top of page

The Van Barkaloos (aka Lubberdincks)

Here is another story about a family line that changed its surname as a result of its arrival in the New World.

The Flag of Borculo

The town of Borculo is located in the province of Gelderland, Netherlands in an area called the Achterhoek. It is considered one of the most beautiful and calm regions in The Netherlands. The city of Borculo has one of the oldest, little Dutch rivers (De Berkel) which flows through this town.

People are not sure where the name Borculo comes from. There used to be a castle, called Kasteel Borculo, and this was the residence of the Lords of Borculo. The Lords of Borculo were first named in the 12th century. Near this castle, the settlement of Borculo eventually was formed. Whether it was named after the Lords of the castle, or not, is not known. The area that the Lords of Borculo managed at first only included the castle and a small region that surrounded one of the biggest moated castles in The Netherlands. During the Middle Ages, they eventually gained more power and expanded their rights and regions. Borculo, as a town, was first named in 1337. In that year, the Lord and Lady of Borculo founded a chapel in this settlement and Borculo eventually gained city rights in 1375. The original documents were burned during a city fire in Borculo, but the city rights and its date were confirmed again after the fire in 1590.

It was in this area where the Lubberdinck family lived, in the town of Geesteren in the Manor of Borculo. I trace the family back to Jan Bernts (Jan Johan) Lubberdinck who married Jenniken Willems Olinchave, the daughter of a prominent resident of Lochem, a town northwest of Boculo. Lubberdinck was a farmstead on which the family resided for several generations and located located southeast of Geesteren. When they came to America, this very local name was superceded by van Borculoo (and later variants including Van Borkeloo, Van Barkelo, Burkelow and even just Bartlow).

Jan and Jenniken had two sons who came to America and started the Van Barkeloo line, Willem Jansz Lubberdinck born in 1621 and Harman Janse Lubberdinck born in 1626.

Willem was the first to travel to make the journey and he had moved to New Netherland in or shortly before 1657 and settled in "Valckebos" (Flatbush). He had married Cornelia Anthonis there in February 1658. While living there, he signed his name as "William Jansz van borkello."

Two or three years later, Willem returned to Geesteren in order to persuade his brother Harman to join him in New Netherland. Harman consented.

The route they likely took from the Borculo area was south to Amsterdam, where they stayed for nearly a month; from Amsterdam by boat to the Isle of Texel where the ship de Trouw (The Faith) was anchored. It, along with a host of other ships waiting to transport needed goods and new colonists to New Netherland, was awaiting favorable winds. It left there on 24 March 1662, crossed the North Sea to the south of England, then by southern or winter route crossing the Atlantic just north of Bermuda, then passing the coast of Virginia and north to New York (Nieuw Nederland). Such voyages usually took from 6 to 8 weeks.

When it finally sailed, de Trouw carried several passengers, including five members of the family: Willem Jansz van Borculo Lubberdinck, his younger brother Harman Jansz, Harman's wife, Willemtjen Warnaers Elderinck, and their two children, Janneken and Reynier, 5 and 3 years old respectively. Both Willem and Harman had their occupation listed as farmer. The ship was fortunate and did not encounter any significant problems, arriving safely in New Amsterdam, capital of New Netherland.

They settled in New Utrecht, a miniature fortress in the midst of a forest through which the indigenous people roamed more or less vindictively, and oblivious of the fact that the territory had been bought of them already three times. A striking proof that, at this time, the forest was still dense and the native population considered treacherous and war-like, is seen in the order issued by the Governor, in the year 1661, that the whole village, which consisted of eleven substantial houses, be well palisaded, and "the trees be cut down within gun-shot, so that men might be seen afar off."

Three more children were born to them, including their son Willem Harmense (William Harmans) Van Barkaloo around 1666. He married Marytje Isabella "Maria" Cortelyou on 5 April 1697. The would have at least 3 children. Their daughter, Helen (Elinor) Van Barkaloo would marry Michael Blaw and later relocate to New Jersey, carrying on my family line there through the Blews.

The Barkuloo (Van Barkeloo) Cemetery Granite Marker

The Barkuloo (Van Barkaloo) Cemetery was founded in 1725 by William Harmans Van Barkaloo. It is the only family plot in Brooklyn not part of a larger cemetery and the smallest cemetery in Brooklyn, located in Bay Ridge, at the corner of Narrows Avenue and Mackay Place. It is also known as the "Revolutionary Cemetery." The "revolutionary" appellation comes from a plaque erected in 1962 on the protective gate, which indicates that several Revolutionary War veterans are buried here; though some historians dismiss the claim as spurious, others say that William Barkaloo's sons, Harmans and Jacques, fought in the Battle of Brooklyn, which raged in Bay Ridge and throughout the towns of New Utrecht and Brooklyn. The last burial took place in 1848.

Despite occasional calls for action, the historic cemetery languished until 1923 when the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) took charge, and just in time, according to an article that year in the Brooklyn Eagle, with "the few remaining stones marking the graves of long dead residents crumbling into decay."

A Boy Scout troop cleaned up the garbage and the DAR tackled research and planning new monuments stressing the Revolutionary War connection. A dedication ceremony was held in November 1923 at the reclaimed cemetery. Boxwoods brought from George Washington’s Mount Vernon were symbolically planted, the monuments were unveiled by Barkaloo descendants, and bugles sounded ‘Taps.’ The large granite marker was added in 1984 by the Bay Ridge Historical Society.


bottom of page