Notes for: Peter Bodine

I have never seen any original sources listing the names of John Bodine and Mary Crocheron's children. As far as I can tell, the best list of these children would be John, Isaac, Jacob, Sarah, Catherine, Peter, and Abraham. However, one should realize that this is only an educated guess. Hopefully, more information will come to light on who John and Mary's children were, but it is not likely. These children were probably born on Staten Island, but there is no source for this information either.

It is almost certain that all the children John Bodine of Bethune and his wife Mary Crocheron would have been born on Staten Island and baptized at the old French Huguenot Church of Fresh Kills (now Greenridge). However, the church records are now lost. Registers from this church did exist at least until 1758 when they were last in the hands of Henry Latourrette, the son of Jean Latourrette and Maria Mercereau. It is thought that these were probably destroyed during the American Revolution by the English and their hired Hessian mercenaries. They probably also destroyed the old church and graveyard. The British did this to those they thought supported the American Rebels (adapted from If by some miracle those records ever were discovered, I'm sure they would reveal a lot about the family of John and Mary Bodine. Without those, we will not know the details of the births and baptisms of John and Mary's children.

Here is some information sent to me by Scott Thompson (iamsthomp2 at It comes from page 490 of History of Hunterdon and Somerst Counties New Jersey, compiled by James P. Snell (Philadelphia: Everts & Peck, 1881). The information in Snell's book does seem to have several errors, but it is probably the earliest information on who some of the children of John and Mary Bodine were. He must have gotten this straight from some of those Bodines themselves. Here is the info:

The Bodine Family is an honored one in the history of France, but moderate as were the advices of Jean bodine, the wise counselor of Henry III, his relatives were afterwards compelled to flee, with other Huguenots, to Holland, whence they ultimately came to Staten Island, at least as early as 1701.*

From the mouth of the Raritan they ascended to its source. Among the settlers of this region there were at least five of this name, all of whom left a large number of descendants.

*The earlier history of the Bodine family has been traced by Rev. Dr. Charles Baird, of New Rochelle, N.Y., for his forthcoming work on the Huguenots of America.

John Bodine had a plantation, early in the last century, on the west side of the North Branch. Immediately north of that was the Ammerman tract, and immediately north of that the Du Mont tract. This John Bodine had a son Abraham, who married Mary Low, and had John, baptized April 15, 1748; Judick baptized March 31, 1745, married Samuel Willemsen; Mary, probably the Mary that married Thomas Cooper; Cathelyntje, baptized Sept. 3, 1749; Sarah baptized Aug. 10, 1755 ; Cornelius, baptized November, 1755, married Margaret Sutphen, of Six-Mile Run, born 1754, and had Abraham, Peter, John, Cornelius, Gilbert, Issac, Charles, and George, all deceased.

Isaac Bodine had eleven children,- eight by his first wife, Cataleyn, and three by his second wife, Jannetje. These children, with dates of baptism, were Jan, Nov. 19,1703; Jantien, April 30, 1707; Frederick April 26, 1709; Mareyken, April 25, 1711; Kataleyn, Aug. 8, 1713; Isaac, April 5, 1715; Abraham, July 31, 1717; Elizabeth, Oct. 31, 1719; Hester, Dec. 25, 1723; Isaac, Aug. 16, 1730; and Jannetje, Aug. 16, 1730.

Peter Bodine had two children by his first wife and one by his second, Margrita. Their names and dates of baptism were Jan, April 30, 1712; David, April 3,1717; Mareytje, Oct 15, 1738.

Jacob Bodine's wife was named Elizabeth. They had six children,-Viz,, Jan, St. Jantien, Jacob, Catherine, Cornelius, and Antje.

Abraham Bodine married Adriantje Janse, and had nine children, among whom were Catrina, baptized April 14, 1725, and married Lodewyk Haydenbrook; Peter baptized December, 1726 and twice married ( first, Mareytje; second, Widow Williamson}; John, baptized Dec. 5, 1730, married Femmetje Vorhees; Abraham and Judick. The last named was born March 17, 1735, and ultimately married John Thompson.

