1627: Site information: Two Dutch East Indiamen-the Vliegende Draak and the Kampen sailing to Batavia

Remains of 1627 wreck of Dutch East Indiaman, described as a "yacht", which stranded near the Middle Needle, while attempting to "thread the Needles" to reach the Solent for shelter during a storm. Her compatriot, the VLIEGENDE DRAAK (896133), was also lost. Outward-bound from Amsterdam to Jakarta, with lead, silver, coin and passengers, she was a wooden sailing vessel. The diver Jacob Johnson recovered material from both wrecks, as he had done for the English East Indiaman MOON off the coast of Kent in 1625 (901997) and petitioned to do for a Spanish ship off the Lizard in the aftermath of this wreck (1318138).

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1627: Two Dutch East Indiamen-the Vliegende Draak (320 tons/325 tonnes) and the Kampen (300 tons/305 tonnes)-sailing to Batavia from Holland with unknown amounts of treasure, were lost on the Needles of Wight, England. The Kampen was discovered and partially salvaged in recent times.
Remains of 1627 wreck of Dutch East Indiaman, described as a “yacht”, which stranded near the Middle Needle, while attempting to “thread the Needles” to reach the Solent for shelter during a storm. Her compatriot, the VLIEGENDE DRAAK (896133), was also lost. Outward-bound from Amsterdam to Jakarta, with lead, silver, coin and passengers, she was a wooden sailing vessel. The diver Jacob Johnson recovered material from both wrecks, as he had done for the English East Indiaman MOON off the coast of Kent in 1625 (901997) and petitioned to do for a Spanish ship off the Lizard in the aftermath of this wreck (1318138).
More information :Wreck Site and Archaeological Remains: Position recorded as 50 39.700N 001 35.383W (OSGB); 50 39.734N 001 35.468W (WGS 84), for filing only. (22) Lying in less than 10m, her hull was accessible, and she was stripped, her guns, anchors, some of the lead and her specie being recovered by Jacob Johnson, an early Dutch diver. Relocated in June 1979 by Northampton BS-AC, 103 ingots of 62kg and some 2,000 coins and artefacts were recovered. (9) 03-FEB-1981: CAMPEN has been located just east of the Needles Lighthouse. Salvage work being carried out by Northampton BS-AC. (10)(22) The wreck was found by Kevin Punch and Northampton BSAC in June 1979 and they initially raised a pig of lead along with pieces of eight and some Dutch coins. The CAMPEN had run aground off the Middle Needle while attempting to find shelter in the Solent.The wreck remains were pored over, guns, anchors and substantial quantities of her cargo were recovered by local people. The Dutch East India Company employed the services of Jacob Johnson “Jacob the dyver” to salvage the site; after the Duke of Buckingham’s death he left the site to work on the silver wreck off the Lizard and a Spanish wreck off Castlehaven. However, he returned to the Needles in later years, and accounted for the recovery of 12 tons of lead ballast in 1631. The team of 6, Kevin Punch, Mike Francis, Jim Tyson, Phil Lay, Dave Whiting and Diane Whiting recovered further objects which were reported to the Receiver of Wreck. The team then agreed with P McBride, R Larn and R Cowan to do a pre-disturbance survey and in liasion with Bas Kist of the Rijksmuseum for the artefact collection to be acquired by them. The survey is ongoing. (19)
  • 200 Lion Daalder coins recovered from this wreck. (Droit A/1737) (20)
  • 3 silver Dutch Daalder and 2 silver Spanish Cob coins, and 2 x 5lb iron cannonballs recovered from this wreck. (Droit A/3215) (20)
  • A tinder box, 2 lead ingots, 7 silver coins – Pillar Dollars and Lion Daalders, and 2 paperweights, recovered from this wreck. (Droit A/4483) (20)
  • 15 silver coins, either complete or partial, and mostly worn, recovered from the CAMPEN at the Needles. (Droit 010/04) (21)
  • 6 Lion dollar coins, condition worn. 2 Pieces of Eight, condition worn. 1 Pieces of four, condition warn. 1 Piece of two, condition worn. (Droit 019/10) (23)
  • A silver lion dollar dated 1626. One side of the coin has a lion, while the reverse side has a shield; A silver coin which is also probably a lion dollar. The coin is worn on one side and concreted on the other. The objects were recovered from the wreck of the CAMPEN (VOC), at the south east corner of the second Needle, outside of the designated area of Needles sites. (Droit 078/11) (24)
  • 15 Dutch lion dollars, recovered from the wreck of the CAMPEN. (Droit 159/11) (24)
  • 19 Dutch Lion Dollars, condition worn, of various dates. One brass semi-circular protractor, condition worn, 197mm w, 110mm h. (Droit 006/12) (26)
  • 7 coin fragments, possibly Dutch Lion Dollars? (Droit 149/12) (26)
