Rotterdam, September 5, 1893

Zwaanshals fire and drowning
at the Fabriekskade ferry in Rotterdam


Zwaanshals and Fabriekskade in Rotterdam are streets, look here
A fire at the Glimmerveen family at the Zwaanshals near Rotterdam led to a serious accident that would still make it to the front pages of the national newspapers.
It didn't happen today or yesterday, but more than 125 years ago, on September 3, 1893.
The message was on September 5, 1893 in the Rotterdam Roman Catholic newspaper "De Maasbode" and also in the Nieuwe Rotterdamsche Courant and the Rotterdamsch Nieuwsblad of the same day. (all the aforementioned daily newspapers no longer exist)
It is fascinating to see how journalists wrote such a message at the end of the nineteenth century.
In our time, the ten dead would be mentioned in the first paragraph, but in the 1893 newspapers it happened differently.
The first sentences suggest that it was a spectacular fire, just good enough for a message in a local newspaper.
Only those who read on patiently will discover that the headline "Terrible disaster" was justified.
(Source: Fam.Glimmerveen)

This written below is a free translation of the text accompanying the photo above.
The last trip of the ferry across the river Rotte opposite the exercise area near the Crooswijk district in Rotterdam.
In the year 1900 this "water omnibus" was sunk in the vicinity of a fire that raged in the vicinity as a result of overloading of people, with ten people drowned.
The ferryman who was short-sighted at the time of the accident and went later completely blinded.
In the background you can see the "Zaagmolenbrug" opposite the Zaagmolenstraat.
Once again an old-fashioned means of transport has disappeared.

Below the literal text from De Maasbode.
Terrible disaster
More than a quarter past ten last night a fire started in a wooden shed on the Gelderlozepad, this wooden building was soon an enormous sea of fire.
The high rising flames attracted a large audience to the site of the fire.
Many people who lived on the side of the river Rotte made use of the ferry there to go to the Zwaanshals. The ferry had already been back and forth several times and had transferred many people, when at about half past ten it took 25 more people to transport them to the other side.
Due to an as yet inexplicable circumstance, when the ferry had already made the majority of the crossing and was about three meters from the Factory Quay, according to some people rumored that someone was lay into the water, according to others for other reasons, all persons pushed to the rear of the ferry, which thereby created water on that side into the ferry.
When this was noticed, a warning was given against the collapse on one side and the advice was given that all persons would divide over the entire ferry, but as it goes more in such circumstances, the water scooping of the ferry had already frightened many.
Instead of following the advice given, all of them suddenly rushed to the front, causing the ferry to scoop water on that side.
The ferry had meanwhile received so much water that it started to sink.
When the people on board noticed this, they all grabbed at the same time, out of preservation, for the chain which is stretched from one bank to the other and along which the ferry moves.
The chain could not bear that burden, it broke, and as a result all of them, about 25 people, got into the water.
The light of the lantern was placed on it by the sinking of the ferry gone out
This was a terrible moment, about 25 people, all crying out loud for help, including some women, lying in the water.
Everyone naturally tried to reach the shore.
Most of them could not swim or, if they could, were unable to move to reach the shore by swimming due to the confusion and accumulation of many people clinging to each other.
As much help as possible was offered from the shore on the Fabriekskade.
The ferryman was soon saved and some others with him, but there were still people in the water.
The confusion and panic was great, this and the darkness seem to have been the cause that ten people could no longer be taken alive from the water.
Of these ten people who have since died, the corpses were subsequently brought onto the quay.
Four doctors, along with some bystanders, were trying to arouse the spirits of life until late at night, but unfortunately, their diligent efforts were unsuccessful, they could only ascertain that the persons had already drowned.
It was an endearing spectacle that ten corpses, more or less undressed for medical treatment, could be seen stretched out on the bank.
The corpses were transferred that same night to the shed for drowning people in the cemetery in Crooswijk, where they were laid down for recognition by the family, today this recognition took place.

