Dutch Australian Heritage Centre Victoria, Carnegie
An historic small town scene etched (or possibly printed) on thin metal and subsequently fastened to a plywood backing. The delicately presented scene is said to show the intersection of Old Church Street and the Vliet Canal bridge in Voorburg, as well as a section of wharf. On the canal are one large and two much smaller vessels. A very tall crane-like construction arises from the wharf to the roof of waterside buildings. The people are soberly dressed in possibly 17th or 18th century costumes.
The Vliet is a canal in the western Netherlands, in the province of South Holland. It starts at the Oude Rijn at Leiden and joins the Delfshavense Schie canal at Delft. Places along its banks include Voorschoten, Leidschendam, Voorburg, The Hague and Rijswijk.
The canal was dug in 47 AD under command of Roman general Corbulo, who wished to connect the river Rhine, of which the current Oude Rijn stream in Roman times was the main branch, to the Meuse estuary. It is unclear what the canal's trajectory was beyond the current city of Delft; the Delfshavense Schie canal, which connects Delft to the Nieuwe Maas river was not dug until 1389.
In the Middle Ages the Vliet was an important trade link that attracted all kinds of trade, as it flowed through the heart of the County of Holland. Windmills have been constructed alongside the Vliet, including the completely renovated mill 'De salamander' in Leidschendam. The Vliet area was particularly attractive among richer families, who built their mansions along its banks.
Inscriptions & Markings
On the reverse has been written: "Oude Kerkstraat Brug over de Vliet Voorburg". (Old Church Street; Bridge over the Vliet canal; Voorburg). However, research proves that the church is actually the Old Church in Delft, a short distance further down the Vliet Canal.