Henk Sneevliet - Chronology

13 May 1883
Hendricus Josephus Franciscus Marie (known as Henk) Sneevliet born in Rotterdam

Secondary school (HBS) in 's-Hertogenbosch

Sneevliet exhibition

Photo: M. van der Heijden

Employee state railway company in Zutphen

Member SDAP [Social Democratic Workers' Party] and NVSTP [Netherlands Federation of Rail and Tramway Workers]

Big strike by railway workers, fiercely crushed by the authorities

Appointed in Zwolle; selected secretary SDAP branch. Contact with Dutch poetess and socialist Henriette Roland Holst and moving in an intellectual Marxist group around the magazine De Nieuwe Tijd.

Marriage with Maartje Visser

July 1906
Member management NVSTP

Member city council Zwolle representing SDAP (until 1910)

September 1907
Chairman SDAP Zwolle

End 1907
Divorce from Maartje Visser

July 1909
Marriage with Betsy Brouwer, teacher

November 1909
Becomes vice-chairman NVSTP

Moves to Utrecht, the central seat of the NVSTP

Elected Chairman of the NVSTP

March 1911
Birth twin sons Pim and Pam

June 1911
Big international seamen's strike

August 1911
Defeat international seamen's strike in Amsterdam

Political crisis labour movement on support of strikers

Leaves SDAP and joins Marxist SDP [Social Democratic Party] for six months

July 1912
Dismissed as Chairman NVSTP under pressure of the right wing of the federation

Leaves the Netherlands for the Netherlands East Indies; first journalist in Soerabaja, later secretary of the Chamber of Commerce Semarang

May 1914
Co-founder and leader ISDV [Indies Social Democratic Association]

Editor De Volharding, organ of the Dutch East Indies VSTP [Federation of Rail and Tramway Personnel]

Final break with SDAP; becomes member again of SDP (from 1918: Communist Party of Holland)

March 1917
Publication article Zegepraal [Victory], making a strong plea to the Javanese to follow the Russian revolution

Propaganda and agitation among navy men and soldiers

April 1917
Dismissed by Chamber of Commerce Semarang because of his political agitation

June 1917
Propagandist VSTP

November 1917
Trial at court of justice Semarang due to his article Zegepraal [Victory]; after appeal acquittal by supreme court of Batavia

November 1918
Formation of councils of navy men and soldiers in Soerabaja

December 1918
Expulsion from Dutch East Indies by authorities, leaves for the Netherlands

Position as propagandist NAS [National Labour Secretariat]

Co-organizer transport workers' strike

July-August 1920
Representative CPH [Communist Party of Holland] to the Second Congress Comintern; elected as secretary for the committee on nationalities and colonial questions

June 1921
Mission to China, arrival in Shanghai

July 1921
Participant First Congress Communist Party of China

December 1921
Meeting with Sun Yatsen

Return to Europe to assist Comintern; got to know Sima Zolkovskaja

July 1922
New mission to China together with Joffe

August 1922
Participant plenary assembly central committee Communist Party of China

December 1922
Return to Moscow for discussions within the Comintern about the question of cooperation with the Kuomintang

June 1923
Back to China to participate at the Third Congress of the Communist Party of China, which accepted the Comintern directives on cooperation with the Kwomintang [Guomindang]

August 1923
Leaves China definitively and stays in Moscow until March 1924

April 1924
Returns to the Netherlands

May 1924
Elected as chairman of the NAS, joins opposition within CPH

September 1924
Divorce from Betsy Brouwer

December 1924
Marriage with Sima Zolkovskaja; Sneevliet and Zolkovskaja had a daughter, born in 1923

Split between NAS and Red International of Trade Unions; Sneevliet leaves the CPH and breaks with the Comintern

June 1928
Divorce from Sima Zolkovskaja, who returns to Soviet Union

Establishment RSP [Revolutionary Socialist Party]; chairman RSP

Marriage with Mien Draaijer

March 1932
Suicide Pim Sneevliet, son of Sneevliet and Betsy Brouwer

November 1932
Meeting with Trotsky in Copenhagen

February 1933
Leader solidarity campaign with mutineers on board of the cruiser De Zeven Provinciën; arrest and sentenced to months imprisonment

July 1933
Released from prison to become elected member of Dutch parliament until 1937

August 1933
Meeting with Trotsky near Royan (France)

Merger of the RSP and the OSP [Independent Socialist Party], under the name of RSAP [Revolutionary Sociallist Workers' Party]

Voyage to Catalonia, Spain, to support the Spanish socialists in their struggle against Franco during the Spanish Civil War

February 1937
Suicide Pam Sneevliet, twin brother of Pim who died in 1932

July 1940
Founder and leader of the Marx-Lenin-Luxemburg-Front [MLL-Front] to resist Nazi German occupation of the Netherlands

March 1942
Arrest of Sneevliet and six other members of the MLL-Front

13 April 1942
Execution of Henk Sneevliet and his six comrades at the Leusderheide near Amersfoort