The film consists of three parts, of which the first is fiction, the second a combination of fiction and documentary material and the third is pure documentary.
Part 1 is a curious and historically inaccurate depiction of events that took place in November 1894 - a strike held by diamond-cutters - and in 1905 - the start of a campaign to combat tuberculosis. It starts in the home of the poor, tubercular diamond-cutter Maurits Groen who, in spite of the aid of Jan van Zutphen, popularly known as "Uncle Jan", cannot find work. He is asked by a jeweller to come to his office, but the salary offered is insufficient for a married man and Groen refuses. Another worker accepts the job. Uncle Jan and his associates hold a gathering at which a strike is proclaimed. The diamond manufacturers promise to improve the working conditions of their employés. Jan van Zutphen visits Groen to tell him of the victory. Groen, who is dying, begs van Zutphen to do something for tubercular diamond-cutters.
Part 2 shows, in tableaux-vivants, the founders of the "Koperen Stelenfonds" (Copper Wire Fund) and a 17th-century diamond-cutter at work. It has shots of the apparatus used in diamond-cutting establishments and ends with a sequence showing the cutting and polishing of the fabulous Cullinan diamond.
Part 3 is a reportage of the festivities in Amsterdam on 18th November 1919 in honour of the 25th anniversary of the ANDB.
- Maurits Groen
- Mrs. Groen
- Oome Jan van Zutphen
G. Donaldson, Of Joy and Sorrow. A Filmography of Dutch Silent Fiction, Amsterdam (1997), p. 188