Sunday, April 6, 2014

Wijnand Otto Jan Nieuwenkamp and the Tangled Web

Look at the people in your genealogy database. How many of them have their own Wikipedia page? Within my own Gramps database of about 6000 individuals, a few are important enough to be discussed in Wikipedia. These individuals include Hendrik Antoon Lorentz, Heike Kamerlingh Onnes, Floris Verster, Menso Kamerlingh Onnes, and Elisabeth Keers-Laseur. A few days ago, using Google, I came across another distant relative with his own Wikipedia page, my 6th cousin once removed Wijnand Otto Jan Nieuwenkamp.

W.O.J. Nieuwenkamp (1874-1950) was a rather interesting person. Described as a multi-faceted autodidact, he was an artist working in a number of different media, as well as a writer, architect, explorer, ethnologist, and collector of East Asian art. In 1900 he married his first cousin once removed Anna Wilbrink (1871-1954). When her parents died, she was left with a sizable inheritance, which enabled Wijnand to finance his numerous trips to the far east. In 1906 and 1907, he traveled to Bali, and pursued pioneering ethnographical and archaeological studies of that island, work that is still appreciated today.
Tangled web of ancestors of Wijnand Otto Jan Nieuwenkamp
If you've been following this blog, you know I like to map out the tangled interrelationships of my distant relatives. Before I encountered W.O.J. Nieuwenkamp, I was starting to map out some tangles with my distant Wilbrink cousins. Wijnand just added some additional flavor to this story. (As before, in the above drop chart, my distant cousins are marked in blue.)

As I mentioned before, Wijnand Nieuwenkamp married his 1st cousin once removed, my 5th cousin twice removed, Anna Wilbrink. Wijnand's four childen would be my 7th cousins and also my 6th cousins once removed.

Moving up a generation (or two depending on which path you take), a couple of Wilbrink siblings married a few members of the van den Ham family: Gerrit Jan Wilbrink (1834-1907) was married to Marianne Gerharda Henriƫtte van den Ham (1837-1913). Gerrit's sister Diderika Wilhelmina Wilbrink (1825-1876) married twice, first to Petrus Albertus Jacobus Moezel van den Ham (1813-1863), and then to his brother Johannes Hermanus Theodorus Wilhelmus van den Ham (1822-1912). These two brothers were the uncles of Marianne van den Ham.

Moving up a generation, we see another case of two brothers, Willem Wilbrink (1798-1859) and Jan Wilbrink (1804-1837) marrying two sisters respectively Gerritje Brouwer (1792-1864) and Hendrikje Brouwer (1786-1849). As far as I can tell, Jan and Hendrikje had no children.

The more I look through my family tree, the more tangles I can find. One great thing about having all the civil and church records for the Netherlands on-line, courtesy of the LDS and familysearch.org, is that you can easily pursue side trips, something that isn't practical using more traditional research techniques. Today's missive also demonstrates the usefulness of doing a Google search whenever researching a new branch. You never know what a Google search may turn up!

Cheers! Hans