Welcome to the Van Family page at Surname Finder, a service of Genealogy Today. Our editors have compiled this checklist of genealogical resources, combining links to commercial databases along with user-contributed information and web sites for the Van surname. As additional sources for vital records, original documents, vintage photographs and surname-based DNA projects are discovered, this page is updated to offer the best list for researching Van ancestry. Share this page on Twitter!
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The Van Family Tree
It is quite possible that someone else has already performed work on a Van family tree, so be sure to examine some of the sources listed below carefully. Have you struck a Van brick wall? Read "" for some helpful advice.
Best Tree Collections for Discovering Van Ancestors
Sometimes two people can look at the same handwritten record, and come up with different spellings of the name. Be creative when searching for your Van ancestors -- we often search for misspellings intentionally to see if we missed any records. Genealogy is more than just searching through databases. Articles like "" can help accelerate your Van research.
Top Five Genealogy Databases to Search for Van
Historical newspapers give us the ability to discover ancestral history through eyewitness accounts. There are currently matching Van records at Ancestry.com! Start exploring this online Van family history resource today.
Origins of the Van Surname
While some countries have limited historical records for last name assignments, you are most likely to only find general guidance on the origin and meaning of the Van surname. Keep in mind that it was not unusual for a last name to be altered as an ancestor entered a new country.
Van DNA Projects
DNA testing for genealogy continues to improve. If you had some of your Van relatives tested several years ago, it may be worthwhile to have them retested. Likewise, as DNA testing companies have gathered more results and samples, you may be able to find more matches if you search again with your test results. If you're not sure how DNA testing could aid your Van research, read "Utilizing DNA in Family History Research".
Van Family History
Every family has a different history, and every document you discover about your Van ancestors will help paint a picture that can be shared with your relatives. Whether you are a beginner or expert genealogists, knowing How do I find my Van family history on the Internet? is always useful.
Networking with Van Researchers
When digging deeper into your ancestor's occupation, a great way to connect with others of a similar interest -- many who might have detailed information, is by posting a message board query giving clear information as to your ancestor's name and the specific occupation or organization, in time and place. The article "Are Your Queries Getting Results?" provides some valuable tips for posting successful Van queries.
You may also want to consider posting a query to the Community Message Boards at Genealogy Today to get assistance from other researchers on your most elusive Van ancestors.
Van Achievements & CelebritiesDid you know that Van was the 4187th most popular surname in the 1990 census of the United States?
Web Sites & Blogs with Van Research
If you are having difficulty locating records for the last name of Van, contact the folks at ProGenealogists for a free research estimate. You may also find it helpful to read, "When, Why and How to Hire a Professional Genealogist."
Upcoming Van Family Reunions
Whenever possible, consider holding the family reunion in place where you have a strong Van family history, which provides opportunities to share stories and visit cemeteries or old home sites; you may even want to consider as a one-day activity, having each family take on the task of gathering information from the local courthouse, school district, public library, etc. -- this, of course, requires advance planning and assignment, but could generate considerable interest and results. The article "Family Reunions Don't Always Turn Out as one has Pictured" may provide you with tips for hosting a successful Van reunion.