  • 11 Dutch Lion Dollars of various dates or worn, with no legible dates. 3 Pieces of Eight or Four Reales coins. (Droit 151/12) (26)
  • 2 silver Dutch Dollars dated 1626; one unknown coin; and a Piece of Eight. (Droit 152/12) (26)
  • 14 Lion Dollars; 2 Pieces of Eight; and 8 coin fragments, could be Pieces of Eight, Four Reales or Lion Dollars. (Droit 282/12) (26)
  • 1 silver coin, detail cannot be made out. (Droit 112/13) (27)
  • 1 silver coin with a rampant lion on one side and a man wearing a helmet and holding a shield with a rampant lion on the other. (Droit 132/13) (27)
  • 3 silver Dutch Lion Dollars. Two are in complete  but worn, the third is in poor condition and broken in half. (Droit 107/14) (28)
  • 12 coins and 1 drawer knob. (Droit 141/14) (28)
  • 9 Dutch lion dollars of various dates; 4 Dutch half lion Dollars; and 1 piece of eight coin. (Droit 366/14) (28)
  • 1 lead ingot; 7 lion dollar coins; and 1 half lion dollar coin. (Droit 259/15) (29)
  • 19 silver coins of mixed or no date (worn). Droit 367/16) (30)
  • 3 Dutch dollar coins; of which one is dated 1616, the other two dates are indistinguishable. (Droit 293/17) (31)
  • 4 pillar dollars, 1 half dollar, and 1 broken coin (the latter with no legible markings). The complete coins are only partially legible, one of which is also discoloured. (Droit 221/18) (32)
  • 3 pillar dollars; 2 broken coins; 6 musket balls; and 1 metal vessel (approx. 4″ across). The coins appear to have no legible markings (only one side of the coin photographed). Musket dimensions appear to be 1/3 the diameter of the complete coins. (Droit 222/18) (32)
  • 1 silver coin (Lion dollar)? (Droit 317/18) (32)
Wreck Event and Documentary Evidence: One of seven Dutch East Indiamen which sailed from Texel for the East Indies carrying cargoes for the settlements there and gold and silver. A gale forced them close to shore and even tried to negotiate the Needles. The CAMPEN was the last to go through and struck a rock. She almost immediately began to break up. All on board were saved. (8)(17)(18) Oct.17 1627, Portsmouth: William Towerson to the same [Sec. Conway]…That instant had received information that two Dutch East Indiamen outward bound had been cast away near the Needles, or on the shore of the main. (2) Oct.18 1627, Southampton: Edward Reed to the same [Sec. Conway]. Three Dutch East India ships have miscarried in coming in at the Needles, one of them, men and all, laden with provisions. The tonnage of the three ships is estimated at 1,600 tons. The voyage was for a plantation, and they carry with them many women and children. (3) Oct.18 1627, Portsmouth: Henry, Earl of Holland to Nicholas. A fleet of Dutch East Indiamen had been driven into the four Needles, and two of them are wrecked. They have in them chests of silver, and other things of value, which may possibly be recovered. Advertises him thereof, that he may take care of the rights of the King and the Lord Admiral. Had sent Capt. Towerson to examine the state of the wreck. (4) Feb.5 1628, London: The Duke of Buckingham to Sir Fulke Greville and Edward Read, Deputy Vice-Admirals of the Isle of Wight, and to Robert Newland, Merchant. Order of the High Court of the Admiralty to restore to the East India Company goods saved from the GREEN DRAGON [sic] and the CHAMPEN [sic], two East India vessels wrecked on the coast of the said island. (5) Aug.22 1628, Portsmouth: Buckingham to Robert Newland the Elder, a merchant in the Isle of Wight. Is informed that there are in his possession 3 pieces of iron ordnance, and other goods taken out of the sea by Jacob Johnson, the diver. He is to deliver the same to Johnson, who is appointed to bring the same thither. (6) May 4 1629: Capt. John Mason to the same [Nicholas]. Jacob Johnson recovered out of the sea, near the Needles, 2360 ryals of eight, 5 pieces of ordnance, 101 pieces of lead, and 9 anchors. Johnson desires to have his part set out. (11) May 19 1629: Invoice of wrecked goods recovered from the sea near the Isle of Wight by Jacob Johnson, the diver; 5 pieces of ordnance, 9 anchors and 101 pigs of lead. (12) One of seven ships in the autumn fleet of the Dutch East India Company outward bound, all of whom carried specie as part of their cargo. Sailing on the 12th of December [sic] they encountered severe weather on the 14th and ran for the shelter of the Solent. Seeking to use the Needles Channel the KAMPEN and the VLIEGENDE DRAECK attempted to sail through the largest gap between the Needles Rocks. The KAMPEN struck a little to the west and sank, her crew and passengers reaching the shore on a raft. (9) Vessel stated to be the KAMPEN, a yacht of 300 tons, lost near the Needles with a date of 23-OCT-1627 (New Style). (14) KAMPEN, a yacht of 300 tons displacement in the service of the VOC from 1627 and lost on her first voyage 23-OCT-1627. The 