Belgium

Geel
Vase planted by Isabelle Jacobs and Elisabeth Joret, April 20, 2014

“This vase  was placed in a public park right behind the hotel Roosendaelhof which is very close to the center of the city.  This park is apparently a dangerous place to be in the evening and people have been assaulted there, I have heard.   Also drug usage.  On the journey to planting the vase there, we – my mom and I – saw some drunk people, but also people playing soccer and even a rabbit.

The hotel  Roosendaelhof is named after a farm once located there in the possession of the abbey of Sint – Rozendaal Mechlin. Presumably the farm buildings were totally destroyed during the Eighty Years’ War (1568-1648 ) . On the plot, in 1642 listed as vacant , a priest named Servatius of Santvliet established in 1645-1647 a moated rectory (i.e. a rectory around which is a small canal) with a carriage house and a gatehouse . In the 18th century, the Roosendaelhof was the residence of the “hoofddrossaerts” of the Land and the Freedom of Geel.  In a sale announcement of 1764, the residence is described as ” a clean large house of Pleasance , adapted to the latest fashion, surrounded by water, including a barn, horse stables, a “remise”,  a back house, a washing place, and a garden inside and outside, in Geel named:  “the old Rectory … ” . In the 19th century, the Roosendaelhof came into the possession of the family of public notary Pauli and in 1883 of the Verbruggen family, who adapted the building in 1893 to include the extra construction of a wing ; probably at the same time the park was redeveloped, retaining the older trees . It was restored in 1978-1980.”