Collectie Brands - museums

The special collection of Jans Brands

For more than 65 years Jans Brands (1932-2019) specialised in collecting anything and everything. His house on the Heerenstreek in the village of Nieuw-Dordrecht was bursting at the seams. He collected not only books, documents and newspapers, but coins, clothes and curios. You would be amazed at how many things Jans Brands collected, however crazy some of them may seem.

All kinds of stuff

Like a child, Jans Brands saw something special in everyday things. What someone else might throw away, he preserved. At flea markets he bought any books and objects which he found interesting, and at auctions he knew just how to get his hands on unique and valuable items. In this way the collection grew both in size and in value. It includes the rare and ancient Bishop’s register and some valuable prints by the painter Hendrik Nicolaas Werkman (1882-1945).


His house is now the museum Collectie Brands. Thanks to all the stuff which Jans Brands collected, this is a place where you can travel back in time. Back to when peat was still dug in Nieuw-Dordrecht and beyond. The Jans Brands collection is enormous. It includes not only individual items, but also diverse collections of badges, coins, cards, jewellery, colour slides of the old peat colonies, calendars, curios, archaeological finds, clothes, crockery and glassware. In fact far too much to list here.

Het huis van Jans Brands is nu het museum Collectie Brands.
Interior of Jans Brands’ original living room

Public limited companies

The Collectie Brands also tells the story of the public limited companies involved in digging peat in this area. In the second half of the nineteenth century wealthy investors came from near and far to Southeast Drenthe. They bought thousands of hectares of peatland from the local farmers. Many workers came to Drenthe in the hope of earning good money digging turf. The Collectie Brands brings that world to life.

Vele arbeiders komen naar Drenthe in de hoop om in de turf hun brood te verdienen.
Turf cutters
The Bishop’s register of goods
“The inn in the Karpathians” (H.N. Werkman)

Opening times

Tuesday to Friday from 11:00 to 17:00
Saturday and Sunday from 13:00 to 17:00

Contact details

Collectie Brands