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Vestingmuseum Oudeschans

Coordinates: 53°08′19″N 7°08′27″E / 53.1385°N 7.1407°E / 53.1385; 7.1407
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Vestingmuseum Oudeschans
Light yellow brick building with dark red shutters and with a canon in front of it
Museum building in 2014
Vestingmuseum Oudeschans is located in Groningen (province)
Vestingmuseum Oudeschans
Location in Groningen in the Netherlands
Established12 September 1987 (1987-09-12)[2]
LocationMolenweg 6[1]
Oudeschans, Netherlands
Coordinates53°08′19″N 7°08′27″E / 53.1385°N 7.1407°E / 53.1385; 7.1407
TypeLocal museum
History museum
Visitors1,195 (2015)[3]
Public transit accessVoorstraat
Bus line: 811[4]

Vestingmuseum Oudeschans (Dutch pronunciation: [ˈvɛstɪŋmyˌzeːjʏm ˈʌudəˌsxɑns]; English: Oudeschans Fortification Museum) is a local museum in the village of Oudeschans in the Netherlands. The museum shows the history of the 16th-century fortification of Oudeschans and has a collection of archaeological findings.

The museum opened on 12 September 1987. The building was renovated in 2009. The museum lost its structural municipal subsidy in 2010. The museum staff consists of volunteers only. With 1,195 visitors in 2015, it is one of the lesser-visited museums in Groningen.


The museum is located at the Molenweg in the village Oudeschans in the municipality Bellingwedde in the east of the province Groningen near the Dutch–German border.

The Bellingwolderschans (Sconce of Bellingwolde) was a fortification created in 1593 by William Louis, Count of Nassau-Dillenburg during the Eighty Years' War. It was renamed Oudeschans (Old Sconce) after the construction of the nearby Nieuweschans (New Sconce) in 1628. Oudeschans was used for military purposes until 1814. In the 1980s, the fortification was partially reconstructed.[5] In 1991, the fortification became a state protected village area (Dutch: beschermd dorpsgezicht).[6]


The museum was opened on 12 September 1987.[2]

In 2009, the museum building underwent a major renovation.[7]


The museum shows the history of the fortification of Oudeschans and of other fortifications in the area.[8][7]

On display in the museum are archaeological findings from the 17th and 18th century, such as pottery, household objects, shoes, weapons, and ammunition.[8][7] There are information panels and a video presentation in Dutch and German.[8]

The museum also has temporary exhibitions.[8]


Year Visitors Year Visitors
2003 3,000[9] 2010 1,500[10]
2004 1,500[9] 2011 750[10]
2005 1,500[9] 2012 800[10]
2006 N/A[9] 2013 1,200[3]
2007 1,500[9] 2014 1,100[3]
2008 1,000[10] 2015 1,195[3]
2009 N/A[10]

The museum staff and board consist of only volunteers.[11] The museum receives an annual subsidy of around 1000 euro of the municipality.[12]

Vestingmuseum Oudeschans is one of the lesser-visited museums in the province of Groningen. In the years 2010 to 2015, the museum had 750 to 1,500 visitors per year.[3][9][10]

The museum is a member of Museumhuis Groningen (Groningen Museum House),[13] an umbrella organization for museums and heritage institutions in the province of Groningen.[14]


  1. ^ (in Dutch) Contact, Stichting Vesting Oudeschans. Retrieved on 7 February 2014.
  2. ^ a b (in Dutch) "Museum is vol, maar Ko graaft door", Nieuwsblad van het Noorden, 1995. Retrieved 14 May 2016.
  3. ^ a b c d e (in Dutch) Bezoekcijfers erfgoedinstellingen Groningen Archived 21 August 2016 at the Wayback Machine, Stichting Erfgoedpartners, 2016. Retrieved 14 May 2016.
  4. ^ (in Dutch) Bushalte Voorstraat, Oudeschans, 9292. Retrieved on 24 December 2014.
  5. ^ (in Dutch) De vesting, Stichting Vesting Oudeschans. Retrieved on 7 February 2014.
  6. ^ (in Dutch) Overzicht van aangewezen en in procedure zijnde stads- en dorpsgezichten, Rijksdienst voor het Cultureel Erfgoed, 2013. Retrieved on 8 February 2014.
  7. ^ a b c (in Dutch) Vestingmuseum Oudeschans weer geopend, Marketing Groningen, 2009. Retrieved on 7 February 2014.
  8. ^ a b c d (in Dutch) Vestingmuseum, Stichting Vesting Oudeschans. Retrieved on 7 February 2014.
  9. ^ a b c d e f (in Dutch) Intermuseaal Extra Februari 2008, Museumhuis Groningen, 2008. Retrieved on 3 September 2013.
  10. ^ a b c d e f (in Dutch) Bezoekcijfers musea aangesloten bij Museumhuis Groningen, Museumhuis Groningen. Retrieved on 7 February 2014.
  11. ^ (in Dutch) Stichting Vesting Oudeschans, Stichting Vesting Oudeschans. Retrieved on 11 June 2014.
  12. ^ "Vesting krijgt toch weer geld", Dagblad van het Noorden, 2010. Retrieved 22 July 2016.
  13. ^ (in Dutch) Leden Museumhuis, Museumhuis Groningen. Retrieved on 7 February 2014.
  14. ^ (in Dutch) Over ons Museumhuis Groningen. Retrieved on 7 February 2014.

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