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Stories from the Sea, Past and Present

Verhoog: Pieter Hugo Gerardus

This photo was taken when he was promoted to Commodore in 1951. Note the full gold bar braid on his shoulder board

Full name: Verhoog: Pieter Hugo Gerardus

Born:  11 January 1893 at Amsterdam

Joined the Holland America Line as Cadet on 08 August. 1910

Studied at the Kweekschool voor de Zeevaart in Amsterdam, date of take in was 26 Augsut 1907. and finished his year as nbr.  11 of the A side (24 cadets) with an average of 7. (Out of a range of 10) (b)

His father was Gijsbertus Verhoog (21 Jul 1862 Naaldwijk ZH – 15 Aug. 1928 Noordwijk ZH) and his mother Aleida Hoogendam (17 Oct. 1865 Noordwijk ZH – ?? –Oct. 1946)

He did not directly come from a seafaring tradition has his father was a school teacher, living at the Brederodestraat 79 in Amsterdam.

When he returned to his school on 02 September 1911 the files note that he returned with a very good attest from his Captain. He then passes his exam for 3rd officer on 25 October 1911; and is honourably discharged the next day where his skills, good behaviour were noted and the good report from his cadet year.

He married on 15 January 1918 at Zaandam with Johanna Wafelbakker (born 08 Feb. 1894) At Amsterdam. She was a daughter of Leendert Wafelbakker (green grocer) and Neeltje Jongewaard. (d)

There were two daughters a miss N.Verhoog who married a Dr. R Weidenhammer in Washington DC (later of Rockville MD with one son) and a miss A. Verhoog who married a Mr. C.A Kaye B.A in New York and went to live in San Juan Puerto Rico. In 1984 they are listed as living in Boston, Mass. With children.

(ED:) On the fleet he was known as Piet the Writer. (Piet de Schrijver). Having a captain with a literary and scientific bend was certainly un-usual for Holland America.  For the 200+ captains now identified there are only a few who published anything outside their personal biography and there are only a few who did the latter.

The first ss Nieuw Amsterdam of Holland America. When it came into service in 1906 it was one of the 10 largest ships in the world.

His first ship was the Nieuw Amsterdam (I) which after the Rotterdam (IV) was the most Sr. ship of the fleet.  After his cadet ship he rejoined the company and then served on a mixture or cargo and passenger ship. As he went for his First mates ticket in 1917, no doubt given in by the fact that the company was laying more and more ship up, due to the unlimited U-Boat war. When the returned it was to the Zijldijk a ship which in 1918 escaped the general seizure of all the neutral ships laid up in American ports.

Then he returned to the Nieuw Amsterdam which as the only passenger ship of the company was officially exempt for this seizure as it was needed to keep the passenger transport line open between the Netherlands and the USA and carried on the return voyage large amounts of grains for the Dutch population.  Both the Zijldijk and the Nieuw Amsterdam sailed in submarine infested waters but neither was harmed.

With the war finished the economy picks up again and the company prospers. Again he services on a mixture of ships when gaining seniority in every rank. There is a photo album with a number of photos from those days.

The ss Kinderdijk (I). This ship was assigned to the North Pacific service of the company. which took on average  3 months and was run in conjunction with an English company so a regular  (weekly and or bi-weekly) could be maintained. The route went through the Panama Canal and called at middle American Pacific coast ports  and continued along USA ports all the way up to Vancouver

I picked two which have some nautical interest, First the pool on board the Kinderdijk in 1922. Until the late 50’s there were no ships with air conditioning and most were designed with black hulls and enclosed superstructures for the cold North Atlantic weather. Thus when a ship sailed in tropical waters all sorts of contraptions where rigged up to bring some relieve. Canvas wind catcher, sleeping under stars, openings cabin doors and portholes from side to side and having a swimming pool. For this a wooden box construction was contrived and a tarpaulin (often from the cargo hatches) was used to make it water tight and then sea water was pumped in and refreshed as necessary. When going to a port the whole construction could be quickly removed and thus not impede the cargo operations.

The swimmingpool on the ss Kinderdijk (I)  Future Captain Verhoog is on the right hand side.

