The PeaceHavens Project

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 Ports and Towns in the Flax Trade

This is the Baltic States & Russia Page

2 more pages ... click here for England & Ireland .. click here for Scotland

 Website design, maps and photos by Ged Dodd - Director of The PeaceHavens Project.

Click here for all the Project Site Map and Links

 

     The flax and hemp were cultivated in the Russian provinces of Archangel, Courland, Estonia, Kostroma, Livonia, Novgorod, Pskov, Smolensk, Tver, Vyatka, Vitebsk, Vologda and Yaroslav or Jaroslav.  (The following names amongst others are given to the fibre: - Archangel, Bajetsky, Courish, Dorpat, Drogobusher, Dunaberg, Fabrichnoi, Fellin, Gjatsk, Glazoff, Griazourtz, Iwashkower, Jaransk, Janowitz, Jaropol, Jaroslav, Kama, Kashin, Konigsberg (now Kaliningrad). Kostroma, Kotelnitch, Kowns, Krasnoholm, Kurland (Courland), Latischki, Livonian Crowns, Malmuish, Marienberg (now Malbork), Mochenetz, Mologin, Newel, Nikolsky, Nolinsk, Novgorod, Opotchka, Ostroff, Ostrow, Otbornoy, Ouglitch, Pernau, Pskoff, Revel, Riga, Rjeff, St Petersburg, Seretz, Slanitz, Slobodskoi, Smolensk, Sytcheffka, Taroslav, Tchesna, Totma, Twer, Ustjuga, Viatka, Vishni, Vologda, Werro, Wiasma, Witebsk. These names indicate the particular district in which the flax has been grown, but it is more general to group the material into classes such as Livonian Crowns, Rija Crowns, Hoffs, Wracks, Drieband, Zins, Ristens, Pernau, Archangel, &c.).

  The bulk of the material was exported through the Baltic ports of Riga and St Petersburg (including Cronstadt) & from Konigsberg, Libau, Memel (now Klajpeda), Narva, Pernau, Revel, Tilsit, Windau,  & also Archangel on the White Sea when it wasn't frozen up..

  

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 ARCHANGEL .. Click here for the Archangel Pages

 All of the Archangel flax is dew-retted.      Arkhangelsk was Russia's first northern seaport and between 1668 and 1684 a large fortified trading centre, the Gostiny Dvor, was constructed on its riverbank.  The winter weather gave a very short time slot for trading as the port iced over and many ships were lost or abandoned to the crushing ice.   The founding of St Petersburg in 1702 in the warmer waters of the Baltic,  along with the ports Konigsberg, Kronstadt, Libnau, Memel, Narva, Pernau, Reval, Riga, Tilsit Windau and others pushed Arkhangelsk out of the limelight.

 Archangel used flax from Kama, Kostroma, Kostrogna, Novgord, Tot'ma, Ustyug, Vologda, Vyatka, Yaroslavl where it was all dew-retted in the fields. Archangel had a reputation for honest bracking whereas the Baltic Ports standards were not as good .. so the English merchants still preferred to buy Archangel flax whenever possible. This resulted in a lack of seals from the Baltic ports being found after the late 1840's, but Archangel seals still being found in abundance into the 1900's .. The seal says Archangel Bracked by Inspector Andrew Plotnik. Archangel and St Petersburg Tow are both classed as No1 & No2.  Codilla was classed as Archangel, St Petersburg & Riga No. 2 & No. 3.

       Below is a summer view of the port.

Vessel Ship Arrivals and Departures for Archangel Cargo
Superior

08-06-1813

Departed

Dundee

to

Archangel

ballast

Caledonia 10-06-1831 Departed Dundee to Archangel ballast
Comely 10-06-1831 Departed Dundee to Archangel ballast
Mary

12-06-1813

Departed

Dundee

to

Archangel

ballast

Confidence 28-08-1831 Arrived Dundee from Archangel Flax Codilla
Moravia 24-07-1892 Arrived Dundee from Archangel Flax
Moravia had 315 tons, 12 cwt, 3 qt, 16 lb of flax on board

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  CRONSTADT  Click here for the Kronstadt page

 The sea port of St Petersburg.  There was a shallow 8' to 9' depth barrier on the Neva river up to St Petersburg so large vessels were loaded and unloaded at Kronstadt (St Petersburg Port) and then shipped up the river on a light draught barge. It is important to note that although the hemp seals have SPB on them this does not mean the seals were shipped from St Petersburg as the ports of Konigsberg, Kronstadt, Libnau, Memel, Narva, Pernau, Revel, Riga, Tilsit, Windau and St Petersburg all used SPB as an indication of a  hemp seal before the year 1829 and for flax seals after 1829 and all NP were flax.  Kronstadt also had its own seal with a crossed anchor and grappnel  which could well have been a Customs Tax or Military Seal for the Fortress but also indicated it was a sea and river port.

Vessel Ship Arrivals and Departures for Cronstadt Cargo
Gratitude 26-07-1830 Departed Cronstadt to London hemp
Gratitude 01-09-1830 Arrived London from Cronstadt hemp
Gratitude 15-11-1830 Departed Cronstadt to Dundee hemp
Gratitude 06-12-1830 Arrived Elsinore from Cronstadt hemp
Ruby 27-07-1892 Arrived Dundee from Cronstadt Flax
Garnett had 231 tons, 13 cwt, 0 qt, 7 lb of flax on board
Garnet 15-10-1892 Arrived Dundee from Cronstadt Flax
Garnett had 441 tons, 15 cwt, 1 qt, 15 lb of flax on board

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      DANTZIG according to Rolt, Dantzig (Gdansk in Polish), was 'the capital of regal Prussia in the Kingdom of Poland', situated on the banks of the river Vistula shortly before it flows into the Baltic sea. The two tributaries that run into the river in the town had been dredged, allowing quite big boats come up the four miles to the city wharves. The port had the 'best foreign trade of any port within the Baltic', and rivalled Hamburg in   importance. The closeness of German Gdansk and the German Dantzig explains why Dantzig and Dansk were used almost interchangeably in the early modern period. It was an important port and through it came a host of commodities from its hinterland of Poland (also sometimes called Polonia), Spruce (now known as Prussia), Muscovy and Russia, as well as the East Country or Eastland. [Dantzick flax; d_z Maningburg and all sorts of Rigitska flax] During the sixteenth century flax was imported to this country from Dantzig, often as a back cargo for the merchants exporting British Lead through Hull into the Baltic .. The flax may well not have been grown close to Dantzig, but brought there from far inland. However, the term 'Dantzig flax' seems to have come to mean a flax with particular characteristics that distinguished it from flaxes grown in other regions exporting through Baltic ports, such as Peterborough flax (St Petersburg) and Lettow Flax. What those distinctive characteristics may have been is now obscure. Dantzig flax could be grown in this country since, during the eighteenth century, its seed was available in the shops among other seeds intended 'to improve the ground'. This suggests that when produced in this country, its fibres may not have been of a high standard and were not the intended purpose of the crop. Found described as Fine describing seed to improve land.

