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Photographer's Note

The title is of course unfair to friendly, present day Statians. This is St. Eustatius Historical Foundation Museum which is located in the center of Oranjestad in the 18th century house of Simon Doncker, who was a wealthy merchant.

The museum is full of information of colonial era when St. Eustatius was a rich trade island with a thriving economy and a cosmopolitan population. Lack of rainfall prohibited a sucessful plantation economy, therefore the Dutch could focus all their attention on trade. the Dutch established free trade in their overseas colonies, free from taxation and regulations (such as those enforced by the other Colonial powers). Thus St. Eustatius became neutral trading hub for enslaved Africans, finished products from Europe and raw materials from the Americas. As many as 200 vessels could lay anchor in Oranje Bay at one time.

(More information on St. Eustatius Historical Foundation pages.)

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Additional Photos by Kari Tanskanen (ktanska) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3326 W: 54 N: 3882] (24624)
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