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top prev next bottom World of Van Vliet

no monkey business Contrary to what the picture suggests, this is no monkey business. On the other hand one should never take oneself too serious either. So, have fun looking at the "van Vliet" family.

Van Vliets can be found all over the world. On my travels I always check out the local white pages to see how many Van Vliets live in that place. You typically look under "Vliet", "Van Vliet" and "Vanvliet".

Nowadays we have also Web sites and e-mail. I never thought about the power of that until I got an e-mail from a Van Vliet family who just moved to the Pocono Mountains in Pennsylvania. We have started to exchange e-mail which I certainly enjoyed. I learned for example that there is a Van Vliet reunion every two years in Stroudsburg, PA.

This has also triggered something in my mind. Can we do something more globally concerning Van Vliets? Something like the Van Vliets in North America, the Van Vliets world wide, Van Vliet reunion date(s) and place(s), Van Vliet contact lists, historical facts about the Van Vliets, etc., etc.. If there are ideas out there let me know. If there is already something like that on the Web I like to know about it too.

top prev next bottom In Loving Memory of Jeannette van Vliet-Penders (14-Jan-2018)

On November 27, 2018, my darling wife Jeannette passed away at the age of 78 after being in hospitals and Long Term Care facility for 261 days.

For texts, recordings and photos of the Funeral Service follow the In Loving Memory link.

top prev next bottom Genealogy News & Statistics (21-Nov-2023)

What is new


Information of our complete database of the last five publications.

Latest update 21 Nov 20235 Mar 201728 Feb 201313 Mar 201218 Feb 2009database version
Individuals 3363 3348 3309 2667 2029 every person
Marriages 1361 1354 1338 1093 797 including living together
Different sources 40 38 35 29 26 source categories
Citations 3207 3212 3161 2301 1956 references to sources with unique details
Notes 3055 1089 618 576 538 individual's extra information
Additional events 360 353 338 290 215 marriage notice, divorce, occupation, etc.
Multimedia items 664 572 515 499 490 scratchbook photos
Thumbnails 147 142 133 124 124 all family snapshots
GUIDs 4724 4702       Globally Unique Identifiers
Research/To Do items5 1       Outstanding

Why username/password to access some details?

Genealogy etiquettes requires that for privacy reasons the details of living persons are only available to a few selected individuals. In our case you need a username/password to view details of living persons. To see if you qualify for a username/password send an e-mail to the webmaster at the bottom of this page.

top prev next bottom Coat of Arms (10-Jan-2013)

Blazon or Blason -- A term generally applied to the knowledge and description of armorial bearings according to the rules of Heraldry.

Coat of Arms or Armorial Bearings -- Consist in the shield and its external ornaments. The term Coat of Arms is however more applicable to the surcoat or mantle upon which the armorial bearings were formerly depicted.

Some useful heraldry websites are listed under Other Web Sites.

Van Vliet Coat of Arms (1) -- click for larger picture

The Van Vliet Coat of Arms as illustrated here is officially documented in the Johan Baptiste Rietstap Armorial Général and is most likely one of the oldest recorded. There are undoubtedly many more Van Vliet Coat of Arms because under most heraldic rules only the first sons of the first sons of the recipient of a Coat of Arms are permitted to bear their ancestor's arms. Younger sons may only use a changed ("differenced") version of their father's arms.

The description of the above shield (arms) is: "D'or, à la fasce de sable, accompagné de trois losanges de gueules". Translated this blazon describes the original colours of the Van Vliet arms as: "Gold with a black horizontal band accompanied by three red diamond shapes". Above the helmet is the crest described as: "A red diamond shape between two gold wings".

The gold metal of the shield or escutcheon denotes generosity, valour and perseverance. The black horizontal band or fess is one of the seven honorable ordinaries. The black colour represents repentance or vengeance. The red colour of the diamonds represents fortitude and creative power.

The Van Vliet Coat of Arms, like many other Coat of Arms, is associated with the European medieval culture and since the 13th century recorded in heraldic archives. See also the Genealogy and Heraldry topics under Other Web Sites for more links.

