Saturday, 13 April 2013

Home! Sweet Home!

Digging in the past may be regarded as the genealogist's core business. The older the document or the source, the better. But generally genealogists tend to forget that recording contemporary data is equally important. If you want to enable your great grandson to find out all kinds of interesting details about his great grandparents, you have to enable him to do so. In other words we have to write down our own, contemporary history. And history not only consists of stories, also material objects such as cars and houses are part of that. Therefore, in this blog I have already paid attention to e.g. the aircraft types I flew in during my professional life and the cars we owned as a family. Now I like to highlight the houses that we lived in. I'll start with my birth home and after having completed all the houses (my wife and) I lived in, there will be posts showing my wife's domiciles.
OK, here we go, back to The Hague in 1944.
661 Laan van Meerdervoort, The Hague
During WW2 there was a maternity hospital in this house. It was named Huize Margaretha (Margaretha's home). According to stories of my mother it was not a paragon of hygiene. I stayed there from Jan. 25 to approx Feb. 5, 1944. Shortly after I developed chicken-pox, a desease you are only entitled to when you are at least about 1,5-2 years old.
18 Mispelstraat, The Hague
After 10 days or so I moved to the nearby house of my grandparents. Although my father and mother lived in Apeldoorn at the time, my mother decided to have me in The Hague. We stayed there from approx Feb. 5 until some time after Mar. 26, 1944. Number 18 is the house with the horizontal brace drawn underneath it. The handwriting is my grandmother's.
6 Parkweg, Apeldoorn
The Parkweg is currently named Prof. Röntgenstraat
My father was a civil servant working for the Home Office. Earlier during the war the Germans ordered this government body, together with the Ministry of Justice, to be transferred from The Hague to Apeldoorn in the eastern part of the country. We lived in the house of two elderly ladies named Bakker. My stay there lasted from some time after Mar. 26, 1944 to the end of June 1945 when my mother and I moved back to The Hague.
18 Mispelstraat, The Hague
As a consequence of the war there was a large shortage of houses. So initially there was hardly any other possibility but to live with my grandparents again. Taking into consideration the circumstances I am sure that they did not mind this at all, to the contrary! We lived there from June 1945 until sometime prior to Sep. 27, 1946 when we were assigned a house in the Goudreinetstraat.
614 Goudreinetstraat, The Hague
Our house was the second ground floor house from the left, just after the portico. For reasons unknown to me, we went back to my grandparents house in the Mispelstraat around August 1949. So we stayed there close to 3 years. The Goudreinetstraat house was then taken by my father's sister and her family. They lived in with my grandparents from Sep. 27, 1946 until approx 1,5 year later. No doubt all this moving back and forth had to do with difficult housing situation at the time.
18 Mispelstraat, The Hague (green front door)

This time I spent some 4 years on this address, the house of my grandparents. I remember my grandmother telling us that they bought this house prior to WW2 for the impressive sum of 5,000 Dutch Guilders. Converted to euro's that was approx € 2,250 then and some € 46,000 today. Measured by today's standards, that was a cheap house. Current prices for similar houses in that part of The Hague are in the range of € 300,000. Speaking of a bubble...

Photo credits
Home Sweet Home
Laan van Meerdervoort Google
Mispelstraat (1): blogger collection
Parkweg: blogger picture Sep. 23, 2011
Mispelstraat (2) Beeldbank, Den Haag
Goudreinetstraat Beeldbank, Den Haag
Mispelstraat (3) Google


  1. I am always very fascinated, when I can see a place "before" and "after".
    All good wishes!

  2. Nice blog, love reading about houses. They all look nice. Looking fwd to read more.
    Peter it is A deceased is a dead person. Of course one can die from a disease....

  3. So very fascinating and I look forward to seeing more. Home Sweet Home is for sure what all this looks like. You are so right about putting this together for the younger ones, so they too can carry on and know all about your life!

  4. First thought: I wish my parents had made something like this.
    Second thought: boy you have moved around a lot (and this is only part one).

  5. Great idea to put this together about the houses you lived in, Peter!

  6. @aussi K
    I'll correct that, thanks!
    I expect three parts in all plus one for my wife.

    Thank you all for visiting, much appreciated!


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