Where are we from?
After nearly three years of research, and over a thousand man hours of pouring through various census, church, and city records, I have begun to put together the pieces of the puzzle as to where our Buys, Boice, and Boyce ancestors listed at this website, descend from. The question that fuels my research is. . .who was our immigrant ancestor? Many of the clues that I have researched has led to some very compelling connective information that traces our ancestors to a Dutch family who migrated to America in the mid 1600's.

Our earliest ancestor that can be traced to date is Rudolph Buys, born in New York sometime between 1740 and 1750, and living in Columbia County, NY., on the Livingston Manor, in the area of Taghkanic. The earliest record that we have for Rudolph Buys yeilds some very important clues:

This is the baptism record for Jacob Boice, grandfather of Stephen V. Boyce
Baptism Record of St. Thomas Lutheran Church: Churchtown, (Columbia County) St. Thomas Lutheran Church 1760-1899
Baptism Date: - 1768
Father: Rudolph Beis
Mother: Catharina
Item #: 196
Child: Jacob
Sponsor: Jacob Platner, & wife Catharina (Loescher)
Birth Date: 25 Sep 1767

The sponsors for the above record are the most important clue as to the possible family of Rudolph Buys. I have extensively researched the families of the above named sponsors, Jacob Platner (Blatner) and Catherina (Loescher), and found Jacob Platners brother, Marcus, to be a sponsor of another Beis (Buys) family baptism record, who's ancestors can be traced directly to the Dutch immigrant ancestor, Aert (Adriean) Pietersen Buys. The following is the connective family record:

This is the baptism record for the child of Henrich Buys and Elizabeth Kreissler
Note the date and the sponsors for the record below.
Baptismal Record of St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church: Manorton St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church 1765 - 1872 (Lutheran Church of Livingston)
Baptism Date: - 1771
Father: Henrich Beis
Mother: Eliseibeth (Kriessler)
Item #: 129
Child: Catharina
Sponsor: Marcus Plattner; Catharina (Best)
Birth Date: 30 Nov 1771

Just four short years following the baptism of Jacob Beis (Boice), the above baptism takes place at St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church which located in the town of Manorton (Livingston), just 12.7 miles from it's "brother" Church, St. Thomas "Lutheran" Church, in Churchtown. Marcus Plattner is the brother of the above noted Jacob Platner, and throughout additional baptism records between the two churches, this Platner/Loescher/Best family continues to be intermixed with the direct and extended family of the above noted Henrich Buys and Elisabeth Kriessler.

One of the big dissapointments of my research has been the absence of the Baptism records for Rudolph Buys other two children, Christina Buys who married Christophel Bechtel, and Peter Buys, who married Eva Bechtel (1), Eva Kuntz (2), and Eleanor Shmith (3). The microfilm records available for these church baptisms are riddled with notations for "torn out" or missing pages, and in some cases, parents names appearing completely illegible. Another interesting note is the absence of the baptism record for Christophel Bechtel, who siblings records are on file, but his is missing.

I have found that well over 90 percent of the sponsors of the baptism records for the churches of this area, were family members. The Platner/Loescher/Best connection to the descendants of Aert (Adriean) Pietersen Buys is well documented and true. The one, single most important clue to finding the family of Rudolph Buys is that of the baptism record of Jacob Boice (Buys). Somehow this record connects this other Buys family group to that of Rudolph. We can safely assume that there is some familial link with this branch of the Buys family tree. Click Here, for recent research revealing this connection in Greater Detail!

As stated above, I have compiled a comprehensive record of "Primary Source Information" on the descendants of Adriean Pietersen Buys. This family migrated from the Duchy of Gelders in Holland to the United States in the 1600's. This family can be traced directly to Columbia County NY., to church records at the above mentioned churches. The name "Rudolph" Buys does not show up in any of these records, but I highly suspect that given the nature of the continued "church faith" of both families, the patronomic naming schemes that are consistant with this Buys family and Rudolph Buys family, and the continuation of other connective families that are married into and related by way of sponsorships to this Buys line, I strongly believe this to be the family tree of our Rudolph Buys.


