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Another long letter of the Rev. Albertus C. Van Raalte to his son-in-law, the Rev. Peter J. Oggel, which was published in De Hope, October 21, 1868, p. 2. On the one hand, the letter was for Oggel but V.R. wrote it for public consumption to counteract the criticism the colonization project in Virginia has been receiving. Excerpts are: "You should know this: the blacks (whose numbers slowly diminish in Virginia) are benevolent, friendly, fearful and in no way vengeful people." The southerners are a "devastated people" due to the recent Civil War. "The only way to healing is to intimately get to know each other and to rebuild the country through Christian emigration. That is why I am so happy that the Dutch have this rare opportunity to benefit and to be a blessing at the same time. This opportunity is nowhere else to be found in America." V.R. is vying for attention because a certain Mr. Kloos is critical of Virginia while promoting his settlement in Minnesota. More excerpts: "I arrived here with our people in August, and the natives complained about the heat, but I rode my horse daily, and none of us were really bothered by the heat." "This land has such a favorable climate and is so close to the large trade centers on the sea!"




Amelia C[ourt] H[ouse], Virginia


In Dutch; translation by Simone Kennedy.

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 of the Rev. Albertus C. Van Raalte to His Son-in-Law, the Rev. Peter J. Oggel, Published in De Hope