Dutch Diary Archives

Diaries and other egodocuments provide a unique and personal view of Dutch history, culture, and language. The Meertens Institute collects diaries in cooperation with the Dutch Diary Archive Foundation.

The Meertens Institute manages the donated documents and materials with great care and makes them accessible to researchers and to the general public. Among other things, the Dutch Diary Archive focuses on the accessibility of content. More information can be found on the Dutch Diary Archive website.

Diary donation procedure

  • An offered document is judged on suitability.
  • If a document is considered suitable, the author/donor and a staff member of the Meertens Institute will sign a contract.
  • The diary will be stored in the archive of the Meertens Institute.
  • The Meertens Institute has been certified with the CoreTrustSeal and it adheres to the Code of conduct for using personal data in research as drawn up by the VSNU (Association of Universities in the Netherlands).

Reading gatherings

The documents in the archive are made accessible for research purposes by indexing their content on the basis of categories and key words. Obviously, this involves a considerable amount of reading, which is done by a group of volunteers. One Friday every month, they gather at the Meertens Institute to spend a few hours reading in the morning and the afternoon, interrupted by a communal lunch break. Are you interested in joining this reading group as a regular volunteer, please send an e-mail with your contact details and a (brief) description of your motivation to info@dagboekarchief.nl. We will contact you a.s.a.p.


Are you in possession of diaries that may be used for research and that you consider donating to the Meertens Institute? Please contact bibliotheek@meertens.knaw.nl or +31 (0) 20 462 85 00.