Page 219 - Dutch Asiatic Shipping Volume 1
P. 219

 Further sources
The remaining sources used in the compilation of the Lists are very diverse: they include serial sources, many of them in archive collections, as well as narrative sources, among them ships' journals and travelogues.
In a number of sources, ships' dimensions and capacity are given with great accuracy. In the collection Hudde for instance, in the Algemeen Rijksarchief, various lists are present in which such data are recorded. This archive collection originated with Johannes Hudde, a director of the Amsterdam chamber from 1679 to 1703, and one of the driving forces behind a committee set up in 1683 with the task of improving the V O C s financial situation, worsened since 1672.28 The many statistical data about ships and shipping collected by Hudde served in particular to ascertain the need for ships' capacity for the Dutch-Asiatic trade. Lists of outward bound ships compiled for Hudde provide few new data - which stands to reason since use was made of "seecker oblong boeckie (a certain oblong booklet) which undoubtedly means uitloopboek KA 4389.2 9 Of importance however is the list made by Hudde of ships taken into service by the chambers from around 1660, giving year of construction, or of purchase or hire, and type and dimensions. In addition Hudde compiled a list of all ships owned by the Company in 1687, again giving dimensions and also the numbers of lasts. It was Hudde's intention to ascertain and evaluate the VOC' assets in ships: he estimated the 120 ships on this list to be worth ƒ 2,722,200.30
The work of the director Hendrik Decquer, already discussed in chapter 3, on the dimensions and carrying capacity of the ships, was done in close collaboration with Hudde. In his book Decquer gives dimensions and capacity in lasts of a large number of ships in Company service between 1670 and 1685. Hudde was also the instigator of the compilation of a great reference work on the VOC, of which the directors put Pieter van Dam in charge. His Beschryvinge already quoted many times in the preceding text, was completed in 1702. Many documents, lists and tables now available in the Hudde archives, were incorporated by V an Dam in his work, sometimes slightly amended and updated to 1702. The first part of the Beschryvinge contains a list of ships built by the chambers from 1660 on, stating dimensions and type. The list runs up to 1702 (the comparable list by Hudde up to 1687) and hired or purchased ships are not mentioned.31
Lists of returning ships and home voyages have been compiled several times during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. In the Hudde collection is a survey of ships returning home from Asia for the Amsterdam chamber between 1676 and 1686, giving date of departure and arrival and duration of the voyage. Hudde made this survey in order to calculate the average duration of the voyages.32 Also covering a ten year period is another list of Hudde's, this time from 1675 to 1685, giving homebound ships with the numbers of returning seafarers and military.33
The most comprehensive list is the one incorporated by Valentijn in his magnum opus Oud en Nieuw Oostindien: it names all homebound ships from 1597, thus including the ships
28 Roessingh, Sources, 113. See also the introduction by F. W. Stapel in Van Dam, Beschryvinge, vol. 63.
29 A R A , coll. Hudde, no. 20 contains various lists.
30 ARA,coll. Hudde, no. 20 and 21; see also p. 27.
31 Van Dam, Beschryvinge, vol. 63, 480-492.
32 On the basis of this list (in A R A coll. Hudde 20) Hudde calculated the following average duration
of the voyage: route Batavia-Netherlands 7 months and 28 days (including the unfortunate voyage of the EUROPA (5769) in 1683); 7 months 19 days (excluding the EUROPA); route Ceylon-Ne­ therlands 7 months 2 days. The results are largely in agreement with the figures given in ch. 5, ρ. 89.
33 This list also in A R A coll. Hudde, no. 20.

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