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Compiled by
Peter J. Vogelzang
2007 (revised 2011)

Peter J. Vogelzang, 2003


The compilation of this work is the result of many years of gathering information about the Vogelzang family. This process led me to many visits to Friesland in the Netherlands and the meeting of many people who supplied information and filled in gaps.

In compiling the history I have gone back to the earliest history of mankind. The reason for doing so is that if one wants to understand where the Vogelzangs come from, one must also understand the origins of mankind and its history. In this process, I have tried to reconcile various branches of study in order to arrive at an as truthful understanding of our origins as possible. Hence the work contains a chapter on genetic research as it lately has become available. It shows how the Vogelzangs migrated from the earliest form of homo sapiens from Africa to Friesland in Holland. Furthermore, we have attempted to have that research confirmed from archeological evidence.

It is interesting that by pursuing these separate avenues, it is found that for some time different humanoid beings existed side by side. Homo sapiens, first emerged about 50,000 years ago. The archeological record shows humanoid beings existing hundreds of thousands years early and some claim as early as 2 million years ago. However, homo sapiens had a greater level of intelligence, thus developing the ability to create better tools, weapons and greater knowledge. They thus outwitted, and probably were instrumental in the destruction of, the other humanoid forms, such as the Neanderthals.

My reason for writing this history is twofold:

  • 1. It is an expression of gratitude to those who have gone before us and by their character qualities have left a legacy worth following and to live by and valuable to pass on.
  • 2. We want to leave to our children and their offspring an understanding of their roots, not only physically, but also of the values that their ancestors lived by.

When studying our ancestors we find that, on balance, they were strong and resilient people, not only physically but also in character; they were people of integrity and principle; they had an independent spirit with a healthy disrespect for authority – were no respecters of persons; they were people considerate of others but hard on themselves, capable of enduring great physical and emotional pain; intolerant of injustice; driven by duty and a sense of responsibility; strong willed and determined. Physically they are tall, with brown/blond hair, typical representing the Frisian/Germanic body characteristics. Over discernable history they seemed to have stayed pretty much around the Gaasterland area. Hence it is reasonable to assume that they were probably exposed and possibly took part in the historic events described in the chapters of this work.

Unfortunately, they were also part of their culture, in the sense, that it was not considered manly to show emotion; they found it difficult to express affection, even though they longed for it to receive it as a part of their normal human need. Rather than giving an embrace or a loving touch, their way of expressing “love” was by the fact that they would go to almost any length, often at great hardship to themselves, to provide, and thus fulfill what they perceived to be their duties to their families. It is hoped that our offspring will take courage from their positive qualities and adopt them as their own. By the same token it is worth knowing their weaknesses we also inherited from them and work on overcoming them.

I would be remiss if I did not recognize the help received from the late Andries Vogelzang in Workum, Friesland. He has done a great deal of research on the family and without him much of the family details for the last three hundred years would not have been put together. Similarly the work of the late Fimme Nagelhout, from Venray in Limburg, and Peter de Jong from Elahuizen, Friesland, have been invaluable. Though the author has tried to be as accurate as he knows how, he is merely an amateur historian. Hence he welcomes any correction of errors that may have crept into this work.

By its very nature, this type of work is always evolving as new Vogelzangs and their offspring are born, or they pass on to the next life. For this reason, we would greatly appreciate receiving any information about births, deaths, marriages, divorces, or anecdotes that will help in keeping this work current and interesting.

Finally, if any reader has any documents, whether pictures, marriage or death certificates, interesting correspondence, prayer cards, or anything of interest, the author would be grateful if you would send them, or a copy, to him. As of 2011 his address is

Peter J. Vogelzang

17e eeuw Friesland-Groningen.