Flag of the Netherlands

Flag of the Netherlands.

Dutch Antarctica (Dutch: Nederlands Antarctica), informally known as the Dutch Midnight Coast (Nederlands Middernachtkust), was a former claim by the Dutch Empire in Eastern Antarctica. Initially comprised of several whaling stations, these settlements grew into a modest colonial presence. Most of the early settlers came from the Cape Colony (formerly a Dutch colony) as part of the Great Trek. While limited, these Boer settlers helped to establish an agricultural base in the settlements.

By the 1840s, these Dutch settlements became surrounded by new settlements of the Russian Empire. Following Russia's victory in the Krannkush War, combined with limited gains for the Dutch, the Netherlands sell their claims to Russia. Despite the Dutch government leaving, the Boer settlers quickly opposed coming under outside rule. A short-lived Republic of the Midnight Coast was proclaimed, resulting in a year-long war. While the war ended in a Russian victory, a compromise was made between Russia and the Dutch settlers. In recognizing Russian rule, Russia would allow the region to remain Dutch and would encourage non-Russians to settle the region.

Today the former colony corresponds roughly to the modern day Bellinsgauzenian governorate of the Midnight Coast. The region continues to retain a uniquely Dutch culture compared to the rest of Bellinsgauzenia.
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