Give us your bicycle or die- The story of the Bicycles in WWII in the Netherlands.

History of Sorts

30.-stalen-ros-met-houten-bandenThe Dutch are known for their love of bicycles, for most Dutch people it is the first choice of means of transport.

Needless to say that the bicycle did play an important role in WWII. There is a long running joke about the Germans giving back dutch bikes, this comes from WWII, The German occupiers demanded all Men’s bikes to be handed over to the Germans. In July 1942 additionally to the demand of the confiscation of bikes, all Jews were also forbidden to even ride a bike.

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Some exemptions were made to some groups who were allowed to keep their bikes, often they would be people working with the Germans or people working on a farm. A pamphlet was distributed  in Amsterdam in relation to those exemptions.

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As the end of the war approached the Germans stole a great number of bikes either to escape to Germany or to…

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