29 November 2020

In the capital of Suriname, Paramaribo, there were two tremendous fires. In 1821 (400 houses destroyed) and 1832 (50 houses destroyed). Especially the one of 1821 (January 21), where also 800 warehouses were destroyed, had an enormous impact. As by a wonder, only four persons died. By King’s decree of April 16, a special commission had been installed to help the suffering people in Paramaribo.

On April 18, the Governor of the province of Zuid-Holland had send out a printed matter to the Magistrates in the province, in this case to the one in Alkemade. Alkemade is not a name of a place, but a former name of a community with the administrative centre in Roelofarendsveen.

The Governor, is asking for a collection in the community to alleviate the needs of the people in Paramaribo, which are suffering after the catastrophe. It is very remarkable that the Governor is speaking of: ongelukkig gewordene Surinaamsche kolonisten. This means, the collected money was solely meant to be for the (Dutch) colonists…

René Hillesum

René Hillesum

Collector of postal history of Finland and postmarks of Imperial Saint Petersburg.

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