Winterswijk, The Netherlands

Source: http://borden.plaatsengids....

At the time of the Roman Empire, Chamaven, and perhaps also Bructeren, lived in the vicinity of Winterswijk. A bronze coin of Galba has been found in Winterswijk. In all likelihood, the village of Winterswijk is at least 1000 years old. The name Winterswijk comes from the Germanic Winidaharis Wika, which meant daughter settlement of Winidahari. The oldest document, which can prove the existence of Winterswijk as a separate 'kerspel' (parish), is a list of revenues of the St. Maurisstift in Münster (Germany). This writing dates from the first years of the 11th century. From this it can be deduced that the first lines from which the village developed were already visible before the year 1000. It is likely that the creation of the built-up area was related to the foundation of a church. The oldest reports speak of a 'parish Winterswijk' or mention the presence of a clergyman there. At this time, the parish of Winterswijk was part of the County of Lohn. In 1300 Winterswijk still belonged to Berka in kerspel Rheinberg (Rijnberk). From 1316 it was part of the lordship of Bredevoort.

Since the 11th century, the monastery or monastery of St. Maurice in Münster had a courtyard in Winterswijk, the main court was located on the Wheme or the castle Starkenrode. In 1223 the main court of Winterswijk, Starkenrode, was donated to the monastery of Bethlehem near Doetinchem. In 1234, Count Herman I of Lohn exchanged the Curtis Varsseveld for the Starkerode court in Winterswijk. In the 14th and 15th centuries there is still a Hof van Winterswijk.

Winterswijk has always been a fairly large village with at least two courtyards and outbuildings, surrounded by canals. Winterswijk may even have had a limited degree of defensibility. As recently as 2011, traces of medieval canals were found.

In the 17th century, Catholicism was temporarily and briefly restored under Bommenberend. In 1799 the peace in the village was disturbed by the execution of orangist de Freule van Dorth for causing "rioting". Until the municipal reforms of 1811, Winterswijk was administratively part of the lordship of Bredevoort, in that year Winterswijk became an independent municipality on 14 March. In 1816 the municipality received a municipal coat of arms. After the Protestant Reformation, Winterswijk was reformed, in contrast to places in the area that remained Catholic, such as Groenlo and Lichtenvoorde. In 1850 the former municipality of Winterswijk, with an area of 138 km², had 7595 inhabitants. Winterswijk has a museum, Museum Freriks, where history can be found in all areas.

On November 21, 1847, a shipwreck took place in the United States that plunged a number of Winterswijk families into mourning. About 51 Winterswijkers who sought their fortune in the 'promised land' through immigration are tragically killed after 2 months of travel when the ship SS Phoenix sinks due to fire a few kilometers before its final destination, Sheboygan, Wisconsin. (Exact numbers of casualties are not known) Approximately 40 of the people who died in Winterswijk are children. The survivors were sheltered in the town, with the population doing everything they could to help the survivors. Because Sheboygan did not have a telegraph connection to other cities, news of the disaster was sparsely reported. It took almost 3 months for the news to reach the Netherlands, after which a day of mourning was declared and church bells rang all over the country as a sign of mourning.

Translated by Azure

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