Martina Elmendorf’s Diary, 1802

In August of 1802, Martina Elmendorf (who would go on to marry Lewis Condict) started a diary… Perhaps diary is not the exact right word. It seems to be a combination of a calendar and a sort of serial acknowledgement/ recitation of what she was learning in school and church. But diary will suffice.

I confess at the outset, I have not read it in any detail. My main effort, so far, has simply been to get it reproduced and available to others, and hopefully ensure its survival – beyond the reach of fire and flood –  into the future.

Consider this a place holder. I’ll post more when I have it.






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The Zabriskie Mansion House, Once Washington’s Headquarters, Lost to Development

The house in which Judge Peter Zabriskie (Martina Elmendorf’s grandfather) lived with his family was said to be one of the most beautiful in Hackensack.

Built in 1751, and located on the north side of the Green at 50 Main Street, it was known by all as The Mansion House, and served as headquarters for George Washington from November 15-November 20, 1776. I have often wondered what Peggy Zabriskie Elmendorf might have remembered from that period in which her home was transformed into the general’s command post. It must have been something…



A view of Hackensack c.1831: the house was located in the cluster of buildings to the right of the church tower


Upon Peter Zabriskie’s death, the house was probably passed to his daughter and son-in-law, Peggy – Margaret – and John Elmendorf. In 1815, following their deaths, the house was sold to Dr. David Marvin, a physician.

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The Zabriskie Family and Its Progenitor by George Olin Zabriskie

George O. Zabriskie was the recognized authority on the Zabriskie clan, and it was to him that I turned for a truthful account of the family’s origins, separating the wheat from the chaff, for here, there is a great deal of chaff.

[Note: this is only an excerpt from the chapter… Multiple illustrations and other materials were not carried over. For those who are really curious about the entire record, see the book.–LSL]


from The Zabriskie Family and Its Progenitor, 1961, by G. O. Zabriskie


This history is devoted to the early immigrant, Albrecht Zaborowskij (Albert Zabriskie), his wife Machtelt Vanderlinde and their many descendants.

The name “Zabriskie” is undoubtedly of Polish derivation, and thus the Zabriskies form a Polish American family— the first such family of consequence. But it is so far removed in time from Poland, and from the other families of American Polonia whose roots in Poland are of much more recent vintage, that it has little in common with them except its Polish type surname and an appreciation of the value of its many centuries of Polish heritage. By virtue of locale, language, religion, and marriages with early Dutch Americans, the Zabriskies also form an early Dutch American family whose male members of direct descent are eligible for membership in The Holland Society of New York.

For many years the true European origin of the Zabriskie family has been the subject of much research by members of the family and by Polish American and Dutch American historians. To date nothing conclusive has been found— claims and traditions to the contrary.

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John and Peggy Elmendorf’s Graves

For years, I wondered where they were/ are buried. Now I know.

The couple appears to be split up, buried in two locations…

John is in in the Old Somerville Cemetery, also known as the Bridge Street Cemetery, or Old Rarity Cemetery, which is part of a larger combined cemetery.

Peggy is in First Reformed Church Cemetery of New Brunswick, NJ; Lot 216.

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A Possible Location for the John Elmendorf Homestead in Raritan, NJ

I have often wondered if it would be possible to discover where in Raritan Martina Elmendorf grew up. Now, I think it may be just north of Duvall Park…


From the Somerset County Historical Quarterly, Volume 6, p.197, available online here

…“The New Jersey branch of the Elmendorfs runs to John, third child of  Petrus Edmund and “Molly.” He was bapt. at Kingston Mar. 24, 1749, and m. Margriet (dau. of Peter and Martina [Varick] Zabriskie, of Hackensack, N.  J.) Under the will of his uncle, Evert Bogardus, John received land on the  road from Kingston to the “Gran Kil.” Evert Bogardus m. Gertrude  Crook, and was captain of one, while John was captain of the other of two companies of  militia drawn up at the Kingston courthouse when George  Clinton was proclaimed Governor July 30, 1777. John  Elmendorf appears to have married and removed to New  Jersey after the close of the Revolution, residing for a  time at Hackensack and settling eventually at Somerville. He  inherited the estate which had formerly been owned by Lord Neil Campbell,  near the junction of the Raritan and the North Branch. He and his son Edmund were among the organizers of Somerville  Academy in 1801. He died July 4, 1812. His wife was b. Jan. 7, 1750,  and d. Nov. 24, 1809.”

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