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New Netherlands (The Kalmar Union)

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Kingdom of New Netherlands
Timeline: The Kalmar Union
New Netherlands (The Kalmar Union).svg No coa
Flag Coat of Arms
Capital
(and largest city)
Kaapstad
Language Luxembourgoise, Dutch, Xhosa
Queen Charlotta
Chief Minister Jan van der Stel
Population 3,958,500 
Currency LXG

The territory of New Netherlands forms one of the UKN's oldest foreign holdings and one of its eight autonomous kingdoms. It forms the only substantial European possession in Africa. To the east is the United States of South Africa and to the north is Lunda. The capital is Kaapstad and the population is around 3.9 million.

First settled by Dutch farmers in 1647, escaping the religious turmoil and devastation of the Fifty Years War, they occupied a fort that had housed various shipwrecked parties over the years. Whereas most previous expeditions from Portugal and Leon had preferred the Mozambique coast, with its calmer weather and sheltered bays, the Dutch found 'the Cape' a pleasant farming area and it quickly became the default stop over point for all vessels moving to and from India and China. Although technically an independent colony friction over the Cape's valuable position led the settlers calling for Luxembourg to provide military assistance to them and it was soon re-absorbed into the growing Luxembourgois realm.

Antwerp had no interest in much else other than trade so attempted to limit the size of the colony. Competition, occasionally breaking into violent clashes, with the various Bantu and Khoikhoi kingdoms (who had enjoyed trade with Tawantinsuyu and Vinland for a full century previously) helped slow the movement of farmers eastwards but it soon came to control a long stretch of coastline, mostly desert, to the North. To this it added various South Atlantic islands, of which only Chururunin Island (Tawantin for 'Island in the Middle') (OTL Tristan da Cunha) is inhabited.

Its wars with the varied kingdoms and encroaching Bantu to its east has occupied it politically almost since the first European settlement. Its politicians were much involved in the 1905 agreement to build a regional council for Southern Africa, a goal which, several wars notwithstanding, has led slowly to the creation of the USSA. It is still much involved in an advisory aspect but as many critics of the Union portray it as a Luxembourgois puppet as a result New Netherlanders tread a very fine line when dealing with their unpredictable and occasionally volatile neighbour, lest it upset the balance.

In 1924 a three-fifths slice of the Antarctic continent was claimed. There are no permanent residents of this territory due to the extremes in weather though the full claim is overlapped by various Kalmar claims. It was a New Netherlander, Allan Oberweis, who first reached the South Pole in 2008 beating his Ladish rivals by three days.

The territory was converted into a Kingdom within the UKN in 1926. The northern barren regions are noted for its relatively plentiful mineral wealth. Towards the cape itself agriculture is more prominent though small, inefficient farmholding has been identified as a major cause of poverty and inequality. Relationships between the descendants of settlers, mostly speaking Dutch or Luxembourgois and those native Xhosa or other speakers is generally good. There is less separation in the New Netherlands than say New Brabant but there are significant and visible bars between races. Many politicians and activists are now committed to the goal of full-equality of all citizens in education, justice and opportunities.

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