Koog aan de Zaan (Noord-Holland, Netherlands)
Koog aan de Zaan (Koog), a town about 10 miles (16 km) north of Amsterdam (coordinates: 52° 27′ 20″ N, 4° 48′ 0″ E), in the Zaanstad municipality, with a Mennonite congregation, the official name of which is Koog-Zaandijk (Zaandijk being a town adjacent to Koog aan de Zaan). Because sources are lacking, it is impossible to state when the congregation of Koog-Zaandijk was founded, but at an early time Anabaptists were already found here. About 1600 the Mennonites comprised the great majority of the inhabitants, both of Zaandijk and Koog. In this time most of them belonged to the Waterlander branch, some were Flemish, and a few Frisian. None of these groups formed an independent congregation and only a primitive Flemish meetinghouse was found at Koog aan de Zaan. The Waterlanders belonged to the congregation of Westzaan and Oost-Zaandam, the Flemish to the Flemish congregation of West-Zaandam, and the Frisians to the congregation of Zaandam and Westzaan-Zuid. In the course of time most Frisians joined the Flemish group, and both Flemish and Waterlanders obtained meetinghouses at Koog and became independent congregations. A Flemish meetinghouse was rebuilt in 1645. Until 1648 the Flemish Mennonites of Zaandam also used to worship in the Koog meetinghouse, but in 1648 a Flemish meetinghouse was built at Zaandam, and the Koog-Zaandijk group, including that of Wormerveer, became somewhat independent.
A Waterlander meetinghouse was built in 1637 in the northern part of Koog aan de Zaan, and in 1646 the Waterlander group became a fully independent congregation. This Waterlander congregation seems to have been more conservative than Waterlander congregations usually were. About 1673 the preacher Pieter Pietersz was dismissed because he tried to introduce the tradition of “free speaking” (i.e., that lay members also be allowed to deliver addresses) as was usual among the Collegiants. In 1680 the Waterlander and Flemish congregations of Koog-Zaandijk merged. The Flemish meetinghouse was sold and the Waterlander meetinghouse became a home for poor members. A new meetinghouse was erected on the Hoogstraat. This characteristic frame building of 1680 was still in use in the 1950s. It was largely renovated in 1873 and again in 1931. An organ was installed in 1870. The congregation possesses six silver communion cups, which date from the late 17th century, and which were probably given to the congregation when the new meetinghouse was built in 1680. At the time of the merger in 1680, there were 68 members of the Flemish branch and about 200 Waterlanders. The preachers at that time were Symen Aarjans (Adriaansz) and Dirk Simonsz Moeriaen (of the Waterlanders) and Aris Pieters of Zaandijk and Aris Cornelis Caeskoper (of the Flemish).
The united congregation witnessed a period of prosperity. In 1701 the membership numbered 584, the highest number ever reached. An orphanage was built in 1697, and in 1698 Abraham Verduin, who had been trained by Galenus Abrahamsz of Amsterdam, was called to serve the congregation as preacher. He served until about 1752. The congregation was a member both of the Rijper Sociëteit (Waterlander Conference of North Holland) and of the Zonist Conference.
Among the families of Koog-Zaandijk who promoted Mennonitism was the Honig family; members of this family, who founded the large and well-known Honig grocery factories, are still found here as members of the Mennonite congregation.
In the last part of the 18th and the first decades of the 19th century there was a decline both of activity and of membership. The membership decreased in one century by about 200; but in the 19th century there was a considerable growth: 1808, 417; 1833, 470; 1861, 506; 1900, 516. From then a decrease took place, to 399 in 1955. The congregation always was rather well-to-do. In the early 18th century it contributed liberally to the needs of the Mennonites in Prussia (1727-1736 a total of 2,840 guilders). From this time on the congregation was served by the preachers Sjoerd Pietersz van Dokkenburg 1750-1775, his son Pieter van Dokkenburg 1770-1811, Jan Visser 1788-1831, Jan Bruin 1827-?, Jan van Gilse 1834-1837, Christiaan Muller 1838-1868, Jochem Boetje 1868-1872, A. W. Huidekoper 1873-1877, S. Lulofs 1877-1889, P. S. Bakels 1889-1907, J. P. Smidts 1908-1922, J. M. Leendertz 1923-1927, J. E. van Brakel 1928-1945, and E. H. Boer 1946- .
The congregation had an old people’s home called the Johanna Elisabeth Stichting until about 1980. Church activities in the 1950s included ladies’ circle, young members’ association, Sunday school for children, youth group Elfregi.
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|Author(s)||Nanne van der Zijpp|
Cite This Article
Zijpp, Nanne van der. "Koog aan de Zaan (Noord-Holland, Netherlands)." Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. 1957. Web. 13 Dec 2017. http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Koog_aan_de_Zaan_(Noord-Holland,_Netherlands)&oldid=108513.
Zijpp, Nanne van der. (1957). Koog aan de Zaan (Noord-Holland, Netherlands). Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 13 December 2017, from http://gameo.org/index.php?title=Koog_aan_de_Zaan_(Noord-Holland,_Netherlands)&oldid=108513.
Adapted by permission of Herald Press, Harrisonburg, Virginia, from Mennonite Encyclopedia, Vol. 3, pp. 223-224. All rights reserved.
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