Featured article

Mother with baby and child

How to find the father of an illegitimate child

In most families, sooner or later you will encounter a child born to an unwed mother. Finding the fathers of these ‘illegitimate’ children can be difficult, but not necessarily impossible. I’ve researched dozens of these cases, both in my own tree and for clients. In four cases, I have been able to prove who the father was. In two other Continue reading →

Featured article

Map of a river with different cities next to it

News from the Netherlands – August 2014

‘News from the Netherlands’ is a monthly series to inform you about the best new websites, projects and books that help you find and understand your Dutch ancestors. New records The Erfgoed Leiden en Omstreken [Heritage Leiden and Surrounding areas, which includes the Leiden archives] has published a series of indexes of Leiden records on their website. [Source: Geneaknowhow] Continue reading →

Archives Portal Europe homepage

Europeana and genealogy

Earlier this week, I had my farewell party at the National Archives, where I had worked for 8.5 years as a consultant and project manager in the IT department. I quit my job to focus full-time on my genealogy business. Besides doing client research, I will also be doing consultancy for IT-projects in the heritage Continue reading →

Featured article

Marriage announcement of H.J. Kastein and E.J.E. de Monye

Source: Family announcements

In the Netherlands, there has never been a tradition of writing biographical obituaries like you see in countries like the United States. Instead, “familieberichten” [family announcements] simply announce the death of a person. In the 19th century, only more affluent people had a familiebericht placed in the paper. It was usually very short and only Continue reading →

Aalten church. Photo: Yvette Hoitink

Fighting in church

It is rare to find sources that show us the how our ancestors behaved in their every-day lives. Church council minutes can sometimes give us a glimpse. The church council minutes of Aalten are a good example. Church seats In Dutch Reformed Churches, most members had their own seats in the church. They would have Continue reading →

Tip of the week

boy looking at paper of boy sitting next to him

Quick tip – Dutch Genealogy Quiz

Are you an expert in Dutch Genealogy? Take the Dutch Genealogy Quiz and find out in three minutes! Regular readers of this blog and newsletter will recognize some of the topics. Don’t worry if you get some answers wrong. I can see which questions people struggle with and promise to write articles about these topics in Continue reading →

Term of the week

train wreck

Dutch term: Spoorwegen

The term Spoorwegen means Railways. The first railway in the Netherlands began in 1839, and ran between Amsterdam and Haarlem. In the rest of the 19th century, a multitude of railway companies developed a railway network that spanned the entire country. The train quickly replaced the Trekschuit (pulled barge) as the most popular form of long-distance transportation.