Col. Gerardus Beekman Page 1

History of the
Beekman Family


     Gerardus Beekman (my ancestor) was a physician and surgeon and resided in New York and Flat Bush, Long Island, and occasionally on his estate on the Millstone River, New Jersey. In 1685, he was Justice of King's County, New York. He was captain of melitia at Flatbush in 1681, and in 1689 he took the oath of allegiance and was appointed Major of all the horse and boot in King's County as appears by his military commission published in "Historical Documents of New York, Vol. 36, page 142. In 1690 and 1691, he was a member of Leisler's Council. He did not thoroughly agree with Leisler in politics and when Leisler's conduct caused distrubances, Dr. Beekman prepared and delivered an addres in pacification of the people.
When Colonel Sloughter came to New York as Deputy Governor in 1691 to succeed Deputy Governor Nicholson, whose government after the accession of William of Orange had been overthrown by Leisler, Dr. Beekman was arrested with Leisler and others and was in prison for seventeen months, but was later pardoned. The unfortunate patriot Leisler was hanged. Governor Benjamin Fletcher, who succeeded Colonel Sloughter was in turn succeeded by Governor Bellomont.
     In 1700, Dr. Beekman was appointed Lieutenant-Colonel and then Colonel, under Richard Coote, Earl of Bellomont. The same documentary history of New York has under the heading "Province of New York" the following curious entry: "List of ye present officers of ye Militia in his Ma'tys Province of New York in America commissioned by his Excel. Rich'd (Coote) Earl of Bellomont Capt. General and Gov'r in Chief in and over his Ma'tys said province, etc. (viz.):
'of ye Regiment of Militia in King's County on ye said Island (Nassau): Stephen Cortlandt, Colonel; Gerardus Beekman, Lieut. Col.; and Corn. Van Brunt, Maj'r - field officers.'
'of ye Foot Compa in ye town of New Uytreyt: John Van Dyke, Capt.; Joost Van Brunt, Lieut.; Matys Smake, Ensigne.' "
      After the death of the Earl of Bellomont, March 5, 1701, the King appointed as his successor, Lord Cornbury, who began his administration on the third of May, 1702, assisted by a Council, consisting of the following members: William Atwood, William Smith, Peter Schuyler, Abraham de Peyster, Samuel Staats, Roberts Walters, Thomas Weaver, Sampson Shelton Broughton, Wolfgang William Romar, William Lawrence, Gerardus Beekman and Rip Van Dam.