Well Castle, locally known as Kasteel Well, lies next to the village of Well, in the province of Limburg in the Netherlands. It is not to be confused with its namesake; Well Castle in the province of Gelderland, also in the Netherlands.
Well Castle, a square moated castle, was first mentioned in 1363 when Willem van Baerlo leased it to his brother-in-law. It is not known if this was the present castle or a predecessor. In 1382 the castle was bought by Salentijn I van Arendael. His descendants owned the castle until around 1478 when it went to Hendrik van den Bylandt, Viscount of Nijmegen. In 1492 the castle was strengthened and equipped with an earthen rampart.
On this rampart a strong defensive round tower was built. During the 80-Years' War the area was bitterly contested by the Dutch States and Spain. During the Dutch States occupation of Well Castle their troops rebuilt the defensive tower on the rampart into a windmill. Spanish troops destroyed this mill when they took the castle in 1586. The tower, now called Dragon Tower, stayed a ruin ever since.
Around 1550 Well Castle went to Balthasar van Vlodrop, Lord of Leuth. The Van Vlodrop family kept Well Castle until 1628. During the next centuries several noble owners followed, amongst which Count Henri de Pas, Marquess de Feuquière, until 1852 when it went to Austrian noble family Von Schloissnig. They only sporadically stayed at their castle and in 1905 sold it to the German industrialist Richard Wolters.
This German ownership was the cause of its confiscation in 1945 by the Dutch State. After being owned by a couple of foundations the castle was acquired by the American Emerson College in 1988. They now use the castle to house and lecture students following an Education Abroad Program.
At present Well Castle is used by the college and thus not accessible. The gardens around the castle can be visited for free. A very nice castle and I am curious to see what remains of its medieval history inside.