January 28th, 2013 is the 100th anniversary of the death of Johan Adriaan Feith, the founder of the Groninger Museum. His sudden demise - at the age of 54 - came as a shock to all of culture- and history-loving Groningen. Between 1894 and 1907, he had realised the construction of the Groninger Museum – now known as the old museum. He was the leading force behind the museum’s exhibits and acquisitions. Moreover, as Provincial Archivist he had made major contributions to our understanding of the region’s history.
Feith went to great lengths to popularise history: he initiated the publication of the annual Groninger Volksalmanak, wrote the first edition of the Borgenboek (‘Book of Castles’) and was one of the compilers of the Grafschriftenboek (‘Book of Epitaphs’). He published many scholarly studies and was a member of many learned societies. The city of Groningen showed its esteem by naming the J.A. Feithstraat after him. Feith’s achievements live on in today’s Groninger Museum, whose art and artefact collections still includes many of his acquisitions.
Frederik Engel Jeltsema
(Uithuizen 1870 – 1971 Den Haag)
Portraitbust of Jhr. Mr. J.A. Feith (1858 – 1913)