In December 1821 the Cantonese junk Tek Sing departed from the coastal town of Amoy in the Fujian Province on the south coast of China. Her 160 feet long hull held a cargo of hundreds of thousands of porcelain pieces and a human cargo, of two thousand men, women and children, busily claiming their places above and below the crammed and cluttered decks. Many were traveling to find work at the sugar cane fields of Java or anywhere in South East Asia that could offer work.
After a few days at sea the ship struck at the Belvedere Reef, stayed stuck for two hours and then slowly drifted off southwards towards Gaspar Island where she finally sank. Only 150 people survived. The wreck was rediscovered the 12th of May 1999. After being catalogued, it was put to auction in Stuttgart a year later. The salvaged cargo offers an important reference point for the dating and identification of contemporary Chinese export porcelain and a memorial items from one of the largest maritime disasters in the world. By right Teksing is called the Titanic of the East.