Local Heart, Global Soul

July 4, 2011

A Statuesque end to my Peace Palace Tour…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Continuing my posts from my archive stash, of the area around the Vredespaleis (Peace Palace) in the Hague.

The Carnegielaan loops it’s way around three sides of the Peace Palace so I followed  it around to where it meets the Groot Hertoginnelaan and on my way I encounter three more statues.

I will show you them in order of appearance … and once again they are all on very busy stretches of road so probably many people have passed by in haste to be somewhere but never actually stopped and lingered long enough to see the details.

The First statue is very much a counterpart in style to the Van Karnebeek Bron of yesterday’s post.

The panel on the left side translates into English as:

“Freedom is the natural atmosphere of spiritual and economic life, Freedom  limited by responsibility and Justice”.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The middle section depicts the portrait of Mr. H.C. Dresselhuys  (1870 – 1926).

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Dresselhuys was a Dutch politician, statesman and was involved in a political party that advocated resolution to conflicts by peaceful means.  It therefore becomes clear why this monument  to him has been placed on one side of the Peace Palace grounds.

The panel on the right side translates into English as:

“To bring Peace, warless or labour peace means to reconcile: to build up and to give of your own free will, Good is only borne from Peace”.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

The Second statue is just a short distance away on the same side of the street. It’s far more classical in design and depicts portraits of  the Maris brothers.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Jacob Maris (1837 –  1899) and  Willem Maris (1844 –  1910)  are two of three artist brothers who belonged to a group of artists  known as  “The Hague School” of painters.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Jacob became famous for his ability to capture the famous “dutch light” in the brooding skies of his landscape paintings.

Willem Maris followed in his older brother’s footsteps but was also very well known for his animal paintings, and later for his dutch landscapes that exhibited more colour and freer style of brush strokes than his brother Jacob.

The classical female figure writes the text on the monument, which translates into English as:

“Artists do justice to the land of Rembrandt”

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Finally, some distance down the road is a Third and more whimsical statue of a lady with a parasol.

When I took the photo, I  looked around but found no plaque to identify her, but Himself recognised her immediately because she is Eline Vere, a famous character from the novels of the dutch writer Louis Couperus who wrote and rose to fame in The Hague in the 2nd half of the 19 century.  The character of Eline was melancholy socialite from The Hague who was depicted in a natural and realistic way that defied writing convention of the time.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Thus concludes my tour around the Vredespaleis (Peace Palace) for the moment, but once I am mobile again these photos have inspired me to put a visit inside the Peace Palace high on my to-do list.  Peace is always worth visiting far more than once, right?

July 3, 2011

Remembering the Foundation of Peace…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

This monument  called the ” Van Karnebeek Bron” (Van Karnebeek Spring)is named for Mr. A.P.C. van Karnebeek  (Jr)(1836-1925) who was the  chairman of the Carnegie Foundation.

For his work in founding of the Peace Palace, van Karnebeek and the board of the foundation were honoured in 1913 with this  monument that also commemorates the opening of the Peace Palace on the 28th of August 1913.

The fountain was designed by Willem C.Brouwer (1877-1933) and stands on the edge of the Zorgvliet Park on the corner of the Scheveningseweg and the Carnegielaan in The Hague.

The text on the monument outlines the names of the Board, the architects, the boards of the building committee of the Peace Palace and the committee of the Carnegie Foundation.

(information from wikipedia, text translated by Kiwidutch from Dutch http://nl.wikipedia.org/wiki/Van_Karnebeek_bron)

Considering that this fountain is right on top of the famous Haagse Beek, it would appear that the “spring” in the title  may not be quite correct. Surely it means that it takes water from the Haagse Beek … after all the  Haagse Beek emerges above ground in the grounds of the Peace Palace directly across the road as my last two photos illustrate.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

July 1, 2011

The Mosaic of Peace…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Today’s post is another taken from my archive  of photos taken last summer.

These are arty, sculptural,  functional seats that stand outside of the Vredespaleis  (Peace Palace) gates.

Obviously the theme is “Peace” and for me at least, mosaic is a perfect choice of medium, after all, are we not wishing and striving for Peace amongst all styles and colourful cultures of humanity?

And are we not all bonded together on this planet,  looking  to fit all our various shapes together in harmony?