Secondly tender service.  Until the arrival of dedicated cruise ships, or North Atlantic Ocean Liners being assigned especially for cruises, the north Atlantic Liners make cruises “on the side” and thus the ships were not really adapted to providing extra service during their cruise. With visiting ports of the beating track in tropical waters these ships often had to anchor and thus a shuttle or tender service had to be maintained between ship and shore. If no shore side boats could be arrange for, the ships lifeboats were used. These boats were not made to provide any protection against the weather, not comfortable seating, and not easy ways of getting in or out.

The March 1931 East and West Indies cruise of the ss Statendam (III) Captain in command was Commodore Krol (See his biography elsewhere on the website) Voyage 17d departed on 24 February from  New York and called at St. Thomas, Fort de France, St. Pierre (tour drop off), Fort de France, Bridgetown, Brighton, Port of Spain, La Guaira, Wilemstad, Colon, Kingston, Havana , Nassau and New York (arrival 21 March). Here is the ship is at anchor on 3 March off Bridgetown Barbados and the sailors are lining up the lifeboats for loading. These were rowing boats, so boats 1 or 2 (motor boats) would pull the other boats to the shore. Local Boasts were used as well, but most of those in the photo where local souvenir sellers.

By 1929 with the Wall Street crash this changed but by one he was a Sr. Chief Officer with two children and thus he was not laid off but sailed full time. As a result when things improved and the laid up ships returned to service he was promoted to Captain. First acting as captain on the Blommersdijk (I) for a fill in and when that was over as The Sr. Chief Officer of the Fleet to the Flagship the ss Statendam (III). Here he remained until he was given a permanent command, the ss Breedijk.  This was one of the 10 B class cargo ships which the company received from the British as compensation for the torpedoing of the ss Statendam (II) in 1917. A company ship which had been under construction in Belfast and had been seized by the British Government and pressed into service as the troopship Justicia.

The ss Breedijk. She would not survive the war but was torpedoed on 14 September 1942. Lives were lost including that the captain.

While in command of the Breedijk he notices he first impact of the 2nd world war. As on 08 September 1939 he directs his ship to the rescue of the British tanker Kennebec (1920 Anglo- American oil Co.). This ship had left Aruba and was sailing in the North Atlantic near the Spanish coast and was torpedoed. After an extensive search two lifeboats were located containing 32 crew; a monkey and a few canaries. They were all taken on board and landed in London on 11 Sept. For the few days on board, each rank shared the cabin of his opposite Dutch colleague and the rest was put up in the mess room, day room and some other cabins (Although this was limited as some of those were occupied as there were 7 passengers on board)

He was at home during the war as he was between ships when the invasion started. He was paid by the company throughout the war on “standby money or tariff”.

The Schiedamsche Weg in Rotterdam West, after some of the rubble of the bombardment had had been cleared away. After the war all the ruins were removed and new houses built on this location. (c)

On 31 March 1943 his house at the Schiedamseweg in Rotterdam was bombarded and burnt out and so he lost his library and all the house contents. This bombardment by American bombers was meant to destroy the port installations of the port of Rotterdam but due to the very strong westerly wind blowing, all the bombs missed their target and landed on top of streets with houses. Approx. 13,000 people were made homeless and there were at least 326 casualties. (Source: Wikepdia).

Once the war is finished he returns to sea in Jan. 1946 as Captain of the ss Blommersdijk (II) which was a Liberty Ship (and the only one ever to sail for the company) which had been taken over as Army surplus. From that moment onwards his seniority kicks in and he is quickly assigned to the senior ships, ending up in 1952 as Commodore on the flagship of the company the ss Nieuw Amsterdam (II)

One of the obligatory photo shoots which come with the function of being a senior passenger ship Captain. This is on the starboard bridge wing of the ss Nieuw Amsterdam (II) in New York. it looks like it as if the Lady needs directions to the local bus top before getting off the ship.

He retired on 01 May 1953 from the company. Upon retirement he received a coromandel wooden box with inside his Commodore flag. On the outside the date of joining Hal and the date of retirement. He also received the recognition of Officer in the Order of Orange Nassau, the equivalent of the British KBE.

He then returns for a voyage on the Aardyk in 1954. Some of his colleagues such as ex Commodore Vlietstra did the same. The consensus is (although never confirmed by company or themselves) that they needed the money

The Dutch Order of Officer in the Order of Oranje – Nassau.

as the pensions were very low especially those who had not sailed during the war years.

