Visit Historisch Museum de Scheper (the Scheper History Museum) in Eibergen, The Netherlands

Returning to Eibergen about 20km to the north of Winterswijk, Bert and I visited the Historisch Museum de Scheper (De Scheper History Museum) in a stately villa at Hagen 24. This Museum is the brainchild of amateur archaeologist and historian Herman Schepers, whom I first met when visiting Eibergen in October 2017.

We met him again today, in the brick barn near the entrance to the Museum, with a volunteer who is progressively taking digital photographs of hundreds of farm implements and other artefacts collected by Mr Schepers since WW2 which are currently stored in the dusty shed, awaiting an opportunity to be put on public display. This lent an authenticity to the effort involved in collecting and cataloguing the wide variety of effects assembled and stockpiled by the elderly Mr Schepers.

Looking through the exhibits on display in the Museum, I gained a fresh insight into why a small village like Eibergen had – during the time my father lived there from the 1920s to the 1940s – multiple slaughterhouses and butcher shops; and why so many members of my father’s parents’ families were involved in the cattle trade.

In the late 1800s, the Prakke family established a large tannery and leather production factory in Eibergen. The Praake factory principally produced leather transmission belts used in industrial-scale manufacturing, until its closure in the 1950s. A ready supply of cattle hide would be essential for a reliable supply of raw material for the leather factory.

This Museum was also interesting and a peaceful place to spend two hours looking over the exhibits.


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