Court of the kaiser

The emperor still had an imposing, but seriously shrunken court in Huis Doorn. The staff was mixed Dutch and German.

In addition to his wing adjutant Sigurd von Ilsemann, several other adjutants worked there, including Ulrich von Sell, Kaiser Wilhelm II's asset manager.


The staff had different tasks, but also appears to have an important social function. The emperor did not want to be alone much and sought company in his daily activities such as chopping wood and talking about politics in the evening.


The emperor was demanding of his staff, and at the evening meeting, according to Von Ilsemann's notes, almost all the gentlemen on duty 'fought again and again against dozing off'. In addition, the adjutants kept an eye on the home front and went through cut-out newspaper articles with the emperor every day.

Believe in return

An important aspect of the emperor's time in the Netherlands is the way in which the emperor continues to believe in his own return and imperial title. The staff reacts differently to this and Von Ilsemann is surprised several times at the way many people talk to the emperor on this subject.

Tea break while working in the park

Wilhelm II while chopping wood in the park



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