  In Dumfries by order of the Queen in Council dated St. James's Jan. 05 1710, for leave to the "James of Dumfries" to unlade her flax and iron from Dantzic, she having loaded there long before the plague broke out and has performed her quarantine in the port of Dumfries and her crew in good health: all on the petition of John Crosby, owner, and James Wilkie, master thereof.

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ELBING (German - Polish Elblag) is a city in northern Poland. Elbing and Konigsberg had Scots communities before 1500.  Elbląg became part of the Hanseatic League, which contributed much to the city's wealth. Through the Hansa agreement, the city was linked to other major ports like Danzig (Gdańsk), Lübeck and Amsterdamand later annexed by Poland. It then flourished and turned into a significant trading hub. In the 17th century nearly half of the trade in Flax and Hemp to the UK came from Elbing, Konigsberg, Narva and Riga. After 1660 our trade with Poland via Elbing and Konigsberg virtually ceased. Polish demand for our cloth almost disappeared due to their own industry growing, and being able to get much cheaper imports from Holland and with Russian products becoming more accessible. While naval stores and undressed flax were obtained from Narva, Reval or Riga, spruce linen yarn came usually from Konigsberg and Elbing. Later its trading role greatly weakened, until the era of industrialization, which occurred in the 19th century. It was then that the famous Elbląg Canal was commissioned and business boomed. Elbing linen came from the area of the River Elbe in Germany. The two entries in the Books of Rates, respectively for 1643 and 1657, are ambiguous, but they suggest Elbing may have been a synonym for, or very like, Dansk cloth or Queensborough canvas. Found described as Double - Ploy, Spruce in units of the Bolt of 28 Ell, Ell.

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  GAVLE, Sweden  It is believed that the name Gävle derives from the word gavel, meaning river banks in Old Swedish and referring to the Gavleån (Gävle River). The oldest settlement was called Gävle-ägarna, which means "Gavel-owners". This name was shortened to Gävle, then Gefle, and finally Gävle.

   Trade from the port of Gävle increased markedly during the 15th century when copper and iron began to be exported from the port. In order to ensure that all trade was via Stockholm, sailing to foreign ports from Gävle and a few other ports was forbidden. During the 16th century, Gävle was one of the most important port and merchant towns with many shipping companies and shipyards. In 1787 Gävle was awarded "free and unrestricted sailing rights" to and from foreign ports. This led to an increase in trade, which in turn led to an increase in buildings, industrial developments, trade and shipping. There is an 18th century warehouse near Gavlean River at Gavle in Sweden but there are no indications of flax or hemp being traded from Gavle.
    A petition of the Governor and Fellowship of the Eastland merchants. The ships are the "Endeavour" (Robert Chambers master, with ashes, flax and yarn from Memel)  "Fortune" from Libau, "William and Martha" from Riga and "Unity" from Gavall [Gafle]. Their loadings are not the product of nor have passed through any infected places and they were loaded at places where no infection was at the time of lading. The three ships from Quinsborough [Königsberg] were loaded before any infection was public there and the hemp on board is of the growth and package of Lithuania and the borders of Russland where no infection has been, and though the flax was packed at Quinsborough the labourers that packed it have continued in health ever since and the seamen who received same on board and stowed it do continue in perfect health.

   By order of the Queen in Council dated St. James's Dec. 25 inst. 1709 for the ship "Unity of Geste," Peter Unonius master, to be permitted to come up the river to discharge, her lading consisting only of iron and deals taken in at Gaval [Gavle] near Stockholm whence she came the latter end of August last and has performed quarantine and her men are in perfect health.

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 GORITSY Click here for the Goritsy page

  The Monastery (Nunnery) at Goritsy Village on the White Lake.  The Bolsheviks subsequently killed all the nuns living in the Goritsy monastery but some other devoted nuns returned in the 1990's to carry on the work.  There was a trade fair in Goritsy Village eight times a year in peace time which had an annual turnover of one million roubles ...and the largest item in the bazaar trade was long fibred flax at 85,000 puds .. One pud (pood) was equal to 36.1 pounds or 16.39 kilograms in 1545–55.    The Russian pud came from the Low German or Old Norse pund  or pound weight.  That was 3,068,500 kg of raw flax fibre, 3000 tons a year, with 5,000 puds of edible flax seed & 300 puds of linseed oil, plus large quantities of fur products ... hare skins and sheep skins.    The Ivanovo Trading Block was created by merging the old flax-processing villages of Dunilovo with the Goritsy Monastery in the 17th–18th centuries. The seals from this merger with the then Ivanovo-Voznesensk bear the inscriptions Selo Goritsy, Dunilovo, Pshenichnovo, Zaichina, Pavlovo, Pistsovo and others..    Ivanovo-Voznesensk was the home to the first labour union in Russia called "Nevestka" (bride) because of the high percentage of women workers, which was normal in the flax industry.   The town was renamed Ivanovo in 1932. These villages also had an extensive fur trade in coats, hats, hare pelts and sheep skins. The seal says CEЛO ГOPИЦЫ (SELO GORITSY).

Goods were transported to the coastal ports for shipment overseas with small shallow draught boats.

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  KONIGSBERG is the name for a former German city that is now Kaliningrad, Russia. Originally a Sambian or Old Prussian city, it later belonged to the State of the Teutonic Order. The literal meaning of Konigsberg is 'King’s Mountain'. Konigsberg joined the Hanseatic League in 1340 and developed into an important port for the south-eastern Baltic region, trading goods throughout Prussia, the Kingdom of Poland, and the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. Konigsberg, the capital, became one of the biggest cities and ports of ducal Prussia, having considerable autonomy, a separate parliament and currency. While German served as the fief's official language, the city served as a vibrant center of publishing in both the Polish and Lithuanian Languages. The city flourished through the export of wheat, timber, hemp, and furs, as well as pitch, tar, and ash.

