch Webber. To them were born Wolfert Webber the Second, born 1602, Marytje Webber, born 1603, Anneke Webber, born 1605, died 1663.
It was said that Anneke Webber, daughter of Wolfert Webber, 4th King of Holland, whose father was William, Prince of Orange, was born in the King's Mansion in Holland in 1605. She was married to Roelof Jans in Holland in 1624. They emigrated to America in 1633. He died in Beverwyck, N.Y. in 1637, and she married the Reverend Everardus Bogardus in New York, January 29 th , 1638. She died at her home in Albany, N.Y. in 1663 at the age of 58 years.
Anneke Webber was the grand-daughter of the King of Holland, Prince of Orange, or William IV. Her father's name was Wolfert Webber and her mother's name was Annetzie Koch Webber.
[NOTE: It has been proven that Anneke Jans was never surnamed Webber, and had no relation to or connection with the royal family of the Netherlands. She was born in Flekkeroy, a village on the island of the same name in Vest Agder, Norway. Her first husband, Roelof Janszen van Maesterland, a seaman, was born in Marstrand, a village in an island of the same name, now in Goteborg Och Bohus, Sweden. They were married in Amsterdam. Anneke's mother was named Trijntje Roelofs Jonas van Maesterland, and was the official midwife for the West India Company in New Amsterdam. Anneke's father's name was Johan (surname unknown). -- DS]
The Anneke Webber legend explained... <http://home1.gte.net/vze4p5bi/jans2.htm
.....Also centered on a woman, interestingly enough, was a cause celebre which made a wide public aware of the Dutch. Anneke Janse, her husband Roelof, their two small daughters, and Anneke’s sister and their mother, a midwife, all apparently from Norway, were among the first settlers of Rensselaerswyck in 1630. But Roelof, a seaman, did not prosper as a farmer, and his women folk disposed of quantities of household goods -- quite possibly in the Indian trade -- so the family left the Patroon’s service in 1634 before the completion of their contract. But Roelof died in 1636, soon after they settled on a farm in Manhattan, and in 1638 Anneke married Domine Everardus Bogardus. Soon after this marriage she became involved in a colorful incident in which some of her husband’s political opponents caused her to be arrested for indecent exposure in the streets of New Amsterdam. Anneke’s defense was that while passing the blacksmith shop -- the seventeenth century equivalent of a gas station as a male gathering place -- she merely tidily lifted her skirts to keep them out of the filth which had accumulated in the street. This defense was accepted, and the incident illustrates one use to which sensation-starved frontier colonists put their courts and also the the earthy humor and broad practical joking which was often a feature of Dutch civic controversy. Thereafter Anneke became the mother of four Bogardus children, in addition to her five by Roelof Janse. After her second husband’s death at sea, she went to Fort Orange to live with her married daughter and “make a living” --presumably at the fur trade, since this was the principal occupation of the town. At her death in 1663 she left a modest estate, of which part, which descended to her four surviving children by Roelof Janse, was the 62 acre farm on Manhattan Island which she had inherited from him.
It was this farm which, over two centuries later, made Anneke famous. After a number of transfers, the land became the property of Trinity Church, and, with the rise in property values on lower Manhattan, immensely valuable. But in one of these transfers, one of Anneke’s minor grandchildren had inadvertently been omitted from the deed. His descendants discovered this fact about 1750, and between then and 1847 sued repeatedly and unsuccessfully to break the church’s title to the land. In spite of these legal defeats, the myth would not die; another suit was instituted in 1909, and in the next quarter century the cause attracted much publicity. Lawyers, genealogists, and promoters who scented an opportunity to make a fast buck thereupon started searching for all the living descendants of Anneke Janse, who turned out to be more numerous even than descendants of the passengers on the Mayflower. Finally, the Legislature passed a special act quieting the title and forbidding any further suits, on the grounds that similar irregularities would have called most titles dating from the seventeenth century into question. It also became clear that if the heirs had won, there would be so many of them that the share of each, even in the vast wealth in dispute, would have been less than the contributions many of them were induced to make toward the expenses of litigation.
In the course of this litigation, there grew up an even more astonishing legend about Anneke’s origins. All the evidence now available indicates that she and her husband were both ordinary people, born in Norway (though perhaps descended from Dutchmen in the Baltic trade). The legend, however, made Anneke out to be the granddaughter of William the Silent who had displeased that prince by her insistence on marrying a commoner; nevertheless, he placed her share of his fortune in trust for her descendants in the seventh generation. This fortune was reputed to have accumulated to the sum of 100 million dollars in the early twentieth century. It is difficult to see how this story gained credence in the face of its glaring inconsistencies, but this mythic fortune was as glittering as the other, and only very recently has a patient genealogist finally dispelled the last shreds of it. According to this myth, Anneke’s father, a son of William the Silent by a secret marriage, was named Wolfert Webber, and a New Netherlander of this name (from whom Irving doubtless derived his character) was her brother. It has now been proven, however that this Wolfert Webber and his father of the same name, a respectable Amsterdam wine merchant, had no connection with either William the Silent or Anneke Janse.
My own note: I have left the alleged connection in my data base simply because it lends authenticity to man’s greed. I also remain a half believer. William the Silent also certainly had a roving eye. :-)
Yet the questions remain: “Who was Anneke Jans? Where did she come from? And what was her station in life?” “From the Amsterdam (Holland) Reformed Oude Kerk marriage intentions of April 1, 1693, it is recorded that Roeloff Janssoon, born in Maesterland (Marstrand, on the island of the same name, Goteburg Och Bohus, Sweden— but in Bohuslan, Norway until 1658), a seaman, aged 21 years, having no parents (to grant parental permission), assisted by Jan Qerritsz., his nephew, residing three and a half years at the St. Tunis gate, on the one part: and Anna Jans, born in Vleckere, Norway Flekkeroy, on the island of the same name, Vest Agder, Norway), aged 18 years, assisted by Trijn Roeloffs, her mother, residing at the same place, of the second part. The marriage record of Roelof Janz (hereafter cited as Jansen) and Anna Jars was dated April 18, 1623 in the records of the Amsterdam Reformed Niew Kerk. it has been concluded by some that the give name of the father of Anneke Jans was therefore Johan. Jan oriohannes. The first three children of Roelof Jansen and his wife Anneke Jans are recorded as being baptized in the Amsterdam Lutheran Church as follows: Lijntje, baptized July 21, 1624, witnesses: Annetgen Jans, Stijntgen Barents, Sara, baptized April 5, 1627, witnesses: Assueris Jansen, Stijntje Barents, and Trijntje, baptized June 24,1629, witnesses Cornetis Sijverts, Trijntgen Siewerts.” <http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~ghosthunter/Anneke/page2.htm