|Researching Your Dutch Ancestors|
From 1811 on, all Dutch marriages are officially registered by the local authorities. The marriage certificates of the period 1811-1922 are kept in provincial archives, and are free accessible. It are very informative documents for genealogical purposes.
The registrar used a standard form. Of course the names of bride and groom were listed, but also their birth and living places, their ages, and their occupations. Also the names of the parents were included in the certificate, and their living places. There were always witnesses, and their names, ages and occupations are mentioned in the last part of the document. At the foot of the certificate you will find the signing of the couple, the witnesses and the registrar. Sometimes not all of them signed for a simple reason: not everyone was able to write.
Usually there are also appendices of the marriage certificate available. The registrar only could marry a couple if they provide him with a few official documents. This are the appendices, or in Dutch the `huwelijksbijlagen'. He needed at least copies of the birth certificates of the bridegroom and the bride and a document of the National Army. But if one of the parents of the couple was already deceased, the registrar also asked for a copy of the death certificate. The amount of documents is sometimes more than 10, including for example copies of death certificates of grandparents, notarial acts concerning the approval of the marriage by parents living far away or a statement about the poor financial situation of the couple.
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