Over the past months, two readers have asked me where to find records for St. Eustatius, an island in the Caribbean. Since more people may have the same question, I thought I’d turn it into an article.
St. Eustatius is a special municipality in the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The former Dutch colony is part of the Netherlands Antilles. If you have ancestors from St. Eustatius, here is an overview of the available records.
An index to the civil registration birth, marriage, and death records of Sint Eustatius since 1869 is available via WieWasWie. Advanced search functions require a subscription. FamilySearch has scans of civil registration records since 1869 and church records of baptisms, marriages, and burials for 1709-1791 (free login required).
In St. Eustatius, slavery was legal until 1863. There is an index of enslaved people in Suriname and the Netherlands Antilles who were emancipated in 1863. Many of the underlying records are available at the National Archives of the Netherlands in The Hague.
The National Archives of the Netherlands has two other record groups that contain information about St. Eustatius:
- St. Eustatius and Saba after 1828 (record group 1.05.13.02). This record group covers the period 1828-1860, but most of the records are for the 1828-1845 period.
- St. Eustatius and Saba before 1828 (record group 1.05.13.01). This record group covers the period 1709-1828, but most of the records are for the 1790-1828 period.
The finding aids for these record groups are online, available via the links. These will give you the archival descriptions (in Dutch), the records themselves are mostly not online yet. The records are mostly in Dutch.
These record groups include:
- Government correspondence
- Criminal court records
- Civil court records
- Notarial records
- Orphan chamber records
- Tax records
- Civil registration records
- Church records (though many are in a poor condition and cannot be consulted)
There are several ways to consult these records:
- The finding aid allows you to order scans of these records (paid service)
- You can consult the original records in the reading room in The Hague (free service, bring your passport)
- You can hire a genealogist to go to the reading room for you to do the research (paid service).
Do you have any questions about Dutch Genealogy? Let me know and maybe your question can be featured in the next “Ask Yvette.”