CV & shows



The synagogue in Borne, our family association Berith Salom,

Martin Spanjaard, and me


My mother always told us that our ancestors were rags-jews (Dutch: 'vodden-joden'), and she was right. Here is the story.


About 1800 a joung jewish lad of approximately 17 years, Salomon Jacob Spanjaard (1783-1861) arrived from Germany in the Netherlands. In the archives of the Consistory of Israelites at Zwolle he is described as "Salomon Spanjaard, vendor of second hand clothes". In 1811 he married Sara David van Gelder (1793-1882), daughter of David van Gelder a "junk vendor". The couple did have 15 children of which 9 remained alive. Salomon Jacob worked very hard and he climbed from merchant of second-hand clothes and rags to textile manufacturer.


Salomon Jacob Spanjaard himself designed the Borne synagogue and in 1842 he finished the building with subsidy of king William II. In 1861 Salomon Jacob and Sara celebrated their fiftieth wedding anniversary with their children and their 50 grandchildren. On this occasion our family association Berith Salom (covenant of Salomon) was founded. Consequently in May 2011 our family association Berith Salom will celebrate its 150 year anniversary.


The descendants of Salomon Jacob became textile barons: they owned the Spanjaard textile factories in Borne (brands: 'Kenmore-shirts', Cinderella-sheets' and 'Teddy-diapers'). My great-grandfather Salomon Jacob Spanjaard (1858-1925) was one of these textile manufacturers. His son Martin Spanjaard (Borne 1892-Auschwitz 1942), my grandfather, became a well-known musical conductor at Arnhem.


K.A. Citroen: The Spanjaard Family - A survey of the descendants of Salomon Jacob Spanjaard (1783-1861) and Sara David van Gelder (1793-1882). Second, revised and augmented edition. Published by the Family Association 'Berith Salom' Borne (Holland) 1981.

E.J. Fischer: Fabriqueurs en Fabrikanten - Twente, Borne en de katoennijverheid 1800-1930. Matrijs - Utrecht - 1983.

J.J. Grootenboer: Het Verhaal van de Bornse Synagoge. Stichting De Bornse Synagoge - 1996.

M. Spanjaard & P. Denekamp: Verweven met Twente - De joodse fabrikantenfamilie Spanjaard (1800 - 2000). Walburg Pers - Zutphen - 2011.