Sigurd von Ilsemann

Von Ilsemann was an officer during the First World War. In 1918, he was added to the staff of the then emperor and he accompanied him on his flight to the Netherlands. Von Ilsemann remained his adjutant until the emperor’s death in 1941. 

Von Ilsemann remained loyal to the emperor in exile and kept diaries during his stay in the Netherlands. Von Ilsemann describes the life of the emperor, his family and the staff at Huis Doorn.

Diary of the exile period 

Von Ilsemann's diary describes Wilhelm II's entire period of exile, from the end of World War I until the Kaiser's death at the beginning of World War II. 

Portions of the diaries were published in German in the late 1960s and subsequently translated into Dutch. On 11 November 2015, the diaries were reissued in a new Dutch translation. 

The book: 'Sigurd von Ilsemann, Wilhelm II in Nederland 1918-1941', Diary excerpts edited by Jacco Pekelder and Wendy Landewé, is available in the web shop, the museum shop and bookstores. 

Elisabeth Bentinck

Among Von Ilsemann's notes are occasional passages from Elisabeth Bentinck’s diary. 

She is Count Godard of Aldenburg Bentinck’s daughter, who accommodated the emperor and empress in his castle in Amerongen for several years. This is how she got to know Sigurd von Ilsemann, whom she married in 1920. To show her gratitude for their stay in Amerongen castle, the empress presented Elisabeth with her favourite horse Uranus. 

MUSEUM Huis DOORN MAakt wereldgeschiedenis persoonlijk


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