RELICS OF THE KONING WILLEM II
Jack Loney, the well known Australian Maritime Author, wrote in 1957; “Koenig Willem II left many relics. Most are in private collections, but among those to be seen today are, a cannon and a number of cabin doors”.
The cannon with inscription plate (refer to photo’s in introduction) is easy to locate. Find Royal Circus near the old Customs House in Robe, and on top of the roundabout (Flagstaff Hill) stands the most visible relic of the Koning Willem II.
The cabin doors and some of the heavy timbers of the stricken vessel can be found in one of Robe’s prized possessions, the Caledonian Hotel in Main Street. This Hotel was built in 1859 by a very eligible Scotsman, Peter McQueen and declared a Historical Inn on December 20th, 1975.
Some years ago, whilst staying in Robe, I visited the Caledonian Hotel and was shown the upstairs bedrooms with the doors from the Koning Willem II and some of the heavy timber in another part of the Hotel. The licensee permitted me to take some photographs which are included at the end of this chapter.
Although I have made a number of enquiries about other relics with local people during several visits to Robe, I have been unable to locate any in private hands.