Photograph shows Swastika flag flying at the head office of Royal Dutch Petroleum, 30 Carel van Bylandtlaan , The Hague, (From Image Database Hague Municipal)
By John Donovan
Printed below is a rough translation of an article in a Dutch newspaper published on 28 December 1936 reporting a donation to Germany by Sir Henri Deterding (founder of the Royal Dutch Shell Group). The donation was in the form of Dutch food products worth millions of dollars. This was in a period when the Nazis were building up their military might.
We would be grateful if any of our Dutch visitors could kindly improve the translation. The original article is also displayed.
The Nation: State and literary newspaper: 12-28-1936
Sir Henri Deterding and Dutch agriculture
Purchase for Germany
Following reports in the press, Sir Henri Deterding, concerned with the difficulties, which Dutch agriculture is in and mindful of food shortages in Germany has decided outside the Netherlands German-clearing to, donate funds amounting to some millions of dollars available for the purchase of Dutch agricultural products which will go to Germany.
The Dutch government has cooperated to the extent that the necessary authorizations for the execution of these operations, an additional exports to Germany signifies will be provided.
Obviously, the size of the amount to be reported nothing positive.
1936 photo of Shell House in Berlin
The Scotsman: £1,100,000 Gift to Germany FOR FOOD PURCHASE: 28 December 1936 (Contains confirmation of the report of the gift)
The Manchester Guardian: £1,000,000 TO BUT FOOD: Helping Germany: SIR H. DETERDING PROVIDES MONEY: Tuesday 29 December 1936
£1,000.000 TO BUY FOOD
SIR H. DETERDING PROVIDES MONEY
The report is published in the official Nazi newspaper “Angriff,” under the headline “Deterding Plans Gigantic Gift of Foodstuff for the “Winter Help.”
SAN ANTONIO EXPRESS: DUTCH SHELL HEAD TO BUY DUTCH FARM PRODUCTS FOR GERMANY: Wednesday 30 December 1936
DUTCH SHELL HEAD TO BUY DUTCH FARM PRODUCTS FOR GERMANY
The rise of a new agrarian party in the Netherlands, dominated by Sir Henri Deterding, may result from the oil magnates large-scale purchases of Dutch farm products for Germany, officials here said today.
Another result may be preferential treatment for Sir Henris oil interests in a grateful Germany, these authorities indicated.
Sir Henri, chairman of the Royal Dutch Petroleum Company, a Hollander recently married to a German woman, yesterday announced he was making available 10,000,000 guilders (about $5,400,000) to buy products of Dutch farms which have had a hard time finding markets- for shipment to Germany, where shortage of foodstuffs is a serious problem.
The Argus (Melbourne) Wednesday 30 December 1936 Page 1
With the object of assisting Dutch farmers, Sir Henri Deterding has given £1,000,000 for the purchase of farm products for export to Germany.