Van Vliet Coat of Arms (2) -- click for larger picture

In recent years, when you search the internet for a "van Vliet" blazon, the commercial sites all use this coat of arms. Apparently they find it prettier.

In the Johan Baptiste Rietstap Armorial Général it is described as "D'argent, au chevron de gueules, accompagné de trois fleurs-de-lis d'azur". Translated it says Silver with a red chevron accompanied by three blue fleur-de-lis.

Actually there are at least eleven "Vliet" blazons listed in Johan Baptiste Rietstap Armorial Général.

de Gier Coat of Arms -- click for larger picture

This is a modern version of the "de Gier" Coat of Arms from the 1300's, based on how it was found without colours on a gravestone. It is registered on 18-Nov-1997 with the "Centraal Bureau voor Genealogie" in The Hague, Netherlands.

Field: blue with three silver gyrfalcons;
Helmet sign: head and neck of a silver griffin;
Coats: blue, lined in silver.

More information can be found on de Gier Coat of Arms and also in a PDF document Genealogie en geografie van de familie de Gier (Genealogy and geography of the de Gier family) by Alfred de Gier (pages 127 to 133).

top prev next bottom Genealogy (10-Jul-2015)

Genealogy is an account of the descent of a person or family from an ancestor. This is also called a family tree. Originally we had no intension on doing any elaborate genealogy research on our families. However, as we went through old family albums and several hundreds of loose pictures from Pieter's mom and dad, we suddenly realized that even a simple family tree would have been extremely useful. Our goal is now to put down whatever information we have or find on our respective families and to add to that some photos so that our (grand)children can put faces to the names. Who knows where this may lead us.

Tools used Then and Now

We found the free Personal Ancestral File (PAF5) program -- a product of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints -- to be just the perfect tool for us to record our information. The program is simple, easy to learn, and yet very powerful. You can store multimedia data (photos, audio, video) with each individual and even generate web pages for publication on the internet. We use this tool to generate the four individual family trees with all the details and pictures.

June 2015 -- The PAF5 program (latest version 5.2.18, 24-Aug-2011) still works fine, but is no longer available and supported. We found Ancestral Quest (version 16.0) from Incline Software the be the perfect replacement for PAF5. The screens are almost the same. The free version provides the same functionality as PAF5, except that it allows only one picture per individual. Hence we use the paid version as we have sometimes up to 35 pictures per individual. You can continue to use the PAF5 database, which allow you to fall back to the old PAF5 program if so desired. We have not found the need for using the new features of Ancestral Quest, but if you do then you have to convert the PAF5 database to the Ancestral Quest database format; a tool is provided. By the way, the PAF5 program was originally based on Ancestral Quest.

In addition Progeny Genealogy offers also a PAF Companion program for a small fee, which produces several coloured screen diagrams and reports in PDF (Adobe) format for printing or publication.

June 2015 -- The PAF Companion program (latest version 6.0.6, 27-Feb-2013) still works fine too, but is no longer available and supported. PAF Companion has been replaced by Charting Companion from Progeny Genealogy (version 7.2). Charting Companion provides the same charts as PAF Companion and many more.

PAF5 and Ancestral Quest can also export the data in GEnealogical Data COMmunication format (GEDCOM for short) which is nowadays the genealogy text standard for exchanging information. Is PAF the best genealogy program? Most likely not, but it is free (just the cost of the disk). A few other top genealogy programs are: Family Tree Maker, Legacy and RootsMagic; I cannot say more about them as I have never used them.

We also like to show all family members what we have in our genealogy database in a more graphical form. Those web pages are generated with GedHTree, a program that creates a really nice family tree and various statistics. Where available we have added one picture per individual or family. Unfortunately, for most of the pictures you have to look at the [scrapbooks] of the "individual families", as this product does not tie in very well with the Personal Ancestral File database. GedHTree takes its input from, what else, a GEDCOM file.

June 2015 -- Unfortunately the author/supporter of GedHTree (latest frozen version 2.80, 28-Aug-2011) disappeared from the Internet. The generated output needs a little TLC (Tender, Love and Care), but we keep using it until we find another program.

