Van der Aa’s Aardrijkskundig Woordenboek der Nederlanden or geographic dictionary of the Netherlands is a dictionary in 14 volumes that appeared between 1839 and 1854. It contains descriptions of all geographical names in the Netherlands. For cities, towns, and villages, it will give a description of its location, the population including the dominant religions, the main industry and occupations in a town, and any peculiarities Van der Aa found worth mentioning.
This gazetteer can be helpful to find out the jurisdiction that a village was a part of, or to get an idea of what the town was like in the 1840s. Knowing whether your ancestors’ religion was a minor one can help you understand marriage and migration patterns. The books are in Dutch so if you don’t read the language, you can use a translator like Google Translate.
The books are out of copyright and can be consulted via Google Books: