First Page




Last Page



During the first half of the 17th century, several beadmaking establishments operated in the city of Middelburg in the southwestern corner of the Netherlands. Bead wasters recovered from several find sites in the old part of the city reveal the diversity of the product line which featured beads decorated with straight and spiral stripes. Several chevron types were also produced. There are similarities with wasters found at contemporary beadmaking sites in Amsterdam, indicating that both production centers made similar bead varieties. Few of the bead varieties represented have correlatives in the areas of North America that were under Dutch control, leaving one guessing what market the Middelburg beads were destined for. In that the city was a major center for the Dutch East India Company, it may be that their market was in that part of the world. Unfortunately, comparative material from South and Southeast Asia is currently lacking.

Publisher Information

The Society of Bead Researchers is a non-profit scientific-educational corporation founded in 1981 to foster historical, archaeological, and material cultural research on beads and beadwork of all materials and periods, and to expedite the dissemination of the resultant knowledge. Membership is open to all persons involved in the study of beads, as well as those interested in keeping abreast of current trends in bead research.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.