Gozen van Schaick   [1736-1789]

Military Leader

Gozen Van Schaick was a soldier for a good part of his life, first serving in the colonial militia and participating in the fight against the French and Indians, and later participating in the Revolutionary War against the English, as a member of the New York Regiment. Towards the end of his military career, he became a brigadier general.

Gozen Van Schaick was the son of Sybrant Van Schaick [1708-1774] and Alida Roseboom. Sybrant was mayor of Albany from 1756 to 1761, during the colonial era. Sybrant’s parents were Gosen Van Schaick and Catherina Staats. Gosen in turn was either a grandson or a son of the original Dutch immigrant, Goosen Gerrits Van Schaick. Goosen Van Schaick came over to New Netherland in 1637, and came from the province Utrecht in the Netherlands.

The first military campaign, in which Gozen participated, was the expedition against Crown Point in 1756, in which the French and the Indians were defeated at Sabbath day Point. During that campaign, Gozen was only 20 years old, and was appointed a lieutenant. He became a captain in 1758 when he took part in the expeditions against Fort Frontenac and Fort Niagara. The following year, in 1759, he was appointed a major of a New York regiment. Prior to his participation in the battle of Ticonderoga, in 1762, he was promoted to lieutenant colonel in the First New York regiment. At the beginning of the American Revolution, he became a colonel in the Second New York regiment, and in November 1775 he was appointed to command the First New York battalion. At the battle of Monmouth, he became a brigadier general. And finally, in 1779, he was appointed to head up a detachment, with which he destroyed the Onondaga settlements. For that service the U. S. Congress gave him a vote of thanks.

In October 1770, Gozen married Maria Ten Broeck [1750-1829] in New York City. Maria was only 20 years old then and Gozen was already 34. The couple had six children who were all baptized in the Dutch Reformed Church in Albany. Sybrant Van Schaick, Gozen’s father, passed away in 1772, leaving Gozen in charge of the extensive family possessions, including land and businesses. In other words, although Gozen’s military service defined him historically, he was also a businessman, and had considerable family responsibilities.

Gozen was an early and ardent supporter of American liberties and independence. For his military service in the Revolutionary War, Gozen received a number of land bounties, and other forms of recognition.

During the battle of Ticonderoga, Gozen had received a severe injury on the cheek caused by a hit from a French musket. The injury eventually turned cancerous, and despite surgical care in Philadelphia, the cancer became the cause of Gozen’s early demise. He passed away when he was only 53 years old. He died at his home on July 4, 1789. His widow, Maria Ten Broeck, outlived him by 40 years. She died in 1829, at the ripe old age of 79. 

                        

REFERENCES

Colonel Van Schaick, www.nysm.nysed.gov/albany/bios/vs/gvs.html

Gozen Van Schaick, Famous Americans

Van Schaick Family Papers, 1661-1863, www.nysl.nysed.gov/msscfa/sc10837.htm

 

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“DUTCH AMERICAN ACHIEVERS: ARTS, SCIENCE AND SPORTS”, 2012

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