Anne Veenstra-Posthumus, locally known as Anne P., has been and still is a household name in Rottevalle. The cottage at Brouwersgreft 5 is a monument and was Anne P.'s property for more than thirty years. After her death in 2013 we bought it in 2014 and renovated it to what it is today.
(Anne Veenstra-Posthumus, born in Langewyk in Rottevalle on 1 November 1927, married to Roelof Veenstra and died 27 August 2013)
Anne P., a household name in Rottevalle. Being in a secondary school class with four other Anne's, she was called Anne P. The name stuck throughout her life. Whenever visitors from outside Rottevalle came to see her, they asked the villagers where Anne P. lived, unaware of her real name.
Although she never lived in the cottage on Brouwersgrêft, it was in her possession for more than thirty years. She used it as a studio/work room. Anne P. loved to do handicraft and with that word we are undoubtedly selling her short. She would use a range of techniques, from flower drying to macramé and making greeting cards to wall decorations and flower arrangements. Many inhabitants of Rottevalle went to her 'lessons' to be taught various techniques. For more than thirty years Anne P was associated with the denominational village school. This school offered so-called 'optional courses' to children from the second grade and up. One of this optional courses was always: handicraft at Anne P.'s. Not every pupil will have chosen this course because of their love for handicraft… No, you had to go to that special cottage on Brouwersgrêft, thát was the reason. And, most important perhaps: Anne P. treated the children halfway the afternoon to liquorice…
We 'knew' Anne P. from the time our children went to school. Suzanne was a regular visitor. Because I took her there, she was only seven at the time, I was able to see inside the mini-cottage. You had to walk through the backdoor, stoop, stoop again and again. From every doorpost red ribbons were dangling, to warn people. As I remember, we had to stoop through many narrow hallways to reach the living room. And there she was, Anne P., behind a large table in front of the mantelpiece. According to Suzanne it was on this mantelpiece that the liquorice bowl used to be. Anne P. was very outspoken. She talked about all kinds of topics with the little ones, but would not allow things to get to heavy. She was genuinely interested in each and every child and these meetings kept her spirit young. One day Suzanne came home and told us that Anne P. didn't have a breast anymore. "She's got something else there now", end of story, that was enough for her.
In 2012, as secretary of Rottevalle Village Committee, Yvette had a few conversations with Anne P. She had not been feeling well for a long time and the cottage on Brouwersgrêft became too much of a burden. She wanted to sell it, but only on her terms: the cottage was to remain intact and she would like it to become a museum. She referred to Theme park De Spitkeet (see caption Art and Culture). She found it very important that the present generation were to understand in what conditions people had been living in the past. She also had an incredible amount of personal belongings she wanted to give to this good cause. Those were wonderful conversations. However, when Yvette, after six months, had to tell hear that the Rottevalle Village Committee unfortunately were not going to buy the cottage, she was very disappointed in the Committee.
Honest and straightforward, outspoken, optimistic and cheerful. Anne P. became a widow when she was only in her thirties and was left with three small children (seven, five and two years old). She had known hard times, but always held on.
In Rottevalle this cottage is regarded as Anne P.'s cottage. Although it has not become a museum, we do think she would have loved the way we have kept the cottage as authentic as possible. That’s why we have decided to attach her name to this holiday cottage: 't Stee fan Anne P. (Anne P.'s cottage).