Buttons from an oriental kaftan, found in the Palmwood wreck

As diver in the Wadden Sea, the water is so cloudy, you often don’t have more than half a meter of visibility. Despite the limited vision, divers from the Diving Club Texel sometimes make spectacular discoveries. Such as in 2014, when a new part of a wreck on the Burgzand flushed free of sand.

Somewhere around 1650, a ship perished on the Roads of Texel. It had just returned from the subtropics, filled with Mediterranean products such as resins and boxwood (or palmwood). The latter is a high-grade hardwood destined for the luxury furniture industry. That is why the wreck was named the Palmwood Wreck. But the divers found more than just trade goods. Among others, they also salvaged a unique collection of 17th century textiles and accessories.

The treasures from the wreck are legally owned by the provincial government, and they are now being studied and conserved. The ultimate goal being long-term exhibition near the Texel Roads. Parts of this remarkable collection are regularly on display at Kaap Skil, provided that researchers are finished with them.

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