Kiliaen van Rensselaer (/m/038hm_)

Kiliaen van Rensselaer was a Dutch diamond and pearl merchant from Amsterdam who was one of the founders and directors of the Dutch West India Company, being instrumental in the establishment of New Netherland. He was one of the first patroons, but the only one to become successful. He founded the Manor of Rensselaerswyck in what is now mainly New York's Capital District. His estate remained throughout the Dutch and British colonial era and the American Revolution as a legal entity until the 1840s. Eventually, that came to an end during the Anti-Rent War. Kiliaen van Rensselaer was born in the province of Overijssel to Hendrick Kiliaensz van Rensselaer, a soldier from Nijkerk in the States army of the duke of Upper Saxony, and Maria Alberts Pafraet, daughter of a printer in Hasselt. To keep from risking his life in the army like his father, he apprenticed under his uncle, a successful Amsterdam jeweler. He too became a successful jeweler and was one of the first subscribers to the Dutch West India Company upon its conception.
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