  From 1600 the flax trade from Elbing to the UK was significant but by 1650 their trade had shifted to Konigsberg.

    Konigsberg was one of the few Baltic ports regularly visited by more than one hundred ships annually in the latter 16th century, along with Danzig and Riga. During the Seven Years' War of 1756 to 1763 Imperial Russian troops occupied eastern Prussia at the beginning of 1758. On 31 December 1757, Empress Elizabeth I of Russia issued an ukase about the incorporation of Konigsberg into Russia. The extensive Prussian Eastern Railway linked the city to Breslau, Thorn, Insterburg, Eydtkuhnen, Tilsit, and Pillau. In 1860 the railway connecting Berlin with St. Petersburg was completed and increased Königsberg's commerce. Regular steamers plied to Memel, Tapiau and Labiau, Cranz, Tilsit, and Danzig. The completion of a canal to Pillau in 1901 increased the trade of Russian grain in Königsberg. The city was an important entrepôt for Scottish herring, in 1904 the export peaked at more than 322 thousand barrels. Jews flourished in this culturally pluralistic city.

The finest Wilna flax was originally exported via Memel and Konigsberg until the arrival of the Edlykuhu railway whereupon it was all transported directly to Konigsberg. The city had Scots communities before 1500 and 3 voyages of flax was recorded being shipped to Montrose in 1689 before the introduction of leads bale seals.

Vessel Ship Arrivals and Departures for Konigsberg Cargo
Providence 18-09-1677 Arrived Dundee from Konigsberg Flax
also from Konigsberg on 26-07-1675, 13-11-1676, 18-06-1678, 14-08-1680
Bruce 17-09-1822 Arrived Dundee from Konigsberg Flax
Wilhelmina 04-08-1831 Arrived Dundee from Konigsberg Flax Yarn

    In the 17th century nearly half of the trade in Flax and Hemp to the UK came from Elbing, Konigsberg, Narva and Riga. After 1660 our trade with Poland via Elbing and Konigsberg virtually ceased. Polish demand for our cloth almost disappeared due to their own industry growing, and being able to get much cheaper imports from Holland and with Russian products becoming more accessible. While naval stores and undressed flax were obtained from Narva, Reval or Riga, spruce linen yarn came usually from Konigsberg and Elbing.

   Treasury warrant (on an order in Council of the 18th November 1709.) to the Customs Commissioners to release from quarantine the ships "Kent", Fr. Oxon master; "Fortune", John Mattinson master; "William and Robert", Tho. Gibson master: from Konigsberg, Queensberg and Riga with flax, iron, hemp, sturgeon and bristles: on the petition of Thomas Pierson.

 Similarly, to discharge from quarantine the ships "Primrose", Robert Stones master; "Endeavour", Rt. Winright master: with iron and deals from Stockholm and Dantzic respectively: on the petition of Thomas Coor.

  The "Biddulph", Mich. Hales master, with iron, pitch and tar from Stockholm; "Thomas and Rober"t, Ra. Vaugh master, with flax and hemp from Konigsberg: on the petition of Ri.Tomlinson.
   "The Riga Merchant" and "Two Twins", with plank: on the petition of John Taylor.
The "Josep", John Young master, with flax and hemp from Konigsberg; "Friends’ Goodwill", Sh. Merriman master; "Blenheim", Th. Simonds master; "Isaac and Jonathan", Is. Rogers master; "Friendship", G. Hodgkinson master: with iron, deals, pitch and tar: on the petition of Alexander Patterson.

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  LIBAU (Liepāja) in Latvia. The modern Liepaja, is one of the two major ice-free ports (with Ventspils) in Kurzeme, the westernmost  region of Latvia. Courland, as it once was, was named after the Curi, a seafaring people, who lived here before the  German knights arrived. Courland became a duchy under Polish sovereignty after the breakup of Livonia (1562) as a result of the Livonian wars between Sweden and Russia. It belonged then to Gotthard Kettlers, the last Grand Master of the Teutonic Order and flourished in the next century under Jekabs Kettlers. It became the Courland-Semigallia imperial port (1625-1795) born out of a wish of the small Duchy of Courland and Semigallia to become a major naval power. For this it needed ports, and Liepāja located on a great location between sea and lake was granted city rights in 1625. Ships left its shores to colonize Gambia and Tobago, while the port was constantly expanded (in 1697 artificial lake-to-sea shipping canals have replaced a local river). While the majority of Courland-Semigallia population was ethnically Latvian, its leadership and elite were German. As such, the new Liepāja was overwhelmingly German, who called the city Libau. The plan of colonization may have been too big for the small Duchy. After losing multiple wars, Courland-Semigallia had to relinquish its American and African colonies in the 18th century and ceased to be a naval power. Liepāja’s importance plummeted together with that of its owner-state, which slowly came under Russian influence, who used the port to export large quantities of flax and hemp to the UK. The railway reached Liepāja (1871), allowing development of factories. Liepāja expanded as Russia’s westernmost port. It received a direct steamship service to New York and was used for cargo export. It was the starting point of Russia-USA Transatlantic telegraph (est. 1906). Shipments of flax are made from Libau as (K) crown ; and 4 brand (superior to 3-band).

Vessel Ship Arrivals and Departures for Libau Cargo
Bruce 20-09-1820 Arrived Dundee from Libau Flax
Mary 29-05-1831 Arrived Dundee from Libau Flax
David 11-06-1831 Arrived Dundee from Libau Flax
Therese Horn 31-12-1889 Arrived Dundee from Libau Tow Flax
Therese Horn had flax identified 7 bales tow - 38 cwt and 18 bales flax - 85 cwt

Liepāja in 1701, looking from the sea. The seashore was occupied by a large fortress (later replaced by a district of wooden villas), while the town itself stood further inland. The shipping channel connected the sea with the lake.

  By order of the Queen in Council dated St. James's Jan. 5 inst. 1710, for leave to the "Fortune" (John Mattinson master, with flax from Libau) to come to their place of discharge and unlade, they having come thence early in the spring before any infection was known either at Dantzic or Queenborough [Konigsberg]: all on the petition of the Governor and Fellowship of the Merchants of Eastland.

