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and papers in the War Office in England will probably show whether he was a Musician or Soldier, and what company and regiment he belonged to, where and when he was enlisted, names of parents, birth-place, age, &c.
Vol. 2, p. 501-2 and 445-6.-"Col. Nicolls' ship, the Guyney (Guinea), 36 guns, there were four frigates, one of 36 guns, one of 30, one of 16 and the fourth of 10 guns. There were three companies of soldiers, 250 men. Nicolls and Sir Robert Carr's numbered 168-Sir George Cartwright's the remainder-of the first two marched into the fort, the last staid at the ferry ; the smallest company went in the fort, the other staid at the gates”
Vol. 3, p. 65.-Of Col. Nicolls' voyage here, Samuel Maverick writes under date : “Piscataway (Maine), July 21, 1664.”—“It's almost ten weeks since we came out of Portsmouth Roads; for the first 15 or 16 days we had as good wind and weather as could be desired, ever since which time we have not only met with cross winds but very bad weather, yet all our ships kept company till the 13th of this month, when by reason of very great foggs, we lost company of the Guiney, and since the 16th day we have not seen the Elyas. Contrary winds driving us on this coast, we were willing to put in here as well to recruit ourselves with water (which we began much to want), as in expectation to meet or hear of the rest of our fleet, who probably will come into this harbor. Yet if they come not suddenly our stay here will be but little, but shall hasten for Long Island.”
“Col. Nicolls' ships were the Guiney, Capt. Hyde, Elyas (Elias), Capt. Hill. At p. 70 ship “Williams and Nicholas” spoken of. Vol. 3, p. 106, Col. Nicolls writing to the Duke of York says: “People of Long Island are very poor; labor only to get bread and clothing, without hope of ever seeing a penny of monies.”
“His soldiers since he brought them out of England had not been between sheets or on any sort of bed but canvas and straw.”
During Oct., 1666, Col. Nicolls writes : “Generally every man hath a little house, a small parcel of land with some cattell, all not worth £5 in clothing in England.”
(From the New York World, August 30th, 1881.] Mr. Cyrus W. Field bought the famous old building on the northwest corner of Broadway and Battery place, known for many years as the Washington House and later as the Washington Hotel, at auction, at the Real Estate Exchange yesterday. The property was sold in consequence of the foreclosure of a mortgage, and the sale was conducted by Mr. Charles F. Brown, auctioneer. The first bid was $50,000, which was promptly followed by a bid of $60,
The bidding continued briskly until $160,000 was reached, after which it proceeded more slowly and was confined to two bidders. The property was finally knocked down to J. Bryant Lindley, agent for Mr. Field, for $167,500. The purchase includes the plot of land, which measures 56 by 122 by 61 by 126 feet. Mr. Field has also bought from Mr. Astor the adjoining real estate corner of Battery place and Greenwich street, which will afford room to erect a building with a frontage of 171 feet on Battery place, 55 feet on Broadway, and 65 feet on Greenwich street. The structure will be one of the finest in the city. A gentleman has offered a high rent for the three upper stories, which he wishes to use for a hotel. Thus the name Washington Hotel will be preserved. Mr. Field denies that his
purchases are in the interest of the New York Elevated Railroad Company: The Washington House took its name from the fact that on his arrival in New York after the evacuation by the British troops General Washington was there entertained by its then occupant. Early in this century it was purchased by the late Nathaniel Prime, the founder of the banking firm of Prime, Ward & King, and within its walls several of Mr. Prime's children were married. When he quitted it, the house was converted into a hotel. The site purchased by Mr. Field stood on the very shore of the North River in the early history of New Amsterdam and was directly commanded by the northerly ramparts of the old Dutch fort. The whole of Battery place, once known as Marketfield street, was afterwards created by filling in the land. Mr. Field's purchase stands where the garden and boat-landing stood of the first grant of land made on Broadway in 1643 to Martin Crigier, many of whose decendants still live in this city. His premises were near the northerly point of the present Bowling Green. During the Revolution the house was occupied by British officers.
In Queens County Clerk's Office, Newtown Records, Liber I of Deeds, p. 446, is recorded an assignment of a Bill of Sale of land made by William Alburtis by Deed, dated May 5, 1686, whereby he "assigns set and makes over all my rights, title and interest of this Bill of Sale, with every part and parcel thereof or mentioned unto. Thomas Skillman, of Maspatt Kills.''