***End of info from Scott Thompson.

I found some info on a David Bodine who was supposedly born in 1690 and married to Mary Van Nest. I assume it is a mistake since it was actually Peter Bodine who married Mary Van Nest. This was WorldConnect at Rootsweb. The source may be this:

Van Neste Descendants

Title: Pieter and Judith (Rapalje) Van Neste and some of their descendants

Publication: Early New York Genealogies Website at

There may well be a mistake in saying Peter's birth date was about 1690. If his wife, Mary Van Nest, was born around 1678, then I doubt he married someone twelve years younger than he was. Maybe Peter was the oldest son, born around 1678 or so himself. I have thought many times that his grandfather could have been a Peter Bodine and not a John Bodine as is commonly thought.

According to Sinnott, Peter Bodine was at Three Mile Run in 1712. [I wonder if this isn't based on one of his children maybe being baptized there.] In 1729, he voted for the removal of the controversial preacher Theodore Frelinghuysen from the united churches of Three Mile Run, Raritan, and North Branch. In 1748, Peter offered some lots of land for sale in a lottery at Raritan Landing in Middlesex County, New Jersey. He was selling 195 lots in an effort to raise 1302 pounds. Each of these lots was an acre or so. Sinnott gives a good description of this on pages 159 to 160 in her book. Several articles came out in the New York "Weekly Post Boy" in 1748 and 1749. Also see the "New Jersey Archives," v. 12 (or V.XII:500 - This may be Second Series. I'm not sure how this works).

There is some information on Peter Bodine and his son, John, in a doctoral dissertation by Rebecca Yamin called "The Raritan Landing Traders: Local Trade in pre-Revolutionary New Jersey" (RLT). It was published at New York University in 1988. She was student in the Department of Anthropology. Anything below marked "RLT" comes from that dissertation.

As of late 2002, there were some excavations going on at where the town of Raritan Landing used to be. Raritan Landing was a small port on the north bank of the Raritan River about two miles upstream from New Brunswick. It was founded about 1695 and was developed as a port by 1720 (RLT: 12). It is the area now in Johnson Park, approximately where the John Lynch Bridge and the Landing Lane Bridge cross the Raritan from New Brunswick. The excavations are along River Road near Landing Lane in Piscataway, New Jersey. There are digs on both the north and south side of River Road. See the web site for more information about the excavations going on there.

Rebecca Yamin says that "Dutch" people (those who belonged to the Dutch Reformed Church, though they came from many European countries) began moving into the Raritan Valley in the 1680's. They were second-generation colonial families. This migration lasted until about 1735. The Dutch people were preponderant in the New Brunswick area by 1700 (RLT: 37).

It was in Raritan Landing that farmers in the Raritan Valley brought their goods to be loaded onto boats for transport to markets. At one time it was a thriving commercial center. The heyday of this town was in the middle of the 18th century. It was destroyed during the Revolutionary War and later rebuilt. It disappeared altogether some time later on. As mentioned before, Raritan Landing was a port town. It was the furthest point upriver that ocean-going ships could reach. Both this Peter Bodine and his son, John Bodine, are mentioned at the web site and in the book mentioned above. Archealogists working there have supposedly unearthed the ruins of some Bodine houses. At that web site, you can see pictures of the foundation of a Bodine house and of the archealogical work going on there. There are also two or three surviving buildings from the town of Raritan Landing. One is the house of Cornelius Low which was built in 1741. It is a museum today. Low was a very wealthy man involved in the shipping business. One of the other buildings still in existence today is the house of Peter Bodine - at least part of it is still standing. See more below.

A map was made in 1936 by Cornelius C. Vermeule of the former town. He based his map on research and family recollections. His map includes houses and their owners. It was published in the "Proceedings of the New Jersey Historical Society." It is a tremendous reference, but it does have many errors (RLT: 61).

According to the web site mentioned above, Peter Bodine was a pretty wealthy man and a leader among the traders there. He was in the freight business working along the Road up Raritan. He did a lot of business between Raritan Landing and Bound Brook which was seven miles up the road to the west. The Janeway and Broughton Store was located there. Records from that store are still available. For instance, he picked up wheat that the farmers sold to the store and was paid to ship it wherever they wanted it to go. In 1735, for example, he took 2000 bushels of wheat to Amboy. He also supplied the store in Bound Brook with articles the farmers needed. In the Janeway journals, Peter Bodine is mentioned eight times in the early pages and he is described as a yeoman, freighter, and forwarder and freighter (RLT: 78). His son, John, helped in this business. Peter paid John for orders, called "assignments," and then delivered them to the store. Peter and John may have had some business relationships with other family members in the Somerset County area. This is only a guess, but Yamin does say that this type of family collaberation may have taken place back in that time (RLT: 51). Her dissertation says that Peter Bodine apparently bought grain from the growers and sold it to the Janeway and Broughton storekeeper who then had it freighted to various places, including Raritan Landing and Perth Amboy. The storekeeper did buy grain from other people, but he had a regular relationship with Peter Bodine. Peter did a major portion of his freighting in 1735 and 1736 (RLT: 83).

