Reflections at Amsterdamhoek

In 16 December 1817 the Dutch troop carrier Amsterdam was on its way to the Netherlands on a return journey from the Dutch East Indies when it hit a fierce storm off Algoa Bay.  The wind snapped the masts and ripped the sails apart and after an eleven hour fight the captain decided to run the ship aground close to the mouth of the Zwartkops River to try and save the lives of his crew.  Only three of the 223 men aboard were lost with the surviving crew being taken to Uitenhage before sailing back to the Netherlands a month later.  Today the village on the banks of the Swartkops River is known as Amsterdamhoek and even though its nothing more than a suburb of Port Elizabeth it does have a nice little piece of history attached to the name. 

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