Signed, Sealed, & Undelivered: Amazing Collection of 17th Century Letters Rediscovered

The Museum voor Communicatie discovered an amazing treasure in their vaults: a box that belonged to a postmaster in the 17th century, filled with 2600 undelivered letters, 600 of which have never been opened. The letters came to The Hague from France, the Southern Netherlands and Spain. Dr David van der Linden, from the University of Groningen, says: "The collection contains unique letters sent between Huguenot family members, evincing the emotional strains of exile and separation. These … [Read more...]

Dutch term – Brief

A brief is a letter. Brieven are a great source of information. Personal letters written by emigrants to their family back home can give you a great idea of what their pioneering life was like. I've also found valuable information in official correspondence, for example in the correspondence of the municipality where my ancestor lived. In municipal correspondence, I've found letters about people who were sent to the pauper colonies or an insane asylum, and appointments of city officials like … [Read more...]

Call for emigrant letters

Emigrant letters are a great source for information about the pioneer generation. Yesterday, I asked for emigrant letters on a newsgroup. Already, I've received two letters that were not widely known yet. … [Read more...]

Beij, unknown family

The Beij family emigrated from Leiderdorp, Zuid-Holland to the United States in 1860 and settled in Paterson, NJ. Miss Beij wrote back to her old neighbors in the Netherlands. This letter still exists today. Unfortunately, it is not known (yet) who this family is. … [Read more...]