You get a lot of information from the archives.
State, Province and Municipality.
But there is another source of information and those are the cemeteries.
A gravestone is like a piece of a jigsaw puzzle that you still needed.
So you may come across me in cemeteries, with my digital camera, to capture the data and work it out at home later.
For example, I once went to Winschoten cemetery to search for a certain one tombstone. One of the workers noticed me and wanted to have a chat.
When you work there, not much is said to you.
The following conversation relaxed (in Groningen)
“Are you looking for something?”
“Yes, I am looking for the grave of Reinder Reininga, but cannot find it”
“There must be one, because they no longer run away here”
“I’ll take a look at the archive”
He jumped on his bicycle and went to the office in another cemetery. A little later he was back and he had something on a piece of paper. “Section 4 row c” he said and walked to the section for me.
He strode past the gravestones and muttered something inside his mouth.
“This must be him,” he said, but I couldn’t detect letters.
He mowed some wet grass between the graves with his hands and rubbed the letters. And damn it writing became visible.
“You see”, he said, “this is him”.
I sometimes do his trick with the wet grass to read a gravestone better.