Friday
Jun282013

Fear Not

From James C. Schaap

Once upon a time, the Schaap family lived here--the island of Terschelling, one of a small chain of islands off the northwest corner of the country of the Netherlands.  Cornelius C. Schaap may well have been a farmer, one of hundreds in that eastern, mint green belly of the island, the side that faces the Netherlands, not sandy beach that swallows the pounding waves of the North Sea.  

 He might have been a seaman, too, because tons of Terschelling men were likely sailors of some type or another.  For a century at least, Holland ruled the high seas.  

 He might have been a scavenger too, a beachcomber.  I'm always taken with that possibility because I've done more than my share of beach walking along Lake Michigan, hoping to uncover some treasure washed up by the waves of a storm.

Some Terschelling-ers made a livelihood from beachcombing, because shipwrecks on the North Sea coasts weren't all that rare. Those massive beaches daily offered up something, sometimes treasures.  

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