Monuments of Curaçao


Wilhelmina Park

The piece of land to the east of Fort Amsterdam was undeveloped longer than two centuries because it had to remain as field of fire of the Fort. After the city walls were demolished in 1861 - 1866, (semi)-public buildings were erected here, like the town hall and the Temple. The building at Wilhelminaplein 2, where now the Department of Justice is housed, dates from this period. In the meantime the building, which originally only had one storey, has been declared a monument.

Wilhelmina Park
On the occasion of the coronation of Queen Wilhelmina in 1898, the ladies' club "Entre Nous" took the initiative to have a park laid out in the still empty square at the time. Wilhelmina Park was inaugurated on 31 August, 1898. In 1933 the ladies' association "Entre Nous" donated a statue of the queen. It is a creation of the Italian sculptor, Pietro Ceccarelli. The queen is represented standing upright in a niche on a tall pedestal. When the park was restructured at the end of the fifties, the statue, which was first facing the east, was turned. The original setup of the park has been altered in the course of the years.

Wilhelmina Square and Hendrik Square
On the occasion of the marriage of Queen Wilhelmina with Prince Hendrik in 1901, the square to the west and to the east of the park was called respectively Wilhelmina and Hendrik. With the increase in motor traffic, the squares were soon used as parking space. In the Hendrik Square there has been a "town gate" since 1989, which150 years after the approval of the building plans, was still realized on the initiative of the urban archeologist Jay Haviser.

The statue of the former Dutch queen Wilhelmina at the park named after her. In the background the renovated Temple can be seen. On Monuments Day, the park was full of activity as can be seen on this picture. Market stands were set-up where all kinds of things were sold.


  Further Reading

Documents and books can be consulted at:


National Geographic,
World Heritage Sites Treasured Places, National Geographic, October 2002, p.58-73.
(Contains a complete list of all World Heritage Sites)

Temminck Groll, C.L., Alphen, W. van,
The Dutch Overseas: Architectural Survey. Mutual heritage of four centuries in three continents, Waanders Publishers, Zwolle, 2002.

Caribbean Region and Netherlands Antilles

Buisseret, D.,
Historic Architecture of the Caribbean, Heinemann, London,1980.

Edwards, J.D.,
The first comparative studies of Caribbean Architecture, De Nieuwe West-Indische Gids, vol. 57, 1983, p.173-200.

Gosner, P.,
Caribbean Georgian. The Great and Small houses of the West Indies, Washington 1982. (p.200-214 deal with Curaçao, Aruba and Bonaire)

Hooff, H. van (ed),
The Cultural Heritage of the Caribbean and the World Heritage Convention, Edition CTHS, Paris, 2000.

Gasparini, G.,
Paraguana. Tradiciones y cambios en el habitat de una region venezolana, Armitano, Caracas, 1985.


Buddingh’, B.R.,
Van Punt en Snoa: Ontstaan en groei van Willemstad Curaçao vanaf 1634, De Willemstad tussen 1700 en 1732 en de bouwgeschiedenis van de synagoge Mikve Israel-Emanuel 1700-1732, Aldus Publishers, ’s Hertogenbosch, 1994.
(On the coming into being and growth of Fortified Willemstad and the building history of the Mikve Israel-Emanuel synagogue 1700-1732. –with brief English summary).

Coomans, H.E., M.A Newton, M. Coomans Eustatia (ed.),
Building up the future from the past, De Walburg Pers / UNA Publication 34, 1990.

Dienst Ruimtelijke Ontwikkeling en Volkshuisvesting,
Het beschermde monument, Curaçao, maart 1997.
(Practical guide on monuments published by the Island Government for monument owners and everyone involved in monuments).

Discover the Spirit of Historic Curaçao. Walking Tours and City Map, Old City Productions, Curaçao, revised 1990.

Gill, R.G.,
Een Eeuw Architectuur op Curaçao. De architectuur en de stedenbouw van de 20ste eeuw op Curaçao, Stichting het Curaçaos Museum, Curaçao, 1999 and 2000.
(One Century of Architecture on Curaçao. The architecture and planning of the 20th century on Curaçao. – with English summaries of chapters)

Hartog, J.,
Curaçao. Van kolonie tot autonomie, 2 vol., De Wit, Aruba, 1961.
(Curaçao. From colony to autonomy – comprehensive work on the history of Curaçao)

Huijgers, D., Ezechiëls, L.,
Landhuizen van Curaçao en Bonaire, Amsterdam, 1991.
(The Country Estates of Curaçao and Bonaire. – A colourful account of the islands’ plantation heritage)

Jonkhout-Gehlen, G.,
Monumenten hersteld. Gerestaureerde monumenten met medewerking van de Stichting Monumntenfonds Curaçao 1994-1998, Vol.1, Stichting Monumentenfonds c, 2003.
( Monuments restored with the assistance of The Monuments Fund, period 1994 -1998)

Newton, M.A.,
Architectuur en bouwwijze van het Curaçaose landhuis, Delft, 1990. (The Architecture and Building of the Country Estates of Curaçao. – thorough study on the plantation houses of Curaçao)

Ozinga, M.D.,
De Monumenten van Curaçao in Woord en Beeld, Stichting Monumentenzorg Curaçao, Curaçao / ’s Gravenhage, 1959.
(First and standard work on the monuments of Curaçao, English summaries of chapters, richly illustrated)

Patrimonio Kultural,
Historic Area of Willemstad Inner City and Harbour, ICAW, Curaçao, 1999 nr.6. (Edition on World Heritage)

Plan di Monumento 2000+, Dienst Ruimtelijke Ontwikkeling en Volkshuisvesting / Monumentenfonds Curaçao, Curaçao, 2001.

Pool, J. de,
Del Curazao que se va, Santiago de Chile, 1935.
(Translated in Dutch Zo was Curaçao in: Antilliaanse Cahiers, jrg.4, 1961, nr.1-4)

Pruneti Winkel, P.,
Scharloo. A 19th century district of Willemstad, Curaçao: historical architecture and its background, Edizione Poligrafico Fiorentino, Florence, 1987 (With Dutch and Spanish summaries)

Renkema, W.E.,
Het Curaçaose plantagebedrijf in de 19e eeuw, / Zutphen, 1981.
(The Curaçao plantation in the 19th century - with English summary)

Temminck Groll, C.L., W.A van Alphen, R.G. Gill, R. Apell,
Curaçao. Willemstad A City of Monuments, SDU-Gary Schwartz, The Hague, 1990.





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