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Albert and Arent Andriessen and their families were early settlers in the Albany, New York area when the colony still belonged to the Netherlands.  Like many of the other settlers, they were not Dutch. These brothers came from Fredrikstad, Norway.

In 1637 Albert and his family arrived in Rensselaerswyck, the large estate of the Amsterdam merchant, Kiliaen van Rensselaer.  Arent apparently came on the same ship. They operated two sawmills just below the falls of the Normanskill (Norman's Creek.  The Dutch referred to Norwegians as Normans).  Arent went on to become a farmer and fur trader and his family were some of the original settlers in Schenectady.

We can only guess how the Bratt surname originated. Hereditary family names were not used by the Dutch or the Norwegians.  When England took over New Netherland and it became New York, that soon began to change.

In those days it was common for Norwegians to use the name of their ancestral farm as their last name. "Bratt" can mean "steep" in Norwegian and it's frequently found in place names all over Scandinavia.  (Most of today's Norwegian Bratt's probably took their names from farms at the end of the 1800s and are not related.)

Another possibility is the old Bratt family that originated in Bergen.  This family originated in the middle ages, but no one has ever discovered any documents that tie us in.  It could be more than a coincidence that Fredrikstad is located on the Glomma River which has it's headwaters in Oppland.  Oppland is the home county of one branch of these Bratts.

There is also a well-documented Bratt family from Brattfors (Steep Falls) in Sweden.  Located 100 miles from Fredrikstad, it was the site of a water-powered iron foundry as early as 1540.  Perhaps someday DNA testing will identify our Scandinavian cousins.

To the best of our knowledge, Albert never used the spelling "Bradt";  he signed his name Brat or Bratt.  Bradt become more common because the Dutch customarily insert a silent "d."  Other spellings usually came about later as some branches of the family moved West.

Over the years, a large number of spelling changes have occurred. Almost all Bradt's and most Brott's are descended from the two Bratt brothers. Many Bratt's, Vanderzee's, Brodt's, Broat's, Van Brott's, and Van Bradt's and some Brad's and Bradd's are also direct descendants.  These are not the only spellings. Some of the others are listed farther down this page.

The Vanderzee line is descended from Albert's son, Storm, who was born on the sea crossing to America. "Van der zee" means "from the sea" in Dutch.

Over 95% of the Bradt cousins descend through female lines.  It's no exaggeration to say that we would not have a Bradt Family Society today without them.

THE BRADT FAMILY SOCIETY was formed when sixteen Bradt family members (and spouses) met at the Desmond Hotel in Colonie, New York, and formalized a Constitution proposed by Kenneth Bradt. Ken has been one of the primary leaders of the Bradt Family association for many years, and was the co-editor, with his wife, Thelma, of the BRADT FAMILY NEWS. The NEWS contains articles and genealogical data and pictures concerning the history and activities of the Bradt family. Major family reunions have been held at the Desmond every five years, and trips to Holland and Norway took Bradt family members to the hometown of the brothers, Albert and Arent Bratt.


If you want to learn more about the Bradt genealogy, Descendants of Albert and Arent Andriessen Bradt and the Supplements can be found in several of the major libraries around the country. Some of them are listed on the BOOKS & BFN page of this website.Pen and Ink Drawing
Albert Bradt's Sawmill
Courtesy of Leonard Tantillo
From Cythia Biasca's preface to Descendants of Albert and Arent Andriessen Bradt:

The Origin

This is the proverbial book that its author never expected to write. Until fifteen years ago I knew nothing of my family background, not even that the Brott spelling of my maiden name had once been Bradt. In the fall of 1976 my sisters and I decided to research our father's background. We knew the name of our paternal great-grandfather, but not the name of his father. (A sad example of waiting too late to start our research, for there was no one still alive who could supply the information.) We tried — and have tried over the past 13 years — every avenue we knew to learn that great-great-grandfathers's identity. We do not to this day know who X Bradt, as we refer to him, was.

In our leave-no-stones-unturned search for X Bradt, we scanned untold numbers of Bradt records. I was able to devote a great deal of time to this work throughout the entire year. For a week almost every summer, my sisters and I met in different counties of New York State, and together we attacked courthouse and cemetery and historical society and local library records, and the information we amassed on Bradt/Bratt/Brott/Brodt families became extensive.

Finally, two things became clear: we might never find X Bradt in our lifetimes (three of us had become grandmothers during this period), and all that voluminous data we had been accumulating must be shared, not kept stashed away in my file cabinets and computer. Following the fabulous Bradt Reunion in Albany in the summer of 1987, more and more data came to me from more and more correspondents. It now seemed all the more urgent that I put into comprehensive book form all the material we had collected and which I had initially set up in the form of family charts. And so work on The Bradt Book (Descendants of Albert and Arent Andriessen Bradt) began.

Webmaster's note: The Bradt cousins owe Cynthia and Ken a huge debt of gratitude. Without their efforts, most of us would not know about our origins.

After all of these years of research, the help and support of her sisters, and countless letters and emails containing family history, Cynthia has still not identified X Bradt.

We urge those with lineage questions or contributions to contact our Genealogist, Laurie M. Grimes.

For those with non-lineage historical questions, (for example, to learn about the role of the Bradt Family in North American history) contact our Archivist, Daniel P. Bradt.

