Memorial Needle Apeldoorn

Exactly on the border of the Crown Domain and the land of municipality of Apeldoorn, as an extension of the main sight axis of Palace Het Loo, you will find this memorial needle. The needle in Apeldoorn symbolizes the connection between the city of Apeldoorn and the Royal House. The citizens of Apeldoorn had held a collection to pay for the memorial needle. In 1901, they donated the needle to Queen Wilhelmina and her husband Prince Hendrik.



Year built



Gerrit de Zeeuw

Sculptor bronze

Pieter Puijpe


Municipality of Apeldoorn

Special feature

Symbol of connection between the city of Apeldoorn and the Royal Family

Owned by Monumentenbezit

Since 2016

Wheelchair accessible


Visitor information

The monument is free to visit. The needle stands near the Loo Palace.

Visiting address:

Zwolseweg 1, 7315 GG Apeldoorn

The needle was placed to express the close relationship between the municipality of Apeldoorn and the royal family, especially Queen Wilhelmina. That plan was conceived in 1900 by Mayor H.P.J. Tutein Nolthenius (1861-1930), shortly after the announcement of the engagement between Wilhelmina (1880-1962) and the German Duke Henry of Mecklenburg-Schwerin (1876-1934).

The proposal was to present the couple with a monument on behalf of the citizens of Apeldoorn. At the same time, the gift was a tribute to her parents, King William III (1817-1890) and Queen Emma of Waldeck-Pyrmont (1858-1934). William III had previously been married to Sophie of Wurtemberg (1818-1877). Three sons were born to this marriage: William (1840-1879), Maurice (1843-1850) and Alexander (1851-1884). After Sophie's death in 1877, William III remarried Emma, who was from Germany, on January 7, 1879.

The couple had a daughter together, Wilhelmina (1880-1962), the later queen. When William III died in November 1890, all three children from his first marriage had already died. The 10-year-old Wilhelmina became the heir apparent. Because she was a minor, mother Emma was appointed regent on Dec. 8, 1890. Emma prepared her daughter for the Kingship. Together they visited the eleven provinces of our country (Flevoland did not yet exist). This increased the popularity of the Orange dynasty. Furthermore, Emma did a lot of charity work, which earned her the nickname "Queen of Mercy" and "Queen Mother. When Wilhelmina turned eighteen, she took over from her mother. Emma had then become the first woman to be queen regent for eight years. She died of pneumonia on March 20, 1934.

The bronze plaque on the pedestal, with the en-profile portraits of King William III and Queen Emma, is a design by sculptor Pieter Puijpe (1874-1942). Puijpe and Mayor Tutein Nolthenius knew each other from when Tutein Nolthenius was mayor of Flushing. Tutein Nolthenius saw that Puijpe was talented and arranged for him to take classes at art schools. When Tutein Nolthenius was appointed mayor of Apeldoorn, he arranged for Puijpe to get an appointment at the Crafts School there. In the 1930s, Wilhelmina herself visited the artist and even took some drawing lessons from him.

Puijpe made the bronze coat of arms of the royal family on the other side of the pedestal. Puijpe also made the bronze bust of King Willem I on the Raadhuisplein in Apeldoorn, also designed by Gerrit de Zeeuw. The other plaque, attached to the monument, bears the text 'Founded by the Inhabitants of the Municipality of Apeldoorn as a grateful tribute to the august parents of Her Majesty Queen Wilhelmina.'

The memorial needle was erected, with the permission of Queen Wilhelmina, on the border of the Crown Domain and the Municipality of Apeldoorn. You will find the needle in the Palace Park, where it has been given an important place. It stands at the end of the main sight axis of Palace Het Loo, opposite the former intendants' residence from 1829-1830 ("The Little Loo"). Earlier, in the seventeenth century, a ceremonial gate stood here as an entrance to the Palace Park.

The structure consists of a granite obelisk that stands on a tall square pedestal. The natural stone memorial pole is seventeen meters high and was designed by the municipal architect of Apeldoorn, Gerrit de Zeeuw (1861-1938). The monument was built by Apeldoorn contractor and friend of Prince Hendrik, Chris Wegerif (1859-1920). To pay for the memorial post, a collection was held among the Apeldoorn population in 1900. The collection raised over 3500 guilders.

In the 1950s it turned out that the plot on which the needle stood had no owner, it came into the possession of the State. Since 2016, Monument Property has owned the memorial needle. In 2019, we reconstructed the eight gilded cast iron crowns that were originally on the stone posts and put them back on the memorial.

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