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The DeMOTTE surname is a place name of French origin. MOTTE means hill or mound, in French "de" means "of" or "from", "la" means "the", "de la MOTTE" means people from the hill or mound. The Castle was always built on a hill or higher land. de la Motte was the name of the people in the castle. The castle Motte was located in Bretagne, as the family expanded they erected castles, named after the original family seat, in several parts of France and Belgium.

from the book DeMotte and Allied Families 1665-1977
by Mildred Ione DeMotte and Louis Bernard DeMotte.

     I've been researching my DeMOTT line for several years, during this time I have read several published family histories that refer to Michiel DeMOTT. Michiel is the 1st known De MOTT in North America (born about 1640). Most of the family histories that I have read do not list any sources for their information. It has become difficult to know what is fact and what is speculation.
This especially true now that many of those family histories are on line, fortunately in the last few years several sources of information have been made available. Hopefully we will now be able prove or disprove some those family stories / histories. I have listed a few of those histories / stories here and other information that refer to Michiel and his children. I hope by listing this type of information here we will be able to sort out what is fact or speculation. If you have information that will help in this task please feel free to contribute.

The DeMOTTES migrated to England upon two occasions; there was a Sieur de la MOTTE with William the Conqueror in the invasions of 1066; after the Massacre of St. Bartholomew's Eve in France, several of the de la MOTTES escaped and fled to England along with other French Huguenots.

from the book DeMotte and Allied families published in 1953
by Phoebe DeMotte-Norman and Estella DeMotte-Craig.

Among the earliest de MOTTES in Colonial America was Mathias, a Huguenot from England, who resided on Long Island, New York and married Margaretge Dercksen BRINKERHOFF.

NOTE: the above statement is not correct Mathias resided after 1704 in Bergen, NJ., he is the son of Michiel DeMOTT and Ante WESTBROEK / WESBROUCK AKA: HENDRICKS)

Another early DeMOTT was Michael who came to Ulster County, New York, from Holland in 1665. he was of the DeMOTTE family who had fled to Holland during the Huguenot Persecution in France.

SOURCE: Hennesse Studio of heraldic Art.


Two De MOTTE brothers, Michiel and Mathias forced to leave their home in France, came to America by the way of Holland. Their names appear in the records of Kingston as early as 1665. They are said to have first lived for a short time in New Amsterdam before buying land from the indians in a French settlement in the Esopus. It is not known just where this French settlement was located. Esopus was originally a general name of a large and indefinite tract of country owned by a tribe of Indians by the name. Later Mathias and Michiel De MOTTE are mentioned as living at Wiltwyk - a Dutch settlement renamed by the English, Kingston.

Early records of the De MOTT family are meager. After our branch of the family reached America most of the baptismal and marriage records can be found in the old records of the Dutch Reformed Church with the name spelled variously; De MOTTE, De MOTT, De MODT, De MOEDT, De MOTH, De MUTH, DEMUT, DEMOT.

SOURCE: DeMotte and Allied Families 1665-1977
by Mildred Ione DeMotte and Louis Bernard DeMotte.

Evidently the DeMOTT brothers found conditions unsatisfactory in the Esopus country for in 1704 they moved to New Jersey, going first to Bergen (Jersey City) Mathias bought land and established a home there. Michiel bought a tact of land lying between the hills
and Pequannack River in Morris County, New Jersey. Known as Pompton Plains. the deed to this land is dated Oct 9, 1704. He built a stone house onto the south end of which he attached his blacksmith shop. He lived there the remainder of his life.

From the book DeMotte and Allied Families published in 1953
by Phoebe DeMotte-Norman and Estella DeMotte-Craig.

During my research I found mention of Michiel DeMOTT several times in the court records of Kingston. On page 452 below Michiel DeMOTT is quoted as saying that he was an old soldier (1670/71) this is the only written information that I have found that give a clue on Michiel's beginings and helps us to better estimate his age. In some family histories there is mentioned that Michiel had a brother named Mathias. I agree that Mathias and Michael are brothers and that they bought land in New Jersey as the above story by Phoebe DeMotte-Norman & Estella DeMotte-Craig mentioned. But they are not from France by way of Holland as mentioned in the story by Louis Bernard DeMotte and Mildred Ione-DeMotte, rather they are the sons of Michiel DeMOTT and Ante HENDRICKS better known as WESTBROEK / WESBOUCK. This Michiel DeMOTT that I refer to above and is thought to be the first DeMOTT to settle in North America (about 1665) and progenitor of the DeMOTTs families of early New York & New Jersey.

