Rodenbach, Pieter Jacob

Rodenbach, Pieter Jacob
   Pieter Rodenbach was born in Roeselare, West Flanders, on 28 June 1794. During the Napoleonic Wars, he joined the Imperial Guard and served in the Russian campaign. After 1815, he enlisted in the Dutch army. After Waterloo, he returned to Roeselare and ran the family brewery while becoming an outspoken opponent of Dutch rule.
   During the opening events of the Belgian Revolution, Rodenbach departed for Brussels together with a small group of armed men. He was probably present at the Théâtre royal de la Monnaie on 25 August 1830. A fervent nationalist, he became a member and then vice-chairman of the patriot club Réunion patriotique centrale de Bruxelles. Rodenbach supported the creation of a volunteer corps to defend Brussels, and he received a commission from revolutionary leaders to organize a group of armed men to contribute to the city's defenses. Under the provisional government, Rodenbach was commissioned a colonel in the cavalry and charged with organizing a company of riflemen. Following independence, he was appointed by King Leopold I as military commander for the capital. His conduct was called into question in 1833 when he was accused by Petrus Simon, a carriage maker, of failure to pay debts, and his wages were garnished by order of the minister of war. During the riots of 1834 he took part in the suppression of pro-Dutch Orangist demonstrations. In recognition of his service to the country he was appointed quartermaster for the military headquarters in Brussels in February 1839, but the post was abolished in June of that year. Rodenbach died in Saint-Josse-ten-Noode on 20 January 1848.

Historical Dictionary of Brussels. .

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