Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Zuiderzeemuseum

The idea for this museum dates from about 1932 when the Zuiderzee was separated from the North Sea.  Because fishing had been considerably diminished, due to the water changing from salt to fresh, many felt that an entire culture had been eliminated.  And thus began the idea of creating a museum preserving memorabilia donated by residents.  "Give what you can do without, even if it seems worthless".  The collection consists largely from the period 1850-1932.  Buildings were disassembled and moved to Enkhuizen, to the museum.  They were disvided into neighborhoods, based on the original village layouts. The houses are "generally furnished on the basis of interviews with the original inhabitants.  The paving, fencing, facing and greenery are as similr to the historial situation as possible."

We enjoyed a very pleasant train journey to Enkhuizen.  Took a small ferry (included in our entrance cost) to the museum,
We arrived at the Limekilns, and began 5 hours of wandering. 
As much as is feasible, they try to make all the businesses and many of the houses occupied and working.  So here is a brief taste,


Alomost every home had a sewing machine - treadle or hand-crank.
Rope making
kerosene tea kettle
with the advent of the steam engine, came a community laundry, with the machines run by a series of pullies.
Gentlemen's barber shop
More formal houses, complete with organ.  There was an operating blacksmith, a cooperage, brush maker and paint shop - even a sail maker with hand-sewn sails.

The chapel was an important building.  It was a place of worship but also a place where people congregated.  Interestingly, the prosperous church-goers had chairs with their names on them.

The less well-off sat on benches with doors.
Benches without doors were intended for the very lowest incomes
And the poor had to make do with standing room.  Hmmmm .

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