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Origin of the museum

For Tegelen, the River Maas was not only important as a waterway. The river deposited clay here for tens of thousands of years. From the beginning of the Common Era, clay has served as raw material for potters and small roof tile and brick making businesses. The name of the town is derived from the Roman word for roof tile: Tegula. For hundreds of years, potters worked according to what is called the Rhineland tradition. They made all sorts of pots to be used in the kitchen, but also tobacco jars and stoves. In addition, large quantities of tiles were made.

The rise of the large-scale and high-quality ceramics industry in Maastricht about 1830, however, was the final blow for many Tegelen businesses. The result was that in the middle of the 19th century there was hardly any pottery activity left here. But not for long.

Circa 1860, the clay industry received a new impulse. A few traders did see the good of the industrial manufacture of bricks and roof tiles and, within a relatively short time, some thirty new ceramics businesses were established.

In 1935, George Goossens, co-director of the Tegelen coarse-ceramics company Russel-Tiglia, organised an exhibition of old Tegelen ceramic handiwork that was still in the possession of the Tegelen population. This collection remained together and formed the basis of the collection at the Pottery Museum, our present Keramiekcentrum Tiendschuur (Tithe Barn Ceramics Centre). In 1936, George Goossens opened a workshop in his factory where Tegelen ceramics was brought back to life. Artists, including Corneille, Karel Appel and Anton Rooskens, were inspired in Tegelen and these artistic visitors in turn inspired the Tegelen artisans.

History of the building
Keramiekcentrum Tiendschuur Tegelen is located on the beautiful Holtmühle Castle estate (17th century). As one of the few in the Netherlands, this castle complex has fully survived with tithe barn, castle gates, gardens, ponds and land. It is nearly 700 years old and, after an extensive restoration in 1993, a hotel-restaurant was established in the castle. The lord of the castle’s tenants owed the lord one tenth of their harvest. This was stored at the tithe barn (18th century). This fine, renovated tithe barn now houses the Keramiekcentrum Tiendschuur Tegelen and the Keramisch Atelier (Ceramics Workshop).

The Gardens
Château de Holtmühle (Holtmühle Castle) is surrounded by beautiful castle gardens in different styles. They show a number of garden styles. Visitors can admire the lands and ponds and a small English park – all freely accessible. With its windings paths and little bridges, this park adds an extra dimension to the romantic surroundings.
The herb garden can be visited from Mondays to Fridays, between 9:00 and 13:00.
It can also be visited by appointment outside these times. (herb garden web site)