Schiedam ([sxiˈdɑm] (listen)) is a city and municipality in the west of the Netherlands. It located in the Rotterdam–The Hague metropolitan area, west of Rotterdam, east of Vlaardingen, and south of Delft. In the south it is connected with the village of Pernis by the Beneluxtunnel.
Old city hall of Schiedam
Location in South Holland
|• Body||Municipal council|
|• Mayor||Cor Lamers (CDA)|
|• Total||19.86 km2 (7.67 sq mi)|
|• Land||18.02 km2 (6.96 sq mi)|
|• Water||1.84 km2 (0.71 sq mi)|
|Elevation||−1 m (−3 ft)|
|• Density||4,324/km2 (11,200/sq mi)|
|Time zone||UTC+1 (CET)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC+2 (CEST)|
The city is known for its historical center with canals, and for having the tallest windmills in the world. Schiedam is also well known for the distilleries and malthouses and production of jenever (gin) − such as the internationally renowned Ketel One − so much so that in French and English the word schiedam (usually without a capital s-) refers to the town's Holland gin. This was the town's main industry during the early Industrial Revolution in the 18th and 19th century, a dark period to which it owed its former nickname "Zwart Nazareth" or "Black Nazareth". Furthermore, the city is known for Saint Lidwina, one of the most famous Dutch saints (her relics are located in the Liduina Basilica in Schiedam).
Schiedam was founded in Rotterdam; around the year 1230 the river Schie was dammed by the Lord of Wassenaer and the Amtlord Dirk Bokel of the Amt Mathenesse, this to protect the existing polderland against the seawater from the North Sea. In 1247, Lady Adelaide (Aleida) of Holland married John I, Count of Hainaut. As dowry she received from him the eastern part of the dam together with the adjacent polder. The dam attracted many trade activities because goods for and from the hinterland (Delft, and further away Leiden and Haarlem) had to be transhipped. A small town developed swiftly around the dam and its activities. In the year 1275 Schiedam received city rights from Lady Adelaide, this in her capacity as sister of William II, the reigning Count of Holland and becoming King of the Romans. She ordered the building of a castle near the Schie, which is known till today as the "Castle Mathenesse" (Dutch: "Huis te Riviere" or "Slot Mathenesse"). Remnants of a donjon, which were once part of the castle, are still visible today in the centre of Schiedam and near the city office.
As a young settlement Schiedam soon got competition from surrounding towns and cities: in 1340, Rotterdam and Delft also were allowed to establish a connection between the Schie and the Meuse. From the 15th century on the city flourished as a place of pilgrimage on the devotion around Saint Lidwina, one of the most famous Dutch saints who lived her life in Schiedam. The city gained subsequently significance by fishing for herring. In 1428 a great city fire swept through Schiedam, thereby destroying large parts of the then wooden city .
The 18th century was Schiedam's Golden Age, when the gin industry flourished. The standstill drink imports from France made the emergence of the Schiedamse distillery possible. From dozens of distilleries Schiedam jenever was exported throughout the world. The gin industry gave the city its nickname 'Black Nazareth'. This industry is now largely gone. Five windmills in the town, called De Noord, Walvisch, Drie Koornbloemen, Nieuwe Palmboom and Vrijheid − are the highest traditional style windmills in the world because they had to stick out above the high warehouses, and many storehouses are relics of this past. In one of the former factories at the Lange Haven the National Jenever Museum is established.
On 10 August 1856 the first major train accident in the Netherlands happened near the Schiedam railway station, causing 3 deaths. On 4 May 1976 the Schiedam train disaster also took place near the station which caused 24 deaths.
At the end of the 19th and throughout the 20th century, the shipbuilding industry was booming in Schiedam, with the existence of large companies like Wilton-Fijenoord and others. In 1941, the ancient municipalities Kethel en Spaland were merged with Schiedam which made large expansions of the city possible with residential areas in the north. At the end of the 20th century the shipbuilding industry largely disappeared and nowadays Schiedam is mainly a commuter town being part of the Rotterdam metropolitan area.
Schiedam exists of nine districts: Centrum ('Center'), Oost ('East'), Gorzen ('South'), West ('West'), Nieuwland, Groenoord, Kethel, Woudhoek and Spaland/Sveaparken.
