Distribution Office, 1944Original size 2364 × 3358 px
L.0. Contacten 1940-1944
Rayon 8, District Z 18
Distributie-contacten: Willem Freyssen
Büro Annie Cremers
In the course of 1943 and the spring of 1944, these contacts had succeeded in branching off between 500 and 800 sheets of ration stamps and cards for the L.O. during each distribution period.
Margin: Van Hinsbergen, the director, was in the picture.
For the district, these cards were absolutely necessary because our people in hiding depended on such illegally acquired documents to feed themselves. The purchase of food on the black market was only possible for the financially strong.
Meanwhile, the rationing office was under the direction of an N.S.B. man, Bosch J.
Hand-written in the margin: Ramaekers and Bosch
Our contact team feared a review at any moment and that they would not manage to correct the deficits in time, which would inevitably lead to their severe punishment.
To free them from this desperate situation, the L.O. acted as follows:
A printer in Amsterdam executed printing work which was difficult to do for the illegality itself. He was ready to falsify the ration cards for our distribution area. With these ration cards our contact persons would be able to correct their deficits.
Footnote: Ration cards of my wife and Mrs. Jaspers from Klimmen were forwarded to the printer.
While we were still awaiting the execution of our order to this printer, the Germans found out that they did illegal work and closed their shop.
Note by the translator: The Dutch resistants called themselves “illegal”!
After consultation with the district management, we decided to attack the distribution office and to establish such a chaos that it would be impossible to control any cards.
The K.P. (knokploeg = fighting team) from Heerlen was found willing to do the job, namely “Kees” (Piet Driessen). He asked for a plan: the ground plan of the building, an exact plan of the front as well as of the back side, the type of guarding and the place where the stock of ration cards was located. The latter was the most difficult point for the entire execution of the attack, for the stamps and cards were stored in a fireproof safe with a heavy door.
Every evening, the key was brought away with the same ceremony: to the station of the Rijkspolitie (gendarmerie) on Emmaberg, where permanently a policeman was present, and there into the safe. For this transport the N.S.B. director put the key into a large envelope, on which were put five wax seals and the signature of the director. Two armed policemen came every evening to get this envelope personally from the director.
The next day the envelope was returned to the distribution office with the same escort.