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Principessa

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« on: September 08, 2014, 06:49:01 PM »

This year I have visited Huis Doorn in Doorn, Netherlands.  Huis Doorn is a manor house which is currently a national museum and a national heritage site.

After WWI in 1919, Wilhelm II (former Emperor of Germany), bought the house, where he lived in exile from 1920 until his death in 1941. He is buried in a mausoleum in the gardens. According to the story, Wilhelm stiptulated that his body will only buried in Germany when this country is a monarchy again. As this hasn't happened (yet) his body is still in Doorn. After the German occupation in World War II, the house was seized by the Dutch government as hostile property.

During Wilhelms years in exile, he was allowed to travel freely within a 15 mile radius of his house, but journeys farther than that meant that advance notice had to be given to a local government official. As he disliked having to kowtow to a minor official, he rarely journeyed beyond the "free" limit. The former Emperor regularly exercised by chopping down many of the estate's trees, splitting the logs into stacks of firewood, thereby denuding the matured landscape as the years progressed. Hence he was called by his enemies "The Woodchopper of Doorn".

Wilhelm's asylum in the Netherlands was based on family ties with Queen Wilhelmina, whom, some claim, he embarrassed by his political statements. In fact, Wilhelm rarely spoke publicly, while in exile. His first wife, Dona, died at Huis Doorn and, afterwards, her body was taken back to Potsdam in Germany where she was buried in the Temple of Antiquities. Wilhelm could only accompany her on her last journey as far as the German border.

In January 1922, Wilhelm received a birthday greeting from a son of the late Prince Johann George Ludwig Ferdinand August Wilhelm of Schönaich-Carolath. The 63-year-old Wilhelm invited the boy and his mother, Princess Hermine Reuss of Greiz, to Doorn. Wilhelm found Hermine very attractive, and greatly enjoyed her company. The couple were wed on 9 November 1922, despite the objections of Wilhelm's monarchist supporters and his children. Hermine's daughter, Princess Henriette, married the late Prince Joachim's son, Karl Franz Josef, in 1940, but divorced in 1946. Hermine remained a constant companion to the aging Emperor until his death. Afterwards Hermine went back to Germany.

In 1938, Wilhelms grandson, Prince Louis Ferdinand, was married to Grand Duchess Kira of Russia, in Huis Doorn.

Despite the Nazi occupation of Holland in 1940, Wilhelm went undisturbed by the Wehrmacht.Wilhelm II died of a pulmonary embolism at Huis Doorn, on 4 June 1941, with German occupation soldiers on guard at the gates of his estate. He was buried in a small mausoleum in the gardens, to await his return to Germany upon the restoration of the Prussian monarchy, according to the terms of his will. His wish that no swastikas would be displayed at his funeral was not heeded.

Five of Wilhelm's beloved dachshunds are buried in the park. A marker is dedicated to the memory of his dog, "Senta", who was a favorite of Wilhelm and died in 1927 at the age of 20.

The Dutch government seized the manor house and its household effects in 1945 and, since then, many new trees have been re-planted and the wooded parkland is returning to its earlier glory.

Huis Doorn opened its doors as a historic house museum in 1956. It was just as Wilhelm left it, with marquetry commodes, tapestries, paintings by German court painters, porcelains and silver. Wilhelm's collections of snuffboxes and watches that belonged to Frederick the Great are considered by some to be the most interesting of the artifacts.

In June each year, a devoted band of German monarchists still come to pay their respects and lay wreaths, accompanied by marchers in period uniforms and representatives from modern monarchist organisations, such as Tradition und Leben of Cologne.

The house became a national heritage site or rijksmonument in 1997.
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« Reply #1 on: September 08, 2014, 06:55:45 PM »

I really enjoyed my visit to Huis Doorn. Experiencing the interior and exterior of the house at the time of Wilhelm II, seeing all the pictures (and being confronted with all family relations), hearing & reading all the interesting stories and so on.

Impressive enough there are only 3 à 4 paid employees at Huis Doorn currently. Most of the work is done by volunteers, who are doing a very good job. I had a pleasant conversation with a Dutch volunteer (with German heritage) about the house, its history, the visitors, the relations with the Hohenzollers (in particular Georg Friedrich, the current head of the family). Apparently Georg Friedrich has visited the house regulary.
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Royalfan 72

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« Reply #2 on: September 08, 2014, 06:58:35 PM »

Thanks for your report. Must have been very interesting.

In a TV documentation it was shown that lots of furniture, decoration articels, china, silver and gold spoons, etc. were brought by several trains from Berlin to Doorn. So Wilhelm II could more or less maintain the same style of life as in Germany.
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« Reply #3 on: September 08, 2014, 07:10:40 PM »

Thanks for your report. Must have been very interesting.

