Meet our Members: B. W. J. Molier

+18 votes

Hi WikiTreers!

It's time to meet another Wonderful WikiTreer. This week's member is B. W. J. Molier.

imageB.W.J. became a WikiTreer in September of 2013 and is very active in our Netherlands (Dutch Roots) Project.

What are some of the surnames you are researching?

Molier, since I was young we had a genealogical register in our house with all the names in our family. The research was done by a professional genealogist when I was only just born, it showed that all persons with that surname were related. My older sisters were opposed to the given name “Gelijn”, only to discover I would have been the 36th in the family to have that name when the book was published. I’m glad I have a different name because its’s not a very common name in The Netherlands and also difficult in foreign countries. During my own research I found the surname Buijsterling but found no living descendants, so I keep looking for that name.

What are some of the locations you are researching?

Mainly places in The Netherlands, I try to connect as many Dutch profiles to the main tree as I can. I think the Dutch sites with indexes of records in archives are very good, so almost all profiles I create get their basic information about birth, marriage and death of the person. Before I started, I never imagined that I would “see” so many different cities or villages, because my ancestors lived there.

When and how did you get interested in genealogy and family history?

As a young boy I looked in the family book at the graphs and trees, and was intrigued. Only after my father passed away, I realised that I did not know anything about my mother’s side of the family. So I started the research to populate my fan chart with as many names as possible. Also I liked to watch the “Who do you think you are” series on BBC TV.

Who's your favorite ancestor and why?

Cornelis Claasz Jongeneel. When I started out on WikiTree I experienced the great way to collaborate and create a tree with many profiles by adding and linking to already existing profiles. That was what made me to “stay” on WikiTree.

Tell us about a brick wall you were able to break down or one you hope to bust through.

Willemina Meijer was not married to Willem Kroeders and died shortly after my third great grandmother Rebekka Kroeders was born. I’m unable to find her parents. Also, due to fire or flood, the records from Zierikzee about the parents of Johannes Kerpel and Martina Rontfreijn appear to be gone.

If you could pick one person in history to be related to, who would it be and why?

Vincent van Gogh. There always was a story in the family that we were related, because the given name Gelijn was used in the Molier family after a Van Gogh was married to a Molier, but there was no connection.

What are some of your interests outside of genealogy?

Well, there is life outside WikiTree (LOWT) ;-) I like walking/hiking the woods of the province of my birth, Gelderland.

(Interview continues in comments. If you have a comment, please post an answer so it does not get mixed in. Thanks!)

WikiTree profile: B. W. J. Molier
in The Tree House by Eowyn Walker G2G Astronaut (1.5m points)

How long have you been on WikiTree and what do you spend the most time doing? If you’re  involved in a project(s), tell us about how you participate in it.

I started in November 2013 by uploading my GEDCOMs of ancestors on my father’s and mother’s side. I participated in the Dutch Roots Project, focusing on merging and connecting all Dutch profiles to the main tree. When I started doing this in a more focused way (April 2018), there were 179379 Dutch profiles and 11213 of them were unconnected. Now, with help of other project members, the total number of profiles has almost doubled and the number of unconnected profiles has dropped by almost 4000.

What brought you to WikiTree?

The Dutch site offered limited ways to build a tree, when I did that in the summer of 2013 I found profiles for ancestors on WikiTree and used that for my tree. But then the option for tree-building and publishing stopped on wiewaswie and I looked for other sites where I could publish my tree. WikiTree came to mind and I could upload my data, which was a good start.

What is your favorite thing about WikiTree?

The Challenges and -thons that are organised give you a real sense of collaboration. You learn from other members and get to know some “real” people. I even met some Dutch Roots Project-members here in Amsterdam, it was hilarious to finally see the people behind the profiles.

If you could improve one thing about WikiTree, what would it be?

I would like to search by location (I used WT+ for that)  I really would like to have search options for location in combination with wildcards or “sounds-as” search options, especially for older (pre-1700) profiles. 

What is an example of how WikiTree has helped you with your genealogy or how you’ve helped genealogy with WikiTree?

By entering profiles with links to sources, I discovered that a lot of sources are online and good to use after you know how to process them. I made a free space page to show my “how to” and got some nice feedback about that. Lately I’m very much into connecting, I see a lot of profiles of users in the US/Canada/Australia/South Africa with ancestors in “Holland” and try to find the Dutch sources and earlier ancestors. I like the spirit of RAOGK and positive vibe of the Thank Yous on WikiTree.

Any tips for someone just starting out on WikiTree?

Ask your questions in the G2G, no question is stupid and we all can learn from the answers.

3 Answers

+10 votes
What is “the spirit of RAOGK”?
by Tommy Buch G2G6 Mach 3 (37.3k points)
Random Acts of Genealogical Kindness
+5 votes

Woohoo congratulations B.W.J you're the best, always around and our connection (and arborist) champ, helping so many people, including me (it was a great surprise to discover so many of my poorly or even unsourced gedcom profiles finally were sourced by you when you just had joined WikiTree) and I will never forget the hilarious and awesome day we had in Amsterdam it still makes me smile..laugh

by Bea Wijma G2G6 Pilot (269k points)
Thank you for posting the picture, Bea (20 degrees from me) next to Astrid (13 degrees from me) next to me. It was a good day!
+1 vote
The New Netherland Settlers Project has been the beneficiary of many acts of random genealogical kindness from our Dutch colleagues, so I appreciated learning about B.W.J., as one of the Dutch team on WikiTree.

And I was impressed to see that my Connection Finder connection path to B.W.J. Molier is shorter (at just 20 steps) than my connection path to Molly Pitcher, who lived in the same country as me! Relationship Finder did not find a blood relationship for us, but (thanks to several members' well-developed ancestral trees for families on both sides of the ocean) we are connected through a Gelderland family that emigrated to Michigan in the 1800s.
by Ellen Smith G2G Astronaut (1.1m points)
Thank you for your reaction! You just beat Eowyn (21 degrees away from me). I helped my my neighbor next door with his genealogy and I see he is 26 degrees removed. We are both almost 100% Dutch.

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