Featured article

boy looking at paper of boy sitting next to him

Sources for Dutch Genealogy – Pre 1811 Cheat Sheet

Looking for information about Dutch ancestors in the period from say 1650 until 1811 (before the introduction of the civil registration)? This cheat sheet will tell you which sources to consult. In some cases, not all types of records are available in each region. If a town did not have an orphan chamber, the administration Continue reading →

Featured article

train wreck

Using risk management strategies to do genealogy efficiently

As a project manager, I am used to assessing and managing risks. I will determine the biggest threats to my project, assess how likely they are to occur and how much of an impact they would have if they do occur. The combination of these factors will tell me which risks I need to focus Continue reading →

Three girls

Case study – Using population registers to tell a story

When you find enough evidence to answer your initial research questions, it is tempting to move on to another family. But you can discover a whole lot more if you make the effort to find all available records. In this case study, I will show you how you can find out more about the lives Continue reading →

Featured article

5 reasons to hire a professional genealogist

Five reasons to hire a professional genealogist

Most of my clients hire me for a combination of these five reasons. Why would you consider hiring a professional genealogist? Or what is holding you back? If you have ever hired a professional genealogist, what was your main reason for doing so? (Feel free to reuse this image. A link back to this blog post Continue reading →

People lying sandbags near a river

Column – Thought process

Shortly after I started doing genealogy, a fellow researcher urged me to always document my sources. “You think now that you will remember where you’ve found everything, but there comes a time that you will have gathered so much that you won’t remember the source.” Wise words that I took to heart and that have Continue reading →

Tip of the week

Windmill during a water surge

Quick tip: There is no village called ‘Burgerlijke Stand’

In some of the records at Familysearch, the place of birth is listed as ‘Burgerlijke Stand’ followed by the name of a municipality in the Netherlands. ‘Burgerlijke Stand’ means ‘Civil Registration‘ and is not a location. The way it is included in the record sets on Familysearch makes it look like a village. When these records Continue reading →

Term of the week

Grave of Gerrit Jan Droppers (1845-1925)

Dutch term – wijlen

The term wijlen means ‘the late,’ or ‘deceased.’ You will often encounter the term in marriage records or death records, where one or both parents are deceased. The record might say “zoon van wijlen…” [son of the late...] or “dochter van wijlen…” [daughter of the late...]. Sometimes, the word is abbreviated to ‘w’ and you will see Continue reading →