Richard Duprel (1996) Lacey,WA.

Entires below are from the New York Historical Manuscripts Dutch Kingston Papers

Page 273 it is written that Michiel DeMOT defendant. Plaintiff demands of defendant the doctor's fee for the received wound being five sch. of wheat. Defendant answers that plaintiff was causa movens in regard to his wound and therefore holds that he is not obliged to pay doctor's fee on account of his wound. the hon. court orders defendant to prove that plaintiff was causa movens in regard to his wound, and if not that defendant shall also pay half the doctor's fee (Evert PRYS, Plaintiff)

Page 278: Michiel MOT, appearing produces two witnesses in the suit between him and Evert PRYS, viz., Jan TYSSEN and Mattys TYSSEN, who declare that Evert PRYS first cut against Michiel MOT three times before Michiel MOT wounded Evert PRYS. the hon. court decides whereas Michiel MOT has had judicially examined his witnesses who declare that Evert PRYS was causa movens in being wounded therefore Michiel MOT shall be relieved from paying the doctor's fee of five sch. wheat.

Page 353: Thomas BERS plaintiff vs. Michiel MOT, defendant. Plaintiff demands of defendant his reasons for pursuing him last Thursday, bein June 20/30, on the road while he was going home in company with Robbert PEKOCK, and brings as witness the wife of Joris HAL who saw defendant go outside the gate. She make the following declaration: Defendant asked her where she was going. She answered that she went after her husband for the purpose of taking him home, so that he should not get in trouble. Hereupon defendant answered, "You need not go after your husband, Mr. PALINGH is as good a man as your husband, and better when he has a sword." Defendant went before her, until she found Thomas CHAMBERS prostrated on the ground in the road; he then left her for the woods in the direction of Mr. PALINGH, who stood on the knoll of the underwood and she answers having gone outside the gate for the purpose of seeing how the trouble would end.
Frederick HOSSY, David GRAFFORD, Anotoni COECK, Willem HOUGHTON and Onfre FARGESON request to be compensated for the damage caused to their crops on WASSEMAKER'S land which has been occasioned by the horses entering upon their sowed and tilled land, and thereby request that said land shall be better protected, because they, in running after the horses, have neglected much in their plantation. (continued on page 354, I do not have page 354 at present.

Page 409: Jan JANSEN is granted a lot outside the gate which shall be pointed out to him by the magistrates, viz., six rod wide, the width of Michiel DeMOTH's along the curtains. And he shall be obliged to live on the same within one year and six weeks. (Sept 1668)

Page 442: On this May 9, 1670 their honors of the court contracted with the lowest bidders to put up the fence of Roel of SWARTWOUT because he neglects, as per sentence, to close the same and keep it in proper condition, and whereas the neighbors suffer much damage on account hereof therefore the lowest bidders, Suvereyn Ten HUDT and Michiel De MODT, contracted to make the fence at 6 gldrs, per rod, the money to be paid when the work be completed in October next of this current year in grain at market price, and they shall commence to repair said fence on tomorrow with serviceable palisades, and shall perform the work to the satisfaction of the examiners of fences, and not stop until the work shall be completed. (The wrod used here is "maecken" which may mean repair or erect).

