Tieske Egberts Beekhuis

Tieske Egberts (dutch link) was baptized 240 yrs ago on 5 Dec 1777 in Wedde, Groningen. She is my fourth great-grandmother. Later she is said to come from Oude Pekela, about 5 miles from Wedde. Whether she was actually born there, is not clear, probably her parents moved there at some point, as her youngest brother is baptized in Oude Pekela. Her father was a shoemaker, and she had three brothers.

She married in 1802 in Winschoten (banns both there and in Oude Pekela). They have only one surviving child, born in Nieuwe Pekela in 1808. I wonder about that: did she have many miscarriages, or did she really only get pregnant once? They did not have any other children baptized in all of Groningen(1)

Her husband was a laborer, he probably worked digging peat, which was the main industry in the Pekela’s in that time.

One thing that is so interesting in Groningen, is the existence of marriage contracts, in which the family members (not just the bride and groom) set forth conditions that need to be met. If there is a lot of property, a first marriage will have a contract, but even in the case of no property there will be a contract for a second marriage, to insure that the children of a first marriage are properly taken care off, and the legal heirs get their portion (if it exists). The interesting part is that all the relations are spelled out (and not just males), and as such they are invaluable for unraveling those relations. Without actual last names, just patronymics, it would otherwise be a lost cause.

(1). Allegroningers database

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