My full name is "Johan Andries van Zanten," which is a Dutch name.

"Johan" is the Dutch (as well as Swedish and Norwegian, from what i have gathered) equivalent of "John," as you may have guessed. It's also the equivalent of the German "Johann."

I'm not sure what equivalents "Andries" has. "Andrew" perhaps?

I inherited "Johan Andries" from my great-grandfather, Johan Andries Küthe. He was born 16 August 1870, i believe in Amsterdam, to "Carel Christiaan" and "Maria Jacoba Egner." Some time later, he made his way East, married a Japanese woman named Yamashita Haru (Yamashita is the family name), and they settled down in Indonesia, where my grandmother was born.

My grandmother and her Dutch husband, Joannes van Zanten, and kids emigrated to the Netherlands, i believe sometime around 1950.

They lived in the Netherlands until about 1959, and then my Dad's family emigrated to the U.S., and wound-up in Morgan City, Louisiana, USA. My Dad went to college at Lousiana State University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where he studied History and then Law and met my mother, Catherine. I was born in the Baton Rouge in 1968.

"van Zanten" is my family name. I believe that "van" means "of," like the German "von" or maybe the Spanish "de." I always try to get people to lowercase it, but unless i move to Europe, i think i'll be doing a lot of trying for the rest of my life. People in the U.S. just don't grok lowercase words in names.

Since i've had this page up on the 'net, i've received a few messages regarding the family name "van Zanten" from kind souls who stumbled across the page. One reported that "van Zanten" means 'you're "from Xant", Germany.' ("Xanten" and "Santen" are both towns in Germany.) From the little i have observed, some names with "X" changed to "S" as well as "Z". So "Xanten" becomes "Santen," "Zanten," or "Zandten."

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