British Index to Dutch Helpers of Allied Personnel

The following subpages are photographic copies of the Index to Dutch Helpers from the British National Archives.  For comments on various features of the list and for a breakdown by city and town, click here.  Judging from the number of listings per page and the number of pages, there are between 8000 and 9000 names listed. To see the comparable list at the U.S. National Archives, click here.  (There are differences between the two lists and anyone researching a helper’s name should check both lists.)

In using the index, note that the place name given for a person’s residence may be a source of confusion.  As one visitor to this website pointed out, it all depends on where the place name falls within the geographical hierarchy of place names.  The Netherlands consists of twelve provinces.  The provinces are made up of municipalities (gemeente).  The municipalities, in turn, are made up of one or more communities, each referred to as a plaats (city), dorp (town), stad (city), or streekdorp (region, village).   As an example, the village of Haulerwijk is in the municipality of Ooststellingwerf, which lies in the province of Friesland.  Further complicating matters, the same name may appear at different levels.  Take, for example, Groningen.  There is a City of Groningen, located in the Muncipality of Groningen, which, in turn, is in the Province of Groningen.  When reading the helper file of someone who aided an Allied airman, keep in mind that the helper (or the typist with Allied Military Intelligence who typed the form) may have used the name from one level of the geographical hierarchy, which might not be what someone else would use.

8 responses to “British Index to Dutch Helpers of Allied Personnel

  1. I have a comment about the list of dutch helpers.. I miss my father on this list, his name is dierks.m.j. and he has got the medal of freedom grade 4 without palm in 1947 in maastricht.I hope you can put him on the list.
    Your sincerely P. Dierks.

    Dear Mr. Dierks,
    Your father is on the list. In fact, he is on both the British list at https://wwiinetherlandsescapelines.files.wordpress.com/2012/05/d5.jpg and the American list of Grade 4 recipients at https://wwiinetherlandsescapelines.files.wordpress.com/2015/09/dutch-grade-4a.pdf.
    Best wishes,
    Bruce Bolinger

  2. Since many years I’m researching the local history of the village of Schoonebeek in the province of Drenthe in the Netherlands. On your list are four persons from Schoonebeek: 1) Gerrit Hans (grade 6, Oud-Schoonebeek A203), G.H. Wegkamp (no certificate, Nieuw-Schoonebeekerveld D46), Johan Scholten-Albers (no certificate, Nieuw-Schoonebeekerveld) and Jacob Wilting (grade 5, Oud-Schoonebeek B16).

    My question is if the files from these persons are still available and can be studied for research.

    Dear Mr. Finke,

    National Archives II in College Park, Maryland, near Washington, DC, may have files on them. For example, I checked their online records for Dutch helpers for Wegkamp and found him listed. They have scanned his file but have not yet posted it online. So contact them directly for his file and the others at National Archives at College Park – Textual Reference (RDT2)
    National Archives at College Park
    8601 Adelphi Road
    College Park, MD 20740-6001
    Phone: 301-837-3510
    Fax: 301-837-1752
    Email: Archives2reference@nara.gov

    Best wishes,
    Bruce

  3. Dear Mr Finke,

    Many years ago my father told me a story about my grandfather who gave shelter to a Canadian pilot during World War II. Although I have done a bit of searching on the internet it´s only today that I have found this source with available databases containing the names of Dutch citizens who helped pilots during the war. My grandfather is on both lists if I am not mistaken. He is on the excel sheet as well as in the access database. His certificate number (NARA-Gov code) is 22682.

    I was wondering whether there are any other means to get additional information, for example the year/month this event occurred , or perhaps even the name of the person he gave shelter to.

    thank you

  4. Dear Mr Finke,

    My grandfather is on the list , British list certificate number 22682 Monnink, Johan. (Munnink on the US list). I was just wondering whether the British or American archives usually have more information than just a name and an address. The only information I have through my father is that my grandfather gave shelter to a Canadian pilot who´s plane crashed somewhere in the area where he lived (Borne/Deurningen/Hengelo). I´m trying to find out when this could have happened (year/month) but so far I haven´t found convincing material. My question is therefore probably naive but if there are any other sources where to find then I´ll be glad to hear.

    Look forward to hearing from you
    G.M

    Dear Mr. Monnink,

    National Archives II in College Park, Maryland has Dutch as well as other nationality helper files. I would expect there to be a file on your grandfather. My understanding is that NAII has scanned all the Dutch helper files, other countries to come next, and has created an online index complete with copies of their files. However, they have not yet gone “live”. The online index can be accessed at https://catalog.archives.gov/id/5709392. A file appears to exist for a Johann A. Monnick (https://catalog.archives.gov/search?q=Monnink&f.ancestorNaIds=5709392). But nothing has been posted yet. So you will want to contact NAII at National Archives at College Park – Textual Reference (RDT2)
    National Archives at College Park
    8601 Adelphi Road
    College Park, MD 20740-6001
    Phone: 301-837-3510
    Fax: 301-837-1752
    Email: Archives2reference@nara.gov
    They should be able to provide you a copy.

