The International Museum for Family History is both a museum and a knowledge centre.
We cater to a large audience and facilitate educational programs for the teaching
and education sector. We exhibit objects of art related to the history of families,
social, religious or ethnic groups, such as portraits, photographs, family trees,
coats of arms, documents, family souvenirs, and archaeological artefacts.
Through modern interactive media visitors are introduced to the world of genetic
genealogy, to medical and forensic research, for which we will not only present the
facts but we will also discuss relevant social and cultural issues.
Next to a permanent collection and exhibition the museum will host temporary exhibitions
on a variety of themes related to humanity and family history. The museum prides
itself on showcasing humanity in all its glory using the sources and findings provided
by modern genome research, archaeology, the rich traditions of genealogy and heraldry
and the history of families, clans, tribes and ethnic groups.
Unity and diversity of Life
The Permanent Collection
Man, or in the language of biologists Homo sapiens, is characterised by a phenomenal
blend of unity and diversity. Members of a family resemble each other and they differ
from one another. Siblings, even so called identical twins, are not identical, but
they do resemble each other, and to a lesser extend they do resemble their parents
and their grandparents. The human population in a certain geographical area shows
similarities and differences. Every individual in this world is instantly recognisable
as a human being, as a member of the human species. Nonetheless, each and every human
being is unique. Unique in outer and inner biological characteristics, in language,
in cultural and social awareness, in personal history.
In the museum, different aspects of unity and diversity in humans will be highlighted
in a number of departments (modules). What is the biological background for unity
and diversity? Why do children resemble their parents and why do they differ so much
from each other as well as they actually do differ from their parents? In how far
do genetics help us in finding answers to this? What is the role of DNA? What is
DNA? And what is the genome? What do modern sciences, medical genetics, the genome
research, epigenetic research, forensic genetics reveal about us, our ancestry and
Science provides important insights in the nature of humanity, but does not come
close to giving us a complete view. Besides being biological organisms, we humans
are also, or even predominantly (as we like to believe), creatures with a cultural
and social nature. We are linked with each other through language, culture and history
and we also differ from one another through language, culture and history. Through
personal history, social experiences and through cultural growth we even differ from
our close relatives. Where must we look for our personal, our own roots? Which events
have shaped the history of our own family? What exactly is our family history?
Wars, revolutions, coups d’état, major discoveries and achievements, all make up
our vision of history. The International museum for Family History intends to show
history as it was daily experienced by individuals, groups or families by focusing
on the personal history of ordinary and extraordinary men, on the roots and history
of families and ethnic groups; sometimes taking this history on a journey of thousands
of miles. Increasing knowledge on the human genome through the practice of genetic
genealogy adds new horizons to traditional genealogy and family history. It brings
about new ideas on historical migrations, both of ethnic groups and individuals.
The museum invites you to organize an exhibition regarding your own family. Our excellent
staff will help you at every stage. Souvenirs of the family’s past: portraits, photographs,
letters, medals, diplomas, newspaper clippings, objects passed from generation to
generation, all can help to put together an interesting exhibition.