Upon his retirement as commodore of the company, he was made an Officer in the Order of Oranje Nassau. (This is a Dutch version of the British OBE)

After retirement he was the chairman of the old boys association of his old Maritime Academy in Amsterdam, (Vereeniging van Oud Kweekelingen VOK) and was later made a Honorary Member (1978)

He passed away on 16 May 1984 after a long illness.   A large number of his papers were donated to Georgetown University including many of his manuscripts both in print and hand written. (e)

Last address: Quarles van Uffordstraat 99, 2202 NE Noordwijk

ED: I am still digging for interesting items out of his career by cross referencing the histories of the ships. Also I have not find out what he did during the war years as some Captains, or future captains were not exactly “inactive”.  TBA.

(a) What was very special about Captain Verhoog was his hobby. He is credited with a large number of publications, all somehow related to the sea, but varying from Plays, to books, to scientific publications.

One of the captain’s hobby’s was the life of Christopher Columbus and he had figured out that the most likely place where Columbus had made his landfall in the new world were the Caicos Islands. There are many theories about were Columbus exactly landed and nobody is completely sure. Most people think it is San Salvador Island in the North East Bahamas but several other islands lay claim to that fame as well. With the current running along the whole eastern boundary of the Bahamas, Columbus could have landed anywhere. He published this in a 66 page booklet, with chart.

However Captain Verhoog came, after investigation of old Spanish sources and subsequent calculations, to the conclusion that it was the Caicos. He announced this accordingly during an interview with the New York Times. This brought the whole gang of “pro Sal Salvador” proponents into action and for a while there was quite a heated discussion going on in the New York Times. Even in the early 90’s magazine articles devoted to this subject mentioned the theory of Captain Verhoog (f). And again there was the underlying current of him not being a “real scientist” but a sailor.

He could be as intimately involved with Columbus as he was proficient in Spanish and later on he also mastered Old Spanish. He was proficient enough to translate a Spanish book published by the Spanish Noble Prize winner Jimenez into the Dutch Language.

Apart from Columbus he was also very active with other publications: books, plays, a large series of various articles, translations of English books, Poems, Biographies etc. etc. Fiction when not published in book form, many appeared in the local Rotterdam Newspaper, between 1928 and 1940 when he was a regular contributor with the NRC.

Nautical articles appeared in professional and hobby magazines alike such as the Dutch “Onze Vloot”, and “Blauwe Wimpel”, but also the esteemed Naval Institute Proceedings.

Photos of some books: small and in line

List of Publications as far as I have been able to find them: (Excluding newspaper and magazine articles)

1924 Op Bruisende Golven,                                                                       Fiction

1927 Avonturen van de Zee.                                                                       Fiction

1927 Onder de Tropen Zon een zee verhaal                                     Fiction

1928 Zijn laatste Reis                                                                                      Play

1932 Van Havens en Zeeen                                                                         Fiction

1933 Schipper Willaert                                                                                   Fiction

1937 Wolken en Water                                                                                  Poetry

1943 Westinjevaarder                                                                                    Fiction

1945 De Vliegende Hollander                                                                      Fiction

1945 Nederland Blijft Varen                                                                        Non Fiction

1947 Guanahani again, the Landfall of Columbus in 1492.        Scientific

1949 Ontdekker en Admiraal, a biography of Columbus.             Scientific

1952 Patero en Ik een Andalusische elegy van J.R Jimenes            Translation

1956 Langs Havens en strand;  De kust van Belgie en Nederland   Non Fiction

1957 Hellevaart Alan Villiers                                                                         Translation

1958 De ontdekking van amerika voor Columbus                               Scientific

1959 De Ontwikkeling van onze scheepvaart en havens                  Non Fiction

1961 De reis van Michel Adriaansz. De Ruyter in 1664 – 1665        Scientific (met L.koelmans)

Xxxx Twee jaar voor de Mast 1834 – 1836 Richard H.Dana             Translation

At the very end of this biography I have listed a few of his poems, which by his admirers of the time were considered to be of a very high standards. In they are in the language of his era and have thus not withstood the change of the times. This might also be the reason that his endeavors (apart from the Columbus publication) are not very well remembered anymore.

Even with this considerable output he was not that popular with those who considered themselves experts in literary matters. He was considered an amateur who was either too light, too heavy, to stiff, too common, etc. etc.  to find a place in the exalted realms of the Dutch writing community. No doubt the fact that his books sold well (many of his books went for a 2nd or a 3rd print) might not have helped his acceptance in the more eclectic world. I have to assume that for a sailor who stood with both feet firmly on deck he would have been more concerned about his readers than about would the experts thought.

