Conveyance of real estate 1757-1805

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The duty placed on the conveyance of real estate was the predecessor to our modern day conveyance tax. The provincial tax was charged over the proceeds of the sale of real estate in Zeeland. Half of the tax (the 80th penny = 1,25%) was payable by the buyer, the other half by the seller. When paying in instalments the buyer had to promptly pay the 40th penny (2,5%) over the cash amount paid and over the (instalment) interest, over the remaining instalments only the 50th penny (2%) was due. Because of the application of the different percentages this tax also goes by the name of the 40th, 50th and 80th penny. The collection of this tax was begun in 1599. On 31 October 1625 the collection of this tax was leased out. In 1757 the “Staten van Zeeland” (States of Zeeland) decided to again take over the responsibility of collecting this tax. One accountable collector was appointed in every district (island). The collector for Walcheren was given the title of Supreme Collector of the 50th, 80th and 100th penny. On other islands he was called the Supervisor of Common Funds of the 50th, 80th and 100th penny. Both buyer and seller paid their share of the conveyance tax to the secretary, registrar or auctioneer in the place where the property was located. These officials then handed over the takings to the Supreme Collector or Supervisor of Common Funds.

The tax records over the periods 1599-1625 and 1757-1805 are keep in the Archives of the Audit Office of Zeeland. For the isles of Walcheren ( 1757-1805), Noord-Beveland (1757-1805) and Tholen (1772-1805) the names of buyers and sellers recorded in enclosures to the accounts of the collectors, are recorded in Zeeuwen Gezocht.
In the enclosures (receipts) the names of persons (buyer and seller) are recorded, as well as the real estate and the amount it fetched (in Flemish pounds: 1 pound is € 2,72. The amounts were noted in pounds, shillings and pence. One pound was 20 shillings and a shilling was 12 pence). The various types of real estate relate to buildings such as houses, warehouses, farms, country houses, gardens, and stables and landed property like pastures, sowing land, fallow land (land free from harvest tax), orchards and forests. Conveyance tax was also due over mortgage deeds. In the Middelburg and Vlissingen assessment registers the street names of the properties are recorded.

If you wish to know the buying/selling price as it would be today, you can refer to the webpage of the Internationaal Instituut voor Sociale Geschiedenis. On the English language page a calculation can be made to indicate what the purchase/selling price of the properties would be today in Dutch florins and euro. Just fill in the amount in Dutch florins or euro and the programme will do the rest. As it is not possible to fill in the amount in pounds, it would be practical to times the amount in pounds by 6 (1 Flemish pound was 6 Dutch florins) and then fill this amount in using the currency sign fl. for the Dutch florin. Following this, type in the year the property was bought and sold and click on ‘Calculate’ to make the calculation.

Using information about a conveyance of real estate found in Zeeuwen Gezocht, you can search for the conveyance transfer in question in the registers of conveyances and mortgages, which are to be found at the Rechterlijke Archieven Zeeuwse Eilanden (RAZE). So in fact, the data file gives indirect access to the registers of conveyances and mortgages in RAZE. Regarding this, take heed of the following. The registers of conveyance and mortgages for Middelburg are no longer available, while those for Vlissingen do not begin until 1778. The registers for the villages in Walcheren and in Veere are deposited with the Zeeuws Archief. For Vlissingen, Oost- en West-Souburg and Ritthem you can visit the Municipal Archive of Vlissingen. The registers of conveyances and mortgages for Noord- Beveland are to be found at the Municipal Archive of Noord Beveland, and for Tholen at the Municipal Archive of Tholen. Visit the website for more information about archive services.

[last updated: October 26, 2011]