Today, 7 January 2019, is the birthday of The Belgian American, a new virtual resource center for the Belgian American immigrant history and experience.
A lot of information is already “out there,” scattered on the internet, in books and journals, and in sundry brick-and-mortar repositories, but finding it (and keeping track of it) is a full time job. The Belgian American will do just that. Some of it is familiar to me—I am a genealogist, librarian, and historian—but I anticipate uncovering a whole lot more as I embark on this journey. Why not join me for the ride?
Discover the history of Belgian immigration to North America and the Belgian American communities. Belgian-Americans are a relatively small ethnic group in the United States. Their long history of immigration and their contributions to life in North American have been subtle, but nevertheless important over the course of time.
Read the fascinating stories of both eminent and ordinary Belgian immigrants. Who were they? Some were leaders in their community, others became famous because of their contributions to the arts or sciences, and some stood out among their peers in their chosen profession. Many others were ordinary men and women who, besides from having left all that was near and dear to them in the old country, led common and unnoticed lives: they were farmers and worked in factories, raised families, learned English, and slowly but surely assimilated into the great American melting pot.
Learn how to trace your Belgian roots. Figure out how to find your ancestor’s village of origin, how to retrace the Belgian immigrant ancestors’ voyage from Belgium to North America, and how to uncover, access, read, and interpret the various records that document the life of the immigrant and the ancestors in the old country.
Explore the annotated bibliography of resources. No comprehensive book on the Belgians in North America has been written, but many articles and books about specific topics have been published. You will find them here in one place, with short captions describing the value for your research, and tips on how to acquire access.
All along, please share your experiences and stories, and ask questions of The Belgian American.
Cite this post
Kristine Smets. “The Belgian American is Born,”The Belgian American (https://www.thebelgianamerican.com : accessed [date]), posted 7 January 2019.