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The reason is simple: After the Dutch East India ship Batavia ran aground on a nearby reef insurvivors made it to Beacon Island, where at least of them were slaughtered by mutineers over a period of three months, reports National Geographic.
Experts know this in part based on journals later published by the ship's commander. But years later, new details of the massacre are still emerging.
Dutch and Australian archaeologists digging at the island say they've uncovered a neat grave containing the bodies of five people who were, surprisingly, not murdered. The "careful and respectful burial" is clearly "not the hurried work of hiding murder victims," archaeologist Al Patterson tells Perth Now.
NatGeo reports they may have died of dehydration.
Researchers, who plan to publish a study on the bones next year, say the discovery provides one more piece to the puzzle of what Australia's 60 Minutes has called "Australia's first and biggest mass murder.
Cornelisz was ultimately hanged after the commander returned. As for his victims, "horrible things happened to these individuals" but "the archaeology allows us to get their story told," Peterson says, per Fox News.
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Dec 08, · Beacon Island off the western coast of Australia is better known as Murder Island or Batavia's Graveyard. The reason is simple: After the Dutch East .