Finally, a detailed map. We use a detailed physical map of the Netherlands scale 1:250,000 (64th print) of FalkPlan, Eindhoven. It has every city and village, no matter how small.

How to start

With the tools in place begin entering information of yourself, your immediate family, children, grandchildren, parents, grandparents. Develop a discipline and be consistent, like enter all given names in full using appropriate capitalization, for places enter village/city, province/state and country, separated by commas. For each event of a person enter the source of information; this becomes very important when you export data to other people and also when you receive data from others. Play around with your PAF tools to see what features they provide and make a list of what kind of data you like to save. We recommend to save everything to begin with, education, occupation(s), witnesses at weddings, etc.. You can always toss it at a later date.

Next will be siblings, nieces, nephews, aunts, uncles, cousins. Get your shoebox out with pictures, newspaper clippings, in memoriam cards, etc.. Talk to relatives to get dates, proper names, etc.. The next step is to get at least the details of greatgrandparents as details of grandparents are often not enough as they are still too young to appear in genealogy databases on the internet. That is the information you need to start digging in archives or doing online genealogy research. And obviously you need a lucky break from time to time too.

WARNING: Even when you get information from a "trusted" source, it is always good to cross check and verify the original source yourself. Anyone can make a simple error which could impact your own research later.

Sources of information & Acknowledgements

One has to understand that in Europe the civil registeries of birth, marriage and death was started by Napoleon Bonaparte around 1800. Before that only the churches kept a record of christenings, marriages and burials.

These are our sources of information in approximate order in which we got them -- yours might very well go completely different --:

  1. We started out with the information as outlined above.
  2. On the internet we found Streekmuseum Oudheidkamer Reeuwijk a museum with history from the area around Reeuwijk, The Netherlands; the area where all my ancestors are from. They also have a genealogical ProGen database with over 150,000 names from that area. After some correspondence they provide us with the pedigree and siblings of the my dad's ancestors. This was a very lucky break.
  3. A cousin of mine, Ton van Beek, knew that another cousin, Ton Davelaar, got a family tree for his birthday and we got a copy of that. Ton Davelaar's mother and my mother are sisters. Yet another lucky break.
  4. Ton van Beek now got very interested in my project and dug up information of the younger generations and older generations of my mom's de Gier family. This and the above provided the much needed hooks to really start digging into my ancestors.
  5. For my wife I consulted a brother-in-law, Emil Bernardi, and he came up with some information. He also had the address of someone who had been asking about the Slootmans family, my wife's mom family. Hence the next step.
  6. I like to acknowledge the tremendous work done by Louis Ch. M. Slootmans from Belgium, who did more than 25 years of genealogical research on the Slootmans family. Thanks to his effort and making the missing details available to us we have been able to add 9 generations of ancestors to the Slootmans family tree; something that would otherwise been impossible for us to do.
  7. I also like to acknowledge Ria Lockefeer, who found our website when she was searching for Slootmans. She provided information and also brought us in contact with Chris Kuipers who provided us with a full pedigree (kwartierstaat) of Frederica Slootmans, and thus providing the missing non-Slootmans ancestors; one branch going back to 1315! That indirectly pointed us also to the transciptions of DTB church registeries on the Internet.
  8. The above was all kind of luck; you may or may not be so lucky. When you are looking for Dutch ancestors and cannot visit civil registries and archives in person then is an excellent source for you. It has civil registry (burgerlijke stand) records of the birth, marriage and death registries, some going back as far as 1788. This database is still a work in progress, but there is a lot already. Also note these restrictions:
    • Death/burial certificates (overlijdensakten, begraafakten) of civil registries become public domain after 50 years.
    • Marriage/wedding certificates (huwelijksakten, trouwakten) of civil registries become public domain after 75 years.
    • Birth/baptism certificates (geboorteakten, doopakten) of civil registries become public domain after 100 years.
    • The registries are published in blocks of 10 years.
    • Keep in mind that transcribing the physical registries for electronic access is all volunteer work!!!
  9. In addition to that there are the Doop-, Trouw- en Begraaf-registers (DTB) Baptism, Marriage and Burial records from the churches. Internet access to that information is very localized, and I am not aware of any centralization efforts. Some useful DTB websites are listed under Other Web Sites.
  10. In March 2012 we received a reference to a document Genealogie en geografie van de familie de Gier (Genealogy and geography of the de Gier family) by Alfred de Gier, which in turn is for a large part based on Genealogie van het geslacht de Gier in den Bommelerwaard" by Dr. J.C. Maris van Sandelingenambacht as published in volume 61 (1943) of the magazine De Nederlandsche Leeuw. We added the shared ancestors to our database.

