The Wreck of the Dutch East Indiaman Amsterdam

By Peter Marsden, published February 1972


This article summarizes the results of a physical (non-invasive) and documentary investigation of the Amsterdam, a Dutch East Indiaman, which foundered off the southeast coast of England, in 1749. The ship was part of the Dutch East India Company’s “Autumn fleet” comprised of 12 merchant ships bound for Batavia, Java.  The Amsterdam’s maiden voyage, plagued by sickness, death, and foul weather, ended when she ran aground and entombed in a “boggy” or quick-sand beach between the villages of Bexhill and Hastings.  Exposure only at low tide, helped preserve the ship’s hull, cargo and archeological context.  The Amsterdam stands alone as an unaltered example of a large, armed-merchant vessel of the post mediaeval period.

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Filed under: East India Company
Subjects include: Historic Vessels, Museums & Restoration

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