Catalogue of the Archives of the Dutch Central Government of Coastal Ceylon, 1640-1796

Description of the Subordinate Components

   The Governor in Council.

   Internal Affairs.

Documents relating to the pearl fisheries. 1694 - 1794.
An important part of the income which the V.O.C. derived from Ceylon came from the pearl fisheries [1]. This income was very irregular and depended on various incalculable factors. Year after year the government considered the prospects of a pearl fishery somewhere along the coast from Negombo to Tuticorin. The chief areas were:
1. Negombo-Chilaw (Caymelle).
2. Bay of Kalpitiya.
3. Gulf of Mannar (Kondachchi, Arippu, Karaitivu, Mannar).
4. Madura coast (Tuticorin).
When it was decided to have a pearl fishery, it was farmed out on special conditions by the Governor in Council, and a commission of V.O.C. officials was appointed to supervise the fishery. In the earlier days, the Jaffna dessave would generally be the chief commissioner: in later days, it would be the chief of the place where it was to be held.
The following documents are the conditions of farming, reports and correspondence with annexes. Nos. 2933 - 2949 should also be referred to in regard to the conditions of farming.
2950
1694 - 1724.
 
Damaged by corrosion.
2951
On the Madura coast. Commissioners: J. Bierens, J. de Roy, A. Snaats and J. de Jong. Report only. Authentic copy.
1708 February 25 - May 24.
 
Damaged.
2952
In the gulf of Mannar and on the Chilaw-Negombo coast. Commissioners: J. B. Weitnauw and A. Lopes.
1719 February 16 - March 23.
 
2953
In the gulf of Mannar and on the Chilaw-Negombo coast. Commissioners: G. Woutersz and J. van der Brugghen.
1721 October 31 - December 9.
 
2954
In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: J. de Jong, J. Driemondt, H.F. van Gent and C. Takel.
1722 March .. - May ..
 
Papers missing. Damaged.
2955
In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioner: J. Fransz.
1723 February 21 - May 16.
 
Damaged.
The report is submitted to the chief of Madura (Tuticorin).
2956-2957
In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: M. Wilshuysen, J. Swart, A. Cornelisz and D. Geertsen.
1743 October 22 - November 28.
2 files.
Badly bound.
No. 2957 contains some papers belonging to no. 2970.
2958
In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: Ferdinand Anthon, graaf van Ranzow, J. Hinderman and J.F. Crijtsman.
1746 February 24 - May 2.
 
Damaged.
2959
On the Madura coast. Commissioners: J. Hinderman, R. van Minnen and J.F. Crijtsman. Report only; copy.
1747 March 15 - May 9.
 
2960-2961
In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: Ferdinand Anthon, graaf van Ranzow, P.E. Schuttrup and G.L. van Liebeherr.
1748 February 28 - April 11.
2 files.
Papers missing.
2962
On the Madura coast. Commissioners: J.F. Crijtsman, A. van Sprang and W. Berghuys.
1748 March 1 - May 6.
 
Damaged by damp.
2963-2964
In the gulf of Mannar and in the bay of Kalpitiya. Commissioners: A. Aarnouts, M. Bles, J. Bauert and F. van de Rondewerken.
1749 February 23 - May 2.
2 files.
No. 2963 contains only an authentic copy of the report. Some papers relating to this fishery are in no. 2385.
2965
On the Madura coast. Commissioners: E. Clermont and W. Visser.
1749 February 27 - April 10.
 
Some documents relating to this fishery have been bound in no. 2385.
2966
In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: Ras Macquet, J.B. van Coeverden and D. Geertsen. Report only.
1749 October 24 - December 14.
 
Some papers on this fishery have been bound in no. 2385.
2967
On the Chilaw-Negombo coast. Commissioners: J. Otto and S.W. Faber.
1750 February 1 - 20.
 
2968-2969
In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: Ras Macquet, J. van Berchem and M. van Hek.
1750 February 24 - May 1.
 
Some papers relating to this fishery are in no. 2385.
2970
In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: Ras Macquet, R. Cramer and J. Toussaint. Draft instruction to the commissioners and letters received from the commissioners only.
1753.
 
Some papers relating to this fishery are bound up in no. 2957.
2971
Reports of a special commission of inquiry regarding the state of the pearlbanks. On the Madura and on the Mannar-Negombo coasts. Commissioner: M. Hemme.
1757 April 24 and June 20.
 
Badly bound.
2972
Report of a special commission of inquiry into the state of the pearlbanks. With annexes. Authentic copy. On the Mannar-Negombo coast. Commissioner: M. Hemme.
1757 June 20.
 
The original of this is in no. 2971; an extract from the council minutes of 1764 November 19 on the pearl fishery, which is bound up at the beginning, may indicate that this file was sent for the guidance of a later commission.
2973
On the Madura coast. Commissioners: W.J. van de Graaff, G.W. Trek and J. van den Bosch.
1757 October 4 - 1758 April 6.
 
Badly bound.
2974
On the Chilaw-Negombo coast. Commissioners: J.B. Tyken, J.J. Bellisse, J. van Orre and J. Lomer.
1760 February 6 - March 11.
 
2975
On the Kalpitiya-Negombo coast. Commissioners: T. Thornton and J.B. Tyken.
1765 February 5 - March 5.
 
2976
In the gulf of Mannar and in the bay of Kalpitiya. Commissioners: N.A. Lebeck and C. Rose.
1765 October 25 - December 5.
 
