Inventaris van het archief van de Nederlandse Factorij in Japan te Hirado [1609-1641] en te Deshima, [1641-1860]1609-1860
Nederlandse Factorij in Japan

Fonds Specifications


Biographical History (Sketch of the Record Creator)

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, coöperation existed between the two factories, wich is manifested in the archive by resolutions of the combined ship's Councils and both chiefs. ( 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. (
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.