General Legend

Some abbreviations are used in the All-inclusive Family Tree and the Indiviudual Family Trees. Here are some of the most common abbreviations:

top prev next bottom All-inclusive Family Tree (18-Nov-2023)

All-inclusive Family Tree and Statistics (free access). Shows our entire GEDCOM database combining all individuals of our four main families into one large single family tree. Direct links are provided for Cornelis van Vliet ("root 1"), Arisje de Gier ("root 2"), Wijnand Penders("root 3"), and Frederica Slootmans("root 4"). Follow the root number to get to one of the above four "root" individuals.

All-inclusive Family Tree and Statistics (restricted access; requires username/password) same as above, but now showing also the details of living individuals. Plus it shows a photo of the root people, their siblings, their (grant)parents, and their (grant)children.


The web pages are generated with GedHTree, that creates a really nice family tree and various statistics. Unfortunately, for more pictures you have to look at the "individual families", as this product does not tie in very well with the Personal Ancestral File GEDCOM database.

top prev next bottom Individual Family Trees (21-Nov-2023)

There are various ways to publish the information on the internet, but for the time being we have decided to split the descendants into the four main individual family groups each time starting with the eldest member of that family group.

How to work with PDF files

The multi-page PDF files open in Adobe Reader, or browser equivalent, and can be printed from there. Recommended to use the "Fit" option. After printing cut off the top strip of page 2 along the dotted line and then glue it to the bottom of page 1. Follow the same procedure for the the next pages.

The single large page PDF files are not intended for printing. These are for viewing with Adobe Reader, or browser equivalent, on a computer screen. For faster response we recommend to use Adobe Reader rather than the browser build-in reader. Start off to use "fit to screen width" or about 50% or just zoom in/out. Then use the horizontal and vertical scroll bars to position the portion you are interested in. Here are a few easy short cuts:

In case the zoom in/out does not show sharp text and boxes, especially in Firefox, then make sure NOT TO USE the build in PDF renderer.
For Firefox: Select Settings --> General --> Applications --> Portable Document Format (PDF) --> Use Windows default application

Who are these?

We also found some pictures that intrigued us tremendously, because we are not sure who is/are in those pictures. Please have a look at Who is This?, and if you come across a picture and can positively identify the person(s) in it then please let us know.


Textual presentation organized by generation, starting with the oldest generation. Things can get confusing pretty quick, so keep also an eye on the number in front of a persons name.

top prev next bottom Information on Family Tree Places and Historic Events(2-Mar-2013)

Interesting information and history of some places mentioned in the above family trees. Mind you, this will not be a rundown of all the places in the family trees. Here I try to record little know facts and history of certain places, especially places that don't exist anymore as a municipality. No doubt, over time this list will grow, and if you happen to have information (personal knowledge, internet link) then please get in touch with us.

Alphen, Zuid-Holland

Alphen and Alphen aan de Rijn is the same place in the province of Zuid-Holland.

Blauwkapel, Utrecht

This village was most likely named after the Blauwkapel chapel (1451), or Bluechapel because the walls and ceiling were painted blue. The Blauwkapel fort was build from 1818 until 1821 and is one of the biggest on the New Dutch Water (defence) Line. And the biggest meteorite strike of the Netherlands occurred there close by in 1843.

Middelburg, Zuid Holland

Middelburg is a hamlet in the Dutch province of Zuid Holland. It is located about 2 km west of Waddinxveen, in the municipality of Reeuwijk. Middelburg was a separate municipality from 1817 to 1855, when it became part of Reeuwijk.

