Dodinsheim / Winterswij – On Tuesday, September 19, a lecture will be given by Marie Rissiew about genetic research in the United States. Franz Michelbrink interviews Joske Meerdink and Bert Wagendorp about the fall of the Phoenix and the Winterswijkers in America. Interested parties are welcome on Tuesday 19 September in the central hall of ‘t Brewinc, IJsselkade 13 in Doetinchem. Starts at 7:45pm, doors open at 7:15pm.
This year, the Achterhoek and Liemers Heritage Center started my background project studying migration flows in the period 1580-1940. The research focuses on collecting information and stories about the Achterhoek who came to Achterhoek or took refuge outside the region. An Achterhooker seems firmly entrenched in the region, but is this really the case?
The results of my background research will be presented in a canon in book form in the spring of 2024. The migration of people from the Achterhoek and Liemers to America will be an important theme in this canon. Driven by hunger, poverty, and religious reasons, thousands of Achterhoek left in droves for America in the 19th century. This massive exodus had a huge impact on Achterhoek. This theme is central to this Tuesday evening.
The show is September 19
This evening, genealogist Mary Rissiew, podcast producer Joske Meerdink, and author and journalist Bert Wagendorf tell stories about the fall of Phoenix and the Achterhookers who immigrated to America in the 19th century. The role of host and narrator is performed by columnist Franz Mikkelbrink. Femia Chioro, director of the Heritage Centre, explains my background project. During the presentation, the film footage Joske Meerdink made in the US for his podcast will be shown. Marie Rissee’s lecture is in accessible English.
You can register via [email protected]. Photographs and/or recordings may be made during this meeting for communication and PR purposes. The visual material will be distributed via the website and social media of the Heritage Center Achterhoek and Leimers, www.ecal.nu and/or www.mijnbackground.nl. If you don’t want to be in the picture, let us know.
American Mary Rissiew is a writer, historian, genealogist and has taught at various universities in the Midwestern United States and the Netherlands. For 30 years he has been researching immigration from the Netherlands to Wisconsin in the 19th and 20th centuries. In this context he visited on several occasions Zeeland and the Achterhoek, from which large numbers of emigrants had settled in America.
Joske Meerdink works for Omrop Gelderland and created the five-part podcast series De Ramp Meet De Phoenix. The ship was destroyed by fire in Lake Michigan in 1847 with 154 Dutch settlers, including 84 Winterswijkers. Ten Winterswijk residents survived the disaster. Joske Meerdink traveled to America for his podcast and spoke with descendants of survivors. During his stay, something tangible about the Phoenix was discovered for the first time in 175 years: the ship’s smokestack. She also tracked down related relatives. Both these events give his story an additional charge.
Writer and journalist Bert Wagendorp studied Dutch at the University of Groningen. Since 2001 he has been writing columns for De Volkskrant. In 2013 he made his breakthrough with a literary novel called Ventoux, in which sport plays an important role. In 2022, Phoenix, De Mémoire von Abel Sickink, a novel about immigrants, deep friendships, fate and tragic events in America in the second half of the 19th century, will be published. The second volume of Abel Sicking’s memoirs, Calle, was published this spring. In it, Abel continues to search for the truth behind the disaster with the shipwrecked Phoenix.
Franz Mikkelbrink was trained as a cultural worker and ended up in the world of theater as a freelancer due to his interest in television, radio and (street) theater. He has written TV shows and radio plays for various broadcasters and has been organizing the Achterhoek New Year’s Eve Convention for many years. He regularly presides over conferences and gives regular performances at Swarte Gras. Along with Ronald Peet, he is the man behind Boer Fritz and wrote the book Dear Ochterhockers: A Guide to Bon Vivants.
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