In 1583, Vedastus Adriaanszoon Coornwinder fled West Flaanders to Leiden.  From there we have him securing the position of “predikant” or preacher in Berkel the following year.  The majority (if not all) of the Koornwinder and Korenwinders in the Netherlands are descendants of him.   During this same period (1600) when Vedastus came to the Netherlands, we also have two women of the same name (re-)marrying in Leiden.  (Cathelyntgen from Nieuwpoort and Jaquemyntge from Wulphen).  We believe that these two ladies were somehow related to Vedastus and that they all fled Flanders together.  Their towns of origin,Wulphen and Nieuwpoort, are a stone’s throw from one another in West Flanders, and both are a short distance up the coast from Dunkirk.   Research on the Belgian/French side of the family shows the name originating in the same area except that the surviving branch settled in Dunkirk and is today the French Corenwinder family.  Both our research and what is available from the French archives stop at the same generation as Vedastus leaving the task to prove the linkage of these two families..

The Berkel Century

Vedastus became the first predikant of Berkel and had one known son, the infamous David Vedastus Coornwinder.   David  himself had many children and the family flourished (despite his decapitation) for the rest of the century.  From 1584 to the early 1700’s we find the family name recorded many times in Berkel which is attributed to the fact that the family produced a number of prominent secretaris and notaris whose records are retained in the Rotterdam Archives.   Also during this period, the family produced a sea captain (Nikolaus) and a publisher (Klaas).  In 1690 we have a Pieter Coornwinder moving to Hazerswoude where he marries and becomes the schout and secretaris.  Pieter probably married into the position as his father-in-law (Veenbergen) was the former schout and secretaris of Hazerswoude.

The Hazerswoude Century

The Hazerswoude period from 1690 to 1780 remains a bit murky.  After Pieter the family seems to have fallen down a bit as we no longer find educated professionals and well-documented public posts as we did previously.   But the trail picks up again in 1780 in the village of Woubrugge.   Here, Arij Koornwinder (b. 1756 in Hazerswoude) marries Neeltje Kroon.  They will have two daughters and two sons.  The Kroon family were prominent molenaars.  Also at that same moment,  we are seeing some changes going on in the Dutch language.  The records for this family have all sorts of spellings introducing an “e” in the name, fluctuating between single and double “o’s”and the important exchange from the “C” to the “K” at the start of the name.  This moment of change along with the first census in 1811 during Napoleon’s occupation combine to create the name fork in the family today.  We have two brothers and two names --  David (see below) listed his name as Koornwinder while Abraham listed his as Korenwinder. 

Bodegraven Period and the Scattering

David Koornwinder was a successful land developer and retired wealthy.   He and his wife, Hillttje Brouwer, had only  son - Arie who settled in Bodegraven.   In 1857, Arie married Aafje van der Mik and they had a large family with four sons: Klaas, David, Dirk and Hendrik.  Klaas moved to Maartensdijk and starts the Utrecht branch.  David moved to Amsterdam and had five daughters.  Dirk moved to Indonesia and finally the United States with present day descendants in both countries.  Hendrik moved to Rotterdam, had a large family with many descendants in today’s phone book.


The Koornwinders in the Netherlands

David Vedastus Coornwinder

secretaris of Berkel 1612-1620

died 20 March 1623 in The Hague

He was beheaded and then drawn and quartered after being caught organizing an attempted regicide of Prince Maurits.