Archaeology Magazine

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Historic Shipwreck May Be a Dutch Trader

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

(Public Domain)DRUMBEG, SCOTLAND—A shipwreck off the coast of Scotland’s northwest Highlands is one of the first to be nominated for the country’s new Historic Marine Protected Area status. Although the ship has not yet been identified in historical records, the three cannons recovered from the site were made in Sweden for use by the Dutch. A white Delft tile decorated with a blue image of a three-masted ship flying the Dutch flag was also found. Personal weapons recovered from the wreckage may have been carried by the crew as protection from privateers. Based upon this evidence, archaeologists think that the vessel may have been owned by the Dutch East India Company, and that it sank sometime between 1650 and 1750. “We have conducted a lot of research on new methods of underwater digital survey and the survey at Drumbeg gave us the perfect opportunity to apply this new technology to an entire wreck site for the first time, and with fantastic results,” said John McCarthy of WA Coastal and Marine, an educational charity.