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LUBECK is a city in Schleswig-Holstein, northern Germany, and one of the major ports of Germany. In the 14th century Lübeck became the "Queen of the Hanseatic League", being by far the largest and most powerful member of that medieval trade organization, capital of the Wendish and Pomeranian Circle . However, even after the de facto disbanding of the Hanseatic League in 1669, Lübeck still remained an important trading town on the Baltic Sea. After the decline of the Hanseatic League the flax trade followed the existing routes which has been well mapped and used many centuries before and lots of the practices used at the ports would still have been in use in the 18th/19th century. .. if it wasn't broke they tended not to fix it. The League's ships plied the major trade routes across the North Sea and the Baltic, and the cog was its tramp cargo vessel. First records of the cog appear in the 10th century. Previous Viking longships had little space for cargo. The cog, or cogge, was rounded, tub-like, with a high clinker-planked hull, a high stern and a deck which covered a considerable hold. Early accounts indicate that it had a steering rudder on the starboard side, though by the mid 13th century this had been replaced by a stern rudder. There were eventually small raised decks at the bow and the stern. Later the boats were developed for purely trading purposes and were called Galliots or Galeas.

Lubeck Harbour 1350

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   MEMEL, (Klaiped) Lithuania. The 17th century saw turbulent times in Memel with the city destroyed by the Swedes in 1678. Indeed, the city was so used to attack that until the 1600s, brick or stone houses were forbidden in case they provided refuge for attacking forces. The fine Wilna flax was originally exported via Memel and Konigsberg until the arrival of the Edlykuhu railway whereupon it was all transported directly to Konigsberg. Trade was supported by merchants and 12 consulates from foreign countries and the "Reichsbank" and was important for trade in wood, linseed, flax, hemp, coal, fertilizer and fish (especially herring) etc..  By 1903, in the large harbour, protected with a light-house, they counted 570 ocean ships arriving and 598 ships departing. The bulk of the flax was exported through the Baltic ports of Riga and St Petersburg (including Cronstadt) and from Konigsberg, Libau, Memel, Narva, Pernau, Revel, Tilsit, Windau,  and from Archangel on the White Sea when it wasn't frozen up. Shipments of flax were made from Memel as 4 brands (Superior to 3-band) and NB (Notabene, Paternoster or Badstuben Cut, usually sent to Portugal).

Vessel Ship Arrivals and Departures for Memel Cargo
Scotsman 25-01-1831 Arrived Dundee from Memel Flax
Scotia 12-03-1831 Arrived Dundee from Memel Codilla hemp
Sophia Willemina 22-03-1831 Arrived Dundee from Memel Flax
Anne 30-03-1831 Arrived Dundee from Memel Flax
Thomas 25-04-1831 Arrived Dundee from Memel Flax
Constance 26-04-1831 Arrived Dundee from Memel Flax
Eagle 01-05-1831 Arrived Dundee from Memel Flax
Pandora 11-05-1831 Arrived Dundee from Memel Flax
Addison 23-05-1831 Arrived Dundee from Memel Flax
Bellona 23-05-1831 Arrived Dundee from Memel Flax
Scotsman 23-05-1831 Arrived Dundee from Memel Flax
Traveller 04-06-1831 Arrived Dundee from Memel Flax
Thomas 10-06-1831 Arrived Dundee from Memel Flax
Ann 11-06-1831 Arrived Arbroath from Memel Flax
Dundee 16-06-1831 Arrived Dundee from Memel Flax

 

    A petition of the Governor and Fellowship of the Eastland merchants. The ships are the "Endeavour" (Robert Chambers master, with ashes, flax and yarn from Memel)  "Fortune" from Libau, "William and Martha" from Riga and "Unity" from Gavall [Gafle]. Their loadings are not the product of nor have passed through any infected places and they were loaded at places where no infection was at the time of lading. The three ships from Quinsborough [Königsberg] were loaded before any infection was public there and the hemp on board is of the growth and package of Lithuania and the borders of Russland where no infection has been, and though the flax was packed at Quinsborough the labourers that packed it have continued in health ever since and the seamen who received same on board and stowed it do continue in perfect health. As to Mr. Richard Green's memorial the two ships from Memel and Libau arrived early in the spring before any infection was known either at Dantzic or Quinsborough and were laden and sailed before July last and on their arrival in the Sound their men were permitted to go ashore, which was not allowed to others.

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MOSCOW. The Grand Opening May 30 (June 11) 1872, in Moscow - of the Moscow Polytechnic - one of Russia's largest trade show of the 19th century which reflected advances in the field of industry, agriculture, transportation, military affairs, science, technology and culture. The exhibition was timed to coincide with the 200th anniversary of the birth of Peter I.  The exhibition was funded mainly by entrepreneurs, who had provided a large sum for those times - 200 thousand rubles. In addition, some of them had paid for the arrangement of some pavilions and exhibits. The main exhibition area (20 hectares) stretched along the walls of the Kremlin – in the Alexander Garden (including the city riding), on the banks of the Moscow River, and also in the Kremlin - the upper terrace of Tainitsky Garden. In 86 original pavilions housed over 10,000 exhibitors from all Russian provinces and about 2, 000 foreign exhibitors from Austria-Hungary, Belgium, the UK, Germany and other countries.  The exhibition opened daily at 11 am and up to 8 o’clock in the evening. On the opening day the price of a ticket was 5 rubles. In the following days the price was lowered to 1 ruble, and in the last month it went down to 20 kopecks. The exhibition had its own printing press, which had issued from 1 (13) May to 16 (28) October "Herald of the Moscow Polytechnic Exhibition", a weekly magazine "Bell" and other printed materials. Exhibition halls were illuminated by illuminating gas, produced on a specially built gas plant. New to the Russians was a turnstile at the entrance connected to the device to account for the number of visitors. During the time of its opening, the exhibition was visited by more than 750, 000 people. In its framework were held numerous scientific and technical readings, debates, lectures, public educational courses, etc. The majority of its exhibits became the basis for the foundation in Moscow of the world-famous Historical Museum and Polytechnic Museum There were numerous UK exhibitors and Bryan Corcoran and Co. who were contractors to H.M. Government won the Grand Gold Medal.

