Leiden and 's-Gravenhage
Leiden is located on the Old Rhine river, at a distance of some 20 kilometres (12 miles) from The Hague to its south and some 40 km (25 mi) from Amsterdam to its north.
In 1572, the city sided with the Dutch revolt against Spanish rule and played an important role in the Eighty Years' War. Besieged from May until October 1574 by the Spanish, Leiden was relieved by the cutting of the dikes by Dutch rebels, thus enabling flat-bottom boats to carry provisions to the inhabitants of the town. As a reward for the heroic defence of the previous year, the University of Leiden was founded by William I of Orange in 1575. Yearly on 3 October, the end of the siege is still celebrated as "Leiden Liberated". The siege is notable also for being the first instance in Europe of the issuance of paper money, with paper taken from prayer books being stamped using coin dies when silver ran out.
Leiden is also known as the place where the Pilgrims lived (and operated a printing press) for some 20 years before their departure in 1620 to Massachusetts in the New World.
Read an article about that and the origin of the U.S. Thanksgiving dinner.
In the 17th century, Leiden prospered, in part because of the impetus to the textile industry by refugees from Flanders and several other areas. While the city had lost about a third of its 15,000 citizens during the siege of 1574, it quickly recovered to 45,000 inhabitants in 1622, and may have come near to 70,000 circa 1670.
During the Dutch Golden Era, Leiden was the second largest city of Holland, after Amsterdam.
From the late 17th century onwards Leiden slumped, mainly due to the decline of the cloth industries. In the beginning of the 19th century the baize manufacture was altogether given up, although industry remained central to Leiden economy. This decline is painted vividly by the fall in population. The population of Leiden had sunk to 30,000 in 1800.
van O-s in Leiden
A very large group of van Osnabrugges (with all the various spellings) developed in and from Leiden in the mid 1600s. Most of these descendants do not seem to be related to the (van) O-s originating in the Cleves, Arnhem or Rijswijk regions.
The first van O. registered in Leiden is Jan Jansz van Osenbrug (cloth weaver). In 1603 he registered to marry Maeycken Lantmeters in the Dutch Reformed church. We have not been able to identify any children. Is Harmen Jans (below) their son?
But then some 50 years later (at least) 3 van O-s register in Leiden and develop large families and descendants, of which at least 1 to the present.
- Jan Jansz van Oosenbrugh (b. ~1600).
His son Jan Jansz van Osenbrug, born in Emden, registers to marry in Leiden in 1650. His father is a witness, who remarries 7 years later. Look here for their notices of marriage.
On the bottom it says that his father's (second) wedding is in doc D-238. Click on the right arrow to view.
This is the patriarch of well over 300 Leiden and (especially) den Haag descendants.
They came from Emden (East of Groningen), a small town where a sizeable group of van Osnabrugges lived and were named after the town of Osnabrück (van [=from] Osnabrugge in Dutch), where they originated from.
Look here for several recorded van Osnabrugge's weddings in Emden from 1596 - 1614.
Jan Jansz van O. and his descendants were Lutherans. It was not easy being Lutheran in those days. Calvinism was the de facto state religion. Other Christian religions (although tolerated) were not permitted to practice their religion in public. Lutheranism only in larger cities on the condition of having house-style churches and away from the main streets.
View a slideshow how they congregated in Leiden.
The first Lutheran worship services in Leiden were held in 1588 in a private home. In 1613 they expanded to the small "Jerusalem Chapel" on Kaiser Street.
In 1618, the first Evangelical Lutheran Church in Leiden was built as a "clandestine church" behind the houses on the Hoogland Church street. As "Dissenters", Lutherans were not allowed to build churches directly on the street. The buildings could not stand out and therefore towers were not allowed. In front of the church were houses with an entry to the alley that lead to the church building.
The Calvinists had laws on the interior display in the church. It had to be austere, without decorations or crucifixes. This original baptisimal carving of 1640 must have temperate enough.
The church was a simple rectangular building. The interior was divided by columns and arches in three ships, covered by a nave with a barrel vault. In 1640 and 1660 the church was enlarged by two galleries. The interior layout is preserved in a drawing from the book "Les Delices de Leyde" from 1712.
In the 19th century Calvinist church rules had relaxed and in 1888 a new fašade with three windows and a turret was built in front of the original wall. The houses in front of the church were demolished resulting into a nice forecourt.
In 1861 a vestry was built (the white building on the right) next to the church.
Shortly before W.W.II the turret had delapidated so badly that it was demolished. The weather vane, which had topped the turret has been preserved and is diplayed inside the church.
- Harmen Jans van Osnabrugge (b. ~1605).
He and his descendants were Dutch Reformed Protestants. They mainly congregated in the glorious Hoogland church and also in the
Mare church, which opened in 1649 and was the first Protestant church to be built after the Reformation.
Because the population of Leiden had quadrupled over the previous 50 years, there was a need for a new (Protestant) church. Construction began in 1639 and was completed 10 years later.
The Mare church is built in the Dutch Classical style. The exterior features an interesting octagonal-shaped dome that is 55 meters high. Inside, true to Protestant values, the pulpit is the centerpiece of the church, surrounded by chairs and benches. The pulpit and other wooden furnishings all date from 1650 and are made of solid oak.
Harmen is the patriarch of over 100 descendants in Leiden, spanning from ~1600-~1800.
In 1811 City Councils took over the Civil Registry from churches. Further research needs to be done in these "new" databases to identify further descendants to the present.
- Evert Jansz Ossenbrugh (also Osnabrugge) b. ~1645.
He came from 's-Hertogenbosch. He and his descendants were also Protestants. Further research needs to be carried out on his descendants beyond on what we have so far.
Most of the information on the Leiden and den Haag (van) O-s comes from 3 sources, which we have woven together:
- herrewijnenweb.nl. A great piece of research with a descendancy list of over 300 people, spanning from 1600 - present.
- mijnstambomen.nl/leiden/osnabrugge.htm. A similar piece and size of research with considerable overlap with the herrewijnen list in the first hundred years or so. The listings end at ~1800.
An interesting find on this site is the change of the van Osnabrugge name to van Es(bruggen) in one branch of the family.
- Because the above two sites did not exactly agree on the patriarchs of the Leiden van O-s, we further researched erfgoedleiden.nl. This now includes Regionaal Archief Leiden, with data on births, weddings and deaths since 1574.
Since several of the van O-s names were so similar (e.g. Jan Jansz van Osenbrugge) in the mid 1600s, we researched families by specific church registrations and now believe that we have identified the true patriarchs of the Leiden and Den Haag descendants.