In 1848, Theodore Hermans (1810-1867) from Kessenich bought a brewery on Oelemarkt 229 (now Oelemarkt 10) in Weert. He reconstructed the brewery to replace his tobacco factory on Maasstraat. He had place to spare, which he used to start trading in foodstuff, tea, coffee and chicory coffee, a popular and cheap alternative to coffee made in the chicory plant on Oelemarkt. The combination was successful, so from 1863, a factory and trading complex arose behind the stately building on Oelemarkt. Hermans even received permission to build his own city gate on Emmasingel for direct access to the complex.
When Theodore died, he was succeeded by his son Hub (Hubertus, 1852-1922). He continued the expansion his father started in his own name: Hubert Hermans, groothandel in koloniale waren and tabak (colonial goods and tobacco wholesaler). In 1887, he enlarged the house and grounds into a complex by purchasing adjacent grounds, connecting the two on the street side with a gate, that would advertise the presence of the company behind the house. In the process, he became chairman of the local chamber of commerce and accepted other honorary functions. Hubert retired in 1918.
Hubert was succeeded by his son Joseph (1890-1925), a lawyer who died early. Jos followed in his father's footsteps in the Weert chamber of commerce. His widow continued to run the company until she re-married with Jos' brother Auguste, who was a doctor with a practice in the house on Oelemarkt. After 1931, the company disappeared in the mist of time. Illustration: Limburger koerier, October 29, 1931. The trading activities were wound up in the 1950s and 60s. The buildings at the back of the house disappeared, but Jos II (son of Auguste) continued the medical practice on Oelemarkt for a while. Only the building on Oelemarkt, the gate and the adjacent building still exist. They are classified as national monuments.
|Hub. Hermans, Weert (HHW)|
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