People who sailed with him (F.L. Bertens j.v.i. 1951 cadet Aardyk) remembered that he wrote some articles on board in English and then had those typed out by him, the cadet on board. Then they went by mail to his daughter.

Source Credits:

(a) Commodoreverhoog.blog.spot.com (Including Photo Album)

(b) Voyage information (Stamboeken and movement boeken) from the HAL Archives as held by the Municipal Archives of the City of Rotterdam

(c) Municipal Archives of Rotterdam.

(d) Mr. E.H Kruidhof

(e) Mr. Laurens van der Laan  Holland America Historian

(f) Het Parool 04 January page 3 & 16.

(b) Sailing List:

Date:                     Function:                             Ship:                                      Wages and/or remarks.

08 Aug. 1910       Cadet                                    Nieuw Amsterdam          10,–

09 Jan. 1911       Cadet                                    Amsteldijk                               20,–

02 Sep. 1911       Temporary dismissed to go to school for 3rd mate license passed 28 Oct. 1911

13 Nov. 1911       4th. Officer                           Potsdam                                30,–

11 Oct. 1912       4th. Officer                           Potsdam                                 10,–

30 Dec. 1912       3rd officer                            Gorredijk                                 60,–

08 Dec. 1913       3rd officer                            Gorredijk                                 70,–

14 May.1914       Temporary ashore

23 May.1914       Passed for 2nd mates license

26 May.1914       3rd. officer                           Noordam                                  70,–

03 Jul.    1914       3rd officer                            Noordam                                  85,–

01 Aug. 1914       Temporary dismissed due to the mobilization service at sea.

04 Oct. 1914       3rd. officer                           Veendijk                                      85,–

20 Nov. 1914       2nd officer                            Veendijk                                     100,–

15 Mar. 1915      2nd officer                            Sommelsdijk                              100,–

14 Jun.  1915       2nd officer                            Sommelsdijk                              110,–

20 Jan. 1916       2nd officer                            Noordam                                       120,–

27 Feb. 1916       Temporary dismissed for military service at sea

13 Oct. 1916       2nd officer                            Noordam                                        130,–

26 Apr. 1917       Temporary dismissed to go to school for 1st mates license.

09 May. 1917      Passed for first mates license

08 May.1917       Made available for the military authorities.

28 Jun.  1917       2nd officer                            Nieuw Amsterdam                      130,–

17 Jan. 1918       Temporary shore

11 Feb. 1918       2nd officer                            Zijldijk                                                  130,–

08 May 1918       2nd officer Sr.                      Nieuw Amsterdam                       130,–

18 Feb. 1919       2nd officer                            in Rotterdam administration

03 Mar. 1919       2nd officer                            Sloterdijk                                             130,–

01 Jul.    1919       wage increase

19 Aug. 1919       2nd officer                            Rotterdam                                            215,–

01 Jan. 1920        Wage increase                                                                                       225,–

01 Jan. 1920        Wage increase                                                                                        270.–

03 Jul.  1920        Temporary ashore

07 Jul. 1920         Act. Chief Officer             Eemdijk                                                   280,–

As acting Chief Officer wage from 01 Jan. 1920                                                      320,–

19 Apr.  1921       Ashore                                                                                                 on leave for 25 days,

14 May. 1921      Chief Officer                      Zaandijk                                                     320,–

19 Oct. 1921        Chief Officer                      Gorredijk                                                  288,–

26 Jul. 1922         Chief Officer                      Breedijk                                                      285,–

31 Jan. 1923       Ashore

23 Apr.  1923       Chief Officer                      Veendijk                                                     285,–

28 May.1924       Chief Officer                      Grootendijk                                              285,–                    At New York

16 Jun.  1924       Ashore                                                                                                            285,–

23 Jul.    1924       Chief Officer                      Poeldijk                                                      285,–

30 Aug. 1924       Chief Officer                      Eemdijk                                                        285,–

07 Jul.    1925       Chief Officer                      Eemdijk                              290,–    wage increase

22 Mar. 1925       Chief Officer                      Noordam                           290,–

08 Apr. 1926       Chief Officer                      Blijdendijk                         290,–

07 Jul.    1926       Chief Officer                      Blijdendijk                        295,–    wage increase

17 Nov. 1926      Chief Officer                      Leerdam                              295,–

01 Apr. 1927       Chief Officer                      Leerdam                              305,–    wage increase

01 Jan. 1929        Chief Officer                      Leerdam                              315,–

04 Apr.  1929       Temporary Ashore                                                          315,– Leave.

10 May.1929       Chief Officer                      Edam                                     315,-

26 Aug. 1929       Act. Captain                        Edam                                   560,–

Due to illness of Capt. Dekker at Havanna.