Could Rudolph Buys be the immigrant ancestor?

I have compiled information which could prove helpful in the event that we are unable to connect Rudolph Buys to the tree of immigrant Aert (Adriean) Pietersen Buys. Click here for this research!


The Buys Immigrants

So, who was this (Adriean) Pietersen Buys who migrated from Holland? While researching the Buys families which descended from these Dutch immigrants, I have found some very interesting facts about their immigrant ancestors.

The Buys family began migrating to the America's in the mid 1600's. One family who's descendants can be traced directly to the locations of Greene and Columbia County, NY., as noted above, are Aert (Adriean) Pietersen Buys from Beest, Gelderland, Holland, who immigrated on THE BEAVER, as it sailed from Amsterdam 9 May 1661, and arrived 29 July 1661 in New Amsterdam, now Manhatten Island in NY.

Another well documented Buys immigrant and relative of Aert (Adriean) Pietersen Buys, was Jan Cornelius Buys from Bunnik. Jan Cornelius Buys can be traced to a family of Dutch ship owners and sailors. (Note: A "buis" or "Buizen" is a small sailing boat used mostly for herring fishing in the North Sea. It was used until the 19th century.) According to record, the Buys family were good sailors who fought the Spanish and British fleets during the hundred years war. The grandfather of Jan Cornelius Buys, William Cornelius Buys, made history by directing a part of the Dutch fleet under the command of famous admiral, Maarten Harpertsz Tromp, out of heavy weather near England and saved a number of his ships. The Buys family were noted captains of warships, when a war was on. Jan Cornelius Buys ancestors also held government positions as Mayors of their respective regions.

The following information was passed along to me from a fellow genealogist and family member (distant cousin).

From correspondence with a profession reseasrch drs. P. Nouwt of The Netherlands <pnouwt@bigfoot.com>; "Passenger list of the vessel Arent [Eagle]: Jouurney from Amsterdam The Netherlands to New Amsterdam. Dep. 3/15/1663: Passenger: Aaddriaen Pietersen from Tiel. Passenger list of the vessel "Bever" [Beaver] Dep 5/1661. Passenger: Aert Petersen Buys from Beest, & wife & son Passenger list of vessel Rooseboom [Rosetree] Dep 3/1663 Jan Pietersen Buys from Beest.

According to these records Aert Pietersen Buys travelled to New Amsterdam with his wife & son in May 1661. Two years later in March 1663, Jan Pietersen Buys and Aadriaen Peteerse Buyss followed. I think it quite likely that Aert Pietersen, Jan Pietersen & Arien Pieterse were brothers. Perhaps all three of them were born in Beest, though Arien Pietrse moved to Tiel later on. the town of Tiel is situated only 10 miles east of the village of Beest. In Tiel, I could not find a baptism record for Arien Pietrse but did find someone called Pieter Aariensen (widower of Ariantejen Jansen) who in 1636 md. to Geriken Hendricksen and in 1646 to Margriet Hermansen. Pieter Ariensen & Geriken Hendricksen could have been the parents of Arien Pieterse Buys (who had a son & dau. named Pieter & Gerritje) However, no definite proof was found.

The locations where Jan Cornelius Buys (of Bunnik) and Adrien Pietersen Buys and brother Jan Pietersen Buys (of Beest) immigrated from, were only 17.52 miles apart!

I have located and would like to share the following Buys family crests. The first crest (on the left), is that of the ancestor of the above mentioned Jan Cornelius Buys. The second crest (on the right), is that of another Buys (Buijs) family of the Netherlands, which coorisponded with me and informed me that their family had a history of ship sailing and farming.