    Best wishes,
    Bruce Bolinger, webmaster

  5. My great uncle Jaak Vandebroek (11-09-1926 / 16-12-2018) always told me his story about helping English and American pilots during WW2 in 1944 in Neeroeteren. These were hidden along the train track in Elen along with Russian refugees. He said he helped two pilots escape from Neeroeteren to the hideout in Elen. Jake brought them food and clothes. Last week I was visiting my great aunt Helena Houben, she gave me original documents about the actions of Jaak Vandebroek in 1944. Two cards from canceled on June 28, 1946 and signed by Col. Robert A. Solborg of 6801 MIS-X DETACHMENT U.S. ARMY, here you can read the following: Bureau de Recherches sur L’Aide rendue aux Evadés Allies To: Monsieur Jacques Van Den Broeck, We have the honour and pleasure of expressing to you our thanks for the help you have given to Allied Service personnel during the German occupation of 1940-1944. There was also a letter from Claessens Henri who was an officer in the secret army in Neeroeteren. Letter:
    Statement
    I the undersigned, Claessens Henri Leon Albert, born in Neeroeteren on 28/10/1918. Corporal o.v. at the 1025th cie T / A u. Pc based in Wenduine. Declared in the capacity of former Brigade Superior of the A.S. Comando Limbeurg / Belgium, that Jaak Vandebroek, born in Neeroeteren on 11-9-1926 and residing in Neeroeteren, Rotemerlaan or Akkerstraat no 55, was during the German occupation in the months of June, July, August and September of the year 1944 kept busy with delivering food and other necessities to units of the allied armies (English and American pilots and escaped Russian prisoners of war) located in the woods at Eeler Heide to render as much useful service as possible, Vandebroek Jaak made many night trips to warn the perpetrators, even when danger was imminent, and thus helped to ensure their safety. Also, the supplies usually took place at night and he spent many nights in the hideout of the suspected victims and kept his watch. I declare on my honor that this statement is genuine. Former BR. o L.B.C 133 corps. Claessens H. H. Claessens Neeroeteren the 24-2-46

  6. My daughter’s husband’s family was from Asten Netherlands and their ancestor Piet Berkvens helped 2 pilots. He is on this list. Is there anyway to find the names of the pilots?

    Dear Mr. Knauss,
    You will see from the list that Piet Verkvens was listed as a Grade 5, the typical grade. The head of a major escape line, for example, would have been a Grade 1. After the Liberation, Allied Military Intelligence advertised in the newspapers requesting that each person who aided an Allied airman complete a questionnaire (vragenlijst). See the following page for a description of its contents: https://wwii-netherlands-escape-lines.com/research/national-archives-research/airmen-helper-questionnaires/questionnaire-translation/. There is a good chance that there is a file on Mr. Berkvens at National Archives II (NAII) in College Park, Maryland. You can contact them as follows: National Archives at College Park – Textual Reference (RDT2)
    National Archives at College Park
    8601 Adelphi Road
    College Park, MD 20740-6001
    Phone: 301-837-3510
    Fax: 301-837-1752
    Email: Archives2reference@nara.gov

    The British National Archives very likely has much the same records but I am not as familiar with them as with those at NAII.

    For further suggestions on researching aid given to an airman, see the following page: https://wwii-netherlands-escape-lines.com/faqs/faqs-resistance/.
    Once you have a copy of Mr. Verkvens’ questionnaire and whatever other supporting documents there may be in his file, you may very well find the names of airmen he helped and you can order their escape and evasion reports from NAII. The questionnaire may also have the names of other helpers working with Mr. Verkvens and you can order copies of their helper files.

    The escape and evasion files of airmen are available from NAII online where you can read them and print them out. See https://wwii-netherlands-escape-lines.com/research/national-archives-research/escape-evasion-reports-available-on-line/ for instructions. For further advice on researching the airmen helped, see https://wwii-netherlands-escape-lines.com/faqs/how-do-i-learn-about-an-allied-airman-who-was-shot-down/.

    NAII announced a year or more ago that it was going to scan and post on the Internet the files of helpers of American airmen in WWII, beginning with the Dutch helpers. But that project seems to have come to a halt because of the virus.

    Best wishes,
    Bruce Bolinger,

  7. I am currently doing a research regarding the grandfather of a relative of mine. His grandfather was active in the resistence in the Netherlands during the Second World War. It is said that he was awarded a medal from the British Forces called the King’s Commendation for Brave Conduct and the Medal of Freedom (USA): by General Orders no 5: granted on the 20the of march 1947.

    He was rewarded these medals because he helpen allied pilots during the war. I was wondering if there is more information available about these medals and the exact reasons why he was awarded these medals. Also I would like to know if there is information about possible statements that were made about this person and the pilots he helpen. The person I am requesting more information about is F.L. Wijnen from Maasbree, Limburg, The Netherlands. I have been looking at the information on this site but I have not seen his name anywhere. I hope there is a way to find out more about him and the reasons he was awarded these medals.

    Dear Simone,

    If you look for him using the “Wynen” spelling, you will find him listed at https://wwiinetherlandsescapelines.files.wordpress.com/2012/05/w12.jpg on this website. His full name is Frans Lodewyk Wynen, living at Renkensfort 359, Masbree. His contribution to helping airmen was rated as a Grade 5, which is the most common rating. A grade 1 would have been the head of a major escape line. You will find a page on this website providing links to some 17 other websites about WWII medals. See https://wwii-netherlands-escape-lines.com/links-to-other-escape-and-evasion-websites/world-war-ii-awards/. One or more of those sources may be of help to you in learning more about his medals. The U.S. National Archives II in College Park, Maryland has begun scanning the files of helpers of American airmen that they have stored there. Their plan is to post all the helper files on-line. They began with the Dutch files. I checked their on-line index to Dutch files and found that there is a file on Wynen. Because of the COVID virus the files have not yet been scanned but if you go to https://catalog.archives.gov/id/38982671 you will see Wynen’s listing and contact information so that you can order a copy of his file from the National Archives. In case you have difficulty connecting, here is the contact information for National Archives II:

    National Archives at College Park – Textual Reference (RDT2)
    National Archives at College Park
    8601 Adelphi Road
    College Park, MD 20740-6001
    Phone: 301-837-3510
    Fax: 301-837-1752
    Email: Archives2reference@nara.gov

    Bruce Bolinger, Webmaster

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