Hoogeveen, Netherlands


Hoogeveen (Drents: 't Ogeveine or' t Oveine) is the capital of the eponymous municipality in the south of the province of Drenthe in the Netherlands.



From the 17th century

The history of the peat of the current municipality of Hoogeveen is described from 1551. That year Reinold van Burmania and his wife bought the so-called Meppense Venen, the southeastern half of the municipality. In 1625 Roelof van Echten exchanged an area the size of 2000 tomorrow for promised services and infrastructure with the farmers of Steenbergen and Ten Arlo. The area was once owned by the Heer van Ruinen. In 1631 both areas were drawn together and the actual history of the peat bogs began. The General Company of 5000 Morgen was established for this purpose. The excavated peat was transported over the water to Meppel and further via a canal (the Nieuwe Grift, later called the Hoogeveense Vaart). At a distance of 160 meters from each other smaller canals were dug across this canal, the so-called neighborhoods. This distance was still expedient for a worker to cover with a wheelbarrow full of peat. This created a grid of intersecting channels. By means of new canals, the ascending ones, systems of neighborhoods further down in the bogs were also linked to the Hoogeveense Vaart. Street names such as 'Hollandscheveldsche Opgelegen' and 'Zuideropgelegen' remind us of those canals.

Hoogeveen was founded in 1636 by Pieter Joostens Warmont and Johan van der Meer, investors from Leiden, because after fierce conflicts with baron Roelof van Echten tot Echten, the Leideners (Hollandsche Compagnie) decided that their workers should be able to settle permanently on their bogs. Shopkeepers, painters, stewards and craftsmen soon settled on the main intersection, called the Cross. In the beginning the new place had different names: Hooch Echten, Nieuw Echten and Echten's Hoogeveen. However, everyone already spoke of Hoogeveen, and that shortened name was retained. In 1664, the land under the oldest part of the village was transferred. Until then, that was legally part of the market of Steenbergen and Ten Arlo. Hoogeveen remained a peat colony for centuries. In 1811 the municipality had 4,794 inhabitants, in 1840 there were 7,339 and in 1874 10,763 inhabitants. It was not until the end of the 19th century that peat became less important and the place switched to agriculture and livestock and industry. This was mainly due to the opening of the Meppel-Groningen railway line on May 1, 1870. Well-known factories of that time are the Coöperatieve Zuivelfabriek (now DOC Kaas), the can factory Drenthina (later part of the Thomassen & Drijver-Verblifa, now Ardagh Metal Packaging) and the Lukas Aardenburg canning and frozen food factory (Iglo products), later part of Unilever.

The industrialist Hubertus Willem Karel Frederik Henderik Scheijbeler, born in Middelburg September 4, 1899, also came to Hoogeveen. In addition to Lukas Aardenburg, Scheijbeler shaped the industry of Hoogeveen. Scheijbeler owned a country house in Hoogeveen, which he often moved into in the autumn to be able to go hunting in the woods. Eventually he came to live in Hoogeveen from Amsterdam in 1950.



Hoogeveen soon after the capitulation became a hotbed of resistance. Encouraged by Reverend Frits Slomp (Frits de Zwerver), people soon started to find their way to Hoogeveen and the surrounding area. Led by Arnold Zandbergen (Roodhart), Jos van Aalderen (Java), Albert van Aalderen (Alva), Freek de Jonge and Albert Jan Rozeman, an LO department was quickly set up to accommodate this influx. The distribution of the illegal newspapers Trouw and Vrij Nederland also took place from Hoogeveen. The notorious gangsters Nico (Jan Naber) and Victor (Albert Rozeman) under the occupier also came from Hoogeveen and ensured the supply of the necessary ration cards, by squatting in collaboration with Johannes Post from Nieuwlande.


