Boutique Hotel d’Oude Morsch is next to the Morspoort and is located in the old Morsport barracks. A location with an interesting history!
The Morspoort, located on the Morssingel, is one of the two remaining city archways or ports of Leiden. Formerly there were eight in the city. It has been the western city’s port ever since 1611. Originally the port was made of wood but in 1669 it was converted into stone so that it could be used again.
The port owes its name to the former neighbourhood. In earlier times the area around Leiden was a marshy meadow- the Morsch-, which is a derivative of the Dutch word “moeras” or marshland. The Morspoort is located in the neighbourhood of d’Oude Morsch and this also refers to the old marshland. In popular slang the Morspoort is also called the Galgpoort or Gallows because this was a former prison.
The port and the corresponding bridge are both national monuments.
The Morspoort barracks were built in 1817 on the Galgewater or “Gallows Waterway”. Infantry and riding equipment was used here until 1940. After this date the barracks were used as a teaching centre for corporal military cooks until this function was moved to the city of Haarlem in 1981.
The guardhouse of the Morspoort barracks
The guardhouse is the only part of the barracks that was not demolished. The building owes its name to its former military function. The entrance port of the barracks, that was guarded, was located at the guardhouse.