September 14, 2018

Slave Records in Curacao 1831 to 1863


Just like many other regions throughout the Caribbean and South America, slavery existed on the ABC Islands that consists of Aruba, Bonaire, and Curacao.  This post concentrates on Curacao and this is far from the only records. I will be posting them separately based on accessibility.  While the below the records are in Dutch, you can open another browser if on a PC and have Google Translate ready to enter information. All links within my posts always open to another window. I purposely set it up that way to keep the blog post available in case you need further instructions or want easy access to links on the page.

While Sephardic Jewish people were the first to settle on the island of Curaçao in 1651, they were not the only ones there. Unfortunately, Curaçao was also where the slave trade thrived in the Caribbean. As many of us know, slavery of Africans occurred throughout the globe but more so in the Americas. Many that were brought over from Africa were sold at the docks in Curaçao.  There was a slave revolt that occurred in 1795, which was led by Tula.  You can read about the revolt via the link I provided. I recommend that you also visit your local library or even search the web for more content on the history.

If you believe that you have found a record on your ancestor, whether enslaved or free, and find that Google Translate does not work, then I highly recommend that you visit Facebook, join the group Genealogy Translations and post the image, the direct link to the document, and the language you want to translate from and to.  There are instructions in the group on how to format your request. It is a very helpful group when it comes to translations.

To start with, in the series of the following records, you will find Roman Catholic Church records of enslaved African children that are being baptized. The records can only be accessed via a Family History Center which I have previously posted about. Visit the hyperlink to learn how to find these records locally to you.  There are other records available on the films such as death and citizenship records. The layout of what I provide below will be a little different than my usual posts as it is going to appear film based versus the type of record. 

Note that there are more records beyond the below that are available online that I do plan to post them on the website. So do not think that this is the end of what is available, it is just the beginning of many records but I need to start somewhere.


Film # 1949737 contains both Baptisms (Dopen) and Deaths (Overlijden) of the enslaved:
  • Slave Death Records: 1844 - 1852, 1848 - 1857, 1854 - 1861, and 1859 - 1863
  • Enslaved Children Baptisms: 1831 - 1837

Film # 1949738 contains Baptisms (Dopen) of Enslaved Children, Death (Overlijden) and Citizenship Index (Burgerschaps-Index) / Citizenship Register (Burgerschapsregister):
  • Enslaved Children Baptisms: 1837 - 1842 - Items 1 and 2 on the film
  • Slave Death Records: 1837 - 1842 and 1816 - 1820
  • Citizen Index / Register: 1831 - February 27, 1845

Film # 1949735 contains Births (Geboorten):
  • 1838 - 1842, 1840 - 1849, 1848 - 1852, and 1851

Film# 1949736 contains Births (Geboorten) and Deaths (Overlijden):
  • Enslaved Children Births: 1852-1857, 1854-1861, 1859-1862
  • Slave Death Records: 1838 - 1839, 1838 - 1842, 1840 - 1846, and 1844

Film# 1949737 contains Deaths (Overlijden):
  • 1844 - 1852, 1848 - 1857, 1854 - 1861, and 1859 - 1863

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