Page 452-453: The hon. Heer BEECQMAN, nomine ex officio says he and Michiel De MODT fought outside the gate and demands the fine in accordance with the laws. Michiel DeMODT says that Eduward WITTEKAR challenged him upon the sword and came with a sword and Michiel MODT also took a sword and went against him, and while they were engaged the hilt of his sword became detached and three (persons) then came and separated them. Claes CLASEN says that WITTEKAR said to the wife of Van de COELEN that he would kick her in her own house whereupon Casper CUYPER said he would do the same to Eduward WITTEKAR, and in this manner the Pole took part in the quarrel and said what is the fighting here about? and that Michiel MODT said he was an old soldier and not afraid. There upon Eduward WITTEKAR fetched his sword and challenged, Michiel and the Pole went together before the door and began to fight. Then the button fell off the hilt, and they were immediately sparated which has been affirmed under oath by Claes CLASEN, Casper MEEUWESEN and Cornelis WOUTERSEN. Eduward WITTEKAR says he had called him a tail. Dirck KEYSER says that he was standing at Jan de BACKER'S door and saw Eduward WITTEKAR go with a sword; thereupon the aforesaid Dirck said, "Ick MOEDT stucken raepen" and went to Van der COELEN'S house and says not to know what had passed before that time. Then Eduward WITTEKAR challenged the Pole and they engaged in a duel with the sword. They were all questioned whether anyone heard that WITTEKAR was called a tail or anything else. Answer, No. the hon. court orders Eduard WITTEKAR to pay for his offence a fine of 60 glds. in behalf of the officer and Michiel MODT 24 gldrs.

Page 460: The hon. court orders Michiel MODT and SUVERYN Ten HOUDT to erect and keep in repairs one half of the fence thay had contracted to make as the lowest subscribers because the examiners of fences have found that the palisades stood only one-foot deep in the ground and in case of neglect they shall have to pay 30 sch. of wheat. The hon. magistrates of Hurly and Marbletown request to keep their court, according to their old right, as it was before. (about 1671)

Page 461: Decree, The hon. court orders that all residents shall make tight their share of the palisades in the curtains, all those that are condemned, with good serviceable palisades sharpened and flat, measuring a lengh of 10 feet, and they shall erect the same in an even line, precisely within three weeks,under penalty of a fine of 20 gldrs. for the first day they are negligent after the stipulated three weeks' time; after the second waring, 40 gldrs., and for the third, arbitrary punishment. This was published on May 15.

It was also resolved that the hon.court shall examine the village curtains and flanks. If any shall be found not to be defensive, they shall have to be made defensive. The lots inside the curtains shall also have to be removed, and the numbers shall have to be increased, that all common labor be drawn in the same. (1671)

List of the inhabitants of this village, where their portion in the Curtains is to be found:

Michiel De MODT No. 1 Rods 10
Robbert BIGGERSTAFF No. 2 Rods 5
Harmen HENDRIX No 3 Rods 5
Jan TOND No 4 Rods 5
Dirck Jansen SCHEPMOES No 5 Rods 5

Page 486: Ordinary Session, October 21, 1672. Present: S. GREVENRAEDT, Cornelis. BARENTSEN, Gorge HALL, Joost ADRIAENSEN, Cornelis. WHNCOOP

Shout GREVENRAEDT, Plaintiff
vs. Michiel MODT, Defendant

Shout GREVENRAEDT says that Michiel MODT has against his will driven his horses on Cornelis land and threatened to hit Cornelis WYNKOOP in the head with a scythe. Michiel MODT says that it is to b proved and that nobody complains about it. The Heer Isaack GREVENRAEDT says that he has rented of said Michiel MODT, and that in conformity with his lease he may enjoy liberty. Michiel MODT says that he contracted for the barn outside, Thoomas HARMENSEN says that Michiel MODT had contracted for the barn out-side (may also mean that the barn was not comprised in the lease)and is ready to prove the same under oath. Schout GREVENRAEDT also demands to be indemnified for the loss he has suffered on account of the fence. Cornelis WYNKOOP says that he cannot be a witness in his own case. The hon. court decides that the Heer GREVENRAEDT shall occupy as per lease house and lot, and Michiel MODT use his barn, but shall not in convenience GREVENRAEDT through his lot, other than with GREVENRAEDT'S permisson.