 

 

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NARVA Estonia. When the German Balts turned to its old adversaries, the Russians, to fight the Swedes, Peter the Great obliged. In 1700, 35000 Russian soldiers set out for the  Swedish garrison at Narva. Charles XII, aged 19, came to its relief with 8000 men and, in a snowstorm, decimated the Russians capturing every artillery piece. Rejecting advisers' calls to press on to Moscow he moved to other fronts. Peter entrusted a second attack on Narva in 1704 to a Scot, Ogilvie. He overwhelmed the garrison, decided no prisoners would be taken and began an indiscriminate slaughter so when Peter arrived, it is said he stopped the massacre by slaying his own attackers with his sword. It was not pure humanity, he wanted Swedish prisoners for building work. The Peace negotiations of Nystad in 1721 gave the Swedish possessions in the Baltic, including Estonia, to Russia and the German merchants carried on as before.

Shipments of flax are made from the port of Narva as No. V. and No. VI.

   The pictures below are Old Narva.

   

Narva has the only identifiable Quartered Crossed Shield with one pellet in each of the top quarters. These pellets can be tiny hollow rings (o) called annulets. The other numerous combinations of up to six pellets in each quarter are still not sufficiently known to be identified.

 
Vessel Ship Arrivals and Departures for Narva Cargo
Arethusa

00-10-1814

Departed

Narva

to

Dundee

Lost

Try Again

21-10-1814

Departed

Narva

to

Dundee

Lost

Margarets

17-07-1831

Departed

Narva

to

Dundee

Flax Codilla

Nimble 04-08-1831 Arrived Dundee from Narva Flax
Margarets 05-08-1831 Arrived Dundee from Narva Flax Codilla
Alpha 14-08-1831 Arrived Dundee from Narva Flax Codilla

 

IDS
1698

Товарищество Нарвской

суконной мануфактуры .

Сукконная фабрика Барона 

 А.Л.Штиглица  1849

Russian Eagle
No 01063
Ap. 3 71

Narva
Cloth
Company

 IDS 1698 - Partnership Narva Cloth Manufactory . Cloth Factory Baron A.L.Stiglitz 1849  (Oval 4cm x 3cm)

 

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NOVGOROD Long-stemmed flax has been one of the main agricultural preoccupations in northwest, north-central, and central Russia in the regions of Novgorod, Pskove, St. Petersburg, Viatka, Vologda, Yaroslavl, Moscow, and Smolensk for centuries. More particularly, it is the Novgorod and Pskove regions that make up the core of Russia’s flax belt. Novgorod supplied the Hansa with flax, furs, and other goods through the collection of tax from its tributaries. The charters documenting Novgorod’s trade with the Rus principalities of Tver and Suzdal (in Northeastern Russia, 13th to 15th centuries) also attest to Novgorod’s supply of flax to other Rus lands.

     Flax cultivation was widespread, with flax grown on nearly every peasant allotment in the Dereva and Vot piatinas. To the west, the Republic of Pskov also developed its flax culture.  For the years 1495–1505, flax was a major agricultural pursuit for much of the Novgorod lands. Records for two of Novgorod’s five piatinas (administrative provinces) show that in Dereva piatina, flax cultivation was widespread in 52 of 61 pogosti (rural fiscal and administrative districts) and rare in only 2 of the remaining 9 pogosti . In the Vot piatina, flax was widespread in 46 of 58 pogosti and rare in only 5 of the remaining 12. Riga became a centre for trade, intermediate between the Hanseatic towns and those of Novgorod, Pskov and Polotsk in Belarus via the Dvina river.

       

 

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   PERNAU, Pärnu, Estonia. The Livonian bishop, Henricus, first conferred town status on Pernau in 1251 although there had been settlement here from the earliest times. The "new" town  of Pernau was also given town status in 1265 and the two continued separately on either side of the river until they were united under the inter-war Estonian government in 1920.   From the 16th century it was exporting timber, and later, flax to the Angus ports.

    Pernau flax is Livonian and Fellin sorts, the latter being the best under the following marks: Marienburg ; G, cut ; R, risten ; H D, Light Drieband ; D, Drieband ; O D, Ordinary Drieband; L O D, Low Ordinary Drieband.  .. also from Estonia.

  Livonia carries on a large export trade, especially through Riga and Pernau, in petroleum, wool, oilcake, flax, linseed, hemp, grain, timber and wooden wares.

Pernau inhabitants in 1820

Vessel Ship Arrivals and Departures for Pernau Cargo
Garnet 12-08-1892 Arrived Dundee from Pernau Flax
Garnet had 464 tons, 5 cwt, 2 qt, 18 lb of flax on board.

 The last cargo of flax was brought to Arbroath on 5 August 1914 by the S/S Orient from Pernau.

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   PILLAU (BALTITSK) The extensive Prussian Eastern Railway linked Konigsberg to Breslau, Thorn, Insterburg, Eydtkuhnen, Tilsit, and Pillau. In 1860 the railway connecting Berlin with St. Petersburg was completed and increased Königsberg's commerce. Regular steamers plied to Memel, Tapiau and Labiau, Cranz, Tilsit, and Danzig. The completion of a canal to Pillau in 1901 increased the trade of Russian grain in Königsberg.

Vessel Ship Arrivals and Departures for Pillau Cargo
Gustar 23-03-1831 Arrived Dundee from Pillau Flax
Craigie 24-05-1831 Arrived Dundee from Pillau Flax
Linnet 24-05-1831 Arrived Dundee from Pillau Flax
James 25-05-1831 Arrived Dundee from Pillau Flax
Lord Lynedoch 10-06-1831 Arrived Dundee from Pillau Flax
James 16-06-1831 Arrived Dundee from Pillau Flax

