Provisional Inventory of the Archives of the VOC
Establishments Malabar, Coromandel, Surat and Bengal and Legal Successors (so -
called "Dutch Records")
(1647 - ) 1664 - 1825 ( - 1852)
Inv. nos. 1307 and 1643 - 1672 (also known as "Dutch Records
transferred from Bombay") make up what is left of the archives of the factory
at Surat. They date from the years 1748 - 1798. With the exception of inv. no.
1307, of which the provenance is completely unknown, the records were put
together at the Department of the Archives of the Bombay Presidency but have
different custodial histories. Inv. nos. 1643 - 1669, first still kept at
Surat, were temporarily sent to Madras in 1895 in order to be described by the
Catholic priest Rev. A.J.M. Heyligers. In 1898, he finished his manuscript, to
be published soon after as Résumé of the Contents of the
Dutch Diaries in the Agency Records of the Surat District, Bombay. This
list, in which the records are numbered I to XXVIII, also includes inv. no.
1672, which had been kept at Bombay at least since 1833 and in fact partly
originates from Cochin. In 1907, inv. nos. 1643 - 1669 were transferred from
Surat to Bombay and put together with inv. no. 1672. Unfortunately, Heyligers'
Résumé only describes (in English) the type and
contents of the papers, without mentioning their creators, and gives very
Therefore, when the Dutch official, J. van Kan, travelled in
British India and Ceylon in 1929 - 1930 to compile a survey of Dutch and Dutch
- related archival materials in this region, he included the missing
information and renumbered the records (I - XXX) in his published account (in
Dutch): Compagniebescheiden en aanverwante archivalia in
Britsch - Indië en op Ceylon. His list (on pp. 77 - 105) also contains
an extra description of inv. no. 1672 (made in 1899 by J.Ph. Vogel, Professor
of Indology at Leiden University, at the request of the staff of the Bombay
Archives who were unaware that Heyligers had described this record just one
year before) and mentions two newly discovered Dutch records in Bombay: inv.
nos. 1670 and 1671. The latter one actually derives from the British factory at
Surat, but mostly consists of papers that were received from VOC and are
written in Dutch. In 1931, all records were transferred to Madras and
renumbered, following the inv. nos. of the VOC archives of Malabar and
Coromandel. In 1939 Rev. J. Fruytier prepared a new, rather superficial list
(in English) of the papers transferred from Surat and Calcutta (see under
Chinsura), which was published at Madras in 1952 as Supplementary Catalogue of Dutch Records.