The OVN Foundation aims to stimulate research into the history of freemasonry, for which the availability of historical sources is essential. The OVN Foundation therefore also contributes to the preservation of masonic cultural heritage, including historical archives, libraries, objects and buildings, and to efforts to make this heritage more easily accessible for research.
The OVN Foundation can offer its expertise for projects concering research, inventorying or conservation of masonic objects and buildings, and offers information and advice to students and academics, heritage professionals and the general public. The foundation also initiates heritage projects.
- An online Network of Esoteric Collections in the Netherlands(esoterischecollecties.ning.com), aimed at stimulating cooperation between curators of public and private libraries and museum collections in the field of study(2010).
- Archive project, aimed at the conservation and inventorying of the historical archive of the Dutch branch of the International Order of Mixed Freemasonry ‘Le Droit Humain’ (2009-2010).
- An inventory of remaining historical lodge buildings of masculine and mixed masonic orders in the Netherlands, built between 1735 and 1945 (2005-2010). A publication of the results is being prepared.
- An educational website on the history of freemasonry in the Netherlands with and information portal to the field of study: http://www.stichtingovn.nl/ (2008).
- An inventory of the historical archives of Dutch lodges in public collections, and the publication of the results in a research guide: Archiefwijzer maçonnieke archieven (2005-2007). A third edition, which will also include data on the archives of various related esoteric currents and friendly societies, is being prepared.
In 2010 the OVN Foundation launced a campaign to save the Cultural Masonic Centre in The Hague. The campaign was aimed at the heritage sector, local gouvernement agencies and all the lodges of the Order of Freemasons under the Grand East of the Netherlands. As the Order is considering to move the Centre to a location elsewhere in the Netherlands, a strong plea was made to allow the Centre to remain in The Hague, as the collections have been inextricable linked to the city for 300 years on both a historical and a physical level, and are part of the excellent (inter)national academic infrastructure of The Hague.