Inventaris van het archief van de Nederlandse Factorij in
Japan te Hirado [1609-1641] en te Deshima, [1641-1860]1609-1860
2. The Dutch factory on Hirado (1609-1641) and the removal to
Deshima (june 1641).
The Dutch trade on Hirado (also called Firando) was not very
profitable during the first years, because the quantity of goods imported was
too small. In 1613 the English also established a factory on the island, wich
would remain in being till 1623. In accordance with the Dutch-Englisch treaty
of june 2nd, 1619, coÃ¶peration existed between the two factories, wich is
manifested in the archive by resolutions of the combined ship's Councils and
both chiefs. (Inv.nr.3.). Although the Shogun in 1617 restricted the overseas
trade to the harbours of Nagisaki and Hirado, the Dutch received a new act of
safe-conduct on their journy to the Shogunal Court of that year, wich passport
guaranteed them free entrance in all Japanese ports. (Inv.nr.1b.).
The efforts of both the English and the Dutch to capture the
richly-laden Portuguese carracks and the Chinese junks, sailing from and to
Nagisaki, led to a sharp reprimand of the Japanese Government in 1621. The
Shogunal Government, on the other hand, became more and more opposed to the
Portuguese, because of their missionary activity. The Shogun believed that the
existing order in Japan was endangered by the expanding Christian religion.
After the revolt of Japanese Christians on the promontory of Shimabara (east of
Nagasaki) in 1637 and 1638 the Portuguese were duly expelled from the Empire
(1639), the Dutch had to demolish their newly-built warehouse on Hirado (1640)
and in 1641 the removal of the factory to Deshima was ordered. The Portuguese
had been confined on this artificially constructed islet in the harbour of
Nagisaki from 1636 to 1639. It was built in 1634 and 1635 through the
contributions of 25 local merchants. The Dutch factory remained here until the
closing-down in 1860. From 1639 to 1854 the Dutch were the only Europeans
permitted to enter japan. The Spanish had been expelled already in 1624: the
English abandoned their factory voluntarily in 1623 and were not admitted again
until 1854, although they tried several times to reopen the trade. Together
with the Chinese, the Dutch provided for the overseas trade of Japan, because
in 1636 the Shogun finally forbade the Japanese to go abroad, after a series of
restricting measure in the years 1633-1636.
The removal to Deshima took place in june 1641. A short time after
the establishment, in august 1641, the Chief of the factory received a letter
from the governor of Nagisaki, in which were promulgated a number of very
onerous regulations en restrictions concerning the residence of the Dutch on
the island. These and others regulations remained in force practionally
unaltered until the closing-down of the facory.