2977
On the Madura coast. Commissioners: P.L. Schmidt and G. de Vos.
1765 November 28 - 1766 January 11.
 
Damaged by damp.
2978
On the Kalpitiya-Negombo coast. Commissioners: T. Thornton and J.B. Tyken.
1766 January 19 - February 21.
 
2979-2980
In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: C. Rose, J.G. van Angelbeek and A. Frankena.
1766 February 17 - April 27.
2 files.
Papers missing from no. 2979.
No. 2979 contains a copy of the report only.
2981
1767 October 24 - December 12. In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: T. Thornton and J.W. Schorer.
 
Damaged by damp.
2982
At Chilaw. Commissioners: C.R. Goldestein and H.J. Lochveld.
1768 January 30 - February 16.
 
2983-2991
In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: A. Diederich, T. Thornton and J.W. Schorer.
1768 February 22 - April 28.
8 files.
No. 2983 contains the ordinary original diary; no. 2984 the draft instruction and the register of papers sent to the commissioners; nos. 2985 and 2986 the letters received by the comnmissioners; nos. 2987 and 2988 the drafts of letters sent out by the commissioners; no. 2989 the documents connected with the fishery; no. 2990 the secret diary in original; and no. 2991 the drafts of secret letters sent out by the commissioners.
The letters "T.O." are inserted at the head of the drafts in nos. 2987 and 2991.
2992
In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: J.B. van Coeverden, J.W. Schorer, L. Herfst and W. van Rossum. Report, with annexes.
1768 November 25
 
2993
On the Madura coast. Commissioners: G.W. Trek and B.I. de Bellon.
1768 December 19 - 1769 February 4.
 
The report on this fishery is submitted to the "opperhoofd" at Tuticorin.
2994
In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: J.B. van Coeverden, M. van der Spaar, L. Herfst and W. van Rossum. Report only, with annexes.
1770 November 6.
 
2995
On the Madura coast. Commissioners: J.G. van Angelbeek and B.I. de Bellon.
1770 November 1 - 1771 January 10.
 
2996
In the gulf of Mannar and in the bay of Kalpitiya. Commissioners: E. Paravicini de Capelli, M. van der Spaar and L. Herfst. Report only, with annexes.
1773 November 15.
 
2997
In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: D. de Bok and A. de Lannoy. Draft instruction to commissioners and correspondence only.
1785.
 
2998
On the Kalpitiya-Negombo coast. Commissioners: J.E. Kuhn and Daniel Ditlof, graaf van Ranzow. Draft instruction to, and letters from the commissioners only.
1785.
 
2999
In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: H.L. Brochet and Daniël Ditlof, graaf van Ranzow. Letters from the commissioners only.
1786.
 
3000
On the Madura coast. Commissioners: H.V. van Sohsten, F.O.W. François. Report only. Authentic copy.
1786 March 11 to April 12.
 
3001
On the Madura coast. Commissioners: M. Mekern and T. van Teiylingen.
1787 March 19 - May 29.
 
Damaged by corrosion. Papers missing.
3002
In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: Daniël Ditlof, graaf van Ranzow and A.S. van de Graaff. Draft instruction to, and letters from the commissioners only.
1788.
 
Contains also some papers belonging to nos. 3005 and 3006.
3003
In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: C.F. Ebell and C. Bruger.
1789 September 15 - December 20.
 
3004
On the Kalpitiya-Chilaw coast. Commissioners: A.S. van de Graaff and C.F. Ebell. Draft instruction and register of papers sent to the commissioners only.
1789.
 
Cf. 3003.
3005-3006
In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: Daniel Ditlof, graaf van Ranzow (who was later succeeded by C.F. Ebell) and C. Bruger.
1789 October 19 - December 20.
2 files.
Cf. nos. 3002 and 3007.
3007
Documents only.
1789 - 1790.
 
The reports during this period are in nos. 3006,3008, and 3009.
3008
On the M dura coast. Commissioners: Pieter van Spall jnr., and Dirk van den Driesen. Report only. Authentic copy.
1789 December 5 - 1790 January 15.
 
Cf. no. 3007.
3009
Reports only. In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: S.P. Foenander and Jean Brohier.
1790 January 24 to March 19.
2 documents.
Cf. no. 3204.
The connected papers of this fishery are bound up in no. 3007.
3010
In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: captain S.P. Foenander in 1790 - 1791; and G. Mooyaart, J. Brohier, C.F. Ebell and F.N. Hopker in 1791 - 1792. Reports only. Copies.
1790 - 1792.
 
Cf. no. 3204.
Damaged. Papers missing.
This volume has been brought to the archives by Mr. P. Brohier on the 7th of November 1838.
3011
In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: Gualterus Mooyaart and Jean Brohier.
1791.
 
A copy of the report on this fishery is in no. 3010.
3012
In the gulf of Mannar. Commissioners: C.F. Ebell and F.N. Hopker.
1793 October 8 - 1794 January 10.
 
3013
On the Madura coast. Commissioners: Dirk van den Driesen and Pieter van Spall. Report only. Authentic copy.
1794 November 4 - December 5.
 
This report is submitted to the chief of Madura, Tuticorin.