Almshouses of Bartholomeus Hospital in Nineteenth Century Utrecht

Authors Corrie Verstoep
Publication date September 2011
Research groups Participation, Care and Support
Type Lecture


The focus of my research is how Bartholomeus Guesthouse (BG), founded in 1407 by Willem van Abcoude, has organized care over more than 600 years for the elderly and elderly sick people in the Centre of Utrecht. After the reorganization of 1817 -by Royal Law- the 7 (9) Guesthouses were merged to one Board called “College van Regenten der Vereenigde Gods-en Gasthuizen” .They have had their domicile in Bartholomeus Guesthouse. This Guesthouse survived as elderly care centre on particular foundation, which has meant until today that people from different religions were welcome. The properties of the other guesthouses came under supervision of the Board of “Vereenigde Gods-en Gasthuizen”. The heritage of the other foundations was , in terms of property and land, considerable. In my paper I will present the following items: -An inventarisation of the situation after 1817 and the ‘cameren’ (vrij woningen) of the different guesthouses in Utrecht and what their (living) conditions were at that time; -the Policy of the Board supervising the Free Houses/ Cameren for Elderly during this area; the observation of the archive manager S.Muller good illustration of the situation in 1900; -the inhabitants of the ‘vrij woningen’; the selection and the rules as part of the social housing policy; - a more general analysis: the policy of poor relief and the debate of who had to take care of the poor? - all subjects give an answer to the question whether or not poor relief can be regarded as a safety valve for the (lower) middle class, in the ninetheenth century.

Language English

Participation Care and Support