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The Netherlands > Gelderland
| In February 1995 Ochten received international media attention because of a weakened dike after a prolonged period of high waterlevels in the rivers. This situation and the state of other dikes forced 250,000 people in this region to evacuate. The riverlevels had been unusually high for almost two months, reaching record heights during the first days of February. Although the dike started to shift a huge rescue operation managed to stabilise the dike. Several months later the already planned strengthening of the dike started
For Geographical and Historical information see: Gelderland
The capital city of Gelderland is Arnhem. See: Arnhem
The official web-site for Gelderland is: Gelders archief (Archive of Gelderland)
There is a great genealogical web-site for the Achterhoek part of Gelderland. See: Genealogie in de Achterhoek
Getting started with Gelderland research
Jurisdictions in Gelderland
Researchers who need to search the Civil Registration records (records after 1811) in Gelderland need to use the records of the appropriate municipalities.
The Church records are generally found in the local towns.
The following municipalities were abolished on 1 January 2005; see further information(in Dutch) for more detailed information on these changes.
These municipalities were merged with neighbouring ones:
- Angerlo was merged into Zevenaar
- Dinxperlo was merged into Aalten
- Gorssel was merged into Lochem
- Lichtenvoorde was merged into Groenlo (later: Oost Gelre, see below)
- Warnsveld was merged into Zutphen
- Wehl was merged into Doetinchem
These municipalities were merged and given a new name:
- Borculo, Eibergen, Neede, and Ruurlo became Berkelland
- Hengelo, Hummelo en Keppel, Steenderen, Vorden, and Zelhem became Bronckhorst
- Bergh and Didam became Montferland
- Gendringen and Wisch became Oude IJsselstreek
- Lichtenvoorde, Groenlo, Lievelde, Zieuwent and smaller neighbouring villages became Oost Gelre
Emigration from Gelderland
During the middle of the nineteenth century, poor crops, a growing population and the need for religious freedom caused many people in Gelderland to consider emigrating. Many of them did. Most of the people who emigrated from Gelderland ended up in Michigan, Wisconsin and New York. At the end of the 19th century, another emigration wave hit. People tended to emigrate to the same destinations as the generation before them.
Great web-sites of Gelderland:
The following web-site has options for 'Search', 'Map", 'Arnhem in Pictures', 'Castles', 'Picture Postcards', 'Blaeu-atlas' (published between 1648 and 1658), and 'Themes'. There are literarely hundreds of pictures that may be of interest to you. Gelderland in Picture
This web-site give you options to search in 'Archive', 'Picture and Sound', 'Family history', 'Area history', 'World War II' and 'Middle Ages'. Gelderland Archive
Transcribed church records of the eastern part of Gelderland, including Aalten, Dinxperlo, Varsseveld and Winterswijk, can be downloaded from Genealogiedomein. Select the name of the town on the left and then click ‘doopboeken’ (baptismal records), ‘trouwboeken’ (marriage records), ‘begraafboeken’ (burial records) or any of the other records that are available.
- (helpful tools and resources, gazetteers)
- (language dictionary, handwriting guide or tutorial, etc.)
A wiki article describing an online collection is found at:
Did you know?
Did you know that at the end of World War II some of the vital records stored at the Rijksarchief in Arnhem were destroyed? Records of Ammerzoden, Doetinchem, and others were almost completely destroyed. For more detailed information on which records were included (see)
Winterswijk was accidentally liberated in 1944 by two lost British soldiers, one of whom was Bernard 'Peter' Lee. Lee and another soldier were driving a Jeep and became separated from their convoy. Taking the wrong road while trying to find the convoy, they ended up in Winterswijk. The soldiers were greeted by the majority of the town in celebration, waiving flags and throwing money at the two. Realizing that the Dutch thought they were being liberated, Lee and his companion fled thinking the German Army was still present in town. The German Army had retreated from the town a few days before. The story has been published in several local newspapers. Lee buried the majority of the money he received in a metal box in another Dutch town. He returned in 1978 to find a bus station had been built on the site.
Wageningen is world famous for its military history. On 5 May 1945, the German general Blaskowitz surrendered to the Canadian general Charles Foulkes, which officially ended the Second World War in the Netherlands. The Generals negotiated the terms of surrender in the Hotel de Wereld, which since 2004 has again been serving as a hotel. On 5 May, which in the Netherlands is Liberation Day, the city hosts a large festival to celebrate the liberation. At this festival, veteran soldiers parade through the city and are honoured for their service.
Gelderland Province Church Records, 1552-1903, are online at FamilySearch.
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