The Research in Germany

Mayor's Branch Conclusion Laurentz Heineken's Family Wesel & Moers Die Maus



When I began my research, I knew very little of Germany and even less of the language.  Though I spent 2 1/2 years in Germany (U.S. military), I was only familiar with a few words or certain phrases.  Therefore, I needed to know more of Germany, and I knew that the Internet would be the way to get this knowledge. has an expansive web site covering most aspects of German genealogy, and I still use this site regularly.  My desire to be effective caused me to narrow the focus of my research to  the history and maps of Germany in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries.  Furthermore, I utilized on-line translation services to translate German documents and web pages into English.   The following are three language services that I use regularly:

AltaVista Tranlations
Free Translations

Bremen lies along the Weser River about sixty-five kilometers south of Bremerhaven, which sits at the mouth of the river as it flows into the North Sea. Bremen and Bremerhaven are two major cities in the Federal State of Bremen, which is the smallest German State in terms of both population and area. The documentation of Bremen first occurred in the year 782 AD, and it eventually becomes a center for Christianity in Northern Europe, primarily during the reign of Charlemagne.   In the time period to which I was interested, Bremen was a free state, and its location on the River Weser made it an ideal trading center.  It became an independent town in 1646 after fighting with Sweden during the Thirty-Year War.

Since I knew that my search should naturally begin in Bremen, I immediately posted a message to a Bremen Genealogy Inquiry Board at  In order to get help, I would have to provide an estimated year of birth for Laurens Heijneken.  And since his wife, Cornelia van Duijnen, was born in 1725, I then estimated that he was born five years before her.