Laurens van der Laan sent us this photo and note regarding his experience with the “De Lijn” North America Association while sailing on Eurodam from Fort Lauderdale to Rotterdam. The De Lijn N.A. Association is an association of past Holland America Line employees.
I worked in the office of the “old” Holland America Line in New York, first at 29 Broadway and later at Pier 40. I left the company in 1972 after the traditional trans-Atlantic service had been discontinued and my services organizing tours of Europe, etc., were no longer needed.
At the time of the bicentennial I became interested in Dutch-American history and started the Hollandamericahistoricalsociety.org Web site. Thus, when Captain Darin Bowland during his staff introductions mentioned Columbus but not Henry Hudson, I mentioned that to him. He admitted he was not aware and I suggested that I give a presentation during the cruise. He referred me to Julie Ann (Jules) Seidel, event manager on board, who got permission from Carolyn Craig, manager of on-board enrichment at Seattle, and my presentation went ahead. Chad, the stage manager was able to connect my laptop to the screen for me to project some of my photos.
Everything went very well and the Captain was kind enough to attend. Afterwards, I held some sessions with three passengers interested in their New Netherlands roots.