Page 491: Ordinary Session February 18, 1672/3. Present; Schout GREVENRAEDT, J. HAL, C. WYNCOOP, Cornelis Barentsen SLEGHT, Joost ADRIAENSEN;

Michiel MODT, Plaintiff
vs. Isaack GREVENRAEDT, Defendant

Michiel MODT (through PAELDIN as attorney) demands for feeding four horses as is customary, and also for the burning of palsiades four gldrs., for the wood of a sleigh and a beam was also burnt in his own house. Defendant in regard to the agreement about the horses says that Michiel MODT was satisfied for the time the horses were stabled there, and for one horse with one can of wine.

In regard to Michiel MODT and Schout GREVENRAEDT, it is ordered to pay for the feeding of the horses, in accordance with his own request, during the time they have been there. In regard to Schout GREVENRAEDT and Michiel MODT, shall pay for the lumber for the sleigh 4 gldrs., and whereas the examiners of fences have not found the fence in good condition, therefore Michiel De MODT shall pay 3 sch. of wheat, because he did not have the use, and further if there shall remain any balance on account of Reynier Van der COELEN, over and above the preferred debts, he shall pay Reynier Van der COELEN'S assignation of Apr 4, 1672.

Page 517: Michiel MODT, Defendant. SCHOUT GREVENRAEDT, Plaintiff. Plaintiff demands of defendant the amount of 50 gldrs. because he drove his horses and wagon on the day of prayer. Defendant says not having known it was a day of prayer and that SCHOUT has even carted beer on the Sunday; also says that he has been obliged to pay for what he did not owe, that SCHOUT seeks to ruin the place, and no worse one than he could be found. The hon. court sentences Michiel MODT to pay a fine of 12 gldrs.

1666   Jan 16th, Michiel De MOT grantee. Evert PRYS 
       grantor, Demands 5 schepels of weat for doctor's fee
1677   Nov 8th, Michiel De MOTT grantor. Marretie HANAS     
       grantee,  Demands 43 guilders for wages
1671   Mar 16th, Michiel De MOTT, grantee. Anthony NICOLAES
       grantor, complaint demands 277 guilders 
1672   Jan 21st, Michiel MODT grantor, Henry PARROT grantee, 
       Agreement to purchase land WASSEMAKER'S and across the
       little Mud Kill.
1672   Jan 13th, Michiel MODT grantor. Thomas HARMENSEN grantee,
       Agreement to purchase land
1673   Feb 18th, Michiel MODT grantor. Isaack GREVENRAEDT
       grantee, Demands payment of debt. 
1674   Mar 15th, Michiel MODT grantor. Suvereyn Ten HOUDT 
       grantee, Debt 38 schepels of weat. SUVEREYN admits debt.
       ordered to pay
1676   Feb 13th, Michiel MOTT grantee. JOOST is the grantor, 
       demands 54 sch of wheat and Michiel is ordered to pay. 
1676   Feb 22nd, Michiel MOTT grantee. Gerrit CLOCKLUYER
       grantor, demands 5 sch of wheat for a small leather 
1676   Dec 3rd, Michiel De MOTT grantor. George DAVITS grantee,
       agreement to purchase land. 
1676   Dec 12th, Michiel De MOTT grantee. Hendry PAELDEN
       grantee, demands 238 schepels of wheat. Michiel admits 
       debt ordered to pay. 
1677   Jan 27th, Michiel MODT grantee. Arent TEUNESEN grantor,
       Agreement to purchase house and lot at Horly. 
1677   Feb 12th, Michiel De MOTT grantee. Orseltie DIRX grantor,
       Agreement to purchase a still with all the hose and three 
       cask. (NOTE: Michiel DeMOTT mother-in-law is Orseltje 
       DIRXS / DIRCKS)
1677   Mar 17th, Michiel De MOTT grantor. Poulus CORNELISSEN
       grantee, Acknowledged debt of 90 schepels of wheat 
1677   Mar 20th, Michiel demands payment for house and lot in 
1677   Apr 19th, Michiel De MOTT grantor. George DAVITS grantee,
       Conveys house and lot in village. 
1677   Dec 17th, Michiel De MOTT grantor. Jan JOOSTEN grantee,
       Agreement to purchase land. 
1678   Mar 23rd, Michiel De MODT grantee. Capt THOOMAS grantor,
       Demands 1,488 guildres. Michiel admits debt, ordered to 
1679   Apr 1st, Michiel De MOTT grantor. Clacs Clacsen  
       SLUTER grantee, Conveys certain house and lot at Horly. 
1680   Mar 23rd, 1680 Michiel De MODT grantee. Nicholaes De
       MAYER grantor, Demands 1,044 guilders in wheat. Michiel 
       ordered to pay. 
1681   Jan 8th, Michiel De MOTT grantee. Capt DELAVALL grantor,
       Demands 1,488 guilders. Michiel admits debt ordered to 
1683   Feb 13th, Michiel De MOTT grantor. Fredrick HUSSY grnatee,
       Mortgage - Land bought of the mavges? across the Ronduyt.
1683   Feb 15th, Michiel De MOTT grantor, Edward WITTAKER
       grantee. Mortgage land bought of the mavges? across the 

