On Saturday, September 26th, 2015 we
were again at the commemoration Orange Hotel in Scheveningen.
In 2010 we
were also present at this commemoration. Since 1946, the
annual commemoration is held on the last Saturday of September
or the first Saturday of October. During the commemoration a
memorial speech pronounced by a prominent Dutchman. This year it
was prof.mr. G.J.M. Corstens, former president of the Supreme
Court. And pays tribute to the prisoners of the Oranje Hotel
during a Silent Walk Along Doodencel 601.
The memorial service is annually
attended by some 400 people, including representatives of the
States General, the Government, the city of The Hague, the
province of Zuid-Holland and many organizations of former
gevangenen.Tijdens the first commemoration were and the
Doodencel inaugurated the Poortje; in 1950 the memorial plaque
on the Stevinstraat was unveiled by Queen Juliana. The Orange
Hotel was nicknamed the prison in Scheveningen during World War
II. From 1919 to 1940 served the Cell Barracks in Scheveningen
prison and remand for petty criminals. After the German invasion
of May 10, 1940 German prisoner of war were imprisoned. After
the capitulation of the Netherlands the Germans took over the
prison. The first prisoners were in all probability
Engelandvaarders, but soon the Oranje Hotel was mainly used to
imprison people and resistance to interrogation. The first group
of resistance fighters who were imprisoned by the end of 1940,
were members of the Geuzen Group. Then came on April 2, 1941 a
large number of members of the Stijkelgroep and from the
beginning of June 1941 an even larger number of communists and
many other political prisoners. The Orange Hotel nickname is
mentioned on March 8, 1941 in the illegal newspaper Fri
Netherlands. From this initial period also dates the famous poem:
"In this prison is no riffraff, but Dutch glory golly." Many
prisoners were tortured during interrogations by the Security
Service and members of the Hague municipal police, because they
were so difficult to speak to. There are several people tortured
to death or killed in the Orange Hotel, as Pieter Philip van den
Berg (communist) on August 29, 1940, Sjaak Boezeman (The Beggars)
on January 9, 1941 and Herman Holstege (communist) on 2
September 1941 have total during the occupation some 25,000
people detained in the Orange Hotel. They were arrested by the
Germans for various acts of resistance or Deutschfeindlichkeit,
listening to Radio Oranje to perpetrate attacks against Germans.
After treatment of their case by the Nazis, some were released
but thousands were condemned to long stays in the German camps
or workhouses. 215 death row inmates have been transferred from
the Orange Hotel in fusillering by truck to the
A number of cells in the central corridor of the Orange Hotel, the D-hall, was used as kill cells. Here condemned men waited for the order to walk through the gate to the truck that would take them to the Waalsdorpervlakte. In their last hours the prisoners were allowed to have contact with each other, talk, pray, cry, sing. In some cases, they still could write a letter. One of the dead cells, Doodencel 601, is preserved in its original state. A portrait of Queen Wilhelmina now hangs above the door. The walls show the original inscriptions of the prisoners to hope, fear and longing for home were made. Doodencel 601 forms the core of the Monument Orange Hotel. During the annual commemoration lay hundreds of flowers at Doodencel 601.
At the Van Alkemade Laan is located next to a large gate, a small gate in the outer wall. By this small port, the condemned men were led out to be executed on the Waalsdorpervlakte.
Death Books and Names
Death Books are four bands with photos and biographies of 734 members of the resistance who died during or after their stay at the Orange Hotel. Death Books are compiled shortly after the war based on information about former prisoners of the Oranje Hotel which was then collected. The data are far from complete, but the books are an impressive monument to the fallen.
HMonument Oranje Hotel consisting of Doodencel 601, the Gate, the plaque "They were of one accord" and Death Books, owned since 1946 by the Foundation Orange Hotel. The Foundation Orange Hotel also organizes the annual commemoration. Monument Oranje Hotel is nearly 70 years shut up in the Scheveningen prison, but now the Cell Barracks no longer in use, the Foundation Orange Hotel since 2012 to the renovation and opening of the Monument. To this end, in collaboration with the Government Buildings Agency and the Ministry of Security and Justice developed a design for which funding is currently being sought. Since the end of 2013 once per month opportunity given to the public to visit Doodencel 601.
Photo Gallery of prisoners in the 'Orange Hotel'
|The room was filled with former detainees, relatives and interested parties.|
|Theatre The Apple reads from 'Orange Hotel' Eduard Veterman, former resistance fighter and former prisoner. About his stay at the Orange Hotel, he wrote the piece 'Orange Hotel' which premiered on November 19, 1945. Theatre The Apple reads the third scene of the play: "A number of men locked in a cramped cell, in fear of the interrogation, torture and the verdict. They try to smuggle inside information about the outside world. They know that the Allies advancing, but time is running out ...|
|Tessel Hersbach, violinist, plays the title music from the film Schindler's List, John Williams, accompanied by the Royal Police Band Haaglanden.|
|Then, the silent procession begins along Doodencel 601.|
A number of cells in the central
corridor of the Orange Hotel, the D-hall, was used as "death row".
Here condemned men waited for the order to the Poortje walking
to the truck that would take them to the Waalsdorpervlakte. In
their last hours the prisoners were allowed to have contact with
each other, talk, pray, cry, sing. In some cases, they still
could write a letter.
One of the dead cells, Doodencel 601, is preserved in its original state. A portrait of Queen Wilhelmina now hangs above the door. The walls show the original inscriptions of the prisoners to hope, fear and longing for home were made. Doodencel 601 forms the core of the annual commemoration.
|After the ceremony we walked to the canteen for a cup of coffee and a sandwich. But it still remains a bit creepy when you see around walls with barbed wire. We were finally in the area of the prison in Scheveningen.|