My Native American DNA. Say what?

Chromosome painting showing my admixture

Always eager to try technological advances, I took an autosomal DNA test to see what that would tell me. One of the tools that you can use on Gedmatch tells you your admixture: the regions where your ancestors originally came from who contributed to your DNA. The methods to calculate this are still very much under development, but I find it … [Read more...]

Quick tip: Free images of Dutch colonial past

View of New Amsterdam

The National Archives and Royal Library of the Netherlands have just donated thousands of images of the colonial past of the Netherlands and its trade partners to the public domain. These images have been uploaded to Wikimedia and are free for everybody to use, without restrictions. Here are a few gems: View images from the Atlas of … [Read more...]

Column: (Re)searcher

Office of the notary

When you've been going genealogy for many years, there are some brick walls that you've just about given up on because you've spent so many fruitless hours tearing them down. But it can be useful to re-evaluate them periodically. Not only will there be new sources available online, but your own skills will have grown too. … [Read more...]

Quick tip: Use Zoekakten.nl to find Dutch records on Familysearch

Zoekakten.nl home screen

Zoekakten.nl is a new website that took over from the popular service Genver.nl. Zoekakten (literally: search records) provides you direct links to record sets of Dutch sources in Familysearch, such as birth, marriage and death records of the civil registration, population registers and baptismal, marriage and burial records from churches before … [Read more...]

Column: Genealogy police

Police officer

To me, one of the best aspects of the internet is that it gives everybody a channel to publish whatever they want. No editors that tell you what you can or cannot do, everybody is their own publisher. This has resulted in a wide range of publications, ranging from copy-paste jobs without citations to well-researched works that would not be out of … [Read more...]

Quick tip: Podcast interview with Yvette Hoitink

Podcast

Dutch Genealogy's Yvette Hoitink was interviewed by Marian Pierre-Louis for the Genealogy Professional podcast series. Listen to the podcast and learn about Yvette's research services and find out what advice she has for other genealogists. The Genealogy Professional Podcast 25 - Yvette Hoitink The Genealogy Professional podcast series is a … [Read more...]

Not everything is recorded

Bedstead in a Noord-Brabant farm

Records were not kept with future genealogists in mind. Many of the things you would like to know about an ancestor may not have been documented. As genealogists, we sometimes feel like we have gotten to know our ancestors through the documents, but records still give us just a very partial idea about their lives. As an exercise, please answer … [Read more...]

Quick tip – Your ancestors may have moved a lot

Car with lots of pans and other stuff sticking out

Your ancestors may have moved around a lot more than you think. Especially towards the end of the 19th century, when more and more people started living in cities, people moved a lot more frequently than we do today. Check this case study, for example, that shows how one woman moved 28 times in 20 years. … [Read more...]

A tale of two calendars

Republic of the Seven United Netherlands

Almost everywhere in the world today, we use the Gregorian calendar. It has 365 days a year, with the occasional leap year that is determined as follows: Every year that is exactly divisible by four is a leap year, except for years that are exactly divisible by 100, but these centurial years are leap years if they are exactly divisible by 400. For … [Read more...]

Quick tip: naming patterns

Gerrit and Mien Woordes

Most Dutch parents followed a strict pattern when naming their children: the first son was named after the paternal grandfather, the second son after the maternal grandfather; the first daughter was named after the maternal grandmother and the second daughter after the paternal grandmother. When you find a source that lists children in their … [Read more...]