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De Curacaosche Courant
 
 
 
Curacaosche drukkerij




The history of the printer shop “De Curacaosche Courant” N.V. 
started in the year 1812 founded by a printer William Lee,
a young Schotchman.
The official newspaper “De Curacaosche Courant” dated 13 of December 1862 
published that the young William Lee fled from Venezuela to Curacao due to 
an earthquake that hit Caracas. He could barely save himself with some 
letters and a manual printing press.
It was on the historical date Friday 11th of December 1812 that the first 
newspaper of printer William Lee was published under the name “The Cuaracao 
Gazette and Commercial Advertiser”
Lee hired a room on the third floor of the building at Heerenstreet 20, 
where he kept himself busy with printing the newspaper and some commercial 
printed matters. He lived there till his death in 1823 at the age of 37. 
He was a pioneer, the first printer, publisher and reporter on Curacao.
In January 1814 he was official appointed printer to the King’s Most 
Excellent Majesty. On the 5th of April 1816 he changed the name of the 
official gazette into “ De Curacaosche Courant”.
On the 21st of April 1822 he married Margarita Wilhelmina Engelbron who 
runs the printer shop assisted by two young fellows A.L.Statius Muller 
and J.F. Neumans Willemszoon who started working for Mr. Lee in 1818.
After the death of Mrs. Lee –Engebron on the 29th of July 1833 they bought 
the print shop and became the owners of “De Curacaosche Courant”.                  
The partnership lasted for 35 years in also good friendship, till the 
death of J.F. Neuman Wz in 1868, were Mr. C.J and A.W Neuman Fz acquired 
his shares. The new shareholders were appointed printer to the government 
by the governmental decree on the 4th of December 1868.
Mr. Statius Muller stayed with the company till 1876 and quitted after 
42 years of giving the best part of his life to the existence of the 
official gazette and print shop.
In 1892 Mr. J.P.E.Neuman became the new owner and stayed for 16 years on 
the same address in Heerenstreet.
Then in 1908, Mr. C.Gorsira bought the shares of the company and managed 
it for 11 years. He died in 1919, where his son Pieter Carel Gorsira                  
started managing the official gazette and print shop. 
Mr. Pieter Carel Gorsira did a quit lot for the progress of the company. 
In 1929 he invested a lot in new equipment and moved the company to a 
new address in the Fort Amsterdam behind the Fortress Church, nine years 
later he became the only owner. Through buying up some print shops he 
became the biggest print shop on the island.
On the 17th of Januari 1950 Mr. Gorsira moved the company to the newly 
build building at the Theaterstreet 11
As appreciation for the pioneers work of William Lee and also for the 
good work Pieter Carel Gorsira has done, the government decided to name 
the street next to the print shop, William Lee Street. Also in later 
years they changed the street name west to the building into 
“De Curacaosche Courant” street.
After 58 years of leading the company, and for the reason, according to 
his words, he did not have an adequate successor, he decided to sell the 
company to Mr.Jaap Koridon in 1974.
Mr. Jaap Koridon stayed for only 5 years with the company but made quite 
a lot of changes and investments that will result very beneficial for 
the existence of the print shop. It was in his time that we switched                  
nearly completely from letterpress to offset, from machine and hand 
typesetting to IBM composing to Mergenthaler computers.
In 1981 The Kluwer concern Holland bought the shares and after a lap of 
only 5 years they sold again, this time Mr. August A Jonckheer in 1986 
who stayed till 1993 as owner –managing director. Neither Kluwer nor 
Mr. Jonckheer has invested in new machinery or new technology.
On November 1993 after being employee of “De Curacasche Courant” N.V. 
for 22 years, Mr. H.C. “Pim” Elisabeth became employer himself after 
buying all shares of the company.
 
 
 

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