It should have been something big and special, a gift of gratitude to Americans after World War II. Queen Juliana was presenting it symbolically during her first state visit to America.
A special committee has been created to prepare suitable gifts for our editors and generous donors for Marshall Aide. It was a bell of 49 bells. A machine in which the smaller bell was just as important as the large bells, a symbol of the situation in which the Netherlands liked to see itself in the early 1950s.
We will look in harmony with other nations.
To be sure, the history of Carillon Holland in Washington is full of hope and goodwill. But it has also become a history full of blunders. And this resulted in our national gift – lavishly decorated bliss – to appear literally false.
But that is now over. The car has returned to the Netherlands since December 2019 to be finally restored, expanded and tuned properly.
For Other Times (NTR / VPRO), there is a reason to make a special show in which watch restoration is followed and in which the turbulent history of the Carillon appears.
The special is titled “Clocks for America,” and the subtitle: “A History of Fatal Errors and Verbatim,” and will be broadcast on Saturday, October 17, 8:35 pm on NPO2. It will – certainly in advance – broadcast revealing. It’s about lost watches, fake watches, payment arguments, pressure ambassadors, and many more fake notes.
In broadcasting, researcher Professor Diedrik Ostdijk (VU) guides the viewer through documents and people who are part of the journal’s history. Oostdijk has spent years researching carillon’s origins and will continue to pursue restoration until opening sometime next year. In addition to the book Klokken voor Amerika (2020), his English-language counterpart is written, Bells for America (2019), which will be re-issued by Amsterdam University Press (AUP) and will be available from the end of November at a price of 19.45 € in libraries and at the Klok & Peel Museum in Asten .
Andere Tijden of Anne-May Wachters-van der Grinten, daughter of Genia van der Grinten-Lücker, the artist from Asten who was largely responsible for the rich decorations on The Netherlands Carillon watches.
Pete Hoekstra, the current US ambassador to the Netherlands, is also speaking at the beautiful exhibition venue Clocks for America in Museum Klok & Peel. This exhibition – which will definitely be on display until summer recess next year – was created under the responsibility of curator Dr Luke Rumpus, who is also a camp scientist who is doing the final inspection of the restored building on behalf of the Dutch Embassy in Washington. Also spoken on special from Andere Tijden.
Unique are the historical color photographs from the 1950s and 1960s, photographed by the founder of the bell, Guus Fritsen. Beautiful statues of Queen Juliana in Washington, but also of the bell tower under construction, by employees of the Arles Rixstel Bell Foundry, Petit en Fritsen, who in 1960 built the bell tower in which the Netherlands lived Carillon.
But most impressive is how American watches are being restored this year and how three new watches are being poured. A great example of traditional craftsmanship is at the world’s largest bell foundry, Koninklijke Eijsbouts in Asten.
And then it turned out that the American part of the restoration – the bell tower – was much more expensive than budgeted and that the planned shipment of the watches had been delayed until 2021. And although the Americans had the money together, the watches would stay in Asten for a few months and still could be. Admire her at the Clock and Bell Museum in the near future.