English summary of Wout's genealogical Site

In 1995, after 6 years of researching, I published a booklet "Four centuries van Bommel". It gives an extensive genealogy of Jan van Bommel, born around 1580, probably somewhere in the Dutch area "Bommelerwaard". The next two generations live in the villages Dongen, ’s Gravenmoer and Oosterhout in the province of Noord Brabant in the Netherlands. Four different branches develop from here. I call these branches "Dordrecht-branch" (Dordrecht is a Dutch city) , "Shoemakers-branch" (to which I belong), "Limburg-branch" (Limburg is a Dutch province) and "Religious-branch". A new "van Bommel-pedigree" begins around 1700 when an illegitimate child gets the name van Bommel from the husband of his mother. The descendants of this child later are raised to peerage. I describe them therefore as the "Peerage-pedigree".

I did search not solely for dates and names but especially also for data that give insight in the way and style of living of all these van Bommels and their family. Under the headings "Korte geschiedenis" and "Persoonsbeschrijvingen" I describe some of the more interesting family histories. Just as an illustration I give here in English a very short summary of some of these histories.

I lose the Dordrecht-branch rather quickly.

The Shoemakers-branch gets its name because so many of its members are shoemakers. Apparently, it sometimes must have been difficult to earn a living for a whole family with the shoemakers profession: in 1826 one of the descendants dies in a "beggars-prison". Some descendants of the shoemakers-branch today are still involved in shoemaking in the oldest Dutch shoefactory of the Netherlands (since 1734): "van Bommel". This well-known factory produces a high-quality brand of shoes and is awarded with the title "Purveyer of the Royal Household".

The early members of the "Limburg-branch", ‘’Religious-branch" and "Peerage-pedigree" are from around 1650 to 1800 involved in the textile business in the cities of Tilburg and Leiden. They are all well-to-do and much involved in public life. Nevertheless also some scandalous stories have been found in the earlier archives.

One of the rich descendants of the Limburg-branch is an officer of high rank at the German court of the Royal Elector of Palts Beyeren. In 1802 he publishes a book about military affaires in the German and French language. This book today can be found in The National Library of Paris. His first marriage is with a German baroness. After her early death he gets nine children with a wife with whom he only marries after the birth of their last child. Looking to the professions of his children,  maid, farmer-servant and the like, he must have lost all his wealth. Some of his descendants immigrate to Germany.

A son of one of the textile manufacturers of the "Religious-branch" studies for Roman Catholic Priest and is appointed by the Pope, with permission of the Dutch King William II, Bishop of Luik (Liege) in 1829, just one year prior to the separation of Belgium from the Netherlands. He remains Bishop of Luik (Belgium) until his death in 1852. He has had during all his life an important influence in both Belgium and Dutch religious and civil life.

One of the early textile manufacturers of the "Peerage-pedigree" is one of the assistants ("kamerheer") of King Lodewijk Napoleon during the French occupation by Napoleon. In 1813 however he is involved in the revolt against the French and in 1815 he is as mayor of the city of Leiden and member of the Dutch parliament raised to peerage by King William I of the Netherlands. The peerage–pedigree dies out in 1977.

The purpose of this Site, apart from sharing and updating my data with and for others, is also to get new and more in-depth information about "our" van Bommels. In this respect I would also welcome information about descendants of female van Bommels.

As far as our van Bommels are concerned I have come across persons who left the Netherlands for Germany, France, the West Indies (today’s Suriname) and East Indies (today’s Indonesia). I have found again most, but probably not all, Germany-immigrated van Bommels. Probably the French and Indies-immigrated van Bommels have no (van Bommel-named) descendants living today.

The remaining part of this Site is in Dutch with the exception of the part under the heading "STAMBOMEN" which is in English. Here all names (about 1600) are given with their connection to their parents and with their key genealogical data. Thanks to an alphabetical index it is very easy to quickly check on the occurrence of specific surnames and given names in my database.

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Wout van Bommel
The Netherlands