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Benjamin Van Raalte kept in close touch with his family. In this letter to his father, Dr. Albertus C. Van Raalte, he gives details about camp life but he also inquires about his father's business affairs. He offers his advice. Ben seems to have good business sense. His description about Kentucky, camp life, and Confederates make for interesting reading.




Louisville, Kentucky


In Dutch; translation by Clarence Jalving. Transcription and retranslation by Nella Kennedy, January 30, 2007.

Description of the document and reference to the Holland Museum by Dr. Elton J. Bruins.

About the collection:

Elton J. Bruins, long-time professor in the Department of Religion at Hope College, spent years collecting documents by and about Albertus C. Van Raalte, founder of Holland, Michigan and early patron of Hope College. Documents were gathered from dozens of public and private collections, making a nearly exhaustive collection of Van Raalte's writings and reflections. It is these documents that make up the "Van Raalte Papers."

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.


The original documents are held in the Holland Museum.


This digitized material is intended for personal research/study only. The original documents may not be reproduced for commercial use in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, without permission in writing from the Holland Museum.

Letter from Ben Van Raalte to A. C. Van Raalte