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  PSKOVE was the poor relative of Novgorod but has always played a special role in Russian trade with the West due to the extensive trade contacts of Russian cities with Scandinavia, which was the source of Russian military elite since the 10th century. Pskov at that was a veche (assembly) republic, where all free people were considered its citizens with the right to participate in governing of their city-state, which was expressed in veche assemblies and election of local officials. Because many Pskov dwellers were involved in trade and craft, the share of merchants in the ruling class was high. These merchants then took positions of sotskiys (Russian: сотский, initially, an official who represented a hundred households), izborniks (Russian: изборник, elected officials) and posadniks, which allowed them to participate in the diplomatic talks and stimulate better trade conditions. This sociopolitical system was a premise for establishing tight economic and political relations with the Hanseatic League. The Pskov republic emerged in the course of a tough struggle for independence from Novgorod but could not compete with its vast resources from the north receiving huge quantities of fur, and only part of it was reaching Pskov. Upon gaining its independence from Novgorod, Pskov merchants lost their right to trade at Novgorod Torg (market) and were treated as foreign tradesmen. The establishment of diplomatic and trade relations between Pskov republic and Hansa was predestined by its geographical location, political system and its independence from Novgorod and Russia. Pskov was trading with many Hanseatic cities – Lübeck, Danzig, Riga, but most of all with Reval and Dorpat. Riga, Revel and Dorpat were part of Teutonic Order in Livonia, or as it often called - Livonian Order – confederation of Order dominions, church lands and Free imperial cities (Freistadt). Pskov has also traded with Narva – the big Livonian city which was not part of the Hanseatic League. Narva's proximity to Novgorod contributed to the rapid growth of its trade significance. Narva traded with Novgorod and Pskov even during the bitterest of Russian-Hanseatic relations. Long-stemmed flax has been one of the main agricultural preoccupations in northwest, north-central, and central Russia in the regions of Pskov, Novgorod, St. Petersburg, Viatka, Vologda, Yaroslavl, Moscow, and Smolensk for centuries. More particularly, it is the Pskov and Novgorod regions that make up the core of Russia’s flax belt. Riga became a centre for trade, intermediate between the Hanseatic towns and those of Novgorod, Pskov and Polotsk in Belarus via the Dvina river.

     

 

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  REVAL. (now Tallinn is the capital and largest city of Estonia. It is on the northern coast of the country, on the shore of the Gulf of Finland in Harju County. As an important port for trade between Russia and Scandinavia, it became a target for the expansion of the Teutonic Knights and the Kingdom of Denmark during the period of Northern Crusades in the beginning of the 13th century when Christianity was forcibly imposed on the local population.  Danish rule of Tallinn and Northern Estonia started in 1219. In 1285, the city, then known as Reval, became the northern most member of the Hanseatic League – a mercantile and military alliance of German-dominated cities in Northern Europe. The Danes sold Reval along with their other land possessions in northern Estonia to the Teutonic Knights in 1346. Medieval Reval enjoyed a strategic position at the crossroads of trade between Western and Northern Europe and Russia. The city, with a population of 8,000, was very well fortified with city walls and 66 defence towers. During the plaque years Reval was approached by a Russian force of 5,000 commanded by Christian Bauer in August 1710, and due to a decision by the local officials and nobles,  capitulated on 30 September without actually being attacked. Behind its walls was a population of 20,000 people in August, composed of the regular inhabitants, soldiers, refugees and the inhabitants of the surrounding villages, which had been demolished by the defendants on 18 August. By mid-December, about 15,000 of them had died of the plague, and the number of inhabitants was reduced to 1,990 inside the walls and 200 in the adjacent villages. The rest had either fled elsewhere, or in the case of the surviving Swedish troops and some citizens, had been allowed to leave by ship after the surrender, carrying the plague to Finland.

Reval shipped flax is mainly grown in Estonia.

 

The "Great Plague" returned up to the 18th century.

 

 Reval port has a depth of 4 to 6 fathoms, and a roadstead 3½ m. wide, which freezes nearly every winter. The exports consist chiefly of grain, timber, flax, hides, wool, a species of anchovy, and hemp, and the imports of manufactured goods and machinery. The Russians besieged Reval twice, in 1570 and 1577. It was still an important fortress, having been enlarged and fortified by the Swedes. In 1710 it was surrendered to Peter the Great, who immediately began the erection of a military port for his Baltic fleet. His successors continued to fortify the access to Reval from the sea, large works being undertaken, especially in the early years of the 19th century.

Vessel Ship Arrivals and Departures for Reval Cargo
Eagle of Dundee

29-06-1831

Departed

Reval

to

Elsinore

Flax

Garry

00-12-1889

Arrived

Dundee

from

Reval

Flax

Europa 31-12-1889 Arrived Dundee from Reval Flax
Garry

04-01-1890

Arrived

Montrose

from

Dundee Reval

Flax

Amethyst 30-01-1892 Arrived Dundee from Reval Flax
Amethyst had 124 tons, 11 cwt, 2 qt, 9 lb of flax on board.
Hope 30-12-1892 Arrived Dundee from Reval Flax
Hope had total flax in cargo 312 tons 10 cwt. Shared as follows: 60 bales flax, 180 cwt
Dresden 07-01-1893 Arrived Dundee from Reval Flax hemp tow
185 bales flax 10 tons - Webster Bros /// 20 bales hemp 5 tons - The Boase Spinning Co.
39 bales flax 2 tons - Charnley & Hodgkinson /// 20 bales flax 5 tons - Thomas Bett & Co
136 bales tow 29 tons - Hill & Renny /// 6 bales hemp 1/2 ton - Hill & Renny
309 bales flax 38 tons, 21 bales hemp 5 tons, 21 bales hemp yarn 62 cwt
1 case caviar 1/4 cwt To order  (from Dresden manifest)
Ennismore 08-01-1893 Arrived Dundee from Reval Flax hemp tow
585 bales flax 31 tons - H & G Luhrs /// 611 bales flax 32 tons - H & G Luhrs
146 bales flax 8 tons - Thomas Bett & Co /// 232 bales flax 11 tons - George Reid & Co
102 bales flax 5 tons - Brough Cunningham & Co /// (J Mitchell - Agent - 10.1.1893)
140 bales flax 7 tons - Brough Cunningham & Co /// 15 bales flax 4 tons - J W Brown
3 bales tow 1/2 ton - J W Brown /// 744 bales flax 39 tons - Hill & Renny
Linseed 1500 qrs - Wilson & Sons
Majorca 09-01-1893 Arrived Dundee from Reval Flax
Majorca had 195 bales flax (10 tons) and 25 tons linseed cake
Envoy 31-12-1893 Arrived Montrose from Reval Flax

     A report from the Customs Commissioners to the Lord Treasurer, 20th December 1709, on the petition of Jonathan Hutchinson and Samuel Holden praying that the ship "Beginning" with flax from Revel may be permitted to land same at Newcastle without airing. The ship has stayed her quarantine [there] and her company are all in health: she came from Revel in July last and arrived in Newcastle Oct. 30 last and the captain saw the flax loose in the warehouse at Revel before it was packed and same was of the growth of the year 1708 and the ship lay six weeks in Elsinore Road and had liberty to go on shore when and where they pleased and when they came away they had bills of health from the magistrates of Elsinore.