SOURCE: New York Historical Manuscripts Dutch volume I. Kingston Court records 1661 - 1667.published by Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc Baltimore 1976

1755. Dec 30. DeMOTT, Maties, of township and Co. of Bergen. Gentleman: Will of. Son, Michael. to have Blacksmith tools as his birthright. Sons, Michael and Joris, to have house and lands where I live. Son, Hendrick, the plantation where he lives in Morris Co. Son, Jacob, the plantation where he lives. Daughter Clasie, F160. Daughter, Ontie. F160. Daughter, Maritie, F200. Sons, Michael and Joris, and daughter, Maritie, to have outset as other children had. Executore - sons Mickel, Hendrick, Joris and Jacob. Witnesses - REYNIER van GRIESS, Jacob van WINCKEL, Daniel van WINCKEL. Proved June 8, 1756.

1757, Nov. 9. Inventory (much of it eaten away) of the personal estate, incl. a gold doubloon, f6.18: a gold St. Johannis, F24: 6 small pieces fo gold, F9: 6 negro slaves (young and old). F108.10: a silver cup, F4: many bonds: made by Machyel de MOEDT (De MOTT), Henderyck de MOEDT and Yocob de MOT, Executors: appraised by REYNIER van GIESEN and Zacharias SICKELS.


It does not appear to be known whether this was the first generation to reach America, or if Mattys was the son of the immigrant who settled in Esopus, a small village near Kingston on the Hudson. There are records in the church there of a Machiel de MOT (MODT) and his wife Ante WESBROUCK, who had three sons in 1682-84-87; these would have been too young to be Mattys. but it is possible that they had older children born before arriving in this country, or of whom no record was kept.

Mattys De MOTT died 1759 Bergen, NJ. married Margrettje BLINKERHOF 6 May 1705, she born 1671 died about 1744 in Bergen, NJ. Mattys came from Esopus (Kingston) in 1693, and bought 87 acres of land in Bergen; from that time on he is often mentioned in civic affairs and in sales of property; he appears to have been one of the most belligerent of the Dutchmen of Bergen in the struggle against the english after their capture of New Netherland, who tried to prove title to the lands of orginal colonists. Mattys and his wife belonged to the "Church of the Green" at Hackensack, and most of their progeny were baptized there, but not their first child and eldest daughter, the only record of whose birth appears to be in the Van VORST bible, copied on a following page/ The will of Mattys was proved 1759, & showed that he possessed large properties at his death.

SOURCE: from Van Vorst, Bacot & collateral families
by Eleanor Micell (1938) DAR Library. SOURCE: Lds film

On the Family Archives CDs "World Family Tree volume 3, tree #5339" list Michiel DeMOTT'S parents at Johannes DeMOTT and Maria FACHE both from France. This the only mention I have ever found on who Michiel parents are. I list their names here for future reference / research as I have not been able to vertify the source for this information. UPDATE: Family Tree Maker Online Genealogy library; the book The Huguenot Emigration to America page 35, Notes from the Walloon Records of Leyden, has DE LA MOT. Jean de la Mote and Marie Fache, his wife, presented their son Jean for baptism, November 10, 1622.

8 generations of Michiel DeMott descendants

DeMotts in the Military

DeMotts "New York Census"

DeMotts "New Jersey Census"

DeMotts "Other States Census"

Unconnected DeMotts

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