Rare footage surfaces of liberation plane in Amsterdam in 1945

Liberation plane in Amsterdam, 5 May 1945
Liberation plane in Amsterdam, 5 May 1945Photo: Screenshot / YouTube

A call for eyewitnesses of a liberation plane landing in Amsterdam on May 5th, 1945 produced rare video footage of the actual plane. The 47 second long video was submitted by Els Kronenberg-Willems, whose father made the film, Het Parool reports.

The video shows enthusiastic spectators watching the plane and then the plane taking off again from the Stadionkade. The video was filmed by Willem Cornelis Willems, born in 1903. The Willems family lived along the Stadionkade, where they Taylorcraft Auster 3 landed in May 1945. When the plane landed, Amsterdam had already been liberated, but the landing of the plane kicked off the official celebration, according to the newspaper.

Els Kronenberg-Willems had no idea that the footage was anything special until the Amsterdam 4 and 5 May Committee called for witnesses of the event. "I thought more people filmed that day, but apparently that was not the case. I think only a few people had a film camera then", she said to Het Parool. 

The Amsterdam 4 and 5 May Committee already managed to track down the original plane, which was found with a collector in a warehouse in Noord-Holland. The plane will be displayed on the Museumplein on May 5th. A second plane that also landed that day has not yet been found.

The Committee is still looking for eyewitnesses. If you were present at the plane's landing, or have footage of the event, you can contact the committee via info@4en5meiamsterdam.nl.