The names of the victims are:
Pieter Philipsen 24 years old, living Meermanstraat number 59; his brother, co-resident there, Cornelis Phillipsen , 20 years old.
Pieter de Braal, office clerk, 19 years old, living at Crooswijksekade 12.
J.P. Kooistra, police officer 3 e class, living on Crooswijksedwarsstraat and his highly pregnant wife, Gijsberta Adriana-Kooistra de Boer.
The man ( J.P. Kooistra ) was free at 10 o'clock in the evening and was, after leaving the office on the Meermanstraaat where he was assigned, went for a walk with his wife, leaving 3 young children in bed at home, of which the oldest is only 6 years old, the alarm probably caused him to go to the scene of disaster in order to provide his services there if necessary to maintain order.
This unfortunate man would have a day off today and go with his wife and children to family in The Hague.
A sister of these unfortunate spouses came this morning to collect the three children who had become suddenly orphaned .
Simon Gotsenberg , 17 years old, bakkersknecht, living at Warmoezierstraat.
Tenna Snel about 23 years, living as a maid with Mr C.Brogman, Crooswijkseweg 74.
This girl was supposed to have married soon, her future, who was in the ferry, managed to save herself while swimming.
Marinus Adrianus Bos , 33 years old, tobacconist living Zomerhofstraat 68;
Bastiaan Veth , 19 years old, cake maker living at Rubroekstraat 56;
Jan Muijt , 21 years old, skipper's assistant living in Bleiswijk.
Presumably the bodies of all drowned persons have been found, at least several of them apparently do not seem to be missing Someone is still missing, but it is highly uncertain that he has been there For the rescue of the drowning people and the raising of the spirits of life, the spray guests are in by the fire department heads put it to work
The fire, which caused this terrible disaster, was caused by an unknown cause in a wooden shed, which served as a storage place for straw, forcing windows and gardening tools and as a home for the Glimmerveen family. The flames became excellent food in the material present and in a moment the building looked like a lump of fire.
As always, the fire brigade was immediately present with six to seven manual fire sprayers, rescue equipment and the three steam sprayers.
The syringes 26, 15 and 16 watered in succession, but nothing could be preserved, the shed burned to the ground.

The aforementioned streets that are designated as links no longer exist as such, at least the buildings have changed considerably, there is also a 1st Crooswijksestraat and a 2nd, in short, there is no certainty where the Kooistra family lived at the time.
 

The report has also been preserved
"To Mr. Mayor of Rotterdam of the Chief of Police"

September 4, 1893.
Yesterday evening at around 10 hours, a fire broke out in a wooden shed on Geldelooze Pad, belonging to the gardener H.Glimmerveen, 54 years old who lived behind the shed.
Various tools for storing windows and reed mats were stored in that shed.
The cause is unknown. Syringes 26, 15, 16, 11, 10, 17, 9, as well as the two steam syringes and the rescue brigade were present, the first three of which only gave water.
The shed that was insured against fire damage burned to the ground, at 1 o'clock in the morning the fire was completely extinguished, a detachment of marines was present.
At 10.37 am the 3 e department received a telephone message from the fire, at 10.42 the agent came to 3 e class J. Poldervaart alerting that department, reporting that he was up to 4 time to the Noordelijk Stoomgemaal to call for a connection with the Central telephone office and first received the 4th answer after first having also tried to gain access to the butter factory in the Zwaanshals.
At the same time as this fire broke out, a number of 20 to 25 people set sail on the ferry between the Left Rottekade and the Fabriekskade.
According to statement by the ferry operator Andries van de Lisdonk , living Fabriekskade no. 8, Hemelaar, police officer 2 e class, Arie Schneijder , living Jaffa Broederhof 42 and Willem Broeder living at Warmoezierstraat 79/1, all of which were in the ferry, the fellow sailors stood back too much, causing the ferry at the back to scoop water, then they suddenly moved towards the front, so that the ferry received so much water that it sank, also because everyone grabbed the chain that broke as a result.
Rescued the aforementioned people from the water, 2 women and 8 men, whether others have saved themselves or are drowned, cannot be determined.
Medical assistance appeared in the drs. Van Beek, Beekhuis, Timmermans and Van Walsum , despite all efforts being made to arouse the spirits of life, the deaths of these people must be observed.
Of the 10 corpses, 2 were recognized by the agent 3 e class Philipsen as being of his sons Pieter, 24 years old and Cornelis 20 years old , having lived with him at Meermanstraat no.59.
The 3 e corpse is recognized as that of Pieter de Braal , 19 years old, Crooswijkschekade 12.
The 4 e and 5 e corpses for that of J.P. Hoogstra (the name is incorrectly stated here and must be JP Kooistra), police officer and his wife Gijsberta Adriana-Kooistra de Boer , the 6 e corpse for that of Simon Gotsenberg , 17 years old, bakkersknecht, Warmoezierstraat 101 and the 7 e corpse of that of Theuna ( Tenna ) Fast about 23 years, maid at C. Bregman on the Crooswijkschenweg corner Van Pleretstraat.
Fishing takes place in the Rotte because there is no certainty that all persons on board have been picked up from the water.
September 5, 1893 .
The corpse of Pieter de Braal was transferred from the cemetery to the parental home last night.
The corpse of Jan Muijt was buried by municipalities in the cemetery.
 
This story is a free translation from the original Dutch story, if someone has a correction on the English translation then I would like to hear via the contact page on the website, thank you in advance.
 
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