The Raepenhofje on the Palmgracht in Amsterdam was founded in 1648 by Pieter Adriaensz Raep, treasurer of the city of Amsterdam. The property originally had six houses, with a total of 12 downstairs and upstairs dwellings. One house was converted into a regent’s room in 1905.
The foundation Het Raepenhofje aims to preserve the national monument and provide housing for underprivileged women. Originally, these were widows without children and old unmarried women. In addition to free housing, the residents of the hofje received 25 baskets of peat, a forefoot of an ox and a deuvecater (type of currant bread) at Christmas every year.
To maintain order at the hofje, an overseer was appointed and there were regulations. Anyone who did not follow the rules was fined or had to leave the court within a month for serious offences such as theft.
Around 1980, older residents could hardly be found for the simple little houses. It was therefore decided to amend the statutes. To preserve the hofje, young, unmarried women were allowed to occupy the houses. From then on, rent was also paid, a relatively small amount.
The hofje is still inhabited by young women, mostly students. Meanwhile, there are two overseers.
On September 17, 2023, the Raepenhofje Foundation celebrated the 375th anniversary of the Raepenhofje. The first part of the celebration took place on the (filled-in) canal with local residents. The Amsterdam municipality granted the hofje the jubilee medal and chairman Mariëtte Zoetmulder was honoured with a royal decoration.
The festivities then continued at the hofje with (former) residents, board members and those involved in the recent restoration.
The Hurgronje Family Fund made a financial contribution to the lustrum celebration at the request of family member Menko Menalda, secretary of the board of the Foundation.