Civil Registration (1811 to present)Civil registration began c. 1811 by order of Napoleon Bonaparte during the French occupation of Holland (1795-1813). At present every township's secretary makes all civil registrations in duplicate. There are four different kinds of registrations:
The registers generated by this usually contain the names, ages, occupations and addresses of the parents, as well as the names of witnesses
Marriage and divorce registration
These registers provide the names, ages, places of birth, occupations and residences of the bride and the groom. Besides this information you will find the names, ages (since 1907), occupations and addresses of the couple's parents and the witnesses. It is important to know that in the nineteenth century it was customary in Holland to marry in the place of residence of the bride. Each marriage document has appendices; more information on these will follow later in this article.
These registers contain the names, ages, addresses, dates and times of death, and usually also the names of the widowed spouses. It also gives you the names, occupations, ages and addresses of the persons who registered the deceased, and sometimes the names of the parents of the deceased.
Registers of wedding announcements
In the place of residence of both the bride and the groom, registers of the announcements of the marriage are kept. A major problem in using these registers is frequently the lack of an index, which makes searching through the information time-consuming.
The aforementioned registers are filed in country, township and regional archives for the period 1811-1912. The council of each township chooses the archive in which to file the civil registers, so that the researcher often has to travel through the whole country to see the registers for the different townships. Usually one can look through them for a fee. It is also possible to get photocopies of the documents. The registers mentioned under 1, 2 and 3 have been made accessible by means of the ten-year tables. These are alphabetical indices of surnames, made over ten-year periods each.