Oldest western building in Australia

Discussion in 'OFF-Topic / Misc.' started by Marcel, Dec 27, 2013.

  1. Marcel

    Marcel Well-Known Member

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    THis is it:
    083G-groot fortje.jpg
    It's build by a group of soldiers on the Houtman Albros on the westcoast of Australia.
    This group of soldiers sailed on the Dutch ship Batavia to the Dutch East Indies when the stranded on a reef near these islands. Around 300 people were stuck on these barren islands and two months of horror followed. A small group of mutineers killed more 120 people, systematic terrorising the other survivors. The soldier Wiebe Hayes was on another island together with 20 other soldiers, Walabi island and settled there. The building you see was build under his command as a fort to defend against the mutineers on Batavia graveyard, as the other island was called.
    This was in 1629, making this the oldest European structure in Australia. The remains can still be seen on these remote islands.

    The wrecking of the Batavia is a really interesting story. I do not understand why no-one in Hollywood ever thought about making it into a movie. It's a thriller and a horror story.
     
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  2. Lucky13

    Lucky13 Forum Mascot

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  3. Wayne Little

    Wayne Little Well-Known Member

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    watched something about this recently...
     
  4. Shinpachi

    Shinpachi Well-Known Member

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    #4 Shinpachi, Dec 27, 2013
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2013
    Interesting story.

    (After an hour)
    Wow, awesome story :shock:
    Thanks for sharing, Marcel!
     
  5. vikingBerserker

    vikingBerserker Well-Known Member

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    Very interesting!
     
  6. Marcel

    Marcel Well-Known Member

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    #6 Marcel, Dec 27, 2013
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2013
    My pleasure Shinpachi. I recently read Batavia Graveyard by the british historian Mike Dash. A real good read. He not only describes the story itself, but also manages to give a good description of the voc, at that time the greatest, most efficient and most ruthless trading company in the world.

    Nice detail, Wiebe Hayes was born in Winschoten, the town in which I grew up. The reverent who is one of the biggest sources of info was the priest of the chuch I attent here in Dordrecht.
     
  7. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    I remember reading about this several years ago...what a terrible event

    Greed seems to bring out the absolute worst in humanity :(
     
  8. Capt. Vick

    Capt. Vick Well-Known Member

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    I was wondering where the connection was Marcel. Thanks for posting.
     
  9. Marcel

    Marcel Well-Known Member

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    Jeronimus was a psychopath to today's standards. Not the kind you find in Hollywood movies, but a real one. His followers had either no conscience or, and that was the biggest group, only trying to survive themselves. But this was arguably one of the bloodiest mutinies in history.

    Another nice detail, two of the younger mutineers were marooned on the mainland of Australia. They were the first European settlers. Although no trace of them has been found, it is known that blond hairs and blue eyes are more frequent with the natives in that area than with any other tribe on the continent. Makes one wonder if they mixed their bloodlines with those tribes.
     
  10. GrauGeist

    GrauGeist Well-Known Member

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    There is speculation that those two that were banished to the mainland did, perhaps contribute thier genetics to the natives but it's been thought that more than likely that the genes found among the aboriginal population might have come from the survivors of the Zuytdorp shipwreck.

    I find it ironic that the soldiers sent away to "find water" actually did and the voyage of the longboat was a maritime feat in it's own right, all aboard surviving the 33 days at sea to reach the city of Batavia.
     
  11. Marcel

    Marcel Well-Known Member

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    #11 Marcel, Dec 27, 2013
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2013
    Actually that was the captain and the head trader, the last one being the real boss on the voyage. The captain was accused of attempt of mutiny as well and ended up in a dungeon in Batavia. He died there 2 years later. The trader, Pelsaert went back and saved the remaining survivors, warned just in time by Wiebe Hayes, who won the race to row to the arriving ship. As I said, it's quite a filmscript.

    You're right, the Zuytdorp also added to the genes in Australia and also a ship called the Vergulden Draek. But that doesn't take away the fact that these mutineers were the first to settle in Australia. To bad they never found out what became of them.
     
  12. Gnomey

    Gnomey World Travelling Doctor
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    Certainly an interesting story. Would make for a good movie.
     
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