- Stedelijk Museum Schiedam
- Jenevermuseum (Schiedam)
- Het Borrelmuseum (in 't Spul on Hoogstraat)
- De Nieuwe Palmboom
- Nationaal Coöperatie Museum Schiedam / 't Winkeltje
- Artgallery 't Walvisch
- The old city hall (Oude stadhuis (Schiedam))
- The canals of Schiedam
- The Wheat Exchange (De Korenbeurs)
- Church of Saint John (Grote of Sint-Janskerk)
- The ruins of the castle Huis te Riviere
- Saint Lidwina basilica
- De Plantage (a park)
- The Porters' Guild House (Zakkendragershuisje (Schiedam))
- Het Proveniershuis (housing elderly people)
- The historical windmills of Schiedam. This includes the tallest windmill in the world which is used as a restaurant.
The most popular sports in Schiedam are soccer and field hockey.The town used to have a professional soccer team named svv (Schiedamse voetbal vereniging), but after financial problems the club was declared bankrupt. Cricket is more popular in Schiedam than in most other Dutch cities.
High schools in Schiedam:
- Davey Hoogstad (born 1988) − chess player
- Maarten Biesheuvel (born 1939) − writer
- Luc Castaignos (born 1992) − footballer
- Rob Cordemans (born 1974) − baseball player
- Ali Elkhattabi (born 1977) − footballer
- Jos van Emden (born 1985) − cyclist
- Rinus Gosens (1920–2008) − footballer
- Cornelius Haga (1578–1654) − the first ambassador of the Dutch Republic to the Ottoman Empire
- Herman Heinsbroek (born 1951) − entrepreneur and former Dutch Minister of Economic Affairs
- Erik Jazet (born 1971) − hockey player and coach
- Danny Koevermans (born 1978) − footballer
- Saint Lidwina (1380–1433) − Catholic saint
- Engelbertus Lucas Jr. (1785–1870) − famous Dutch naval officer
- Robert Maaskant (born 1969) − footballer
- Wim Meuldijk (1922–2007) − writer, illustrator, and screenwriter, e.g. creator of Pipo de Clown
- Arnold van Mill (1921–1996) − opera singer
- Piet Paaltjens (pen name of Francois Haverschmidt) (1835–1894) − Protestant clergyman and romantic author
- Theresia van der Pant (1924–2013) − sculptor
- Rien Poortvliet (1932–1995) − sketcher and painter
- Adam Pynacker (1622–1673) − Dutch Golden Age painter
- Jan van Riebeeck (1619–1677) − colonial administrator and founder of Cape Town, South Africa.
- Gökhan Saki (born 1983) − kickboxer
- Piet van Stuivenberg (1901–1988) − sculptor, painter, lithographer, and graphic artist
- Andre van Troost (born 1972) − cricketer
- Luuk van Troost (born 1969) − cricketer
- Pieter van Vollenhoven (born 1939) − husband of Princess Margriet of the Netherlands
- Pauline van der Wildt (born 1944) − swimmer
- Elizabeth Witmer (born 1946) − member of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario, Canada and provincial cabinet minister
- John de Wolf (born 1962) − footballer
Twin towns – Sister citiesEdit
Schiedam is twinned with:
All these contacts were under review after a decision of the municipal council on 4 February 2010 
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- "Wijken - Gemeente Schiedam". Retrieved 16 November 2016.
- "Stedelijk Museum Schiedam". Stedelijk Museum Schiedam.
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- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2007-10-06. Retrieved 2006-07-06.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
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- "Nationale molen- en gemalendag - Alles over molens". www.nationalemolenengemalendag.nl.
- Yorick de Vries (30 September 2012). "Schiedam 2012 - DOUBLE LIPDUB WORLD RECORD!!! - OLD BETA VERSION" – via YouTube.
- Artipico. "Galerie Artipico Schiedam - DIET WIEGMAN CLEMENS BRIELS - JUDITH WIERSEMA". www.artipico.com.
- "Hail Holland, world cricket's unlikely lads". Retrieved 16 November 2016.
- "Neath Port Talbot Twin Towns". Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council. Archived from the original on 2013-08-22. Retrieved 2013-08-22.
- "Decision municipal council (in Dutch)".