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   RIGA .. flax was shipped to Montrose in 1689 before the introduction of leads seals. The Rennys were wealthy 17th century flax importers in Riga sending undressed flax to Montrose.  Patrick Renny exported flax to Dundee and Montrose in 1720.  The Ouchterlonies were also established in Riga. John Ouchterlony, a merchant there, retired to Montrose in 1736 and continued his interest in the flax trade. In the 18th century, traditional trading patterns held firm; the growth of the linen industry in Montrose from the 1790s meant increasing flax imports mainly from Riga but also from St. Petersburg and Archangel. Skippers of vessels bringing flax and hemp from Riga nearly always carried a mast or two and some small timber home. Almost the whole of this Baltic trade was carried out in Montrose vessels, mainly two-masted brigs and schooners. Riga became famous for the highly alcoholic health tonic Kuncz's Tincture when in 1764, Russian Empress Catherine II was cured of a cold. From then on the family of Abraham Kunze was granted exclusive rights to produce the miraculous elixir .. "Riga Black Balsam". Tilsit born Max Scherwinsky was the architect for Riga's first Art Nouveau building.

     SD, Slanitz Drieband and PSD, Picked Slanitz Drieband are dew-retted qualities of flax shipped from Riga either as Lithuanian Slanitz, Wellish Slanitz or Wiasma Slanitz, showing from what district they come, as there are big differences in the quality of the produce of each district. Codilla from Riga was classed as No. 2 & No. 3. The lowest grade of Riga flax was DW Drieband Wrack. Livonia carries on a large export trade, especially through Riga and Pernau, in petroleum, wool, oilcake, flax, linseed, hemp, grain, timber and wooden wares.  Riga became a centre for trade, intermediate between the Hanseatic towns and those of Novgorod, Pskov and Polotsk in Belarus via the Dvina river.

    Order of the Queen in Council dated St. James's Dec. 15 1789, that the ship "Ufra Christiana" from Riga with hemp, flax, iron and deals be left to the Customs Commissioners as to her lading, she having performed quarantine and all her men in health “but being partly laden with hemp and flax, the officers are obliged to make stay of those goods till an account thereof be laid before the Privy Council and orders be given by said Board thereon.

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   RYBINSK. (Rybnaya Sloboda) Known since 1137, it has been a trade and shipping center for traffic between Moscow and Arkhangelsk since the 16th cent. The Mariinsk Waterway, built in 1810, linked Rybinsk with the Baltic for the first time. In the 1870s it developed as a shipping point to St Petersburg. The construction of the Volga-Baltic canal system increased its importance as a river port. In the 18th century, the Sloboda continued to thrive on the Volga trade. Catherine the Great granted Rybnaya Sloboda municipal rights and renamed it Rybinsk.   It was a place where the cargo was reloaded from large Volga vessels to smaller boats capable of navigating in the shallow Mariinsk Canal system, which connects the Russian hinterland with the Baltic Sea. With the population of 7,000, the town daily accommodated up to 170,000 sailors and up to 2,000 river vessels. Consequently, the local river port became known as the "capital of barge-haulers".

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   ST. PETERSBURG (nick-named Peterborough)

The principal commodities for the export trade via St Petersburg were iron, copper, hemp, first, second and third sort flax, codilla, cordage, tallow and tallow candles, wax and wax candles, soap, potash, hemp seed oil, linseed oil, isinglass, tobacco leaves, horse hair, treacle, bristles, Muscovy leather, sole leather, tar, pitch, linen yarn, mats,  feathers and down, wool, caviar, tea, hops, horsetails, hare skins, Morocco bear skins, calve skins, deals, spars, quills, hats, ox and deer tongues, glass of different kinds, sailcloth, ravenduck, drillings, different kinds of napkin cloth, wheat, rye, linseed, flems, linen of different sorts, ox and cow horns and bones, and other lesser goods including potatoes..    St Petersburg was the capital and centre of tax collection during the Flax Trade Era. A fundamental mistake made by seal identifiers in the early days was that SPB or СПБ meant the seal came from St Petersburg. PeaceHavens Rules state it actually means that tax had been paid to St Petersburg. Every seal dated from 1829 with SPB or СПБ on the reverse and ЛД (LD) (flax inspector) on the obverse is a flax seal and by the same token every seal dated before 1829 with SPB or СПБ on the reverse and ПД (PD) (hemp inspector) on the obverse is a hemp seal.  All seals with NP on the reverse before 1829 are flax seals .. in fact there are no NP seals after 1829... tax paid to St Petersburg.   The sea port for St Petersburg was the Isle of Cronstadt.  There was a shallow 8' to 9' depth barrier on the Neva river up to St Petersburg so large vessels were loaded and unloaded at Kronstadt (St Petersburg Port) and then shipped up the river on a light draught barge.

   Both dew-retted and water-retted flax are exported from St Petersburg, the dew-retted or Slanitz flax being marked 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th Crown, also Zebrack No. 1 and No. 2.

St Petersburg and Archangel Tow are both classed as No1 and No2. Codilla was classed as Archangel, St Petersburg & Riga No. 2 and No. 3.

