Bronbeek is a former estate in Arnhem. The Bronbeek estate was built around 1820 as a country estate for Hermen Stijgerwald. After his death in 1830, his widow Magadalena Wilhelmina Eskes sold the estate and it was renamed Bronbeek. The following owners converted the house into a neoclassical style villa. In 1854, the Bronbeek estate was purchased by King Willem III for a price of 75,000 guilders. The total investment, including renovation and furnishing, amounted to 250,000 guilders. Bronbeek was said to be initially intended for his mother, Queen Anna Paulowna, but there is no evidence of this.
Willem III had the house renovated in 1854 to a design by his architect H.F.G.N. Camp, who for his duties was made a Knight of the Order of the Oak Crown in October of that year. In October 1854, the renovation was completed and the king received a serenade from the association of craftsmen, accompanied by the bandstands of the municipal militia and of the eighth infantry regiment. A committee of this association was admitted to the king and a representative spoke the words: 'Sire, with deep respect the management of Arnhem's Handwerkbloei, accompanied by employers and their workmen, approaches you for you, who are an advocate of industry and agriculture, her to express our sincere thanks for the purchase and changes made to the Bronbeek estate, as a result of which in these times of expensive bread was provided to them and their families. ” Two years after the purchase of Bronbeek, there were already rumors that the king wanted to get rid of it again. In December 1856 the king's possessions were moved to his palace in The Hague and to Paleis Het Loo and it was generally thought that the king had sold the country residence to a wealthy private individual. In the years that followed, the house was still used as a guesthouse for royal visitors.
In 1893 the Arnhem football club Vitesse played on a field within the plant and bird garden and on a meadow in Bronbeek Park. Because there was a tree in the middle of the field, playing official games at Bronbeek was not allowed. That is why, from December 1894, Vitesse was forced to move to the Paasweide, on the other side of the Rhine.
By Royal Decree of June 14, 1857, a commission was set up to propose a plan to set up a military disabled home; M. baron van Geen sat on this committee as chairman and as members military intendant first class H. Hardenberg, lieutenant colonel J. Vertholen, lieutenant colonel A.J. Andresen, Lieutenant Colonel Engineer G.A. van Kerkwijk and Mr J.P. Feith.
In a letter of 13 June 1857, addressed to the Minister of the Colonies, King William III indicated that he wished to donate the Bronbeek estate to the State of the Netherlands to furnish a colonial military house for the disabled. good never could be given another destination and that the State of the Netherlands would pay all charges, counting from January 1, 1860. On September 28 of that year, the deed was executed by civil-law notary J. Bervoets in The Hague. In May 1860, the Department of Colonies devoted the required works and supplies for the foundation of a military home for the disabled to Mr. K. Kooy, residing in Amsterdam, who was the lowest of the eleven tenderers and to whom the work was therefore granted for an amount. of 193,400 guilders. The foundation stone was laid on July 13 of that year. Chief Government Architect W.N. Rose was responsible for the design of the main building in eclectic style. In November 1860, the costs of furnishing the pavilion and the disabled house under construction, including the purchase of household goods for the expected more than 200 disabled people, were estimated at approximately 300,000 guilders. The house for the disabled was constructed in such a way that it could be expanded in the future at a relatively low cost, should the need arise
In 2015, the Bronbeek military home offers housing and care to resident former soldiers of the armed forces, with the exception of officers. Bronbeek offers care for the elderly in which the residents' own capabilities are central. The home has a maximum of fifty residents and a short waiting list. The Ministry of Defense bears the costs of operation and maintenance, but residents also pay their own contribution. Bronbeek focuses strongly on the demands of the resident and tries to provide good quality care.
The home was renovated in 1987 and in 1997. In February 2013 the 150th anniversary of Bronbeek was celebrated, which was graced by a visit by Queen Beatrix to the house on February 27, 2013Monuments
Various monuments have been placed on the Bronbeek estate, including:
- Karel van der Heijden sofa (1963)
- Dutch East Indies monument Arnhem (2001)
- Monument Japanese Women's Camps in Apeldoorn (1971), relocated in 1985 on the Bronbeek estate (Arnhem)
- Boy's Camps Memorial (1988)
- Japanese Sea Transport Monument (2004) - See also Death Railway
- Dampit affair | Memorial Dampit Criminal Camp (2001) by Rudi Augustinus
- Burma-Siam Railway Memorial (1989) - See also Death Railway
- Monument to the abolition of KNIL (1990)
- Monument to the Indian Resistance (1997)
- Monument in memory of the KNIL (see image)
- Papua Warriors Monument
- Bust in memory of Jan Engelbert van Bevervoorde
- Bust in memory of Joannes Benedictus van HeutszCommemorations on Bronbeek
Several commemorations are held annually, a number of which are;
- Battle of the Java Sea,
- Bangkinang Japanese Camp,
- Royal Dutch East Indies Army (KNIL),
- Japanese Boy's Camps / Women's Camps,
- 4-10 Infantry Regiment,
- Burma Siam & Pakan Baroe Railways,
- Japanese Sea Transports,
- Papua fighters.
Several years back I have visited Bronbeek once, on the occassion of the Dutch Open Monumentendag (Open Monuments Day). I visited the museum and had a short tour at the outside by a guide of Moluccan origin. And I was told the Indonesian restaurant, next to & part of Bronbeek, is the best one in Arnhem and region. I still have to try it once