Genealogical Society of Flemish Americans

JUNE 19, 2020 - We are still locked out, and will know more on the June 26, 2020. The GSFA Library and Museum are temporarily closed until further notice. Due to Covid-19 restrictions, we have been asked not to come to the Library anymore until this is over because we are not essential to the running of this assisted living center. We will re-open after we get the all clear. Thanks for your understanding.

Welkom! Thank you for visiting our GSFA website. As the largest collection of Flemish genealogical records outside of Belgium, the GSFA helps people trace their Flemish and Belgian heritage; publishes a newsletter and magazine of pictures, stories, queries, and genealogy information; and has a large library of genealogy and Belgian heritage material at the American House in Roseville, Michigan, USA.

NOTE: The Gazette van Detroit and it's parent, The Belgian Publishing Company, ceased publishing and operation on December 31, 2018. All content and holdings have been transferred to GSFA. Please contact the GSFA library with questions about the Gazette at 586-777-2720.

Here is a link to the photos from Margaret Roets' 99th birthday drive by! https://photos.app.goo.gl/tC5MbMtGdBZvtvQp8

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GSFA News and Site Updates:

UPDATE: JUNE 19, 2020 - We are still locked out, and will know more on the June 26, 2020. The GSFA Library and Museum are temporarily closed until further notice. Due to Covid-19 restrictions, we have been asked not to come to the Library anymore until this is over because we are not essential to the running of this assisted living center. We will re-open after we get the all clear. Thanks for your understanding.

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June 19, 2020 - Quarantine Family Activities! Visit our Family Fun page for ideas to keep you and your children busy!

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MAY 9, 2020 - In honor of Margaret Roets' 99TH birthday, there is a drive by and honk party in front of her home in St. Clair Shores today for Margaret on Saturday, May 9, 2020 from 3:30 to 4:00 . There will be a book to sign somewhere on the block and at the moment, we don't know if its driving north to south or south to north! E-mail Cheryl at flemishlibrary@gmail.com for the address.

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We are registered with Amazon Smile! At checkout, the Amazon Smile Foundation donates a portion of your purchase to a charity you have selected (0.5% of qualified purchases). This is completely free. Visit our Membership/Donate page for instructions! Thank you!

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Poll: Please visit our facebook page and take a poll regarding interest in touring the Detroit Institute of Arts' focus exhibition to celebrate one of the museum's most iconic paintings, Pieter Bruegel the Elder's The Wedding Dance (1566), on the occasion of the 450th anniversary of the artist's death. Visit our facebook page here.

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On June 6, 2019, Cheryl Heckla was interviewed by ATV (Belgian TV) during her visit to the Red Star Line Museum in Antwerp, Belgium. She is currently touring Belgium for several weeks. You can see the interview here --> https://atv.be/nieuws/hoog-bezoek-en-binnenkort-meer-toeristen-voor-red-star-line-museum-79837

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The GSFA's new Youtube Channel is now available!

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"Five Things All Family Historians Should Do Before They Die" by Curt B. Witcher, published in a recent "Genealogy Gems Newsletter". This is a timely and insightful article that discusses the necessity of getting our family stories recorded and the current available methods to do so.

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Volunteers Needed:

We are always in need of volunteers of varying skill sets to assist with our many projects & events - visit our Volunteer page for a complete list of opportunities. We are in the midst of the two major projects listed below with which we require immediate and on-going assistance - please share these opportunities with others.:

Save The Newspaper Project:

HELP! Please lend your hands to help save thousands of pages and many decades of Flemish-American history. Do your part in helping make them available for researchers like yourselves by joining our "Save the Newspaper" team. We need additional pairs of hands for as little as a couple of hours a week. It may sound dramatic, but every hour saves a few months or more of history. A day in the library can sometimes preserve an entire year! The Gazette van Detroit published a Flemish language newspaper in Detroit for nearly 105 years and we are currently scanning and digitizing every page of every issue and creating searchable documents! It's a delicate operation, but a relatively simple process. It's a rare opportunity, rewarding and quite fascinating work. You do not need to know the language.

Please visit our Volunteer page and learn about the various opportunities we have or call, email or drop-in for details.

The Belgian American Museum Cataloging Project:

Our Belgian American Museum is packed full of interesting traditional cultural pieces, each of which need to be cataloged with photos and detailed descriptions. It is a fascinating, yet time-consuming project. Please consider helping us with this important work.

We are normally open every second and fourth Saturday of the month and private weekday visits can be scheduled by contacting the office at 586-777-2720.

Upcoming Events Snapshot:

MAY 9, 2020 - In honor of Margaret Roets' 99TH birthday, there is a drive by and honk party in front of her home in St. Clair Shores today for Margaret on Saturday, May 9, 2020 from 3:30 to 4:00 . There will be a book to sign somewhere on the block and at the moment, we don't know if its driving north to south or south to north! E-mail Cheryl at flemishlibrary@gmail.com for the address.

All classes have been canceled until further notice. The library is temporarily closed to to COVID-19 restrictions.

Canceled: April 11, 2020, 10:30 a.m.: Writing class: "Do you know how your parents or grandparents met? Tell us about it." Don't be intimidated, but if you are, come and sit in to see how it is done.

Canceled: May 9, 2020, 10:30 a.m.: Writing class: "When was the last time you learned something new? Was it easier than you thought or was it a struggle?" Don't be intimidated, but if you are, come and sit in to see how it is done.

Canceled: June 13, 2020, 10:30 a.m.: Writing class: "Tell us about something special your husband, wife or friend did for you that you will never forget." Don't be intimidated, but if you are, come and sit in to see how it is done.

Save The Newspaper Project:

HELP! Please lend your hands to help save thousands of pages and many decades of Flemish-American history. Do your part in helping make them available for researchers like yourselves by joining our "Save the Newspaper" team. We need additional pairs of hands for as little as a couple of hours a week. It may sound dramatic, but every hour saves a few months or more of history. A day in the library can sometimes preserve an entire year! The Gazette van Detroit published a Flemish language newspaper in Detroit for nearly 105 years and we are currently scanning and digitizing every page of every issue and creating searchable documents! It's a delicate operation, but a relatively simple process. It's a rare opportunity, rewarding and quite fascinating work. You do not need to know the language.

Please visit our Volunteer page and learn about the various opportunities we have or call, email or drop-in for details.

The Leon Buyse Library Tour:

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Our Mission - To share and promote with pride the preservation of our heritage and to help educate persons interested and learning about genealogy by providing resources and assistance.

GSFA is proud to be the largest library of Flemish genealogy records outside of Belgium. Please come by and take a look around or ask questions. We also have a museum of interesting traditional cultural pieces, as well as books, shirts, and many other items for sale.

The GSFA is staffed by volunteers and is funded by donations and proceeds from memberships. Please consider becoming a member or making a donation today. There are several ways to help us with funding. Check out our Membership & Donations page for further information. Thanks!

GSFA is always looking for volunteers! Do you have a few extra hours a month during the day and/or an occasional Saturday to assist with several ongoing projects or help with special events? In many cases, your genealogy skill level doesn't matter! Please Visit our Volunteer page and learn about the various opportunities we have or call, email or drop-in for details.