Continue down this page for all of our e-mail addresses:

Anne Holzinger:
[email protected]
To subscribe to the "Bradt Family News" or to join the Bradt Family Society, fill out the membership form and send it to Anne.  That's it.  No need to contact the editor unless you want to submit an article to the News.     Thank you.
NEWSLETTER (The Bradt Family News)
Marie Emerson
[email protected]
[email protected]
and Administrator of the Bradt DNA Project:
Laurie M. Grimes:
[email protected]
VICE-PRESIDENTS: Dale Atherton-Ely
Gary Bradt
Dan Ely
PRESIDENT: Barbara Bradt Long:
[email protected]

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Estimated percentages of North Americans who are "Bradt Family," descendents of Albert and Arent
Bradt 90-95%
Bratt 25% in the U.S., fewer in Canada.  Most others are English.
Brott 50-70%
Vanderzee 25-45%  Also spelled Van Derzee.
See 1% ?  Shortened from VanderZee.
Braudt 45-55%
Braut 20-40%
Brodt 25-35%
Van Bradt 100%?  Also spelled VanBradt.
Van Brott 100% ?
Bradd 10-20%
Brad 5-10% ?
Broat 50-100%
Brawt 100% ?
Brought 1-5%
Braught 0-2%
Brandt 0-5%
Brant 0-5%
Braat 0-4%



Albert Brat Family
 — m. Annatie Barents

Arent Andriessen Family
 — m. Catalyntje De Vos

Albert's line and their spouses:

Aefje (Eva) Bradt
 — m1. Anthony De Hooges Family
 — m2. Roeloff Swartwout Family

Barent Bradt Family
 — m. Susanna Dirkse Meyer

Storm Vanderzee (Van Der Zee) Family
 — m. Hilletje Lansing

Engeltie Bradt
 — m. Teunis Slingerland Family

Gisseltie Bradt
 — m1. Jan Van Echelen Family
 — m2. Hendrik Willemsz Family

Andries Bradt Family
 — m. Cornelia Van Wie

Jan Bradt Family
 — m. Maria Post

Dirk Bradt
 — probably never married

Arent's line and their spouses:

Aeffje Bradt
 — m. Claes Van Patten Family

Ariaantje Bradt
 — m1. Helmer (Helmers) Otten Family
 — m2. Reyer Schermerhorn Family

Andries Bradt
 — m. Margarita Van Slyck

Cornelia Bradt
 — m. Jan Putman Family

Samuel Bradt Family
 — m. Susanna Van Slyck

Dirk Bradt Family
 — m. Maritje Van Eps

Albert's line and their spouses:

Anna De Hooges
 — Warner Hornbeck Family

Catrina De Hooges
 — m. Harmen Rutgers Family

Johannes De Hooges Family
 — m. Margaretia Post

Eleanora De Hooges
 — m1. William De La Montagne Family
 — m2. Cornelis De Duyster Family

Thomas Swartwout Family
 — m. Elizabeth Gardiner

Antoni Swartwout Family
 — m. Jannetje Coobes

Rachel Swartwout
 — m. Jacob Kip Family

Anthony Bradt Family
 — m. Willempie Teunise

Maritje Bradt
 — m. Egbert Teunise De Metselaer Family

Dirk Bradt Family
 — m. Anna Teunise De Metselaer

Anna Bradt
 — m. Salomon Fredericks Boogh Family

Johannes Bradt Family
 — m. Maria Keteluyn

Johanna Bradt
 — m. David Keteluyn Family

Daniel Bradt Family
 — m. Elizabeth Lansing

Jacob Bradt Family
 — m. Aefie Everts Wessels

Isaac Bradt Family
 — m. Dievertje Wessels

Sara Bradt
 — m. Reynier Meyndertse Family

Anna Van Der Zee
 — m. Johannes Becker Family

Wouter Van Der Zee Family
 — m. Jannetje Swart

Albert Van Der Zee Family
 — m. Hilletje Gansevoort

Cornelis Slingerland Family
 — m. Eva Mebie

Albert Slingerland Family
 — m. Hester Brickerse

Annatie Bradt
 — m. William Schackerly Family

Maritje Bradt
 — m. Jeremiah Pemberton Family

Effie Bradt
 — m. John Morris Family

Barent Bradt Family
 — m. Anna Van Der Heyden

Antje Bradt
 — m. Daniel Wilkerson

Claartje Bradt
 — m. Cornelis Van Slyck Family

Andries Bradt Family
 — m. Wyntje Rosa

Pieter Bradt Family
 — m. Christina Bowman

Storm Bradt Family
 — m. Sophia Uziele

Rebecca Bradt
 — m1. Claes Borger Family
 — m2. John Collinson Family

Arent's line and their spouses:

Arent Van Patten Family
 — m. Jannetje Conyn

Annatje Van Patten
 — m1. Class Siverse Family
 — m2. Cornelius L Van Wormer Family

Nicholaas Van Patten Family
 — m. Rebecca Groot

Catheryna Otten
 — m. Gerrit Symonse Veeder Family

Jan Schermerhorn Family
 — m. Engeltie Vrooman

Arent A Bradt Family
 — m. Jannetje Vrooman

Bathsheba Bradt
 — m. Charles Burns Family

Margarita Bradt
 — m. Philip Bosie Family

Arent Putman Family
 — m. Lysbeth Akkerman

Arent Bradt Family
 — m. Catrina Mabie

Margarita Bradt
 — m. Daniel Toll Family

Jacob Bradt Family
 — m. Margarita Clute

Catalyntje Bradt
 — m. Jacobus Van Slyck Family

Susanna Bradt
 — m. Bartholomeus Vrooman Family

Andreas Bradt Family
 — m. Anita De Graaf

Samuel Bradt Family
 — m. Catharina Van Petten

Ephraim Bradt Family
 — m. Claartie Bosie

Catalyntje Bradt
 — m. William Berritt Family

Maria Bradt
 — m. Ryckert Van Vranken Family

Johannes Bradt Family
 — m. Margarita Van Vranken

Dirk Bradt Family
 — m1. Anna Van Antwerp
 — m2. Catarina Hybelaar

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