Peter Bodine had a house advertized for sale in a New Jersey newspaper in 1747. This can be found in "New Jersey Archives (newspaper extracts): Second Series," v. V.XII:374. It came with "a good and convenient storehouse, with sash windows, a very good garden, orchard and barn on it. The whole containing 130 acres, all in good fence fifteen acres thereof being choice good English meadow, 75 acres of cleared upland or pasture land, and the remainder, about 40 acres of woodland, very convenient for either merchant, storekeeper or farmer. Also a lot adjoining thereto 160 feet front 120 feet back, with a very good sashed house, and a storehouse on it, also very convenient for a merchant or storekeeper" (RLT: 69).

I'm not sure if the house above is the same one that is still standing down the hill from the Cornelius Low place. Peter Bodine did also have a warehouse along the Road up Raritan, now called River Road. It was a road with many stone warehouses with houses built in between them. Peter's house was built in 1728 near Logan Lane. It is now at 1281 River Road (Piscataway, NJ 08854) on the bluff across from the archeological digs on that road. Today it is the Piscataway Township museum (Middlesex, Co., NJ) and on the national and state Registers of Historic Places. The oldest section of the museum is the house that Peter Bodine built. The house passed through several owners before it was purchased in the 1890's by George Metlar. In 1977 it was purchased by the New Jersey Department of Transportation and slated for demolition to make room for a bridge project. Concerned citizens soon intervened and it was preserved. The museum calls it the Metlar-Bodine House.

Here are some entries where Peter Bodine is mentioned in the baptismal records of the First Reformed Church of the Raritan:

Apr. 30, 1712 Bodyn, Piter and wife--Jan. Witnesses: Isack and Cataleyn Bodyn.

May 18, 1715 Schermerhoorn, Luykas and wife--Marya. Witnesses: Peter Bodyn; Jacob Jen Middagh.

Apr. 3, 1717 Bodien, Piter and wife--Davit. Witnesses: Kataleyn Middagh; Abraham Bodien.

Oct. 14, 1719 Bodyn, Isak and wife--Elisabet. Witnesses: Pieter Bodyn and wife.

May 7, 1721 Bodyn, Jacob and wife, Elisabeth--Catharina. Witnesses: Pieter and Marietje Bodyn.

Information from Theodore A. Bodine says Peter married Margrita first and then Maretje Van Nest. Sinnott said he married Margrita who may not have been the mother of his eldest children. She listed Peter, John, David, and Marretje for his children and said that he doubtless had others.

Sinnott lists a Marretje Bodine as his daughter, baptized on October 15, 1738 at Somerville. That seems a little late for Peter, but it is possible. He would have been about 48. However, Mary Van Nest would not have been the mother if her birth date is correct (1678).

The following is quoted from the "Somerset County Genealogical Quarterly," v. 4., no. 1, (March 1986) issue. Its editor was Fred Sisser III.

David and Marytje (Van Neste) Willemse were the parents of at least two known children: Judith, born in 1707, who was named for her maternal grandmother, and a son, Willem, born circa 1703-1705, who was named for his paternal grandfather. Willem Willemse (or William Williamson), the son of David and Marytje, is readily determined as the individual by that name who married before 1731, Jannetje (surname unknown), and had a son David, baptized 25 July 1731 (PNJHS 1926:401). Willem's son, David, was named, in accordance with Dutch custom, for his paternal grandfather.

David Willemsen serves at least twice on the Grand Jury for Somerset County. He is first mentioned on 7 Sep 1708, when "David Willemson" and seventeen others were in attendance (MxCt:211). Again, in May 1710, he was a member of the Jury (ibid"233), and this is the last known instance in which David is recorded as alive.

Presumably David Willemsen died quite suddenly. His young widow, with at least two infant children, soon married again. Mary (Van Neste) Willemsen married, second, circa 1710, Peter Bodine, the son of Jean and Marie (Crocheron) Bodine (Somerset County Genealogical Quarterly 3:233-235)....."