Ask Yvette – How far can you go back?

One question that pops up regularly in conversations is how far back we can trace our Dutch ancestors. Here's a rough overview that will apply to most people. Research in the 1900s and 2000s is difficult because of privacy restrictions. You will need permission or proof of death to access records of people born less than 100 years ago. Since … [Read more...]

Ask Yvette – Where Can I Find Records For St. Eustatius?

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 … [Read more...]

Ask Yvette – Should I Take a DNA Test?

Last month, I blogged about my ethnicity predictions, which were wildly off. As a result, several people have asked me: Should I take a DNA test if they are so unreliable? My answer? Absolutely! You see, a DNA test gives you two types of results. On the one hand, it gives you the ethnicity predictions. This feature has the most curb appeal … [Read more...]

Ask Yvette – How to Record Place Names

Dutch Genealogy reader Linda had the following question: In my research, the locations for some births/deaths, etc. are confusing. I'm finding, "Lellens, Ten Boer, Groningen, Netherlands" or just "Ten Boer, Groningen, Netherlands". ALSO "Stedum, Loppersum, Groningen, Netherlands" or just "Loppersum, Groningen, Netherlands", and once, "Stedum, … [Read more...]

Ask Yvette – Where is “Friesland” anyway?

Holly (De Fries) Flaherty wanted to know more about Friesland. Her paternal grandfather was from Friesland and spoke Dutch, but her maternal grandfather was from Friesland and spoke German. She heard that there were two provinces called Friesland - one German and one Dutch. She wanted to know if they were connected, historically, and whether … [Read more...]

Ask Yvette – Are there Passenger Lists in Dutch Archives?

I often get asked if there are any passenger lists in Rotterdam or Amsterdam, of the people who departed from these ports to America, Canada, or Australia. Depending on the period, there may not be any. Passenger lists often went with the ship and were archived in the port of arrival, not in the port of departure. The archives of the shipping … [Read more...]

Ask Yvette – Dealing with Records Loss in World War II

To celebrate 1,000 likes of Dutch Genealogy Services on Facebook, likers were invited to ask a research question for a free consultation. Some could quickly be answered on Facebook. Eric Schmidt asked a question that some of you may struggle with as well, so I thought I'd answer it in more detail. Eric asked: For years this is my brick wall … [Read more...]

Ask Yvette: Untangling two same-named women

My distant cousin, Fred Geurkink, asked me the following question [edited for brevity]: My grandma Gigi, (Marion Peterson), wrote down in her recollections about my great great grandma Grietje Koning. Said she was born on 30 Aug 1834, married my gg grandpa Jan Pieters Stelma on 23 Jun 1856, etc etc. On Ancestry, I received "hints" about said … [Read more...]

Dutch Genealogy Webinar – Questions about Immigrant Ancestors

This is my second post answering the questions asked by viewers of my "Researching Your Dutch Ancestors" webinar. In this post, I will answer questions about finding immigrant ancestors. A good general strategy for finding immigrant ancestors is outlined in my article How to find my immigrant ancestor in the Netherlands? How do you trace your … [Read more...]

Dutch Genealogy Webinar – Questions about Records

During the webinar "Researching Your Dutch Ancestors," the viewers had the most interesting questions. I got to address some of them during the webinar, but thought they all deserve a reply so I'm dedicating this post to answer some more. There were so many great questions that I will have inspiration for several follow-up articles, so please stay … [Read more...]