Quick Tip – Did the boundaries change?

Over the past two hundred years, Dutch municipalities have seen many boundary changes. In the past 50 years especially, many smaller municipalities have merged to form larger municipalities. Understanding these boundary changes can help you figure out if your ancestor moved, or if they continued to live in the same place but the municipality changed. For an overview of all municipalities in the Netherlands since 1811 including boundary changes, see the website Gemeentegeschiedenis. Example: … [Read more...]

Quick tip – Was the municipality involved?

Records created by the municipality can be a great source of information about our ancestors' lives. The municipality collected taxes, provided poor relief, gave permits, and kept population registers. They employed many people, including teachers, architects, and police officers. They wrote reports about the state of the municipality, which can give information about crops, industry, and special events. The mayor was informed if a resident was admitted to an asylum, or of other special … [Read more...]

Source – Records of the municipality

In 1812, the Netherlands had more than 1,100 different municipalities. Since then, many have merged so we have about 350 left. See the Gemeentegeschiedenis website for an overview of all the municipalities that ever existed. Each of these municipalities created a wide range of records. Typical categories include: Records created by mayors, aldermen, municipal council, such as minutes of meetings, correspondence, municipal reports Various departments within the municipality … [Read more...]

Source: Municipal Reports

Since 1851, municipalities were required to write annual reports about the state of the municipality. These reports rarely give information about individual ancestors, but can be a great source of information about their circumstances. Topics you can find in municipal reports: Population Elections Names of the municipal council members Names of mayor and aldermen Finances Municipal property and works Health Police National and local militia Education … [Read more...]