Aruba Past and Present: From the Time of the Indians until Today

By Johan Hartog; J. A. Verleun | Go to book overview

FIFTH CHAPTER
POLITICS AND ECONOMY IN THE NINETEENTH CENTURY

Aruba becomes Dutch again

HOW ARUBA FARED AFTER THIS PERIOD OF CONFUSION IS VERY precisely known. When, in 1816, the colony was taken over by the newly risen Kingdom of the Netherlands a detailed report was drawn up relative to our island.

On 27 January 1816 Governor-General Albert Kikkert set foot ashore on CuraçaO. Among his followers there was also Ludewich Christoph Boyé, Aruba's new commander. On March 4 next the English governor handed over the administration of the colony to Kikkert. The transfer of Aruba followed in the same month.

Already on the day after he had assumed office Kikkert appointed a committee to settle the transfer of the islands of Bonaire and Aruba. Aruba, mentioned last, was first served. Members of the Committee were H. W. de Quartel, commanding officer of the schooner De Haay (Shark), the vessel that had accompanied the ship Prins van Oranje in which Kikkert had made the passage, J. F. G. Ziegler, merchant, and Frans Royer, planter.

These were the persons commissioned to take over Aruba, for which purpose they embarked on His Dutch Majesty's De Haay, commanded by De Quartel. Boyé, now styled Lodewijk, who had been sworn in by Kikkert on 8 March 1816, accompanied them.

As appears from a letter written by "the Committee appointed to take over and incorporate the islands of Bonaire and Aruba" the transfer proper took place on 11 March 1816. In this letter the Committee duly informed Kikkert of their arrival on Aruba on March the 10th, at 1 p.m. The next day British authority, they report, was formally transferred by Commander I. v. der Biest, whom they style British civil commander.

The letter was accompanied by some enclosures, one of which is commended to Kikkert's special notice. This is a list drawn up by the captain of the Indians relative to government livestock and showing the difference between the figures on the date of transfer and those of 13 August 1814. Basing themselves on this statement the Committee report that during this period 265 donkeys have been sold by the English administration.

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