I know all is far from perfect in the world, but I do think that for all but a very few selfish people, that Peace is something  most of us would all love to see in our world in our lifetime.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

June 30, 2011

Andrew Carnegie, Vredespaleis, and a Place of Peace…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Not too far away from the Anna Paulonastraat of yesterday’s post, is the Carnegieplain.

I took these photos last summer one late afternoon when the sun was really not at a favourable angle at all, I didn’t go inside because there was a special event on so wasn’t open to the public right at that moment.

Therefore I took some  outside shots of the gates and building but really wanted to in this post about the person for whom this is named.

The  official website of the Vredespaleis  (Peace Palace)  http://www.vredespaleis.nl/default.asp?tl=0  tells the story in detail so I will just lift out some text and advise you that the rest of the website is well worth a visit and a read for further information.

Once I am fully mobile again this is a place that is high on my wish-list to visit and to learn more about.  Sadly I don’t, and never remotely will, possess even a minuscule percentage of  his wealth, but I dohope to emulate Andrew Carnegie’s philanthropic ideals whenever, and however I can in my lifetime.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Andrew Carnegie (1835 – 1919) was born Dunfermline, Scotland,the eldest son of William Carnegie, a linen weaver and local leader of the Chartists (a group that sought to improve the conditions of working class life in Great Britain), and Margaret Carnegie, daughter of Thomas Morrison, a shoemaker and political and social reformer.

When he was thirteen, the family moved to the United States, where he worked his way up from telegraph messenger to successful entrepreneur.

He had received little formal schooling and credited his education to his love of books. As a boy, he took advantage of the generosity of a person in his village who opened his library to local working boys.

Later, wishing others to have access to similar opportunities, since he believed books to be the key to knowledge and open mind, Carnegie gave gifts to communities in the United States to establish free public libraries.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)


At the age of eighteen, he started working for the railroads. But Carnegie was never quite reconciled to working for other people.

He was still employed by the railroad when he invested in a new company being set up to manufacture railway sleeping cars.

In 1873, the first of his steel works started, taking advantage of the profit potential he saw in the Bessemer converter, the first practical method of converting iron ore into steel.

It was a unique company, founded on the philosophy of Carnegie that “it shall be the rule for the working man to be partner with capital… as an owner of the shares and so far interested in the success of his effort combined with that of the man of affairs.”

The steel company was very successful and Carnegie’s steel empire expanded over time. Later on, he invested his profits in oil fields, managing to profit first from the development of the train and afterwards from the transition from coal to oil as fuel.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)


Around 1900, one year after the Hague Peace Conference, Carnegie, aged sixty-five, decided to retire from business. In 1901, he concluded a historical transaction by selling his business to the banker J. Piermont Morgan for $480 million.

He then started working on what he considered “a far more difficult and serious” task than accumulating money, namely “spending it wisely”.

Carnegie’s personal motto was that “he who dies rich, dies in shame”.

According to him, wealth ought to be administered for the best good of the community. So he systematically donated money in the way he thought would most benefit the greatest number of people.

This self-made man believed that a lack of education was the cause of a great number of problems in society and was convinced that education of the public could solve many of these problems. As a result, he spent most of his fortune on funding educational institutions, establishing no fewer than 4,000 libraries and financing many church organs.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)


But above all, Carnegie was a man of peace.

After the mediation of his friend Andrew White, Carnegie agreed to finance the construction of a world peace centre in The Hague with an amount of $1.5 million on condition that the centre would not just house the Permanent Court of Arbitration but also a legal library that would meet the highest possible standards.

In 1904, a special foundation was set up to manage the funds and the preparations for the construction. The Carnegie Foundation is still owner and manager of the grounds and buildings at the Peace Palace in The Hague.

By making use of the principles of “scientific philanthropy,” which he had outlined in his book,’ The Gospel of Wealth’, Carnegie proceeded to give away $350 million during the next 18 years.

By the time of his death in 1919, he had created 22 different Carnegie Institutions and trusts, all with the single purpose of benefiting humankind.

My Dutch Oma (Grandmother) was born in The Hague in 1897 and lived to be almost 100 years of age. I remember her telling me that she played as a child on the nearby Scheveningseweg as the Vredespaleis was being built and she and her parents went and looked when it was newly opened (1913).


(photograph © Kiwidutch)(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

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