Fun Facts

You probably have had many conversations with people asking you “can you please spell your last name?” adding “hmm, that is not a very common name” (or in the Netherlands they often refer to an assistant in a police series named Vledder).  But exactly how unique is our name? And are we expanding or declining in numbers? Please find out and enjoy other trivia on questions you probably never asked yourself. 


Not Frequently Asked Questions

Question 1

What is the most common first name in the Van Vledder history?

Question 2

What famous painting can be found in Vledder?

Question 3

Who live furthest away from Vledder and how far do they have to travel when they want to visit?

Question 4

In how many countries do Van Vledders live ?

Question 5

How many Van Vledders (men and women, but born as a Van Vledder) are currenly living on our planet?

Question 6

How many people are part of our family tree (born Van Vledder, married to or child of a Van Vledder)?

Question 7

Historically, what has been the life expectancy of the Van Vledders? 

Question 8

Who was the oldest Van Vledder in history and at what age did he/she die?

Question 9

How many new Van Vledder baby boys have been born this millennium?

Question 10

How many times has our name been misspelled? 

The wordcloud left shows all the names (official first name) for everyone born as a van Vledder. Pieter (Peter) is the most common name amongst the van Vledders. We have no less than 21 Pieters in our family tree. Other common names for the boys were Johannes (John / Jan / Jack), Cornelis (Cees) and Maarten / Marten). Popular names for the girls are Johanna (Hanneke, Jannetje), Margaretha (Grietje, Margriet) and Wilhelmina (Wil, Willy)

Believe it or not, but you can admire the Mona Lisa in Vledder. Along with paintings from Rembrandt, Picasso, Matisse and many more. Not the real ones of course, but you can visit the museum of fake art in Vledder. Yes it’s real, a museum of fake art. Click here for details


kilometer or 11492 miles.  That is how far Michael and Cindy van Vledder have to travel (in a straight line) when they want to visit Vledder. Michael and Cindy moved from South Africa to New Zealand a couple of years ago and are are living in Hanmer Springs with their 2 sons Timothy and Caleb. 

We have been growing from 1 to 6. Besides Netherlands, South Africa and Australia we now have presence in 3 more countries:
    • Marina with husband Erwin and son Sven in Sweden;
    • In the UK we have from Holland Willy and Michael and from South Africa Sean and Aletta
    • And in New Zealand lives Gavin with Nicole and son David and Michael with Cindy and their sons Timothy and Caleb, all from South Africa
  • Yes, only 82 ! 30 of them are born in South Africa, 29 in the Netherlands and 23 in Australia. All these numbers may not be 100% accurate yet since not all van Vledders might be on the radar yet. On the other hand, some van Vledders that I assume still alive may not be alive anymore. But one statement we can safely make is that the van Vledders certainly are not responsible for the overpopulation on the planet …..


    So far, the research has dug op quite a lot Van Vledders and people somehow related to them. About 2/3 of all people in the tree are true van Vledders (registered at birth) while the other 1/3 had either the privilege of marrying one or having a van Vledder mother. As of now, 58% had Dutch parents, 25% South African and 17% Australian. As there are still some white spots in the research, this number will probably grow a bit more.    

    Oops, that’s a bit scary isn’t it? The average age at which van Vledders died is only 45. The good news however is that this number is rising rapidly. Health conditions in the 17th, 18th and 19th century were quite poor and the historic distribution is dramatically skewed by the fact that no less than 30% of the van Vledders died before the age of 10. You Aussies are lucky that Philip James, who emigrated to Australia, made it, since 5 out of his 7 siblings died before the age of 10

    The oldest van Vledder so far was Jan Albert van Vledder, born in 1916. He did extensive research on our family history and was the initiator / founder of this site. He programmed the first version when he was already in his eighties ! We are still reaping the benefits of all his good work and owe him a lot of gratitude. Jan Albert died in 2018 at the age of 102 !

    In Australia, Monica Lyons, daughter of Florence May van Vledder, turned 100 in December 2020. The oldest (born as) Van Vledder currently alive is John in South Africa (oldest son of Emile) who was born Jan 26 1936. 


    Yep, this millennium only 8 male van Vledders are born so far:

  • Three of them live in New Zealand (Timothy and Caleb, sons of Michael and Cindy, David who is son of Gavin and Nicole)
  • Two live in South Africa (Andre and Braam, sons of Michael and Martie)
  • Also two in the Netherlands (Seth and Otis, sons of Tim and Livia)
  • And only one in Australia, Cody (son of Ashley and Jess).
  • So we are truly an endangered species. Work to be done !


    Yep, still counting. It’s phenomenal in how many ways people can screw up writing our name right. This must be the same across all geographies. This also made the research of the family tree much harder since sometimes some van Vledders could only be found by trying different spellings.