"Click on the images below for a closer view."
Hendrich Buijs
Coat of Arms
Adryaen Adryaensz Buijs
Coat of Arms

Another direct source of the Buys family involvement with the war time sailing class, appears in the document Tromp : het verhaal van een zeeheld, Maarten Harpertszoon Tromp,1598-1653 / Anne Doedens en Liek Mulder. - Baarn : Hollandia, 1989. -(Hollandia Zeegeschiedenis). The list was originally written and published by a "pamphlettist", who wanted to make public the fighting arrangement and composition of the fleet of Tromp in 1652.

The name of captain: Rut Cornelisz Buys appears, (9th name in the second column). Rut is the Dutch equivalent to that of the modern name; Rudy or Rudolph.

"Click on the image below for a closer view."
Rut Cornelius Buys
Circ. 1652

Click on the map image below to view the locations in Holland, The Duchy of Gelders and Brabant, where several pre-immigrant Buys/Buijs families lived.
(Note: Large file, but worth the download.)

I find an interesting connection between these Buys family ancestors, and the more contemporary Boice/Boyce descendants. As I stated in the foreword of this web site, my father told me that we were descendants of a Dutch Sea Captain. A facinating coincidence and possibly a connection to this theory can be found with the descendants of Stephen V. Boyce.

The question recently arose as to the above statement from my father, John Nathan Boyce, claiming that we were the descendants of this Dutch Sea Captain. Why hadn't this information been passed down along other lines of the family as lore?

This is my theory:

John Henry was the "first born" son of Stephen V. Boyce, his "pride and Joy" if you will. I believe that John Henry heard the family history first, and possibly with more clearity and detail. Also, from what I've learned, John Henry kept in touch by mail with his parents even while away in Utah in 1881, discussing family by mentioning a Peter Boyce of Utah, who claimed they were "kin". I would have to assume that for Peter Boyce to make that assumption, John Henry would have had to relay the information of Stephen's origins. The story matches, as this Peter Boyce is a confirmed direct descendant of the above mentioned Columbia and Greene Counties Boice/Buy's families, and a direct descendant of the above mentioned Aert (Adriean) Pietersen Buys.

John Henry's eventual position as a customs officer and Tug boat captain, perhaps stirred up the discussion about the family ancestors. Stephen worked on the tow lines of the Hudson River early on, and Jacob (Stephen's brother), had a son John, (Stephen's cousin), who was a ships carpenter. Perhaps Stephen shared information passed down to him from his father, or perhaps even the mysterious uncle that we've heard about. ( More about this uncle later.) I understand that other descendants of Stephen V. Boyce continued this family tradition as fisherman in the Pudget Sound area.

John Leroy, the "first born" son of John Henry, was urged by his father to join the Navy. . . perhaps he too learned of this family history of ancestor ship skippers, carpenters and captains, suggesting that he "keep the family tradition alive."

Then there was my father, the "only son" of John Leroy, who more than likely bombarded his father in the early years with questions about family, etc. This may have been why my father joined the Merchant Marines as a teenager. It could also explain my fathers love for the sea, even to the point of eventually purchasing his own large boat, a Chinese Junk, which he kept moored in the harbor at Portland Oregon for a time. My mother shared with me that my father had a dream of purchasing a huge cabin cruiser and living with his family on it, going from port to port. I also remember something said about the laws of the land didn't apply to those on the sea, therefore it was quite the attraction for a man such as my father, not to mention his interesting adventures while working for the Alaska Barge and Transport Company during the Vietnam War.

Additionally, other Boyce family members made their way coincidentally to military service on "ships" during WW2.

So, where are we from? I believe that history has an ironic and uncanny way of repeating itself.

A Buys family from the Netherlands, who held government positions, were military sea captains, skippers, fisherman and farmers of their regions, and a Boyce family of San Juan Island, who held government positions, were sea captains, skippers, fisherman and farmers of their respective regions.

Quite a remarkable coincidence. . .