Oldenburg, Germany

According to Wikipedia, Oldenburg is an Independent City in Lower Saxony, Germany. It is situated in the western part of the state between the cities of Bremen and Groningen, Netherlands, at the Hunte river.

Sluipwijk, Zuid Holland

The village is surrounded by the lakes of the Reeuwijkse Plassen, close to the city of Gouda. Sluipwijk was a separate municipality until 1870, when it became part of Reeuwijk.

Miscellaneous History

French Huguenots

My grandmother, Jacoba Oomse, is said to be a descendant from French Huguenots, who left France to avoid persecution there. Apparently her great-grandfather, Hannes Oomsen, came from Germany. Don't know if his family went there in the 1500's or 1700's.

top prev next bottom "van Vliet" Contact List

The Van Vliet Contact List is an easy way to get in touch with other Van Vliets from around the world. This is a free service, but you have to be in the contact list yourself before you can access the list of the other Van Vliets. Requirement is that your last name (surname, maiden name) contains "vliet" to qualify for entry into the contact list. Names like Vliet, Vanvliet, van Vliet, Vandervliet, and van de Vliet, are all acceptable. You decide what information is shown/published to the other Van Vliets.

top prev next bottom Other "Vliet" Web sites (16-Aug-2005)

These Web sites refer to various "Vliet" names which may not necessary be related to the "van Vliet" name, such as Vliet, Vanvliet, de Vliet, van de Vliet, van der Vliet, Vandervliet, etc..

top prev next bottom Looking For... (8-Nov-2008)

People are sometimes looking for a long lost Van Vliet. We facilitate the placement of a search request for that person. We are not responsible for the search request contents or accuracy. We do not mediate between parties. We are not responsible for anything that comes forth from the placement of this search request.

Alternatively you can also look at Wie zoekt wie? which is a good contact point when you are looking for a lost Dutch or Belgium friend or relative who left for another country with address unknown.

Marty van Vliet (posted: 14-Mar-1999)

Requester: Rachel Johnson (e-mail:

I'm trying to help my sister locate the whereabouts of Marty van Vliet, who she met in Edmonton, Canada, in the summer of 1986 or 1987. Not sure. However, she travelled with him North of Edmonton into the wilds, after the finish of a field trip, which she was undertaking with the Dept of Town and Regional Planning at Oxford Polytechnic here in the UK. I think she met him through the University in Edmonton where he must have been a college student. She's now living in Norway, with her 2 children and partner Stuart Cowie (

Relatives of James D. Sanders (posted 8-Nov-2007)

Requester: (Jim) James D. Sanders (e-mail:

My mom died when I was eight. Dad remarried two years later to Evalyn Mae Heath Van Vliet who had been widowed about the same time. Evalyn Mae Heath Van Vliet Sanders passed away February 3, 2007.

Evalyn Mae Heath Van Vliet Sanders first husband was Frank Louise Van Vliet, his parents were Marinus Van Vliet and Louise Maters. Records show that Marinus Van Vliet and Louise Maters Van Vliet were born in Holland. Frank was born in California. He died in an automobile accident in Burnt Creek, California.

That is all I know of them. I would like to know more about the van Vliet side of the family. I do have pictures of Frank, Marinus and Louise.

Relatives of W.D. "Wib" van Vliet (posted 29-Jun-2009)

Requester: Carl Mills (e-mail:

I'm an ex-member of the Canadian Air Force's 400 Squadron and we will be celebrating our 80th anniversary in 2012. 400 Squadron still exists as a reserve unit and flies Griffon helicopters from Canadian Forces Base Borden (north of Toronto). The squadron was formed in 1932 and deployed to the Second World War (UK) in February 1940 as the first Canadian Air Force unit to deploy. The Commanding Officer at that time was Squadron Leader (later Group Captain) W.D. "Wib" Van Vliet. We are attempting to contact descendants in order to inform them of the project and to discuss any further information that the family might have.

Any assistance would be appreciated.

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Updated: 21-Nov-2023 13:55 EST -- Copyright © 2003-2024 Pieter van Vliet. All rights reserved. (Remove "NoSpam" before sending)