160 soldiers, seamen and passengers on board managed to get to land. Only two chests of her total lading could be saved. Jacob de Duiker [“the diver”] retrieved 2365 reales during 1627-8; other coins carried were lion daalders and half lion daalders. (15) [NB: See a different account of two chests in source 16.] ‘ . . . the Dutch captains were under specific instructions from the Heren XVII, the seventeen chosen delegates who directed the affairs of the Dutch East India Company, not to venture too close to English soil, and ‘under no circumstances to anchor on English ground’. Following yet another dispute between the rival English and Dutch Companies in the Far East, the latter had in fact tortured and killed a number of English in Amboina, an island off Seram, in the Celebes, in 1623 and James I sought revenge. A Dutch fleet sailed from the Texel on 12 October, which consisted of seven ships, including the CAMPEN, VLIEGENDE DRAECK, PRINS WILLIAM and TERSCHELLING. These four vessels found themselves off the Isle of Wight in a severe storm, which drove them ever closer to the island, but their instructions forbade them to seek the shelter of the Solent. ‘Closer and closer the gale drove them towards those tall white cliffs, until they were just off the Needles rocks themselves. All four must have been in an impossible position, since they took the extraordinary action of actually attempting to sail through the gap in the Needles. Even today, 220 years later after ‘Lot’s Wife’ collapsed, a pinnacle of rock which partially blocked the central gap at the time, small boats navigate this area with great caution. ‘It must have been a life or death decision to attempt such a move, and perhaps it is even more remarkable that three of the Dutchmen actually made it! It cost them two ships, since the CAMPEN missed the gap, drove beam on towards the western Needles Rocks, and became a total loss. Somehow, all 150 or so soldiers, sailors and passengers made it safely to shore. Some of the ships cargo was even salvaged. But two treasure chests of silver coins were lost to the sea…’ (16) [NB: See a different account of two chests in source 15.] Source (9) states the date of loss as 23-OCT-1627. Sources (7)(13) and (16) state the name of the vessel as the CAMPEN, (9)(14) and (15) as the KAMPEN, (5) as CHAMPEN. Built: 1627 Builder: VOC Amsterdam Owner: Amsterdam Chamber of VOC Armament: 30 guns Crew: 127 On Board: 150+ (16); 160 (15) Date of Loss Qualifier: Actual date of loss Additional sources: Custom House c.a.1V (144); Historic Manuscript Commission Reports .M.C. Cowper (CPKE) (173); High Court of Admiralty 30/158 Droits 1608; Calendar of State Papers. Addenda 1627 – 1649 Vol DXXIX 1628 p109 A Tier 1 Heritage Partnership Agreement was set up in 2013 concerning the seabed remains of the Campen. Salvage work on the site was conducted in the 1980’s in agreement with the Dutch government who are the legal owners of the vessel. Raised material included 103 lead ingots and around 2,000 coins (Larn 1985b).(25) ‘Work on the site has been noted as resulting in a ‘disappointingly low’ yield of artefacts; a result of the effective contemporary salvage of the site and the dynamic on-site conditions leading to a high level of dispersal and erosion (Larn 1985a: 15). Limited, badly degraded elements of the vessels hull were located, but do not appear to have been fully recorded or published. In addition to the ingots and coins noted above (see Larn 1985b), a range of other artefacts were recovered from the site and are outlined in the published report (Larn 1985a: 15-31). This includes elements of the ship’s ordinance, brass and copper tacks, ceramics, pewter utensils, wooden tools, iron nails and a mill stone.’ (25) Source (33) states date of loss 23 October 1627. Date of departure: 12-OCT-1627 (33) Place of departure: Texel (33) Date of loss: 23-OCT-1627 (33) The Dutch pinnace (yacht) KAMPEN was owned by the Verenigde Oostindische Compagnie and in service for the Kamer van Amsterdam. (33) On 23/10/1627, KAMPEN, carrying silver species [sic], was lost in a storm on her first voyage to the East, off the Needles, Isle of Wight. 160 crew and soldiers managed to reach the shore. (33) On October 12th, 1627, a convoy of six VOC ships had left Holland for the Indies, when they ran into a gale. Off the Needles, Isle of Wight, two ship[s] ran aground on the 23rd and were lost: the Vliegende Draeck and the Kampen. (33) At the time of her loss, only 2 chests with silver were recovered. A diver, ‘Jacob de Duiker’ [Jacob the Diver] salvages some 2365 reales in the years 1627-1628. Only in 1979 the wreck was rediscovered and some 8.000 pieces of reales and leeuwendaalders were found. (33) Tonnage: 150 bm. (33)

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