Gov. William Kieft, of New Amsterdam, granted in 1642 to the Rev. Francis Doughty a patent for 13.332 acres of land on which the little village of Maspeth was built. Mr. Doughty was a dissenting clergyman from Lincolnshire, England. The whole town of Newtown, in which Maspeth village is, was known by the Iudians as Mespat.
In Queen's County Clerk's Office-Newtown Records -in Liber 1 of Deeds, page 235. is recorded a deed made by Cornelius Briese and Sarah his wife, April 1, 1699, , for and in consideration of a certain and vailble sum of money they convey to Thomas Skillman—both parties being of Newtown—“ All the fourth part of the housing lands, meadows, and orchards, rights, profits, privileges, advantages, hereditaments and appurtenances thereunto belonging or in any wise appertaining to ye sa premises above sd y was bequeathed to them by Thomas Skillman senior, deceased, of Maspath Kills, unto the above sa Thomas Skillman, him, his heirs, executors, administrators and assigns forever."*
I have been unable thus far to find any further record to support or invalidate the different traditions given me.
It seems fairly to be inferred that the first Thomas gave his property by will to his wife, as his son Thomas and grandson Joseph did, notwithstanding their leaving numerous children. It is very much the habit of the pres
*Deeds for other land bo't by Thomas? may be found recorded in Queens County Clerk's Office—one from George Duncan and Frances his wife, in Liber B, p. 302, conveys dwelling house and outbuildings and 10 a. of land, dated May 30, 1707. (This deed is written on parchment, and I have had it in my possession).
Another, dated August 8, 1713, recorded in above Clerk's Office – Newtown Records—in Liber 4, at page 397, by which Johanis Opdyck, of Maiden Head, county of Burlington, N. J., conveys 50 a. at Mashpath Kills
Another, dated Dec. 15, 1726, recorded in above Newtown Records, in Liber 5, at P 321, by which Humphrey Hilliard conveys 26 a. north side Maspath Kills creek.
Another is referred to in Liber 4, p. 169, in a deed from Benj. Skillman to Abm. Polhemus, by which Richard Betts, Jr., conveys 43 a. of woodland at Newtowu Springs.
ent day to be dissatisfied with and seek to set aside wills, alleging various reasons therefor. The son must have failed to comprehend the facts, or was unable to take the proper steps to set aside the will. That he was dissatisfied is evident from the tradition.
In respect to the patent for land at Albany, I find nothing more than is to be seen in the extract from Gov. Dougan's Report. No record of any is to be found in the office of the Secretary of State. Hence, if any existed, it was probably for so much land as his building covered and no more.
I have not been able to search the records of Staten Island with reference to this point, and I have not felt much encouragement to make such search after seeing the following extract in either the Colonial or Doc. Hist. of New York: “ There were many patents granted at an early date for small quantities of land that were soon given up."
In respect to the farm at Bushwick, occupied by Lambert Wyckoff, I find nothing on record to confirm it Opposed to this is the fact that Barnet Johnson told me that the farm Lambert Wyckoff lived on was the ancient Wyckoff place.
Eighty-one years have elapsed since the death of Abraham Skillman, and with him has passed away the name of Skillman from Dutch Kills. A few of the descendants of his daughters remain, but the iuformation obtained from them shows that their knowledge of the earlier Skillmans is about lost. They seem to have no knowledge or tradition of there having existed two Thomas Skillmans, father and son, both, when spoken of to me, being coupled as one person. Nothing is more clear than that the Thomas who came first to this country had a son Thomas, as shown in the deed from Briese.
It is very certain that the first Skillman who came to this country was named Thomas, and that he was a musician or soldier under Gov. Richard Nicolls, and died prior to April 1, 1699, and that he left three children (if no more) :
I. Thomas’, who married Ann Aten.
sor at baptism of Elizabeth and Peter, twin chil
dren of her brother Thomas, on March 4, 1694. III. Lysbet (Elizabeth), who was a sponsor at baptism
of her sister Elsie's child, John, Sept. 21, 1701. By the recital in the deed from Cornelius Briese and wife to Thomas Skillman, he certainly left a will, which I have been so far unable to find. The destruction of the records of the town of Newtown by the British and by fire in 1789 may forever prevent its being found.
The will of Thomas? I find recorded in the Counties of New York, Kings and Queens. It makes no mention of two children, Elizabeth and Peter, twins, who, by the records of Boooklyn Dutch Church, were baptized twice in 1694 ; hence I infer that if he had other children than these twins and those named in his will, they did not survive him.