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Record precise locations as they were

In his post Tips from the Pros: Record Precise Locations as They Were (on Ancestry's 24/7 Family History Circle blog), George G. Morgan states:

"For each of your ancestors' vital dates (birth, marriage, and death), always record the precise location as it existed at the time of the event. That means listing the town, the county or parish, and the state for U.S. events. For foreign locations, the town, province, and county should be recorded."

So, what would you need to record for The Netherlands? Not the county - that may be extremely important for genealogical research in e.g. England, but it does not make sense for The Netherlands.

Since 1813, The Kingdom of The Netherlands (excluding overseas territories) is divided in provinces (currently twelve), which are divided in municipalities. For events after 1813 you need to record the place (town, city, village, hamlet, etc.), the municipality, and the province.

From 1810 to 1813, The Netherlands were part of the French empire. For events in this era, most people nowadays record the province and municipality as it was after 1813.

The years 1795-1810 were rather volatile. Places are usually recorded as they were before 1795.

Before 1795, the Dutch Republic consisted of seven provinces with voting rights (Holland, Zeeland, Utrecht, Gelre (or Gelderland), Friesland, Groningen and Overijssel), one without voting rights (Drenthe), and occupied territories in the south (parts of Brabant, Limburg, and Flanders). For events in this period, record place and province. For some places, you may need extra identifying information because there are multiple places with the same name.

Recording places as they were at the time is less important for The Netherlands than it is for some other countries, as the current location of major genealogical records is nearly always decided by the current municipality and province a place is in, and usually not by the jurisdiction it may have been a part of in the past. So always try to find out the current municipality and province as well.


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