Maps de Haan

On January 28th, 1892, the Dutch East Indies government made an important decision to appoint an official officer, the so called ‘Landsarchivaris’ to manage and preserve the Dutch archives for historical writing and science. The date marks the birth of the archival institution as well in charge of the Dutch archive records dating back tot the early 17th century. In time four people were appointed Landsarchivaris between 1894 and 1943. Dr. Frederik de Haan succeeded the first Landsarchivaris Dr. Jacob Anne van der Chijs after his death in 1905 and held the position until 1922. De Haan finished the map collection and the inventory of this collection. This collection is now published here on this website, searchable and indexed.

Frederik De Haan was born in Holland, studied Classical Literature in Utrecht and decided to go to the East Indies in 1892, despite medical conditions that made him ‘unfit for the tropics’. After moving to Batavia in 1895 he started to write in the ‘Tijdschrift Bataviaasch Genootschap’ (TBG). He published many articles about the archives of the 17th and 18th century that were already under the supervision of Landsarchivaris van der Chijs.

De Haan was hired by van der Chijs to make inventories and conduct research in the archives from 1898 to 1902 and continued to write and publish articles. Even though de Haan did not have archival studies as his educational background, he had knowledge of old documents through writing his publications. Immediately after he had been appointed as van der Chijs’ successor, de Haan continued the publication of “Dagh-register gehouden int Casteel Batavia vant passerende daer ter plaatse als over geheel Nederlands-India”. He managed to publish four volumes (1678 – 1681) and in parallel also continued to work on eight volumes on the Preanger. Also he published works on Batavia and the Portuguese Church.

Even though he was a very loyal and dedicated person, it seemed that some considered him a poor Landsarchivaris. There was criticism from the Netherlands that De Haan was more a compiler of historical publications, who only focussed on his own works and neglected his function as the Landsarchivaris. Although de Haan’s works were praiseworthy, his activity in the historical field was obtained through the disparagement of his archivist function. He did not assist the few researchers or the public that visited the Landsarchief in order to gather information, as was stated in his job description. But it seems that the situation in the Netherlands, were the archivist main task was to support the historians in their research, was not similar to that of the Dutch East Indies, were the Landsarchivaris task was more focused on doing research and publish. More criticism focused on the state of conservation and housing of the archives in the East indies and the inability of de Haan to improve that. Last but not least, he was not a very sociable man to work wit hand had a hearing problem. During a leave of de Haan to Holland in 1922 he asked for a honorable discharge at the age of sixty.


The Map Collection

One of the things that de Haan did after being appointed Landsarchivaris is continue the work started by van der Chijs. Some maps were already extracted by van der Chijs from the archival series of so called appendices to the resolutions to make it a separate collection and de Haan proceeded and finished this task. He added an inventory of the map collection to the archives and in the introduction of this inventory he explains how he came about to accomplish this. The original Dutch text of the introduction is shown here as well as the translation.

Dutch Original text

Catalogues der Kaarten verzameling behoorende tot 's Lands Archief te Weltevreden

Toen door ondergeteekende het archief na den dood van Mr. A. van der Chijs werd overgenomen (1 maart 1905) bestaan de kaartenverzameling in eene massa door elkander liggende kaarten van een verschillende opmeetingen, gedeponeered in een kastje met een half dozijn laden.
Wel schijnt de Heer van der Chijs van plan geweest te zijn een catalogus te vervaardigen, althans de kaarten dragen potloodnummers van zijne hand en in zijne kast werd een stapeltje in omslagen gepakte nummerbriefjes aangetroffen, gezamenlijk in een anderen omslag gepakt die tot titel droeg: Inventaris der kaartenverzameling.
De omslagen droegen den titel: Batavia (algem. kaarten) enz., enz. en het was aldus gemakkelijk, met dezen inventaris in de hand te zien welke aangeteekend dat die bekend bij een aangeduide resolutie der Indische Regering. Deze laatste zijn verendelijk uit de bundel bijlagen die resolutie overgenomen; waarin uit die bijlagen niet systematisch doorzoekt zijn, en mij niet bekend weten hoe vele belangrijke kaarten daar in nog scholen, heb ik in maart 1900 de bijlagen stelselmatig doorzocht en alle kaarten er uitgelicht telkens in de bijlagen aanteekening dat dit was geschied en op de kaart zelve waar zij was gevonden.
In het begin van 1906 is vervolgens begonnen van opschikking der kaarten eenvoudig volgens de grootte (wat het zoeken moest vergemakkelijken), met het nummeren enz. Door verkeerde uitvoering van mijne gegeven aanwijzingen zijn in de verschillende portefeuilles de kaarten alleen naar de lengte gerangschikt zonder eenigen mate de breedte in aanmerking te nemen.
Het is waar dat de kaartverzameling, zooals ik die heb geschikt, aan mogelijk kan woorden geband zonder catalogus; daar staat echter tegenover dat met den catalogus alles een spoedig na te slaanen uiterst handig te raadplegen en weer op te bergen, zal zijn; de domste oppasser kan zich in dat laatste niet meer vergissen.
Ad perpetuam rei memoriam heb ik het wenschelijk geacht ter voorlichting meijner opvolgers het bovenstaande te noteeren; zonder dergelijke aanduidingen zal het archief; hen dikwijls voor raadselen plaatsen die niemand meer kan oplossen evenals ik zelf, opschoon ettelijke jaren, met der Heer Van der Chijs hebbende omgegaan en nu en dan wat aangaande archiefsaken vernomen hebbende van zeer vele dingen niet op de hoogte ben gekomen.

6 maret 1906
De Lands Archivaris
De Haan

Translation

Maps Collection Catalogue of the Landsarchief at Weltevreden

When the archive was taken over by the undersigned (ed: de Haan) after the death of Mr. A. van der Chijs (ed: the former archivist of the Dutch East Indies, also known as the ‘Landsarchivaris’) on March 1st, 1905, the map collection was a mass of mixed up maps of different measurements, deposited in a closet with half a dozen drawers.
It seems to have been the intention of mister van der Chijs to create a catalog, as the maps have pencil markings by his hand and in his closet a stack of numbered note papers were found wrapped in a cover, and together in another cover packed with the title: Inventory of the map collection.
The covers bear the title: Batavia (general maps) etc. etc. and it was therefor easy, using this inventory, to see which ones had a note indicating to which resolution of the Indies Government they belong. These maps are taken from the bundles ‘appendices to the resolutions’ and as these bundles were not systematically researched and it was not known to me how many important maps were hidden in there still, I searched through the appendices bundles systemantically in March 1900 and I extracted all maps and made a note in the appendices bundles that I did this and on the map itself were I had found it.
At the beginning of 1906 the ordering of maps started with numbering them according to the maps size (with the idea to simplify the searching). Because of unproper use of the procedure I provided, the maps in the different portfolios are ordered only to their map length, not considering in some way also their width.
It is true that the map collection, in the way that I have ordered them, can be binded without catalogue; but on the other hand with the catalog all is easy to find and to put back again; the most ignorant can make no mistake in the last.
To be remembered always: I have found it necessary to inform the above notes to my successors. Without such references the archive will become a mystery that no one can understand any more including myself, although I have spent years with mister Van der Chijs and have heard about some archival matters every no and then, I have not been able to understand many other.

March 6th 1906
The Landsarchivaris
De Haan

 

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