Celebrating 25 years of genealogy

Twenty-five years ago, I was a teenager in high school. I had lost my grandfather the year before. We were looking forward to a new addition to our family: My cousin was pregnant with her first child. My aunt told me it could be twins, since our deceased grandfather had a twin brother. I had never heard anything about this and had always thought opa was an only child. I was a bit freaked out by the idea that I could run into my dead grandpa's twin at any time. I asked my grandmother, and she … [Read more...]

Tribute to Henk Hoitink (1914-2000)

A hundred years ago today, a boy was born in Winterswijk, Gelderland. His parents, Gerrit Jan Hoitink and Willemina Berendina van Nijkerken, had just been married the year before. They named their son Hendrik, after Gerrit Jan's father, as was the local tradition. Informally, they called him Henk. Henk Hoitink was my grandfather. Henk grew up in the village of Winterswijk, where his father worked for the railroad as a shunter. Winterswijk was an important railroad hub in those days, … [Read more...]