Dutch immigration to the Midwest in the 19th century will be emphasized in "Dutch in America," an evening course being offered at Hope College during the spring semester.

          The instructor will be Dr. Robert P. Swierenga, a
  member of the Hope faculty and staff who has spent more than
  three decades studying Dutch immigration history.  The
  course will run on Thursdays from 7 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
  beginning on January 27 and continuing through April 6, and
  is designed for a general audience.
          "I'm gearing the course for the public," Swierenga
  said.  "I'm intending to basically lecture with time for
  discussion.  There'll be some recommended reading but
  nothing required.  There won't be any tests."
          Although he has spent his career studying,
  lecturing on and writing about Dutch immigration history,
  the course will be a first for him.  It marks the first time
  that he has taught a full course dedicated exclusively to
  the topic.
          The 19th century wave of Dutch immigrants will be
  emphasized in "Dutch in America," but the course will tell
  the story of Dutch immigration and settlement in America
  from the founding of the New Netherlands colony to post-
  World War II immigration.  Weekly topics will include the
  New Netherlands; causes of the 19th century migration; the
  migration of A.C. Van Raalte and Hendrik P. Scholte;
  planting the Midwest colonies; religious struggles; work and
  politics; and Dutch Jewish emigration.
          Swierenga is a senior research fellow with the
  college's A.C. Van Raalte Institute and an adjunct professor
  of history at Hope.  He has been at Hope since 1996,
  following his retirement from the history faculty of Kent
  State University, where he had taught since 1968.
          He has written or edited a dozen books, ranging
  from the English translation of Jacob Van Hinte's
  "Netherlanders in America:  A Study of Emigration and
  Settlement in the 19th and 20th Centuries in the United
  States of America," to "The Forerunners:  Dutch Jewry in the
  North American Diaspora," to "Family Quarrels in the Dutch
  Reformed Churches in the Nineteenth Century" (co-authored
  with Dr. Elton Bruins of the Hope faculty).  He has written
  more than 100 journal articles and made more than 100
  scholarly presentations.
          Swierenga holds his bachelor's degree from Calvin
  College, his master's from Northwestern University and his
  doctorate from the University of Iowa.
          Students may enroll in the two-credit "Dutch in
  America," which is designated as History 200, either on an
  audit basis for a $75 "sitter's" fee or for college credit
  (there will be additional course requirements for those
  taking the class for credit).  Additional information may be
  obtained by calling the college's Registrar's Office at
  (616) 395-7760.