Archeological artifacts arrive at their final resting place

POSTED: 08/25/11 12:48 PM

St. Maarten – “This is a historical day in the heritage of St Maarten” said Dr Jay Haviser, Director of the Sint Maarten Archeological Center Simarc. Those comments were made after several pieces of local artifacts were removed from the bowels of the HMS Pelikaan at the cargo pier yesterday afternoon.
Among the delegation to witness the unloading of the crate with boxed artifacts were Vice Prime Minister Theo Heyliger. Minister of Education, Youth Sports and Culture Rhoda Arrindell, lieutenant at sea Maarten Veenstra, the commander of the ship along with members of the St Maarten Harbor Group of Companies headed by Mark Mingo, parliamentarian Patrick Illidge, the local representative of the National Archeological & Anthropological Memory Management (NAAM) Alfonso Blijden and four Simarc students.
“Finally we are having our archeological heritage artifacts which were housed in Curacao since the 1970’s coming back to be housed at the SIMRAC office,” Haviser said when he delivered the opening remarks prior to the opening of the crate.
Haviser attributed the restoration and return of the artifacts to St Maarten through the kind cooperation between the Netherlands, Country Curacao and Country St Maarten who were collaborating in a constructive way. After some kind words of encouragement by Minister Arrindell, Vice Prime Minister Heyliger had an opportunity to address the small gathering.
While Heyliger wasted no time to shower Haviser with praise, he could not refrain from commending the young people that are involved in the business of restoration. “ It’s hard to be doing a project without having our young people involved. This is one of the better projects when were able to get something back from Curacao and I am very happy with that,” Heyliger stated. It’s now up to the Simarc students of to unpack, label and store the pieces which can be viewed by special arrangements with Dr Haviser.

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