What Were My People Like?

I put a page on here  (see tab at the top of this page) which links to my genealogy blog.  A year ago I barely knew what a blog was, and now I have three blogs (with ideas for more–slap me, please).   The third blog was actually the first one–it’s about adoption and I write it with my daughter.  I had so much fun, I decided to keep going.

Back to the genealogy blog.  Long before I had kids (both of them were adopted), I was interested in family history and genealogy.  For a while I worked on a master’s degree in history, specializing in just that subject.  That’s before I gained/lost my senses and switched over to creative writing and English.  So while genealogy is a strange subject for someone with kids and a brother who were adopted, it’s something I’ve long been interested in.  Because of my interest, family members have told me stories and given me memorabilia.  I feel a great responsibility for this trust.

If you’re also into this subject, or if you just want to see what kind of weird family created me ;), check out my mother’s Dutch ancestors at The Family Kalamazoo.

I keep the focus on the DeKorn and Zuidweg families of southwestern Michigan. On this site, I share old photographs (100 years old), many taken by family photographer Joseph DeKorn.

Flooding at the Water Works Bridge in Kalamazoo, March 26, 1904. That spring, the water got 6″ higher than the photo shows.

I also have many other old photos and artifacts from the family.

Years ago, my grandfather Adrian Zuidweg shared a portion of the collection with Western Michigan University‘s Archives and Regional History Collections. A larger portion is not at the archives, and my goal is to share the rest of the collection on this blog.

At the lake

At the lake

The lives of my family members revolved around their families, small businesses (such as retail and construction), and the many lakes of the Kalamazoo area.


Filed under Memoir

16 responses to “What Were My People Like?

  1. Love the history and the pictures!….Jill

  2. Family history (mine or others) is always so fascinating to me..Loved this post and the snapshots as well..My daughter did a quick ancestry.com search last summer and what she uncovered was so interesting.. years from now, people will find you and me in their searches 🙂

    • lucewriter

      Hi Lynne, ancestry.com is such a great resource today! And you are right. I’m finding my ancestors secrets and thinking uh oh ;)!

  3. I am fascinated with genealogy. It’s fun and intriguing.

  4. I’m a genealogy enthusiast, too! I’m so addicted. I’ve just recently uncovered a DUTCH family line! It took me forever. Much of my family settled in New York. I have deep roots there. It’s funny because I grew up in New York and had no idea that my ancestors were buried in cemeteries all around me. My family names are the names of towns and roads and bridges. It’s strange and thrilling. It always makes me feel so connected, as I’m sure that’s the lure for all of us. I feel like my peeps are all around me rooting for me in my efforts. Do you get that, too?
    I even had my DNA done! haha! As you can see I’m a little obsessed.
    Great post and pictures!!

    • One more thing… do you ever watch that show, “Who do you think you are?” I always end up crying. It’s so emotional for me. 🙂

      • lucewriter

        I love that show. I’m not a big TV watcher, but I record them and watch some of them and always feel that emotional connection.

    • lucewriter

      I might do the DNA test. I’m not sure which one yet to use. You are obsessed 😉 and that’s a good thing. Your roots sound so cool because of the visual surrounding you. Earlier generations of my family cared about family history, but the current generations don’t seem very interested. I rely on fellow bloggers for emotional support ;).

  5. Wonderful post. More and more people are having DNA done to assist their searches to fill in the gaps. Your writing and pictures are excellent.

  6. Love that GOP picture. Although the houses are the wrong tule, it reminds me of Amsterdam

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