In a TV documentation it was shown that lots of furniture, decoration articels, china, silver and gold spoons, etc. were brought by several trains from Berlin to Doorn. So Wilhelm II could more or less maintain the same style of life as in Germany.

If I am correct 59 railcars, completely stuffed with stuff, went to Huis Doorn. It was so much that only a limited amount can be shown at Huis Doorn, the rest is in storage.
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« Reply #4 on: September 08, 2014, 07:15:37 PM »

One of the pieces on display is a huge table piece, a silver ship, which apparently stands voor ship of state. The prodution of this table piece, which was a present for Wilhelm II, was delayed. Ironically Wilhelm received the piece, the ship of state, after he abdicated...........
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« Reply #5 on: December 18, 2014, 10:00:35 AM »

Thanks for your report. Must have been very interesting.

In a TV documentation it was shown that lots of furniture, decoration articels, china, silver and gold spoons, etc. were brought by several trains from Berlin to Doorn. So Wilhelm II could more or less maintain the same style of life as in Germany.

If I am correct 59 railcars, completely stuffed with stuff, went to Huis Doorn. It was so much that only a limited amount can be shown at Huis Doorn, the rest is in storage.
Gosh what wouldn't I give to be allowed to rummage thru those storage rooms. Basically all of the Royal Houses and Palaces must have tons of stuff, remember when they found Queen Elisabeth the FIRST's christening robe tucked away in a drawer in some forgotten chest in some locked up room in some palace? Incredible.
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« Reply #6 on: December 18, 2014, 11:50:25 AM »

I've been to Huis Doorn. It's pretty cool. So full of stuff though!
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CyrilSebastian

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« Reply #7 on: May 01, 2020, 06:09:51 PM »

The exterior of Huis Doorn   
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Vwekh3hL0w
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« Reply #8 on: May 02, 2020, 09:30:23 PM »

There is also a clip about the inside: https://www.youtube.com/w...?v=lUoWzk1DIpE&t=102s

And to think he didn't like it very much, because he most probably considered it beneath him….. Thinking
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Mary's life motto:
"if I had the choice between world peace and a Prada handbag, I'd choose the latter one" Marian Keyes.
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« Reply #9 on: May 03, 2020, 04:11:25 PM »

There is also a clip about the inside: https://www.youtube.com/w...?v=lUoWzk1DIpE&t=102s

And to think he didn't like it very much, because he most probably considered it beneath him….. Thinking
   
 
fairy, Thank you for the photos. Some rooms certainly had a lot of photographs and paintings.
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Principessa

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« Reply #10 on: May 04, 2020, 08:21:48 PM »

There is also a clip about the inside: https://www.youtube.com/w...?v=lUoWzk1DIpE&t=102s

And to think he didn't like it very much, because he most probably considered it beneath him….. Thinking

Thank you
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« Reply #11 on: May 06, 2020, 02:33:14 PM »

Wow, Thank YOU two for those fabulous interesting posts on all things dutch (principessa) and historical (Cyril): bravo!!
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« Reply #12 on: May 06, 2020, 07:08:03 PM »

Wow, Thank YOU two for those fabulous interesting posts on all things dutch (principessa) and historical (Cyril): bravo!!
   
Thank you very much, fairy!  St. Patricks Day St. Patricks Day
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« Reply #13 on: May 07, 2020, 12:58:15 PM »

Wow, Thank YOU two for those fabulous interesting posts on all things dutch (principessa) and historical (Cyril): bravo!!

Thank you for the compliment!
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« Reply #14 on: May 07, 2020, 01:05:59 PM »

The Dutch website of Huis Doorn: https://www.huisdoorn.nl/nl/

Due to the Corona situation, the house and the park are closed until June 1st.

On the agenda for September: https://www.huisdoorn.nl/...keizer-en-het-derde-rijk/

THE EMPEROR AND THE THIRD REICH

The Emperor and the Third Reich. The Hohenzollern family and National Socialism

In 2020 it is commemorated that the Netherlands was liberated 75 years ago. This end of the Second World War is an important moment for Museum Huis Doorn. In 1945, the estate of the German ex-emperor was seized by the Dutch government. This lays the foundation for the current Museum Huis Doorn.

Huis Doorn is the only place in the Netherlands where two world wars come together. The exhibition The Emperor and the Third Reich is about the former imperial family after the First World War and their contacts with the "new" rulers in Nazi Germany.

Photos and historical objects provide insight into the complex relationship between old and new generations of rulers.

The opening of this exhibition is scheduled for September 2020. As soon as the date is final, we will state that on the website.
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