In the middle of the large city of Zwolle, capital of the province of Overijssel, is the Sassenpoort, a defensive gate in Zwolle with many functions. In the 14th century, this tower was intended to defend and protect the city against the fighting between the various cities, nobles and prelates on the one hand, and against the rabble that moved about on the other. The gatekeepers had the task of checking the carts and watching out for the visitors’ appearances. If they had a scar or the ear was off, they were not allowed in.
In the Middle Ages, the Duke of Gerle wanted to take the city of Zwolle , but that didn’t work out. He was captured between the doors and the fence of the Sassenpoort. The front was closed by thick doors, and the gatekeepers also lowered the iron railings behind him. He couldn’t go back. There he stood all alone. Caught between thick walls and ironwork and his crew still stood outside.
In the 17th century, the Sassenpoort was converted into a prison and in 1739 it was used for less fortunate families who had lived in the Sassenpoort. In the 20th century, the gate was still used by various organizations of the municipality.