Map of the Month – February 2012

This month’s featured map was created by the prolific Brooklyn surveyor Teunis G. Bergen, who copied it from an “ancient map.” According to Bergen, there was no date or surveyor’s name on the “ancient map,” but it was probably made before 1750. The map roughly covers modern-day Brooklyn Heights south to the Gowanus and shows buildings and names of landowners. Please note that any writing on the map with an asterisk was added by Bergen and not found on the original map. If you’re interested in learning more about Bergen, the BHS archive has an amazing collection of his writings and maps.

Copy of an ancient map in possession of a descendant of the Hannes or Hans Bergen: whose house is located thereon. Teunis Bergen. 1864. Brooklyn Historical Society Map Collection.

(Click on the image to show more detail)

Interested in seeing more maps? You can view the BHS map collection anytime during the library’s open hours, Wed.-Fri., from 1-5 p.m. No appointment is necessary to view most maps. Our cataloged maps can be searched through BobCat and our map inventories through Emma.

Map of the Month is part of a project to catalog our map holdings, funded through the Council on Library and Information Resources Hidden Collections program. If you would like to help us do more of this kind of work with our exciting map holdings, donate here.


About Carolyn

Carolyn is the Project Map Cataloger on a grant-funded project until May 2012. When not reveling in all things cartographic, she enjoys knitting and exploring Brooklyn.
This entry was posted in Brooklyn Past & Present, Hidden Collections, Library & Archives and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Map of the Month – February 2012

  1. Arne Solli says:

    Hi. The note in the left corner of the map says that this map is made from an original hold by a Bergen family descendent (probably living in the 1860s?). The scale of the copied map is reduced by 50% of the original, which is dated to the 1750s. Is it likely that the original map from which T.G. Bergen made the copy still exist? Secondly, the original must have been made for a purpose, a sale, a will or a conflict of some kind. If one identifies this context, the date of orginal map might be correctly identified. Thirdly it is also likely that the map was made by an authorised map maker, e.g. under the supervision of New York’s Surveyor General, Cadwallader Colden. However to me there are some similarities and details in the copy that also can be found in the map of John Batty, Map of Livingston Manor Anno 1714, c.f.
    Library of Congress at

    Any suggestions for a date and context of the (original) Bergen map?

    Very best
    Arne Solli

  2. Bill Coleman says:

    Another interesting map. In addition to being a part of the new Bergen collection of maps, this one shows at least two of the earliest Dutch land grants or Patents on Long Island. Using Gehring, Charles T., New York Historical Manuscripts Dutch, Volumes GG, HH &II, “Land Papers”, Baltimore, Genealogy Publishing Co. Inc. (1980) as a source, the two southernmost Patents are important.

    Wouter Van Twiller. June 22, 1643. Van Twiller was the second Director of New Netherland. His successor Willem Kieft granted this piece of land called the Red Hook located on the North River with express condition and stipulations etc…. (These are not included). “Land Papers, 20, GG 66).

    Van Twiller also owned Nut Island,(“Land Papers 6, GG 17, Indian Deed June 16, 1637) now Governor’s Island and extensive tracts on Manhattan Island (Land Papers 7. GG 18, Indian Deed to two islands in Hell Gate), Long Island (“Land Papers 6, GG 15 Indian Deed, July 16, 1636)and elsewhere in New Netherland.

    Frederick Lubbertse, May 27, 1640.
    A number of genealogy websites record his family history.We, Willem Kieft, etc. have given and granted to Frerick Lubbersz a certain piece of land upon Long Island near Merechawikingh about Werpos extending in breadth from the kil and marsh that come from Guwanes N. W. by N. and from the strand on the East River S. E. by E 1,700 paces of three feet each and in length from the head of the aforesaid kil N. E. by E. and S. W. by W. to the Red Hook; under the express condition, that if the Indians shall voluntarily give up the corn land in the aforesaid piece, Frerick Lubbesz shall be allowed to enter upon it in the width and extent of it, without anybody preventing him; on the express condition and stipulation etc… “Land Papers 16 GG 53.

    This Patent is either the first or the second one granted by the Dutch on Long Island. All previous land transactions were land purchases from the Native American Indian groups in the area. This patent also appears to have been one of the larger ones made by the Dutch in this period and it would be interesting to know how Lubbertse was connected to the West India Company.

    7 or 8 other Patents are shown on the map and will be researched when time permits.

    One other point of interest is the map of the Gowanus and its feeder streams. I can almost taste the oysters that in the 17th and 18th century were some of the largest and best in the world.

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