Military registers

The Administration and the draw for the military services were recorded in so called 'militieregisters’. Because every conscript was registered, all Dutch guys from 18 years of age were noted in the militia registers between approximately 1811 until 1940. Even if they were withdrawn for conscription, or got an exemption, or hired a replacement (remplaçant). Because of this broad coverage there’s is a very good chance that you can find your Dutch ancestors in the militia registers.

Militia registers- and drawing registers
With the introduction of the conscription every male resident of 18 years (later increased to nineteen and twenty years) was appealed for the national militia. They had to report themselves at the commune where they lived and were registered in the militia registers. Each municipality had to deliver an annual number of conscripts. The municipality drew from service obligations those who actually had to participate in the services.
That happened on number order. Who had the lowest number drawn was the first called for participation. This was followed by the higher numbers until the desired/necessary number reached. The draw under the conscripts was tracked in the drawing registers. The militia registers contains all kind of data: name of the conscript, date of birth, place of birth, occupation, names of parents, police description, reason for exemption or censure, date of incorporation and assigned regiment were enlisted. Who was enlisted could swap his drawn number with someone that had a higher number on the list and thus exempt.

Someone who was appealed could also be replaced by a “remplaçant”, somebody from outside the list. Who escaped the actual service by using a number swap or a remplaçant paid his substitute as a compensation. The possibility of surrogacy was abolished in 1898. The draw continued to exist until 1938. Every conscript was then called up for military service.

A part of the militia registers in The Netherlands can be searched by name in WieWasWie including many certificates. Perform a search and filter the search results then click the document type "military sources".

More information?
You can find more information on the military sources on the theme page of the CBG. This page however is only available in Dutch.