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De Rijp

De Rijp is a village and former island in the Dutch province of North Holland. It is a part of the municipality of Alkmaar, and lies about 10 km northwest of Purmerend, between the Schermer and the Beemster polders. Before the poldering of the lakes surrounding it, De Rijp was famous for its herring industry. Today it is known for its characteristic rijksmonuments, which include some of the oldest wooden houses of North Holland.De Rijp was a separate municipality until 1970, when it merged with Graft.The statistical area "De Rijp", which also can include the surrounding countryside, has a population of around 4020.HistoryBefore the lakes on either side of De Rijp were pumped dry, De Rijp was a port town with merchant ships that travelled the high seas on trade routes. The town had a medium-sized herring fleet, and searched for whales with larger ships. Rijper vessels travelled regularly to Spitsbergen. After the success of the polders near Alkmaar and Egmond, plans were formed to make polders of the other lakes in North Holland, including the ones on both sides of De Rijp. In 1605 De Rijp split off from Graft and became a relief center for the effort to pump the Beemster dry. The project was run by the architect-engineer Jan Leeghwater, who had been born in De Rijp and even designed the Town hall.
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