Most of the Belgians refugees fled to the Netherlands during the first months of the war, between August and October 1914. The flood of refugees reached its peak after the fall of Antwerp on 9 October. A total of 500,000 Belgians fled north.
The Netherlands was neutral in the First World War. The Belgians crossed the border primarily into the Zeeuw-Vlaanderen area of Zeeland that includes towns such as Terneuzen, Sluis and Hulst and into the West-Brabant district of the Dutch province of North Brabant that includes cities such as Eindhoven.
Around 40,000 Belgian refugees stayed in Zeeland long-term. The names of these Great War refugees were archived. The archive material have now been digitalised and published on a new website.
The ‘Zeeuwen Gezocht’ site has an English version that you can access by clicking here.