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|In 1958, Prof. Ir. Piet Velzeboer arranged some funds to re-locate the whaler graves at Holländerhaugen. The building of Renseverket made this necessary. His son has sent me some old pictures. More old pictures from Velzeboer here.|
The ceremony with the new stone. The inscription reads: Herinnering aan de hier begraven vijftig Nederlandse walvisvaarders verre van het vaderland gestorven in de 17de eeuw (In memory of the 50 Dutch whalers burried here, who died far away from their homes in the 17th century).|
Sofar I have not found any confirmation that these whalers were Dutch. The type of graves was characterized as Dutch graves and maybe even the name Holländerhaugen is based on a misconception. There are no ship logs about Dutch whalers in Kongsfjord. There have been British whalers though.
In the Netherlands an ocean burial was not preferred. The bodies needed to be burried in the soil to wait for the resurrection. People who died during the trip were kept on the boat until arrival at Spitsbergen. Many people died on scurvy. In the Dutch winter there was already a buildup of vitamin C deficiancy. A trip to the north would continue that and especially during a second trip scurvy became a cause of mortality.
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