Ommen (Low Saxon: Ommn) is a city in the Dutch province of Overijssel and the capital of the municipality of Ommen. Ommen is located on the Overijsselse Vecht, in the Salland region or more specifically the Vechtdal. The place is already mentioned around the year 1100 as a fordable place along the Vecht. In 1248 it was granted city rights.



Ommen originated on a river dune near a ford in the river Vecht. This is clearly visible around Kerkplein, which is higher than the streets to the south and east of the church. The place name first appeared in 1133: Engelbertus de Umme was then one of the witnesses to a donation of goods to Klarholz Abbey in Westphalia.

In 1248 Ommen received city rights from Bishop Otto III of Utrecht. The original deed has been lost, which is the case with many cities. A document that had to pass for this is generally considered spurious: the manuscript is 17th century and even contains the wrong year (1208). Nevertheless, the content feels authentic. The name of the bishop is mentioned with eight witnesses, including knights and the then bishop of Salland and Vollenhove. Other evidence for the old papers of Ommen as a city are the letters from 1343 and 1346, in which Bishop Jan van Arkel confirms the rights. The city seal of Ommen hangs from a charter from 1336, from which the current municipal coat of arms is derived.

In the time of the Hanseatic League, until about 1500, there were a number of important Hanseatic cities in this region such as Kampen, Zwolle and Deventer. These so-called Municipal or Principal Cities sought contact with smaller towns and villages in their hinterland. In Overijssel, a large number of these Bijsteden were affiliated with one of the major IJssel cities. For example, the city of Ommen, including Hasselt, Gramsbergen, Oldenzaal and Enschede, was connected to the then important trading city of Deventer. Apart from agricultural products, Ommen had nothing to offer for trade and transport. Ommen's limited involvement in the Hanseatic League was solely due to its location on an important waterway connection via the Vecht at the time.

Until the early 20th century Ommen had a central function in the region. There were various government organizations in the city, such as the tax office and the district court. From 1838 onwards, the cantonal court was the continuation of the Ommen peace court, which was established in 1811. When the jurisdictions in Overijssel were re-established in 1933, it was lifted together with the cantonal courts of Goor and Kampen.

City and Office Ommen
Until 1811 there were two administrative organizations. The city-centered Ommen, consisting of a narrow strip from the Vecht, from the city to the Ommerschans, was governed by its own city government. In addition, the Kerspel or Schoutambt Ommen was used as a form of government for the surrounding countryside. Ambt-Ommen at the time also included Avereest and Den Ham and after 1685 was also called the bailiff of Ommen and Den Ham. With the introduction of the French administrative organization in 1811, Den Ham was separated from the bailiff of Ommen and became a separate municipality. The remainder of the bailiff Ommen was united with the city council of Ommen to form the Mairie Ommen. In 1818 the old separation of the two municipalities Stad-Ommen and Ambt-Ommen was restored, and Avereest also became a separate municipality. In 1923 Ommen was again faced with a reorganization when the municipalities Stad- and Ambt Ommen continued together as municipality of Ommen. The eastern part of Lemelerveld, until then belonging to Ommen, was added to the municipality of Dalfsen in 1997. The municipality of Ommen has therefore become smaller and smaller, against the current trend.

In the twenties and thirties of the twentieth century Ommen was the world center of theosophy. On the Eerde estate of Philip baron van Pallandt, Jiddu Krishnamurti had established the Order of the Star in the East. The Sterkampen were held annually on the estate. In 1929 Krishnamurti ended the order because he was against personality cult. The baron sold the site to the municipality of Ommen. The Star Camps continued until 1939, and Krishnamurti was an annual guest speaker.

In 1942, Camp Erika was set up on the grounds of the Sterkampen as a penal camp, later a camp for vagrants and an internment camp for collaborators after the war.