Lambertus van Erp, mayor of Rosmalen

Since 1996, Rosmalen has been part of the municipality of ‘s-Hertogenbosch. Before that time, Rosmalen was an independent municipality. Since 1813, when the position of mayor was introduced in the new Kingdom of the Netherlands, there have been several mayors. Lambertus van Erp was the third in a series of twelve mayors of Rosmalen.

Lambertus van Erp 1805-1880, mayor of Rosmalen

Schoolmaster Lambertus van Erp

Lambertus van Erp was born on December 31, 1805 in Boxtel. In 1828 he moved to Hintham, at that time the municipality of Rosmalen, to become a teacher. The profession of schoolmaster immediately made Lambertus one of the notables in the small village community.

New career

When the post of municipal collector in Rosmalen became vacant in 1844, Lambertus applied for it and was accepted. Two years later, the position of municipal secretary was added. The administrative burdens were not yet that great in the then small Rosmalen, so that both functions could still be perfectly combined.

Mayor of Rosmalen

With the establishment of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in 1813, the position of mayor was created. From that moment on, the office in Rosmalen was held by Willem Siepkens, then by his son Hendrik Siepkens. In 1852 the post became available, and Lambertus van Erp, now experienced in the municipal civil service, became the new mayor of Rosmalen.

The former town hall of Rosmalen, demolished decades ago

Mayor of Nuland

When Lambertus was mayor of Rosmalen for six years, the mayoral post of neighboring Nuland also became available. Apparently it was quite possible to hold the same office in several municipalities, because Lambertus van Erp also became mayor of Nuland in 1858. By the way, it would not be the first time that the mayoralty of Nuland was combined with the mayoralty of either Rosmalen or the municipality on the other side of Nuland: Geffen. Since 2015, Nuland has also been part of ‘s-Hertogenbosch, and Geffen has since then been part of the municipality of Oss.

Piet van Erp

Lambertus van Erp had a number of children, one son was a baker in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, a daughter married the Rosmalen miller, and son Piet van Erp followed in dad’s footsteps by focusing on official duties. Piet initially assisted at the Rosmalen town hall, later he became a notary in Schaijk. Lambertus and Piet maintained an extensive correspondence. Thanks to the fact that Piet was interested in family matters and kept his father’s letters, we can now uncover all kinds of facts that Lambertus shared with his son Piet on a private or communal level.


Rosmalen is located between the river basins of the Maas and the Aa. Because the dikes of these rivers were not yet at their current heights, these rivers could overflow their banks during times of high water. With a bit of bad luck, this happened at the same time, causing Rosmalen and the surrounding villages to experience flooding. That always meant a lot of misery for the village community. Not only a lot of damage, but also drownings, diseases, crop failures, etc.

He wrote to his son Piet during the flood of March 18, 1876:

Dear son!
The brick road between the Coudewater road broke through last night, flooding Rosmalen, Nuland and Berlicum. If we still had the heath, there would still be a chance to turn around. It looks miserable how I will get through, I don’t know
Greetings from all Your father LvErp

During the flood of 1878 he wrote:

With the water it looks miserable here. The polder and all the lowlands within are full. There is not a single piece of arable land dry at Hintham and the situation on the lower side of the Maas is even worse. Where should it go? If the water does not fall soon, I fear that the polder will remain partially under water again and will produce spoiled grass. No pasture is dry, the road to Gewande is still completely covered.


Anniversary gift with the text: L van Erp, 25th anniversary of your mayoralty, 23 August 1852 – 1877


In Van Erp’s time, it was still possible for administrative jobs to remain with one person for a longer period of time. This is how it happened that Lambertus van Erp was allowed to celebrate his 25th anniversary as mayor in 1877. That was worth celebrating! The municipality presented the jubilee with a beautiful armchair, which was placed in the town hall. The seat is now owned by the Heemkundekring Rosmalen. The family gave the jubilee a beautiful cup and saucer, with a print. Other times!
The Provinciale Noordbrabantsche and ‘s-Hertogenbosche Courant stated the following about the anniversary:

Already early in the morning, the national tricolor flew from some houses and many asked each other about the reason for this so unexpected raising of the flag. And yet it was the day on which Mr L. van Erp was appointed mayor of Rosmalen for twenty-five years. Soon it was learned in the morning that the jubilee had gone elsewhere and that they had therefore not been given the opportunity to offer him his congratulations on this rare celebration; However, not discouraged, four young gentlemen delivered a beautiful armchair to the home of the jubilee as a souvenir of this joyful celebration, at the request of the municipal council and some residents. That Zed. Being able to make pleasant use of it for many years to come is certainly the wish of many.


Mayor of Erpstraat, Rosmalen

Passing away

Lambertus van Erp combined the mayoralties of Rosmalen and Nuland until his death. Van Erp died on January 2, 1880 at the age of 74 in the presence of his son Piet. Lambertus was succeeded in Rosmalen and Nuland by Lambertus Nieuwenhuizen.

Mayor of Erpstraat

In the center of Rosmalen there is still a street named after Mayor Van Erp. Other important and prominent residents of Rosmalen, who knew each other well during Van Erp’s life, such as Pastor Coolen and Doctor Anderegg , have been given streets in the same neighborhood. And there is something appropriate about that!

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