17 Oct. 1929       Chief Officer                      Edam                                    315,–

02 Jan.  1930       Wage increase                                                                  325,–    starting 1 Jan. 1930

16 Jun.  1930       Chief Officer                      Maasdam                          325,–

18 Dec. 1930       Chief Officer                      Ashore                                325,–

13 Feb.  1931       Chief Officer                      Grootendijk                     325,–    with the ship to sea

21 Oct. 1931        Temporary ashore                                                           325,–    due to sail Grootendijk

12 Nov. 1931      Wage decrease                                                                  262,50

And put on 70% stand by money

09 Jan. 1931        Chief Officer                      Breedijk                               262,50

06 Apr. 1933       Temporary ashore at 70%                                            262,50   70% canceled

11 Apr. 1933       Chief Officer                      Leerdam                              262,50

28 Jun. 1933        Wage decrease with 5% in acc. with circulaire No 929 dated 27-6-1933

19 Jul. 1933         Chief Officer                      Bilderdijk                          262,50

25 Oct. 1933        Chief Officer                      Beemsterdijk                 263,50

28 Dec. 1933       Wage decrease to                                                           236,25 see circ 929 dated 27-6-1933

30 Dec. 1933       Temporary ashore                                                           236,25

08 Jan. 1934        Chief Officer                      Breedijk                               236,75

20 May. 1934      Chief Officer                      Breedijk                               236,75

22 Sep. 1934       Chief Officer                      Blommersdijk                    236,25

01 Oct. 1934        Wage decrease to                                                           226.75

10 Jan. 1935        Chief Officer                      Binnendijk                          226.75

04 Jul. 1935         Temporary ashore                                                           226.75   regular leave

22 Jul. 1935         Chief Officer                      Binnendijk                          226.75

02 Jan. 1936        Chief Officer                      Veendam                            226.75

04 Nov. 1936      Temporary ashore                                                           226.75   regular leave

12 Nov. 1936      Chief Officer                      Veendam                            226,75

21 Apr. 1936       Temporary ashore                                                           226.75   regular leave

28 Apr. 1936       Act. Captain                        Blommersdijk                    350,–    promoted to Act. Captain

01 Oct. 1937        According to new regulation                                       390,– (as captain)

255.25 as Chief Officer

Captain until 10 Dec.

14 Dec. 1937       Set back to Chief Officer and temp ashore           255,25   regular leave.

GAP

04 Feb. 1939      Chief Officer                       Statendam

19 Mar. 1939      Chief Officer                      Statendam

19 Jul. 1939         Captain                                 Breedijk                               Until 26 Oct. 1939

Note: The Statendam was the Flagship of the company and the function of staff captain / chief officer on board was considered to be on par with being captain. As per company seniority system, the chief officer of the flagship was the first in line to be promoted to Captain when an opening became available. Thus it was possible that somebody went up and down a few times.

Was in the Netherlands during the war, as the ss Statendam (III) did not make it back to sea when the invasion started and subsequently burned out during the fighting in and around the port of Rotterdam.

21 Oct. 1945        Captain                               Blommersdijk                    Sailed as passenger to Montreal.

07 Dec. 1945        Captain                               Blommersdijk                   Took command in Montreal

03 Jan. 1946        Captain                                 Blommersdijk

Xx Sep. 1946       Captain                                 Groningen/Andyk             Until 25 Dec. 1947

travelled to Chester to collect the ship which was then still owned by the Dutch Government. It sailed on  23 October from New York with a cargo of tabacco, and wood (for wooden shoe production) for Antwerp and Rotterdam. In Rotterdam the ship was formally handed over to Holland America and renamed.

28 Jan.1948        Captain                                 Blijdendijk                              Until 21 Mar. 1948

13 May 1948       Captain                                 Duivendijk                             Until 20 Dec. 1948

27 Dec. 1948       Captain                                 Noordam                                Until 09 Oct. 1950

18 Nov. 1950      Captain                                 Westerdam                            Until  05 Mar. 1951

30 Mar.1951       Captain                                 Veendam                                 Until 22 Oct. 1951

GAP

Most likely on Leave, unless there was a fill in for illness which is not in the records of the company.

