History of Voorhout




For hundreds of years Voorhout was just a dot on the map. In 1988 Voorhout celebrated it's thousand years of existence. The exact year is not known, but it is sure that it's early name was Foranholte, and it lay in a big woody area and stretched from Lisse to Rijnsburg/Oegstgeest to Katwijk/Noordwijk to Sassenheim. Qua area it could compete with Leiden. Voorhout had few inhabitants, only a few hundred, mostly farmers. There was no real village centre, not until a few years before the 19th century.            
According the church records of the Abby of Egmond, the church of Voorhout was granted to them by Count Dirk II and his wife Hildegardt in May 988. A letter to Emperor Hendrik IV in 1064 spoke of the church and chapel in Voorhout. The tuff stone church and chapel was granted to the diocese of Utrecht. Twelve years later the parish of Vorenholte was pawned to the Abby. As subsidiary, the church of Sassenheim fell under the parish of Voorhout. In 1083 Count Dirk V confirmed in a charter that the church was given by his ancestors. 
Well known noble family's lived in the early middle ages in the forest areas of Voorhout. Even in 1283 the noble family's of Nagel, Boekhorst and Van Teijlingen lived there. Under the Nagel family there were for two century's many bailiffs . In the trade account from 1459 was read of " Jan Naghels voor die bregge" ( It means that Jan Nagel paid for the bridge). The present bridge is not the original one, that one was over the waterway connection between Noordwijk, Sassenheim and Warmond, about 100 meters away. It was popularity known as  the Low or Old School Bridge and was demolished in 1967. The Low or Old School Bridge was build in 1657 for 195 guilders ( about 50 U.S.Dollar) at the same time that the Haarlemmertrekvaart (a waterway) was build. The in 1971 Inn " De Bontekoe" was also then build.     
At the end of the 12th century the family Van Teijlingen lived in the castle Teijlingen. Lord Willem died in March 1244. He had as far as we know, 4 children. Forty years later Willem's son died. The castle and rest of the estate fell to the Count of Holland, because he was childless. Floris V gave the castle to the widow of Lord Albrecht van Voorne. A granddaughter of of the Count, the well known Jacoba van Beieren lived in 1428 in the Teijlingen house. Jacoba  died eight years later.  
Apart from Teijlingen, Voorhout was well known in the 14th century of castle Boekhorstburg also known as  Boekenburg. After Jan Boekenburg died in 1400, his son succeeded him .In 1468 he received the "het recht van zwanendrift" (He was allowed to keep swans) untill the French Revolution this right was only for the nobility. The castle was destroyed in the Hoekse and Kabeljouwse disputes. They build a new smaller house, but probably never lived in it. Voorhout had also some big farms for example "De Hoogkamer" and "Oosthout"            
Voorhout still had few inhabitants. The Abby of Egmond owned in 1339 a few houses. About the 15th century Voorhout had 40 houses and 160 communicants. Only 29 family's paid taxes. The others where either poor or noble,they did not have to pay taxes. During the French Revolution Voorhout had only 331 inhabitants, mostly Catholic. After the iconoclasm of 1556, they went to church in Sassenheim. Because there were too few Protestants, most of the official jobs stayed in Catholic hands. In 1795 the administration of Bailiffs and Alderman ended. Liberte, Egalite and Fraternite followed. Voorhout became a municipality, 12 years later the French left.Voorhout and Sassenheim became one town and stayed that way till 1818. Afterwards Voorhout became again a village.The municipality consisted of 400 people.
In 1856 after nearly 300 years of churchgoing in Sassenheim, Voorhout again had his its own parish, The Holy St.Bartholomeus. The Hervormde Kerk (protestant church) sold the old part of the building to the Catholics for 1700 guilders (425 U.S.Dollar). At this time the country seat of Schoonoord was build and demolished to make room for seminary Hageveld. After the priests left, it became a school up to 1970.Then the building was demolished. A new school was build and welcomed the 10.000th student in 1991.      
Because there where not enough inhabitants, Voorhout did not have its own Lord Mayor from 1860 until 1920, but shared one with Oegstgeest. But time did not stand still. The number of people grew until in 1880 there were 1100 inhabitants. At the end of the 19th century the bulb culture began to flourish. After starting with 61 hectare it grew to 170 hectare within 20 years, with 42 bulb growers. Around 1940 this was 245 hectare. On the last Saturday of April there is a flower show that draws many tourists. The route goes from Noordwijk to Haarlem, through Voorhout.       
At the end of the 19th century corporate life began. The oldest club known it that of the bulb culture, established in 1895, and the ice skating club from 1899.The traders association 1918, the music Harmony St.Hubertus 1920, up to the second world war there were many clubs. A lot of them were gone after 1945. Times changed, people got more free time. After Foreholte (football) there came many more sport clubs. In the fifties  urbanization did not pass Voorhout  by. Roads were widened, street lightning spread and many new houses build. Also more schools and shops came. The village grew and the district of Oosthout in 1983 with 1600 houses and Hoogh Teijlingen in 1993 with also 1600 houses were build.  
In 1842 the railway was build near Voorhout, but a station was not built until 1893. The station was closed after the second world war. In the first years of the railway it raced right through the village, but only stopped in emergency's. Now the call for a station grew and the new station was opened in on the 1th of March  1997.The locomotive 1719 carries the coat of arms of Voorhout.
Voorhout is getting more and more popular as a good place to live. Import is not new to Voorhout as early as 1839 the census showed that 45% of the inhabitants were from other surrounding places..   

Text Emiel van der Hoeven

Translated by Jean Hoogerdijk-Shaw