1400 - 1890 From the beginning to Wezen
The Wezenspyk polder exists from before the Reformation, then referred to as “Beguines spyk”. The polder was owned by the beguines that lived in a monastery with a chapel, close to the Green City on Texel, the center of Den Burg. Their income came from the proceeds of donated property. After the Reformation, they moved to the town of Leiden; were they recalled because they led a too free and easy life on the island of Texel? For some time the small monastery was left empty and after a while the decision was made to give the premises a new function; to serve as housing for the orphans on the island of Texel. During the French time more than fifty orphans lived in the former monastery. They lived here in poverty. However, a housekeeping book that was found years later, revealed that white bread was provided to sick children and to the German mowers that came to Texel and the Wezenspyk ranch to mow. (research by the Rev. G. vd Kooi)
1890 - 1956 Stolp farm Wezenspyk
The widow of Peter Janzn Witte (around 1890) ordered that the “Stolp farm” was moved from Oosterend to a piece of land known as “the high cow grounds” in the Wezenspyk polder. Her son Cornelis (known as Piet Keesie) Witte was the first occupant of this farm at the new location. After the death of his first wife, Keesie Piet moved to Oosterend and rented out the farm. Marius Witte, (born 1928), son of Keesie Piet and his second wife Grietje Barhorst (daughter of Cornelis Maria Johanszn Barhorst – first name Gerrit, born 1857 in Eierland and died in 1899 in PH-Polder and Immetje Maas Vredelust) came to live on the Wezenspyk farm in 1956. He had a livestock of cows and sheep. Around the farm lay a property of 13 hectares.
1956 - 2000 From cattle farm to cheese farm
The oldest son of Marius, Anton (born 1959), joined the family company in 1979. A year later he built a new free stall barn, where the cows obtained more space, being able to move around. Until then, during the winter the cows stood in the barn next to each other with their head to the outer wall, in a so called Frisian barn. During the so called lambing period the eighty sheep stayed in a shed behind the barn. Anton’s brother Marcel (born 1961) came in the company and it was then when Anton started making cheese. The cheese was laid to mature in the barn, where they also had a shop. The other half of the property was turned into a house (official residence).
In the first year Anton only made cheese from milk of their own cows. In Friesland, at the Dairy Academy in Oenkerk, he had learned the profession of cheese making. After the famous sheep cheese maker Commander (located between Den Burg and Oudeschild on Texel) stopped making the little authentic sheep cheese, this changed. A few sheep farmers on Texel were willing to milk their sheep for Anton. Thus in 1982, in addition to cheese from cow milk, small sheep cheese was made at Wezenspyk as well, extending the portfolio of cheese made and sold.
2000 - 2012 Further development of the cheese farm
From 2000 Wezenspyk was wholly owned by Anton and Janine, as brother Marcel decided to continue at another farm. A few years earlier father Marius had decided to hand over the baton to the next generation. The company developed and in 2007 a milking robot was added to the company. The farm became “a landmark on Texel”, having the second robot on the island. Thus 70 cows were milked in a high-tech manner . Expansion was soon to follow; the second milking robot to be purchased in 2009, in light of more cows being held on the farm. The free stall barn proved to be too small to meet the expansion. Through breeding cows became bigger and as a result the free space became too small. At the same time there was the ambition to build a new cheese factory on the property.
2012 - 2017 Milk Partnership
A “milk-partnership” was established with the family Rutten of “the Eendracht ranch”. The dairy cows of Wezenspyk moved to a large new barn in the “Eendracht polder”, in the north of Texel. On Wezenspyk, the cheese factory was extensively renovated and modernized. Cow milk is now collected by a milk tank and brought to Wezenspyk. In the modern cheese factory, numerous types of authentic and traditional cheese is made from their own cows. Sheep and goat milk is collected in a tank from fellow farmers on Texel and used as the primary ingredients to make these type of cheese at Wezenspyk.
2017 - Present Sheep Dairy and Sheep-Museum
In 2017 is the cow stable converted into sheep stable and from the spring of 2018 250 sheep get milked daily.
On 23 June 2018 has Skéép and Lantskap Texel opened the Sheep-Museum.. The Museum is behind Wezenspyk. Acces to the Museum is free.