Monday, 24 April 2017

German shipyard Schichau very dangerous concurrent for delivering torpedo boats by the Dutch shipyard Kon. Mij. De Schelde according to a letter dated 13 June 1908

The newest Dutch torpedo boat Hr. Ms. Zeeslang built by Kon. Mij. De Schelde

On 13th June 1908 wrote Van Leeuwen (1) to the shipyard referring to his letter dated 10th that he departed towards the same evening towards Montevideo, Uruguay. He was accompanied by Mr. G. Zaayer known by the Kon. Mij. De Schelde as Zaayer claimed. For an eventual delivery of torpedo boats to Argentine was that a big advantage regarded the knowledge of Zaayer of this subject.(2) At the same time warned Van Leeuwen that also the Dutch shipyards Fijenoord, Nederlandsche Scheepsbouwmaatschappij and Smulders (what later became Gusto) were probably interested in delivering torpedo boats. While these firms hardly delivered such material, was the well experienced shipyard Schichau, Elbing, Germany a serious concurrent. Despite all efforts the Kon. Mij. De Schelde never succeeded in obtaining orders in South-America for building torpedo boats and/or submarines.

1. W. van Leeuwen&Co., Buenos Aires, Argentina, representatives of the Dutch shipyard Kon. Mij. De Schelde, Vlissingen, Netherlands.
2. The last torpedo boat built by the Kon. Mij. De Schelde was the Hr.Ms. Zeeslang on account of the Dutch Department of Colonies to serve in the Dutch East Indies. Displacement 89,32 tons and as dimensions 39,632 x 4,124 x 2,514 (hold) x 1,155-2,06 (draught) metres or 130.0 x 13.6,25 x 8.3 x 3.9,5-6.9 1/8  feet. Laid down on 15 November 1906, in the thrushes on 31 January 1907, launched on 27 April 1907 and handed over to the Royal Netherlands Navy on 6 July 1907. Speed 24,048 miles. Armament consisted of 2-3,7cm guns, 1 torpedo tube and 1 torpedo gun. Crew numbered 20 men.

Archive Kon. Mij. De Schelde 1875-1960 (Municipality Archive Vlissingen) T. 214.258.