October 31, 2018

Nineteenth century shipwreck found off Texel

Filed under: History by Orangemaster @ 11:14 am

Off the Dutch island of Texel, a diving team has discovered the wreck of a two-masted ship, the SS Nordlyset (not shown here), a cargo ship that sank during a storm – as ships usually do – while transporting a load of grain from Riga to Antwerp.

Back in the day, many rescue workers from Den Helder, North Holland were killed during a rescue operation for the ship’s crew, as out of the 23 people who ended up in the water, nine drowned, while the others made it to shore.

The shipping company under which the Nordlyset sailed apparently still exists. According to the divers, the company is enthusiastic about the discovery.

‘Nordlyset’ means Northern Light (singular) In Norwegian, and if you know anything more about this cargo ship or my interpretation of Norwegian, let us know.

(Links: nltimes.nl, nos.nl, Photo of the Batavia replica by Wikimedia user ADZee who released it to the public domain)

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January 11, 2017

Groningen to house asylum seekers in hotel ship

Filed under: General by Orangemaster @ 9:54 pm

In Groningen, some 112 failed asylum seekers and asylum seekers waiting on answers who are homeless will soon be housed in an old hotel ship, explains John van Tilborg, Director of the Inlia Foundation in Groningen that works with asylum seekers. They all have a right to a place to stay during the night as well as a shower and a meal according to the Dutch government, but that same government isn’t doing what’s needed to ensure they have an actual place to say, Van Tilborg explains in a recent radio interview in Amsterdam on BNR.

“The State decides whether someone can stay here or not. If someone can stay, they get a resident’s permit from the State and if they have to go, the State has to kick them out of the country or make sure they leave. If that doesn’t happen, then the city is saddled with the problem, like it is now […]. The city has to pay for a problem created by the State and the city has no influence on the situation”.

And the rest is all about cities not getting the money they need from the State to deal with these people who end up on the street. Elections are coming up in March and the outgoing Dutch government has stopped all funding to new housing projects for asylum seekers, leaving cities to figure it out for themselves.

(Links: bnr.nl, dvhn.nl, Photo of the Vluchtkerk church in Amsterdam that housed many asylum seekers)

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January 14, 2015

World’s biggest ship named after Nazi arrived in Rotterdam

Filed under: History by Orangemaster @ 2:01 pm

1024px-Pieter_Schelte_(ship)_(15617682463)

On 8 January a crowd watched world’s biggest and most expensive vessel ever built, the Pieter Schelte, float into the Port of Rotterdam. The ship was named after Pieter Schelte Heerema, founder of the Swiss-based Allseas group and a maritime engineer, but also a member of the Nazi Waffen SS, convicted and sent to prison for three years for his crimes against humanity in WWII.

The ship is owned by Schelte‚Äôs son, Dutch businessman Edward Heerema who has received much flack and petitions from Jewish groups and others to change its name. The Dutch government had given Allseas’ Netherlands subsidiary a $1 million tax break for its part in designing the ship, adding to the ship’s controversial nature. “While Mr Heerema’s father had been recognised by the courts as providing “very important” services to the resistance, he was earlier a “prominent” figure among Dutch collaborators with the Nazis,” according to the Netherlands Governmental Institute for War Documentation.

Edward Heerema distances himself from his father’s past, stating that the ship was named after “the offshore pioneer that he was”. Read more about this huge vessel and see more pictures.

(Links: www.ad.nl, www.jpost.com, Photo of Pieter Schelte ship by FaceMePLS, some rights reserved)

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December 17, 2014

Half Moon ship to make historic journey to Hoorn

Filed under: History by Orangemaster @ 12:55 pm

Half Moon

The New Netherland Museum in Albany, New York will soon be saying ‘bon voyage’ to their Half Moon (‘Halve Maen’) replica, originally a Dutch ship from 1609. Owing to financial difficulties, the city of Hoorn, North Holland that already serves as a retirement home for many old vessels, has agreed to care for the 1989 replica, with the museum retaining ownership.

The Half Moon was used for educational purposes, teaching people about explorer Henry Hudson who came to the New World in 1609 for the Dutch East India Company on board the Dutch ship. Nobody knows yet how the ship will actually cross the Atlantic.

“From the moment the keel of the Half Moon was laid, it has been my ambition to see the Half Moon sail in Dutch waters,” said Andrew A. Hendricks, founder and chairman of the New Netherland Museum/Half Moon Replica. “After 25 years of service as the unofficial flagship of the state of New York, the Half Moon will have the opportunity to sail in the Netherlands.”

(Links: www.timesunion.com, en.wikipedia.org, Photo of Half Moon ship by Katy Silberger, some rights reserved)

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