Promoted to Commodore  date: tba and assigned to the ss Nieuw Amsterdam.

01 Jan. 1952        Captain                                 Nieuw Amsterdam

07 Mar. 1952      Captain                                 Nieuw Amsterdam            Until 21 May. 1953

Retired from the company.

Then returns for unknown reasons:

28 Mar. 1954      Captain                                 Aardyk                                    Until 18 May. 1954

20 Aug. 1954       Captain                                 Almdyk                                   Until 07 Nov. 1954

Three Poems published in the Dutch Magazine Forum:

Bui in het Kanaal

De zon een fusaïool van licht

In amethysten wolkenbank,

De kim van zware buien dicht,

Verworgt een doffe donderklank.

Het rhythmisch rillend golfgewemel

Doorschulpt een zeevlak van ophiet,

De violette onweershemel

Bevlaagt blank-adrig het nephriet.

De eb zuigt weg langs Michaëlsbergen,

Ontsnapt de horens van de draak:

De levensmoeden mogen sterven,

Voor ‘t wassend water hen bewaak’.

Sepia vlerken van twee visschers

Bezeilen rotskust in de lij,

Moderne nautische arithmanciërs

Jagen een groote boot voorbij.

Pardoens en stagen zijn het speeltuig,

De sylphenschaar striemt tonen voort,

En dissoneerend, luid en ruig,

Huilt dreigend hun septiemaccoord.

Wit als zwanendons, ijle ijzelwind,

Gamma

Als schuim van de zee, als een gletscher-val.

Blauw de kou van het interstellair heelal,

Getemperd staal, Oceaangolven-tint,

Een aswenteling die op sterven zint.

Geel als vruchten en bloemen in bladerhal,

Als ringen van wespen, als solfer, als gal,

Denkbeeldige grens waar waanzin begint.

Rood: rijpe kersen, vloeiend bloed,

Handeling, prikkeling, roofdiermuil,

Zon achter mist, en vlammengloed.

Zwarte rattenpest, rouw, en smartgehuil,

Aasvliegen op lijken, der mijnen schacht,

En de schuwe schaduwen van de nacht.

 

Bar in Havana

 

Spiegelwanden kaatsen flesschen,

Rum klutst over kruimels ijs,

Beenen slank in zijden kousen,

Vreemde vruchten, heete spijs.

Neuzig raspt een oude Yankee

Na zijn zevende ginfizz,

Witte bartenders in actie:

Elke greep behendig, wis.

Tintelende lichtreclames,

Presidente, Daiquiri.

Droog tòk-tòk op houten claves:

Dreinend schuurt de melodie.

Ritselt balslag der maracas,

Coïtocentrische muziek:

Canciones, tangos, rumbas,

Wentelklank van molenwiek

Schurkt er als met korte rukjes:

Zinbenevelend gekweel.

Volk op paddestoelen-krukjes

Sipperlipt een rum-cocktail.

 Buiten rauw claxon-getoeter

In de nauwe, Spaansche straat.

 

Vreemde geur vol zwoelheid doet er

Telkens zinken het gepraat.

Bruine facies in de deuren,

Meisjes, negers, en een gids,

Vicieus verlokkend leuren,

Zweemend bieden zondentrits,

Wenken klanten in de bar:

Elders oesters, rijst ‘con pollo’,

Restaurant of lupanar,

Nieuw genot, en dans bij banjo.

Duister breidt de zee zich uit

Langs de gladde Malecon,

Rust hergevend ruisch-geluid,

Nacht om lichtgloed, abandon.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2 Comments

  1. Daniel Kusrow

    June 29, 2020 at 3:10 pm

    Thanks so much for the photo of the Breedijk. My late father in law, Hendrik Voorspuy, was a mate on her when she was torpedoed in 1942. He spent a number of days in a life boat off West Africa before being picked up by the British Navy. This is the first photograph I have seen of her. It is an important ship to our family.

    Daniel
    Staten Island, New York

    • Captain Albert

      June 29, 2020 at 8:37 pm

      Thank you for visiting my website.

      I am working on the history of the Breedijk and it’s captain, Ruygrok (who did not survive the torpedoing)So please check my website again in about six weeks and there should be a lot more information available.

      Best regards

      Capt. Albert

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