On February 17, 1944, the post office in Hoogeveen was raided by Nico, among others, with the assistance of counter clerk Henk Raak (who would later be arrested and executed in the Overveense dunes) and 13,000 ration cards were stolen. On July 29, 1943, the NSB mayor of Oud Schoonebeek was liquidated by members of Knokploeg De Krim. This incident had far-reaching consequences for the Hoogeveen resistance. The day after the liquidation, a raid followed in Hoogeveen by the Grüne Polizei: between 25 and 30 detainees were transferred to the holiday colony 'Noorderhuis', located north of Hoogeveen. Early Sunday morning, three of them were executed on the grounds of the colony. In the resistance area of ​​Hoogeveen, streets are named after these three victims, the Adriaan Baasstraat, Jhr. the Jongestraat and the Notaris Mulderstraat. Around that time, the German occupier had had it all with Hoogeveen and its 'die vaporized Reformierten' inhabitants. The latter probably refers mainly to the Christian foundation of the Hoogeveen resistance, which mainly acted on Christian charity and learned patriotism.

From July 8, 1944 until the liberation of Hoogeveen on April 11, 1945, the mayor of Hoogeveen was the NSB member Jan Marinus Veldhuis. After a 'crash course' he was personally appointed by Reich Commissioner Arthur Seyss-Inquart. When the Canadians arrived, he initially fled on a bicycle but later hid in a house in the toilet. After spending several years in prison, he settled in Rotterdam as an accountant in 1950.


Recent History

After the Second World War, most canals were filled in. This created long, wide, straight roads, ideal for traffic. Philips, Fokker and Standard Electric, among others, settled in the place. Jan Kip also founded Kip Caravans in Hoogeveen in 1947. The economy received a huge boost and Hoogeveen was for some time the fastest growing municipality with a population of more than 20,000 in the Netherlands. In order to meet the enormous population growth, large new housing estates were built. In the eighties, however, the great growth had stopped. Instead of the previously expected 100,000 inhabitants around 1990, the number of inhabitants stabilized at around 45,000. Due to a municipal reorganization in which a few villages were added to the municipality and the construction of the new housing estate De Erflanden, the number of inhabitants grew later to about 55,000.

Today, Hoogeveen is characterized as a place with many urban facilities, which are often located in Hoogeveen due to the lack of rural areas. Hoogeveen has an extensive range of shops and many employment opportunities in the industry. Hoogeveen is characterized as a place with many different and fragmented church movements.


Well-known buildings

In the center, especially around the old Kruis (crossing canals), there are still some of the oldest houses in the place with beautiful facades, such as the Huis met de Duivengaten (now a restaurant) and the former drugstore with a gable stone from 1703 (nowadays a house and a clothing store). In the facade, probably the oldest facade in Hoogeveen, is a plaque with the text "So Godt voor ons is Wie sal tegen ons syn". Research has shown that the building was probably built in the second half of the seventeenth century and was certainly inhabited from 1691 onwards. And also the Olde Schippershuus, a café where skippers came together. The Olde Schippershuus is still the oldest existing building in Hoogeveen, with a core from 1632/1633. The house was built as a steward's house and office for the Algemeene Compagnie van de 5000 Morgen, founded in 1631 in Zwartsluis. The first known steward was Carst Peters from Hasselt. From the 18th century, the building has had various destinations. After 1882 it became a café. In the same year, the building was radically renovated. The design was by architect Hoegsema.
The Grote Kerk on the Grote Kerkstraat (construction started in 1651 and somewhat completed in 1664)
The Jewish cemeteries at van Echtenstraat (founded 1725) and Zuiderweg (founded 1829)
Hoogeveen town hall
The De Zwaluw corn mill on the van Echtenstraat
The Synagogue on the Schutstraat, the current church building of the union Baptist church the Schutse
The Remonstrant Church on the Grote Kerkstraat
Vincent van Gogh house in Hoogeveen (Van Gogh stayed here for a few weeks in 1883)
Hoogeveen airport
Main Street Church