Houtman was an experienced navigator, assisting Pieter Dirkszoon Keyser with astronomical observations during the very first Dutch expedition to the East Indies in 1595. In 1618, he set sail on another Dutch East Indies Company voyage on Dordrecht and Amsterdam with Jacob d’Edel, sighting the coast near present day Perth which they named d’Edelsland. Sailing northwards, Houtman encountered and narrowly avoided mishap on a cluster of shoals he named the Houtman Abrolhos. A decade later, the islands became notorious a decade later when Francis Pelseart’s Batavia came to grief there and a bloody slaughter ensued.
Join noted author Dr Howard Gray, author of a new biography Spice at any Price as he unpacks the story of this fascinating but overlooked figure in the charting of our continent. Associate Professor in Maritime Archaeology at Flinders University, Wendy Van Duivenvoorde, will also talk about her research into Dutch interactions with Australia prior to 1770 and the earliest known historic accounts and material remains of Dutch-Indigenous interactions on Australian soil.
In a nod to the ‘spirit’ of these Dutch voyages, gin cocktails will be served by our fabulous sponsors Kangaroo Island Spirits
South Australian Maritime Museum
126 Lipson Street, Port Adelaide, SA 5015
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