The Historical Background
Sweden and the City of Gothenburg

All Ships and their Expeditions 1731-1813

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1. Friedericus Rex Sueciae
2. Drottning Ulrica Eleonora
3. Tre Cronor
4. Suecia
5. Götheborg
6. Stockholm
7. Riddarhuset
8. Calmar
9. Drottningen af Swerige
10. Cronprinsessan Lovisa Ulrica
11. Freden
12. Cronprinsen Adolph Friederic
13. Prins Gustaf
14. Götha Leijon
15. Hoppet
16. Enigheten
17. Prins Carl
18. Prins Friedric Adolph
19. Prinsessan Sophia Albertina
20. Stockholms Slott
21. Riksens Ständer
22. Finland
23. Adolph Friedric
24. Lovisa Ulrica
25. Cron Prins Gustaf
26. Drottning Sophia Magdalena
27. Terra Nova
28. Gustav III
29. Gustaf Adolph
30. Götheborg (II)
31. Drottningen
32. Maria Carolina
33. östergöthland
34. Wästergöthland
35. Fredrica
36. Prinsessan
37. Wasa
38. Hoppet

One of the easiest available sources regarding the Swedish East India Company (1731-1813) is Sven T. Kjellberg, Svenska Ostindiska Companierna 1731-1813, Malmö 1974, in the texts called STK.

Sven T. Kjellberg got his information from the Directors of the Swedish East India Company first application for passports (direktionens första ansökan till K. Maj:t om pass) for each ship why the "time of departure" was the one the company planned for and might not have been the actual. Sames goes for time of arrival in China and date of return in Gothenburg.

My interest has been to try to calculate the actual length of each expedition, and what influence the date of departure had on the success of the voyages.

What we know is that the Gotheborg was held up around Java and did not make it to Canton in time for its proper season, to stock up and return with the following monsoon, but needed to wait one more year before they could return with all stress on ship and crew this meant. My question was, did the Company sent out the Gotheborg unusually late already from Sweden and would the company actually had known that this ship might not make it back in time for the next season, but sent it out anyway towards an uncertain destiny, knowing well there would be an extra heavy death toll on-board due to the long trip and maybe - it would not make it back at all?

When possibly I have thus looked for dates in all available sources, such as diaries and contemporary newspapers, and have done my best to indicate the most likely. But, use the dates with caution and if there is a specific date you really want to know I suggest that you take my data as a starting point and then search in the sources yourself. All texts is for the time being still in Swedish.

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Copyright © Jan-Erik Nilsson, Göteborg, 1982-1999, 2010.