“It is sometimes said that every person dies twice: the first time when he dies, and the second when he is forgotten by the last survivor from his own time, an old man or woman. Thus a number of the dead vanish forever when the last living memory of them dies.”
-Geert Mak, Amsterdam
Purpose. This site intends to keep memories alive by tracing the Bustraan family in America back to its roots in the Netherlands and beyond. And, maybe meet a few more Bustraans. Here you’ll find descendant lists, a list of all the names collected thus far, pictures, and some speculation on the origins of the family, upon which I really encourage you to comment or correct. The family history as documented here will always be incomplete and imprecise. Your assistance is solicited. This website is a modest effort to bring our family together and learn the story.
In America. Two Bustraan cousins (fourth cousins, once removed, to be precise) left the Netherlands for America in the late 19th century. In 1891 Cornelis Bustraan (b. 1849) migrated from the small South Beveland village of Wemeldinge in the province of Zeeland and brought his family to Michigan. A year later Adriaan Bustraan (b. 1857) migrated from Wemeldinge and settled just outside of New York City in northern New Jersey.
In the Netherlands. By far, today most Bustraans live in the Netherlands. The ancestors of Cornelis and Adriaan have been traced back to Maljaert Bustraan of Kapelle, Zeeland, in the late 1500’s. Most Bustraans still remain in Zeeland, although a few others reside elsewhere in urbanized Netherlands. Other parts of the family, with slightly different names, are in Flemish Belgium and France.