150 year old can of turtle soup found at Delft excavation

150 year old can of turtle soup found in Delft, May 2016 (Photo: Archeologie Delft)150 year old can of turtle soup found in Delft, May 2016 (Photo: Archeologie Delft)

Construction workers working on the construction of a railway tunnel and parking garage on Phoenixstraat in Delft, recently made a remarkable discovery - an old tin can that used to contain a culinary delicacy: turtle soup, Archaeology Delft announced.

The construction workers first thought they struck gold when they found the shiny can, but it later turned out to be tin with a brass wrap. Still, the can was never intended for an average Joe, according to Archaeology Delft. Turtle soup was considered a massive delicacy, and was served as and was served as an appetizer ath King Wille III's 70th birthday party in Grand Hotel Krasnapolsky in Amsterdam on 23 April 1887.

The label of the can reads in French: "Preserved foods, W. Hoogenstraaten and Sons, purveyor, turtle soup, Leiden. "The soup was therefore of Dutch origin, but was probably sold throughout Europe. French was a common language then", Bas Penning of Archaeology Delft explained to AD.

The company W. Hoogenstraaten & Co. was founded in Leiden in 1860. In 1900 the company changed its name to Nederlandsche Fabriek van Verduurzaamde Levensmiddelen. Which means that the found can was manufactured somewhere between 1860 and 1900.