The third Keynote speaker at our Annual conference in September will be Dr van Duivenvoorde who will be giving a presentation on Dirk Hartog’s landing in Western Australia (1616–2016): An Archaeological and Historical Context.
This year marks the quadricentennial of the first confirmed European arrival in Western Australia. On 25 October 1616, Dutch skipper Dirk Hartog and his crew landed at the northern tip of what is known today as Cape Inscription on Dirk Hartog Island in Shark Bay. One of the most significant early European sites in Australia, his crew left behind a pewter plate as a testimony of their arrival and departure. This presentation discusses Hartog’s life, his reputation and experience as an accomplished seafarer, and even suggests that he purposely navigated into Australian waters. It also investigates the archaeological and historical context of the Hartog Inscription Plate—now featured in the Rijksmuseum collection. Emphasising the nature of similar monuments left by European explorers in the Indian Ocean region and contemporary ship communication practices, it places Hartog and the Inscription plate into the broader setting of seventeenth-century Dutch seafaring activities and exploration.
Dr Wendy van Duivenvoorde is a senior lecturer in maritime archaeology at Flinders University and deputy director of the Australian Consortium of Humanities Research Centres. She is also affiliated faculty with the Institute of Nautical Archaeology at Texas A&M University. Dr van Duivenvoorde’s research primarily focuses on ships of exploration and Indiamen, and includes the archaeological remains of Western Australia’s Dutch East Indiamen shipwrecks.