Der Nederlanden: Part 9

Bucholt and Rhede – Day 5

Most of my great-grandfather Otto deGruyter’s father’s family was in Venlo or Blerick, just across the river Maas, as far back as the records go – the 1620s, except for Walter deGruyter, who moved there from Den Bosch in the 1740s. But his mother’s family, the Venhorsts and Nienhauses, were from east across the Rhine in Germany, in Rhede and Dingden and came in the 1760s.

Here is a family tree of Otto’s ancestors tree

It took me so long to get to this post because I was reviewing who was from where and trying to figure out how to display them so they made sense. In the process, I started looking at church records again, found many I had not before (confirming another generation in a few lines), and discovering that some information I picked up from OPR (the notorious Other People’s Research) was wrong, and, no, I didn’t have anyone from Bucholt – only a fifth great-grandfather who married his second wife there – and I am descended from his first. But it was a lovely town, anyway.

Here is the beautiful Dutch Renaissance Rathaus, which now has a cafe with elaborate ice cream. We had coffee on the plaza.

Rathaus, Bocholt, Germany

Rathaus, Bocholt, Germany

We also visited St. George Church, immediately behind the Rathaus, which was bombed and burned in World War II, thinking at the time I had ancestors who attended.

Next was Rhede, where I did have many ancestors, back to the oldest records, unfortunately only to the late 1600s — the Venhorst, Wülfing, Schwers, and Hoveke great-grandparents of Jan Venhorst, who moved to Venlo in the 1760s, grandfather of Louisa Venhorst, Otto deGruyter’s mother. Her mother’s grandmother, Margaretha Ten Esse, whose parents moved from Ramsberg a few miles away, was also christened here.

This is the 12th century font of the church in Rhede, Sankt Gudula. The old church was replaced in 1898, and the font was used elsewhere until it was returned to Sankt Gudula in 1996.  While the church is new, and the records are gone, many generations of my ancestors were christened at this font.

12th c. Font, Sankt Gudula, Rhede

12th c. Font, Sankt Gudula, Rhede

Leaving the church, the first thing I saw was this store window; I took a picture for our daughter, Hilde, whose full name is Anna Mathilde.

"Mathilde", shop window, Rhede

Shop window, Rhede

It was past lunch-time, so we ate in the church plaza at Zum Griechen (To the Greeks) which was nevertheless quite German.  I had Jägerschnitzel.


And so off to Dingden, which is just only 10 miles away.

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