Dutch term – Uithangbord

An uithangbord is a sign hanging from the façade of a building. Many businesses had one. It served as advertising and as a form of address: people often referred to a house by the sign that hung from it. In old court records, you can sometimes find references to these signs, for example in phases like ". . . sells his inn at the Achterstraat, … [Read more...]

7 Tips for Finding the Address of your Dutch Ancestors

Are you thinking about coming to the Netherlands to visit the bulb fields and visit the places where their ancestors lived? Depending on where your ancestors lived and how wealthy they were, it may not be easy to find out exactly where they lived. Here are some things you need to know when trying to find the address where your ancestors … [Read more...]

Dutch term: Wijk

A wijk is a part of town: a district or neighborhood. Before the introduction of modern addresses, many houses were identified using their Wijk and housenumber only. You will see that your ancestor died in Wijk B number 298, for example. Maps from that period may show you where the Wijken were, but they will rarely show you the location of … [Read more...]

Quick tip: addresses are a modern invention

Addresses that consist of a street name and a number are a relatively modern invention. Until the 19th century, many houses in the Netherlands did not have addresses but only street names, and often unofficial ones at that. You may encounter descriptions like "the house at the end of the Lily Canal, where the Boars hangs out," followed by a list of … [Read more...]