Laurentius Nicolaas Deckers

Laurentius Nicolaas Deckers (14 February 1883 – 1 January 1978) was a Dutch politician and diplomat of the defunct Roman Catholic State Party (RKSP) and later co-founder of the Catholic People's Party (KVP) now merged into the Christian Democratic Appeal (CDA) party and agronomist.

Laurentius Nicolaas Deckers
Laurentius Nicolaas Deckers.jpg
Laurentius Nicolaas Deckers in 1933
Member of the Council of State
In office
1 April 1946 – 1 March 1958
Vice PresidentFrans Beelaerts
van Blokland
(1946–1956)
Bram Rutgers (1956–1958)
Parliamentary leader in the
House of Representatives
In office
22 December 1945 – 1 April 1946
Preceded byOffice established
Succeeded byFrans Teulings
Parliamentary groupCatholic People's Party
Chairman of the
Catholic People's Party
In office
22 December 1945 – 1 April 1946
LeaderCarl Romme
Preceded byOffice established
Succeeded byPiet Witteman
Chairman of the Roman
Catholic State Party
In office
1 September 1941 – 22 December 1945
LeaderHimself
Preceded byTimotheus Verschuur
Succeeded byOffice discontinued
Leader of the Roman
Catholic State Party
In office
11 November 1937 – 22 December 1945
Deputy
See list
Preceded byPiet Aalberse Sr.
Succeeded byOffice discontinued
Parliamentary leader in the
House of Representatives
In office
11 November 1937 – 22 December 1945
Preceded byJosef van Schaik
Succeeded byOffice discontinued
Parliamentary groupRoman Catholic
State Party
Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries
In office
2 September 1935 – 24 June 1937
Prime MinisterHendrikus Colijn
Preceded byHenri Gelissen
as Minister of Economic Affairs
Succeeded byMax Steenberghe
Minister of Defence
In office
10 August 1929 – 2 September 1935
Prime MinisterCharles Ruijs de
Beerenbrouck
(1929–1933)
Hendrikus Colijn (1933–1935)
Preceded byJohan Lambooij
Succeeded byHendrikus Colijn
Member of the House of Representatives
In office
8 June 1937 – 1 April 1946
In office
9 May 1933 – 26 May 1933
In office
17 September 1918 – 12 August 1929
Parliamentary groupCatholic People's Party
(1945–1946)
Roman Catholic
State Party

(1918–1945)
Personal details
Born
Laurentius Nicolaas Deckers

(1883-02-14)14 February 1883
Heeze, Netherlands
Died1 January 1978(1978-01-01) (aged 94)
The Hague, Netherlands
NationalityDutch
Political partyCatholic People's Party
(from 1945)
Other political
affiliations
Roman Catholic
State Party
(1926–1945)
General League of
Roman Catholic
Caucuses
(1904–1926)
Spouse(s)
Petronella van Dijck
(m. 1907; died 1951)
Alma materCatholic University of Leuven
(Bachelor of Science in Agriculture, Master of Science in Engineering, Doctor of Philosophy)
Leiden University
(Bachelor of Laws, Master of Laws)
OccupationPolitician · Diplomat · civil servant · Agronomist · Jurist · Researcher · Businessman · Corporate director · Nonprofit director · Trade association executive · professor

