Dirk Veerman is a son of my 3rd ggrandparents Gijsbert Veerman and Jannetje Bronkhorst, numbers 34 and 35 in my ahnentafel. Earlier this summer I wrote about him:
Dirk Veerman, born on 10 September 1839 in Huizen, died on 11 May 1870 in Bloemendaal. Dirk never married. Dirk died in Bloemendaal, far from his home in Huizen - I'll get back to that in a future post.
According to his death certificate, Dirk died on 11 May 1870 in Bloemendaal, in a house called Meerenberg. Dirk was only 30 when he died, still single, and, strangely, jobless.
So, why did he die so far from home?
I had no trouble finding the house called Meerenberg in Bloemendaal. It's actually called Meer en Berg (which means Lake and Mountain), and was a lunatic asylum at the time! Now, I should not jump to conclusions - the fact that Dirk died at an asylum does not prove that he was an inmate, but I strongly suspects he was. I still need to check the archives of Meer en Berg to prove it, though.
The main building of Meer en Berg asylum still exists. It was a lunatic asylum in the 19th century, and became a psychiatric hospital in the 20th century. It closed its doors only a few years ago. I tried to visit but was a bit surprised (shocked even) by what I found. The monumental building seems to be in bad shape. It badly needs maintenance and repairs. The building is surrounded by fences and barbed wire, with warning signs for asbestos. I did not try to enter, of course, but I took a couple of photos from the other side of the fence. A few of them I share here.