Sweers Island Project
The Sweers family

Sweers Islands Unveiled follows the paths of discoverers Abel Tasman (1603-1659) and Matthew Flinders (1774-1814) with one common factor in mind: The places they named after Salomon Sweers (1612-1674), Councillor of the Dutch United East India Company (VOC) in Batavia in the 1640s.

"This booklet is a highly polished gem"
The Globe, Journal of the Australian Map Circle Icn, No. 59, Aug 2007, reviewed by Victor Prescott

Title: Sweers Islands Unveiled - Details from Abel Tasman and Matthew Flinders' explorations of Australia
Høgenhoff Forlag, ISBN 9788299714020 (ISBN 10: 8299714028)

SIUThe book gives a short, comprehensive history of early Dutch discoveries of the South Seas. Following Councillor Salomon Sweers, it gives an interesting insight into the life of the VOC, and on a local level, it gives the history of present-day Sweers Island in the Gulf of Carpentaria, Qld. This is the only place among the original five that still carries Salomon Sweers name.

The Bonaparte Tasman map
By examining a short section of the Gulf of Carpentaria, the book demonstrates that the Bonaparte Tasman map is much more accurate than previously believed. The map shows Dutch discoveries up to the 1640s and the course of Abel Tasman's two great voyages of 1642-43 (discovering Tasmania [Van Diemen's Land], New Zealand, Tonga and the Fiji Group) and 1644. The 1644 voyage took Tasman along the entire northern coast, mapping the largest new section of Australia ever covered in one expedition.

48 pages with stapled cover, the book is richly illustrated with old charts and modern maps, and colourful vignettes by local Aboriginal artist M Henry.Sweers Islands Unveiled was printed by Steejo Press in Queensland, Australia in April 2006. Høgenhoff Forlag, ISBN 9788299714020 (ISBN 10: 8299714028)

Below, from left: Lyn & Tex Battle, Sweers Island, Australia, residents of modern day Sweers Island; Carsten Berg Høgenhoff, Oslo, Norway, descendant of Salomon's niece Judith, genealogist and author of the book "Sweers Islands Unveiled"; Bob Forsyth, Mount Isa, Australia, local historian, holding a copy of Heeres' book on Tasman; and Annette Sweerts, Amsterdam, the Netherlands, genealogist

SIU Team LibrarySweers Islands Unveiled in the media

Click for articles

The Globe
, Journal of The Australian Map Circle Inc, No 59, August 2007, p 62. Reviewed by Victor Prescott at the University of Melbourne: This booklet is a highly polished gem.
Placenames Australia, Newsletter of the Australian National Placename Survey ANPS, Macquarie University, September 2006. Article about the SIU in their New Publications column on p. 2-3.
History Magazine, Royal Australian Historical Society, Sept 2006 Number 89. Short article in their book review column.
ABC Northwest (Radio programme), Saturday 28th April 2006: Short presentation of the book by Saturday Breakfast Presenter Bruce Underwood.
Blues Country Magazine, April 2006, Tale would have been history without internet presentation of the new book in Robyn's Book Review.
Flying Doctors, May 2006 (Royal Flying Doctors Service's monthly magazine) presents the SIU for their readers.
North Queensland Register, 6th April 2006 brings a half page article presenting the book.
ABC Northwes (Radio programme), Wednesday  26th April 2006: Radio interview with Senior Curator Paul Brunton and the SIU's Bob Forsyth, by Morning Presenter Scott Barret

See also:
Placenames Australia, December 2006. "Did Matthew Flinders go one river too far?", by Carsten Berg Høgenhoff, p. 1 & 4-7. Article with a closer look at Matthew Flinders's discovery of Sweers Island in 1802 and the old Bonaparte Tasman and Thèvenot map

Click here for our Press release (Pdf file)
Sweers Island Fishing Resort Official web site

Mapping Conference DarwinPhoto: Co-writer Bob Forsyth participated at the conference 400 Years of Mapping Australia in Darwin, Northern Territory, from 23rd to 25th August 2006. Sweers Islands Unveiled was very well received by the audience, with more than 30 copies sold. The conference was organized by the Mapping Sciences Institute, Australia (MSIA).

You get Sweers Islands Unveiled here:
Please contact one of these bookstores or use the order form to order Sweers Islands Unveiled.

Price: AU$ 19.95 / ca EURO 11.95 / ca US$ 14.25 / ca NOK 95,00 plus postage from Australia.

  • Astrolabe Booksellers,1st floor, 81 Salamanca Place, Hobart, Tasmania, Ph. /Fax 03 6223 8644 Email Web
  • Australian Stockmans Hall Of Fame, Longreach, Central Queensland. Ph: 07 7658 2166
  • Book Country, Isa Square, Simpson Street, Mount Isa, Queensland. Ph: 07 47490400
  • Burketown Post Office, Beames Street, Burketown, Queensland. Ph: 07 47455106
  • Cooktown Historical Society, Cooktown, North Queensland. Ph: 07 4069 5888
  • Cooktown James Cook Historical Museum, Cooktown, North Queensland. Ph: 07 40695386
  • Croydon Tourist Information Centre, Samwell Street, Croydon, Queensland. Ph: 07 47456125
  • Dymocks Booksellers, Gardentown, Toowoomba, SE Queensland. Ph: 07 4632 7655
  • JC Museum, Cooktown, Queensland. Ph: 07 4069 5386
  • Jean-Louis Boglio Maritime Books, Currumbin, SE Queensland. Ph: 07 5534 9349 Email Web
  • Karumba Post Office, Yappar Street, Karumba, Queensland. Ph: 07 4745 9210
  • Karumba Supermarket, Karumba, Queensland. Ph: 074745 9187
  • Queen Victoria Museum & Art Gallery, Invermay Road, Inveresk Tasmania, Ph. 03 6323 3742
  • Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS), Mount Isa, NW Queensland. Ph: 07 4743 2800
  • State Library of NSW, Macquarie Street, Sydney, NSW. Ph: 02 9273 1414
  • TerrEstrial Centre, Low Street, Georgetown, Queensland. Ph: 07 40621485
  • The Maritime Museum of Tasmania, Carnegie Building, Hobart, Tasmania. Ph. 03 6234 1427
  • Thingadonta's Den, Riversleigh Centre, Mount Isa, Queensland. Ph: 07 47490600.
  • Townsville Maritime Museum, 42-68 Palmer St., Sth Townsville 4810, Queensland. Ph. 07 4721 5251 
  • Undara Experience Lava Lodge, Mount Surprise, Queensland. Ph: 1800 990992

I hereby order copy/copies of Sweers Islands Unveiled for the price of AU$ 19.95 per copy + postage.

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From the website of Sweers Island Fishing Resort, Gulf of Carpentaria, Queensland

[1] See also Grahame Anderson's book The merchant of the Zeehaen (Te Papa Press, Wellington 2001). Anderson demonstrates that the handwriting of Mr. Isaac Gilsemans can be recognized on the Bonaparte Tasman map. Gilsemans accompanied Tasman on both journeys in 1642-43 and in 1644, and was dead in Asia by 1647 without ever returning to Europe.

Go to Chapter 12.2 of the SIEC website


Siste endring: 19-Feb-2009
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