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About Schagen

b2ap3_thumbnail_Coat_of_arms_of_Schagen_20130922-174043_1.pngSchagen has been mentioned in various texts from around 975. One of them was a population count that found that 43 people were living there. Schagen was also mentioned in documents as Scagha from around 989. At this time Schagen was a center of artificial dwelling hills. Perhaps the name refers to Scagha to its location above land water: it could mean "elevated point". Some time later, there is a coastline near Schagen. When the sea retreated again at the end of the 13th century the places in the region grew. The land around Schagen was especially fertile, so it grew and remained the main town in the area.




Schagen is located 15 kilometers north of Alkmaar and about 30 kilometers southwest of Den Helder, the main entrance to the North Holland Canal to Amsterdam and about 40 minute car ride to Enkhuizen. Schagen is situated in the centre of all kinds of nice places and near the beaches of Schoorl, Sint Maarten, Bergen and Callantsoog (nude beach). Great to ride around with bikes, motor bikes on the small dikes surrounding the town. Schagen itself is an active commercial town, always creating fairs and markets in the weekends and standard market day on Thursday. See The Village of Dirkshorn, home to Atol Solutions.


Ringsteken 2012

Some History

William VI granted in 1415 city rights to the town. In 1427 Philip the Good of Burgundy loaned Schagen to his uncle William of Bronckhorst, one of the seven illegal children of Albrecht of Bavaria, and to Maria van Bronckhorst. Schagen became a fief with some regional rights in addition to its city rights, including some control over the small towns around Schagen. William ordered the castle in which he lived from 1440. In 1460 the church of Schagen, dedicated to St. Christopher, was consecrated. In 1463 Schagen received the right to hold a cattle market and became a trading town for a wider region. From 1603 an annual horse market was held in Schagen, upon authorization by the States of Holland and Westfriesland. As it is still held todate.

At the beginning of the Golden Age Schagen underwent very little growth, unlike other cities in the region: Alkmaar, Enkhuizen,Medemblik, and Hoorn. Later in the Golden Age the city benefited from the increased prosperity, but never to the degree these other cities enjoyed. Even after the Golden Age growth was limited. Partly due to the reclamation of the surrounding area, Schagen could flourish economically again in the 19th century. In particular, the cattle market played an important role. When in 1865 the railroad between Alkmaar and Den Helder came into use, the market and home industries flourished. Schagen had about 2060 inhabitants at this time. During the 20th century prosperity decreased slowly. Especially after the Second World there was a sharp decline in the agricultural sector. As Schagen did not only depended on agriculture, the decline was less than in surrounding rural communities.

Around 1960 Schagen started to flourish again, though population was still below 5,000. The seventies were a large boom for Schagen. In the early nineties, the growth gradually diminished but Schagen remained relatively strong compared to neighboring nuclei and municipalities. From 2005 to 2007, Schagen resident Johan Huibers built a replica of Noah's Ark in Schagen. Johan's Ark was opened to the public in April 2007 and later towed between various port cities in the Netherlands. In 2007 Schagen proper had about 19,000 inhabitants.


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Sunday, 24 September 2023