The Strange Fate of Hendrick Driessen

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Not all material relevant to the Dutch exploration of the Southland (Australia) is confined to Dutch East India Company (VOC) archives. Indeed, in addition to official company communications and reports, Dutch ships sailing to and from the Indies carried with them a variety of articles of mail, ranging from the correspondence of private individuals, to papers related to the book trade, as well as scientific material. Some of these contain observations about the Southland. Some of this is still preserved in specialist archives in the Netherlands, South Africa, and Indonesia.

One of the most extensive types of archival evidence related to VOC activities in the Southland can be found in church archives. From the beginning of Dutch settlement in the Indies (now Indonesia), religion played key roles in smoothing the expansion of Dutch culture, language, and power. The efforts of early reformed ministers were thus crucial in underpinning the success of the Dutch trading enterprise.

Period7 Sept 2020

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