Deckers was elected as a Member of the House of Representatives after the election of 1918, taking office on 17 September 1918. After the election of 1929 Deckers was appointed as Minister of Defence in the Cabinet Ruijs de Beerenbrouck III, taking office on 10 August 1929. After the election of 1933 Deckers returned as a Member of the House of Representatives, taking office on 9 May 1933. Following the cabinet formation of 1933 Deckers continued as Minister of Defence in the Cabinet Colijn II, taking office on 26 May 1933. The Cabinet Colijn II fell on 23 July 1935 and continued to serve in a demissionary capacity until the cabinet formation of 1935 when it was replaced by Cabinet Colijn III with Deckers remaining as Minister of Defence, taking office on 31 July 1935. Deckers was appointed as Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries after the Ministry of Economic Affairs was split into the Ministry of Commerce, Industry and Shipping and the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, taking office on 2 September 1935. After the election of 1937 Deckers again returned as a Member of the House of Representatives, taking office on 8 June 1937. Following the cabinet formation of 1937 Deckers was not giving a cabinet post in the new cabinet, the Cabinet Colijn III was replaced by the Cabinet Colijn IV on 24 June 1937 and he continued to serve in the House of Representatives as a frontbencher. Deckers was selected as Parliamentary leader of the Roman Catholic State Party in the House of Representatives following the election of Josef van Schaik as a Speaker of the House of Representatives and was also selected as Leader of the Roman Catholic State Party following the retirement of Piet Aalberse Sr., taking office on 11 November 1937.

On 10 May 1940 Nazi Germany invaded the Netherlands and the government fled to London to escape the German occupation. During World War II Deckers continued to serve as a Member of the House of Representatives but in reality the De facto political influence of the House of Representatives was marginalized. On 9 October 1940 Deckers was arrested and detained in Buchenwald concentration camp and was released on 7 November 1940. Deckers also served retroactively as Chairman of the Roman Catholic State Party from 1 September 1941 after Timotheus Verschuur was detained in Sachsenhausen concentration camp and later died in captivity on 17 April 1945. In May 1942 Deckers was arrested and detained again in Buchenwald concentration camp and was released in August 1942. Following the end of World War II Queen Wilhelmina ordered a Recall of Parliament and Deckers remained a Member of the House of Representatives, taking office on 20 November 1945. On 22 December 1945 the Roman Catholic State Party was renamed as the Catholic People's Party, Deckers was one of the co-founders and became one of the unofficial Deputy Leader of the Catholic People's Party and was selected as the first Parliamentary leader of the Catholic People's Party in the House of Representatives.

In March 1946 Deckers was nominated as Member of the Council of State, he resigned as Parliamentary leader and a Member of the House of Representatives the day he was installed as a Member of the Council of State, serving from 1 April 1946 until 1 March 1958.

DecorationsEdit

Honours
Ribbon bar Honour Country Date Comment
  Grand Officer of the Order of the Crown Belgium 10 February 1935
  Grand Officer of the Order of Orange-Nassau Netherlands 30 July 1937 Elevated from Officer (1 May 1928)
  Grand Cross of the Order of the Oak Crown Luxembourg 18 June 1946
  Knight Commander with Star of the
Order of the Holy Sepulchre
Holy See 12 August 1948
  Grand Officer of the Legion of Honour France 5 February 1950
  Grand Cross of the Order pro Merito Melitensi Sovereign Military Order of Malta 1 January 1953
  Knight Grand Cross of the Order of St. Gregory the Great Holy See 8 March 1957
  Commander of the Order of the Netherlands Lion Netherlands 30 April 1959 Elevated from Knight (1 April 1946)

ReferencesEdit

External linksEdit

Official
Party political offices
Preceded by
Josef van Schaik
Leader of the Roman
Catholic State Party

1937–1945
Succeeded by
Office discontinued
Parliamentary leader of the
Roman Catholic State Party
in the House of Representatives

1937–1945
Preceded by
Timotheus Verschuur
Chairman of the Roman
Catholic State Party

1941–1945
Preceded by
Office established
Parliamentary leader of the
Catholic People's Party in the
House of Representatives

1945–1946
Succeeded by
Frans Teulings
Political offices
Preceded by
Johan Lambooij
Minister of Defence
1929–1935
Succeeded by
Hendrikus Colijn
Preceded by
Henri Gelissen
as Minister of Economic Affairs
Minister of Agriculture
and Fisheries

1935–1937
Succeeded by
Max Steenberghe
Records
Preceded by
Charles Welter
Oldest living former
cabinet member

28 March 1972 – 1 January 1978
Succeeded by
Willem Drees