21 – John Campbell Brother of Jenette Campbell

Again, keeping in mind this is a working theory on my part, I want to mention another John who lived in New Brunswick and had a son Archibald. My hunch is that John Campbell, subject of this sketch, is the John Campbell who was the son of Dugal, brother of Jenette, and cousin to Archibald who named him in his will, and also in-law to the Van Nordens. If it’s still not clear, read post #20 regarding Jenette Campbell Van Norden. I know it’s long but power through. My best advice.

John Campbell died intestate prior to 1764 Dec 28, Somerset Co, NJ.  His wife Margaret Campbell declined administration of the estate in favor of her eldest son, Archibald Campbell. The estate was valued at £78.13.6 and Greear Brown was the fellow Bondsman. “In favor of her eldest son” seems to imply there were other sons and possibly daughters but I do not know who they were.

In 1784, 20 years after the death of the above John Campbell, Archibald Campbell of Albany, NY advertised what was either his or his father’s farm, as being for sale in the Political Intelligencer, New Brunswick.

To be sold, a farm on the Bank of the Raritan River, with Middle Brook running through it, with two houses, on 138 acres with an old mill house which may be easily repaired have the stones and irons entire. Also, 22 acres nearly adjoining.  For terms apply to Greear Brown living on the premise, or Archibald Campbell of the City of Albany who will give title for the same.

The name Greear Brown is common in both the Will of John and the sale of land. I am assuming they are the same properties and same Archibald Campbell.  It seems Archibald of the City of Albany was this person:


Archibald Campbell was born about 1736. Several same-named individuals were at risk during the second half of the eighteenth century (My Note: but not in Albany).…   By 1766, he was paying taxes on an Albany house. In 1768, he married Christina Starenberg of the Schoharie Valley. The marriage produced many children including Archibald who was baptized in the Albany Dutch church in 1778 and became a prominent Albany resident. In 1763, he is said to have been deeded a tract of family land in Albany County *. He was known regionally as a surveyor. In 1772, he laid out a 1.15 million acre tract in the Adirondacks. He also made a number of maps of the city of Albany. At the outbreak of the War for Independence, Campbell supported the Revolutionary cause and was named to represent Charlotte County in the Provincial Congress. He also posted bail for some country people including his father-in-law. For several decades these Campbell’s were Albany mainstays. During the 1780s, his store “opposite Mr. Denniston’s tavern” was advertised in the Albany newspaper. He sold imported tea, sugar, and window glass. He owned and leased a number of lots within the city limits. In 1787, he served as an inspector in the first ward. He also was a member of the Albany Presbyterian Church.  After the war, he resumed surveying. In 1785 he was the deputy State Surveyor. In 1789, he patented 3,000 acres of bottomland (including two islands) in what became Tioga County. He also owned lands in New Jersey and near Sacandaga. **

* I haven’t located a deed but I haven’t searched to any extent.

** Sacandaga is located in the Adirondacks and probably part of the 1.15 million acre tract he laid out in 1772.  I am unsure of his land in New Jersey.

Electric Scotland says: http://www.electricscotland.com/history/highlands/chapter7.htm

Surveyer for Captain Lauchlin Campbell of the island of Isla was the surveyors, Archibald Campbell, of Raritan, New Jersey, and Christopher Yates, of Schenectady, who began their labors June 19, 1764, were instructed to lay off the land as planned…

Could Archibald, son of John, be the Archibald who purchased part of the Kells Hall plantation? He could be.  Elisabeth Van Horne’s deed states:

“Archibald Campbell purchased from said Cornelius Van Horne in his lifetime (prior to 1771)”

It is possible that this is the Archibald of Kells Hall since Lauchlin Campbell’s surveyor was “of the Raritan River”.  If this was the Archibald, he probably did not live there much since his surveying and/or merchant career revolved around Albany. While many merchants kept second homes in Bound Brook, they typically lived in NY City, 30 miles away.  Albany is over 200 miles.

Another theory could be that Archibald’s father, John brother of Jennet who owned the property first and it was paid off by Archibald after John’s death or perhaps the inheritance.   This seems a little awkward given the wording on the 1774 deed but it is possible since John died in 1764.  My inclination is that neither theory is correct simply because of the reference to “Raritan River”. The Kells Hall land would be commonly (but not exclusively) referred to as Bound Brook and it wasn’t directly on the Raritan River.  It would be more common to hear New Brunswick described as Raritan River and in fact possible to own land on the Raritan in New Brunswick.

The following is an abstract of the Will of Archibald Campbell of Albany:

CAMPBELL Archibald of Albany City surveyor Wife Christena son John Jacob and four others daughters Margaret wife of Thomas Brissbrown, Hannah, Sarah, Caty, and Elizabeth. Lands in New Jersey and near Sacondaga house and lot in Albany personal property. Executors the wife and sons John and Jacob Witnesses Robert Hewson William Fryer P Sternbergh Recorded 1793 Febry 19 vol IV p 24

Archibald Campbell, his wife and perhaps other relatives are buried in Albany. The annals of Albany, Volume 3 By Joel Munsell:

  • Archibald Campbell, surveyor, April 24, 1793, aged 57
  • Christina Campbell, wife of Archibald Campbell, died May 9, 1790, aged 45
  • William Campbell, May 16, 1796, aged 27
  • Wm. Campbell, Sept 13, 1831, aged 59

In addition to John and Jacob mentioned in his will, Archibald and Christina had a son named Archibald who lived to adulthood.  From Records of the Reformed Dutch Church of Albany, NY 1683-1809,   Huntington, IN Public Library. http://www.kimmelfamily.net/NY-Data.htm

4/8/1778 baptism of Archibald of Archibald Kemmel and Christina Starrenberg

This is all I know of the Archibald Campbell of Bound Brook/New Brunswick/Kells Hall.  Hopefully more information can be obtained from copies of the original documents.


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