About this website

Creating a website like this is a fun activity. There are so many options, so many choices. What do visitors want? What do I want? In this blog I will describe some of the things I encounter in developing and maintaining this website.

Quick tip – 400 Years of Dutch-American Stories

The National Archives of the Netherlands publishes a monthly series of stories about the 400 years of Dutch-American history. Past issues include stories about the name New Amsterdam, a woman named Mayken van Angola who was freed from slavery, and Dutch-American relations. … [Read more...]

Dutch Genealogy News for August 2022

Here is an overview of the new sources, websites, and other news announced last month. Sources 450,000 records from population registers 1900-1938 from Zeeland have been added to the Zeeuws Archief website. Several church, court, and notarial records from the east of Noord-Brabant have been added to the Brabants Historisch Informatie Centrum website. Transcriptions of church, tax, and population registers of Nieuw- en Sint Joosland have been added to HoGenDa. Transcriptions of … [Read more...]

Quick tip – Hear the dialects of your ancestors

In the Netherlands, every region, sometimes every town, has its own particular dialect. If you want to hear how the people in your ancestors' region sounded, you can listen to audio clips at the Meertens Institute website. Click on the + before the province Click on the name of the town, which will open a pop-up with a list of recordings. Click on "Afspelen" [play] Most of the clips are anonymous. You can also click Kaart [map] to see the recordings on a map or click the Opnames … [Read more...]

Quick tip – Look at old photos

Looking at old photos can tell you a lot about life in the times of your ancestors, even if the photos were not of your family. Take this photo of an unidentified Winterswijk farm in 1937, for example. Since I am related to just about everyone from Winterswijk, the child in the photo is probably a distant cousin of mine. We can see that the she is wearing long stockings above her wooden shoes, telling us the photo was probably taken in winter. She is sitting on a wooden chair with a … [Read more...]

Dutch societies with members-only databases or transcriptions

Most genealogical information in the Netherlands is available free of charge. Government archives are required to make existing information available free-of-charge. This is why you will not be charged to access online records at the websites of Dutch archives. Private organizations can charge for access. Some organizations have created databases or transcriptions that are available as a member benefit. Here are some examples. Please note that the websites of these organizations are … [Read more...]

Quick tip – Frisian genealogy yearbooks online

The Genealogysk Jierboek [Genealogical Yearbook] is a publication about Frisian genealogy. The issues from 1951 to 2020 are online. The articles are in Dutch or Frisian. … [Read more...]

Quick tip – Signatures in Civil Registration Records

If you are looking at a civil registration record, the last part will identify who signed the record. If any of the people were illiterate or had other reasons not to sign, it would say so. Example: Biggelaar-Rens marriage record On 1 May 1858, my ancestors Hubertus van den Biggelaar and Anna Maria Rens were married in Terheijden. The bottom of their marriage record described who signed the record. It was signed (translation) "with the father of the bride and the witnesses, while the parties … [Read more...]

How Adriaan Marijnissen died

In May, I wrote about my ancestor Johanna van Groezen, who became a wife, mother of two children, and a widow; all in 1864. Her husband Adriaan Marijnissen died in Strijen on 29 October 1864 at the age of twenty-six.1 I had been unable to find out how Adriaan Marijnissen came to die in Strijen, away from his residence in Made, or how he died, since Dutch death records do not include the cause of death and I was unable to find anything in newspapers. After publishing the article, I decided to … [Read more...]

Dutch Genealogy News for July 2022

Here is an overview of all the new sources, websites, and projects that were announced last month. Sources Over a million scans of notarial records of Overijssel (1811-1925) have been added to the finding aid. Almost 60,000 of these scans have been automatically transcribed. These transcriptions are available via Zoek in transcripties. Church membership records of Steenwijk (1721-1882) have been scanned and indexed and can be searched via the Steenwijkerland municipal archives … [Read more...]

Thank You for your Donations

Three months ago, I added a donation option to my free newsletter. The newsletter has continued to grow over the past years and outgrew the free service I was using. To my surprise and delight, more than a dozen people used the opportunity to donate. Thank you very much. I will use the donations for the mailing list provider and the hosting of the website. If you want to support the free information on this website and newsletter, here are some options to contribute: Donate via … [Read more...]