The Three Worlds of Christoffel Harmenszen
From the editor of The Van Zandt Record comes a book about the life of Christoffel Harmenszen, earliest known ancestor of the Gerret Stoffelse van Sand branch of the family in America.
Trace the migration of one of the Van Sant family's earliest known ancestors, Christoffel Harmenszen, from his homeland in Ostfriesland along the North Sea coast, to his years as a young man living and working in Amsterdam, followed by his final three years of life struggling in the virtual wilderness of Nieuw Amsterdam. View sample pages below from the large, full color, coffee table-styled book. See the church where Christoffel worshipped in Cleverns, the North Sea coastline of his homeland, copies of his marriage intentions, and walk the streets of seventeenth-century Amsterdam as it appeared when he lived there in the 1640s.
Christoffel Harmenszen brought his second wife, Tryntje Claes, and his 8-year-old son by his first wife, Gerret Stoffelszen, on the fateful journey in 1652 to Nieuw Amsterdam. There is no evidence that Christoffel (aka Stoffel) was ever called Van Sant, or one of its many variations. It was his son, Gerret, and Gerret's sons who adopted the surname van Sand in the 1690s as the family migrated south to Pennsylvania, Delaware, and Maryland from their homes on Long Island and Staten Island.

The book is rich with full color photographs of Amsterdam and the northern coast of Germany, including Jever and Cleverns—the two places that Christoffel gave on his marriage intentions recorded in Amsterdam. The vibrant photos are complemented by copies of ancient maps of the areas where Christoffel lived, along with copies of original records which document important milestones in his life.

The limited edition book is available for $70 plus $12 shipping for delivery in the US. Questions can be directed to the author/publisher, Laurie Van Sant. Download an order form here.

What people are saying:

FIRST, MIDDLE, and FINAL impression of your book is WOW! I still can’t give words to how impressed I am with your book, and what a treat it is. The only comparison I have to the anticipation I would feel each time I would pick it up, is when I was a kid, reading a special new book after Christmas. VERY impressive and a huge treat to read! — Cheri Van Zant, Pennsylvania

  I've now read through your book and I thought it was terrific. I love the maps and pictures and the visual layout was great. I also liked the text. I thought you did a good job of weaving in the historical background with the information specific to Christoffel. All in all, a superior job in every way. — Bill Utermohlen, Virginia
Moin Laurie,

Again, thanks for the work you did on your book about Christoffel Harmenszen. It's the finest, most professional book I've ever seen in genealogical circles. Gene Janssen — President of the Ostfriesen Genealogical Society of America, Minnesota

Laurie, we have enjoyed reading your book and keep going back to it over and over. You are so talented and the book is such an expression of your talent. I hope everyone enjoys it as much as we have. — Allen & Marcia Van Sant, New Jersey

  I am so thrilled to have my own copy of your book. Can't tell you how many times I've picked it up to refer to some place or event. It has really made me become obsessed with reading 17th century history. I am looking forward to sharing it with my brother when he visits in a few weeks. — Janice Van Zandt Cox, Mississippi

Received your book and it certainly is a great work of art and a nice surprise. This plugs a hole in our ancestry which I suspect many of us didn't think was possible. — Harry Van Sandt, Washington