Elwin International Tours
ELWIN INTERNATIONAL TOURS (est.1995) "A true knowledge of Africa"
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Mission Statement
The Elmina-Java Museum is established as a philanthropic project in culturally sustainable tourism. Income derived from the Java Museum and Guesthouse will support philanthropic projects in the fields of general education, public health and the arts. Scholarships for higher education will be awarded to deserving youth from the Elmina area. At the discretion of the Board of Directors, youth from other parts of Ghana and Africa may be indeed be considered. The late E. A. Ulzen whose Estate provides the gift of the Museum, believed that "only education can liberate a people from poverty." The main exhibits of the museum will focus on: 1. The history of the Black Dutchmen (Belanda Hitam) 2. The tri-partite relationship between Elmina, The Dutch and the Ashanti Empire 3. Aspects of Elmina’s own history, including Ulzen family Genealogy from 1731 and 4. The story of two Ashanti Princes educated in the Netherlands in the 1800s. Java House will also serve as a place of welcome for the descendants of the Black Dutchmen and others from the African Diaspora when they visit Ghana. THE PROJECT: The idea for a museum to preserve the history of The Black Dutchmen (Belanda Hitam) came about after the heirs of the late Edward Abraham Ulzen learnt that their great-great grandfather Manus Ulzen, had served in the Royal Netherlands East Indies Army from 1832-1837. Dr. Ineke van Kessel, a professor at the Centre for African Studies at the University of Leiden had been researching the history of the descendants of 3080 African soldiers who departed from Elmina for service in what is now Indonesia. Her resulting meeting with the late Edward Ulzen brought her into contact with his son Dr. Thaddeus P. Manus Ulzen who attended the 10th biennial Reunion of the Belanda Hitam descendants in Scheidam, Netherlands in September 2000. It was at this reunion that Dr. Ulzen announced the decision of the family to provide a permanent site for a museum to preserve the history, largely forgotten, of these African men who served gallantly in the East Indies. --------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Java Guest House
Java House consists of the Elmina - Java Museum, Offices of the Edward A. Ulzen Memorial Foundation (EAUMF) and The newly opened Java Guesthouse. The guesthouse is a self-catering establishment within the complex. It is made available to healthcare volunteers in the KEEA district who a working under the auspices of the EAUMF for a nominal donation towards the Foundation's philanthropic mission. It currently available from $150.00 per week to other visitors. Residents at the Guesthouse are free to peruse the museum's exhibits at their leisure. Reservations can be made by email: info@elwininternational.com

Edward A. Ulzen Memorial Foundation
THE FACILITIES: The Elmina - Java Museum is located at the 3rd interchange on the Accra -Takoradi Highway at Teterkessim, Elmina. Java House includes the museum, The Java Guesthouse and the offices of The Edward A. Ulzen Memorial Foundation, which operates the museum. Guided tours will be provided by appointment on weekdays from 10:00am - 4:00pm and weekends from 12:00noon to 4:00pm. Tourist Admission: Ghs 15.00 per adult, $Ghs 10.00 - Self-guided tours and Ghs 5:00 College or University students. Elementary and High School children - free.

The Black Dutchmen (Belanda Hitam)
THE HISTORY: The history of the recruitment process of these soldiers occurs in the context of Dutch colonial interests on the Guinea coast and in the more lucrative East Indies. After Belgian Independence the Dutch had to find other sources of troops to prosecute the Java War which had erupted in 1825. They first hoped to recruit 150 Dutch descendants (mulattos or tapoeyers) in Elmina and surrounding areas of Dutch influence including Accra and Axim. They were to form the nucleus of a planned 1800 strong African Corps to fight in Java. The assumption was that they would be more familiar with Dutch culture and more likely to follow military rules. The British had abolished slavery in 1807 and few men were interested in volunteering. After numerous monetary inducements only 44 men signed up for the Army. Later, the Dutch sought the assistance of the King of Ashanti, Kwaku Dua from whom they expected two thousand men. In 1837, Maj -Gen. Jan Verveer as Royal Commissioner led an embassy to Kumasi presenting over 2,000 guns and gunpowder in exchange for 325 of a proposed 1000 men over the next year. These recruits were almost exclusively slaves from the hinterland. The Dutch went to the trouble of issuing them certificates of manumission prior to embarkation to avoid the criticism of carrying on a covert form of slavery. The recruitment occurred in 2 main phases, from 1831-1842 and from 1855-1872 when the Dutch abandoned their interests to the British. The African soldiers distinguished themselves in battle but there were numerous mutinies, when they felt their rights were infringed upon. For a detailed account of the history by Dr. van Kessel, click on "The History" below:

The History
THE COLLECTION: The permanent collection of the museum will includes artifacts from the military experience in the East Indies, such as replicas of uniforms, paintings,photographs and documents. Cultural artifacts from Indonesia and photographic collections from generations of the Afro-Indonesian community in Indonesia and the Belanda Hitam community in the Netherlands form a significant part of the exhibit. Special exhibits will be mounted in conjunction with museums and other institutions in the Netherlands and other educational institutions and museums of the African Diaspora. The compelling story of the two Ashanti princes Kwasi Boakye and Kwame Poku sent to Holland for an European education in 1837,as part of the Ashanti -Dutch relationship, will also be exhibited. A special exhibit on the 10 generations of the Ulzen family from 1731 to the present, forms part of the permanent collection. Exhibits from other Euro-African families of Elmina and other aspects of Elmina’s history from its earliest settlements in the 1300s will inform the public of the evolution of the local area.

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Edward A Ulzen Memorial Foundation

The Elmina - Java Museum Is a philanthropic project. All funds realized from the operations of the museum support scholarships for children in the Elmina area for tertiary education. Your tax deductible (US) contribution is most appreciated. The museum is a project of the Edward A Memorial Foundation which is a registered public charity in the US.