From 1795 - 1813
the Netherlands were ruled by Napoleon
Bonaparte, self-declared emperor of France. In 1811 he issued a decree
demanding each person in the Netherlands to take a family name, this in
accordance with the French law. Registration of the surname was the
of the father of the family and as from then on the name would apply to
the father as well as to his children. For good orders sake it should
noted that a widow, by the obvious absence of her late husband, was
to take a family name for her children.
It is known that sometimes a (married) son took another
than his father and/or brothers e.g. because the spouse of the son
had a surname in 1811-1812. The son simply had this family name
for him and his children and that was it. Furthermore it has happened
after some years a family name was changed to another family name e.g.
a stepchild decided to take the surname of her stepfather (or, the
way around, took her original surname of 1811-1812). In the database
will find a few examples of both situations. Not all records of
are available anymore. The records of the Waddeneilanden (Ameland,
Vlieland and Terschelling), Het Bildt, Menaldumadeel and Leeuwarden are
In 1811-1812 Ferwerderadeel had four "marieën"
Blija, Ferwerd, Hallum and Marrum. The records of all four have
saved over the years. The certificates date from December 1811 till
1812 numbering 1145. You will find a scan of all certificates at the
mentioned below. Click on a name and the relevant certificate will be
For good orders sake it should be noted that the quality of some of the
certificates is rather poor due to the fact that the ink of the
has faded over the years.
municipal archive of Ferwerderadeel.
Scans: Klaas Leen.