The Association for the Advancement of Dutch-American Studies held its bi-annual conference in Fulton, Illinois. Submitted photo

FULTON, Ill. — The Association for the Advancement of Dutch-American Studies held its bi-annual conference in Fulton this past week.

Attendees from 10 states and two foreign countries came here to learn more about the early and later connections between the Dutch immigrants and their relationship, adjustment, contributions and acclimation to the United States.

The three-day conference included a one-day tour of the Dutch immigration sites in Whiteside County. Led by Mike Swanson, a local native, the bus tour started with tours at the de Immigrant windmill, the Windmill Cultural Center and the Hospitality/Dutch Museum Rooms in the Drives Historic Building. Local churches were featured sites of the tour. East Clinton was originally called “Holland Town” as many immigrants settled there to farm when they first arrived in America.

There were 17 separate presentations. The conference was held in the Del Curley Conference Center at Agri-King. The theme of this year’s meetings was “Agriculture: Past and Present.” A tour of the plant was included on the agenda. A Dutch dinner was served to 75 guests in the Outreach Room of the Fulton Presbyterian Church.

Local caterers provided the food service and the attendees stayed in the AmericInn Hotel.

The next bi-annual conference will be held in June 2019. The location will be at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and the theme will be “Dutch-Americans' Involvement and Contribution in the Field of Education.”

“A special thank you is extended to all who helped make this a successful conference here in Fulton,” commented Barbara Mask, Fulton’s local host coordinator.