Albertus C. Van Raalte Collection (COLL 300)

Albertus C. Van Raalte Collection (COLL 300)


The Albertus C. Van Raalte Collection houses the personal, family, and business papers of A.C. Van Raalte, as well as publications related to him and his work. This collection, which dates from 1829–1997, consists of correspondence, sermons, essays, speeches, articles, business papers, and personal memorabilia, documenting the life and works of A.C. Van Raalte, including his social background as a studious academic and entrepreneur of a brick manufactory in Ommen, his active involvement in the secessionist movement from the Dutch Reformed Church, his encouragement and aid of Dutch immigration to the United States, and his passion for improving the economy and education of the Holland colony.

This collection fits into the broader narrative of immigration to the United States and is unique in focusing not only on the immigration experience of the Dutch, but in examining that experience through the lens of the Holland colony’s foremost leader. In fleeing from religious persecution, the search for freedom colors every page of this immigrant collection, from the most spiritual of sermons to the driest of business papers. Researchers interested in the history of the church Secessionist (Afscheiding) movement, the development of the Holland colony, the background of Hope College, the narrative of the Van Raalte family, and the Dutch immigrant experience—from overcoming colonial struggles to fighting in the Civil War—will all find something to value in this collection.

Digitizing the Van Raalte papers was supported by the Dutch Culture USA program by the Consulate General of the Netherlands in New York. The project was done in partnership with Heritage Hall at Calvin University, which also digitized its Van Raalte collections.


Browse the Albertus C. Van Raalte Collection (COLL 300) Collections:

Series 01: Personal Papers (COLL300)

Series 02: Sermons (COLL300)

Series 03: Lord’s Day Sermons (COLL300)

Series 04: Outgoing General Correspondence (COLL300)

Series 05: Outgoing Family Correspondence (COLL300)

Series 06: Civil War Correspondence (COLL300)

Series 07: Business Papers (COLL300)

Series 08: Publications by and about A.C. Van Raalte (COLL300)

Series 09: Miscellaneous Papers (COLL300)

Series 11: Photographs (COLL300)