Belgium Emigration and Immigration

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The FamilySearch moderator for Belgium is Daniel Jones.

Emigration and Immigration

Emigration records (Emigratie registers, Registres des émigrés)

Research use: Very valuable for making proper connections to place of origin and residence in Belgium. Many researchers do not know their ancestor's place of origin.

Record type: Lists of emigrants and immigrants, and permissions for those moving within Belgium.

Time Period: 1500-present.

Content: Emigrants’ names, ages, occupations, birth dates and places, residences, destination; wife’s and childrens’ given names and ages or number of children; reasons for emigration; taxes paid; religion, military service, etc.

Location: Provincial and municipal archives.

Population coverage: 5-10%.[1]

For an extensive article with many resources, click here.

Surname Distribution Maps

Sometimes it is possible to guess where an immigrant originated through surname distribution maps.

Emigration to Sweden

A large group of emigrants left Wallonia to work in promoting mining and industry in Sweden. For more, see: Vallons in Sweden.


  1. The Family History Department of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, “Family History Record Profile: Belgium,” Word document, private files of the FamilySearch Content Strategy Team, 1987-1999.