ЛД=LD  SPB Flax

1829 - 1850

 ЛД=LD  CПБ Flax

1829 - 1850

ПД=PD  SPB Hemp

SPB   1740 - 1828

 ПД=PD  CПБ Hemp

1829 - 1841

Vessel Ship Arrivals and Departures for St Petersburg Cargo
Bruce 04-09-1817 Arrived Dundee from St Petersburg Flax
Bruce 21-11-1817 Arrived Dundee from St Petersburg Flax
Bruce 11-09-1818 Arrived Dundee from St Petersburg Flax
Bruce 24-07-1820 Arrived Dundee from St Petersburg Flax
Bruce 07-09-1821 Arrived London from St Petersburg Flax
Bruce 00-08-1823 Arrived Dundee from St Petersburg Flax
Bruce 06-09-1824 Arrived Arbroath from St Petersburg Flax
John Black 09-06-1831 Arrived Dundee from St Petersburg Flax
Margaret 17-08-1831 Arrived Dundee from St Petersburg Codilla
   

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TILSIT (Russian Sovetsk after 1946) is a town of Germany, in the Prussian province of East Prussia, situated on the left bank of the river Memel (river Niemen), 57 miles S.E. of Memel and 72 miles N.E. of Königsberg by rail.  Tilsit carries on trade in timber, grain, hemp, flax, herrings and coal; but its trade with Russia, at one time considerable, has fallen off since the construction of the railway from Königsberg to Kovno. The river is navigable above the town, and there is a steamboat communication with Königsberg, Memel and Kovno. Tilsit, received civic rights in 1552, grew up around the castle of “Schalauner Haus,” founded in 1288. It owes most of its interest to the peace signed here in July 1807, the preliminaries of which were settled by the emperors Alexander and Napoleon on a raft moored in the Memel.
This treaty, which constituted the kingdom of Westphalia and the duchy of Warsaw, completed Napoleon's humiliation of the Kingdom of Prussia, when it was deprived of one half of its dominions.

German Max Scherwinsky was born in Tilsit  and was  active the architect for Riga's first Art Nouveau building.

Fabrikstrasse ("Factory Street")

   

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VISBY on the Swedish island of Gotland in the Baltic Sea was an important link for Hanseatic Trade. It was famed for piracy under the leadership of the Victual Brothers. The name "Visby" comes from the Old Norse "Vis", the genitive singular of Vi the pagan place of sacrifices, and "by", meaning "village".   In the "Gutasagan" (mid 14th century) the place is referred to as just Wi meaning "holy place, place of worship", giving a tentative hint that Visby could be allied to the elusive WU trading block... Visby functioned as the leading centre in the Baltic, before the Hansa, on behalf of the Gotland, Livonia and Swedish regions. Sailing east, Visby merchants established a trading post at Novgorod called Gutagard, dealing in timber, furs, resin (or tar), flax, honey, wheat, and rye, however in 1525 Visby was in a feud with the Lübeckers, members of the Hanseatic League who burned down all Visby's churches except the cathedral. Control of trade was transferred to Riga. It has been suggested that flax seals with the designation WU could have originated in Visby.

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 VOLOGDA (BOЛOГДA) a city and region found on the seals of  HILLS & WHISHAW or (ХИЛЛCЪ И BИШAУ) (Folly Gill)

is KHILLS & VISHAU or HILLS & WHISHAW COMPANY who were established in Archangel in 1842 by William Whishaw.   Eventually most of the trade diverted to St Petersburg and the Baltic ports which was less effected by  the severe Russian winters.  Dew-retted flax from Vologda was of very high quality .. grown in fields and forest clearings resulting from slash and burn on the banks of the rivers Viledga (Spolvychegodsh  region) and Sukhona (Ustyug region).   Classen's: No1 and Classen's: No2 Tow were shipped to Dundee in 1857 from Vologda. Quality Control Officers Vedensky, Popov-Vedensky and Sveshnikov lived in Vologda and shipped the flax and hemp via Archangel.  In 1851 in Krasavino, near Veliky Ustyug, a flax spinning factory was commissioned producing scarves, napkins and tablecloths that became widely spread in Russia.

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   WINDAU in German but VENTSPILS was the Russian name from the time of the Russian Empire,

 ВУНДАЕА, ВУНДАЙ although ВЕНТСПИЛС, a transliteration of VENTSPILS has been used since WW II.

 Some other names for the city include Livonian VANTA and Polish WINDAVA. Ventspils is a city in North  Western Latvia in the historical Courland region of Latvia, and is the sixth largest city in the country. It is situated on the Venta River and the Baltic Sea, and has an ice-free port.

 The city's name means "castle on the Venta", referring to the Livonian Order's castle built on the Venta River.

 Old Ventspils was devastated by 18th-century wars and plague, its importance dwindled until it was annexed by Russia in 1795. The Russians saw little use for Ventspils port for a long time and by 1863 Ventspils had  merely 4000 inhabitants, some 50% of them the descendants of Courland-Semigallia’s German elite. The tides of fortune turned again in the 1890s, as the railway from Riga reached Ventspils, allowing the port to be used to export goods from the entire Russian Empire. An era of rapid expansion followed, during which the city grew to 29000 inhabitants as it needed to staff the swiftly growing port.   The port played an important role in the export of flax and hemp products to the UK in the 18th/19th centuries .. and today is an important oil terminal.

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   YAROSLAVL was founded by Yaroslav the Wise, c.1000 AD and named after him. The city's fortunes came largely from its position on the river Volga which allowed trade to be brought from and to Moscow via the river, linking the new Russian capital with the port of Archangelsk. Resultantly Yaroslavl became an important place for the conduct of international trade and a number of shipping berths and warehouses grew up around the city for the use of merchants, especially those from England and Germany.  The city benefited greatly from its geographical location over the years and the wealth which business produced for the town helped ensure its prosperous future. In fact, in the 17th century a number of early industrial concerns were set up in the city, including a number of leather-working shops, and Yaroslavl became a center over the years for the production of textiles, cosmetics (fragrances) and silver work.

 

All of the best high quality flax from the Veliko Village region in Yaroslavl Province. (BEЛИKOCEЛCKOИ) was kept within Russia for the production of Yaroslavl Linen. At the beginning of the 18th century Yaroslavl finally began to transform itself from a trading post into a major industrial town; this largely came about because with the foundation by Peter the Great of Saint Petersburg in 1703, the importance of Arkhangelsk as a port on the White Sea was drastically decreased, and the amount of trade being channelled through the city for export fell accordingly, however, the wealth which Yaroslavl had amassed over its many years as an important trading post allowed it to invest great amounts of money into the development of the city's new industrial base, and thus make the city very attractive to new investors. In 1772 the linen textile factory of Dutch merchant Ivan Tames opened on the right bank of the Kotorosl. This plant was not only Yaroslavl's first major industrial enterprise, but also one of Russia's largest textiles producers. Amazingly this famous establishment still exists today under the name 'Textile factory 'Krasny Perekop' (russ. Красный Перекоп).

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ZYRARDOW in Poland was the home of Europe's largest Linen Mill established by Hielle & Dittrich.

   Karl August Dittrich was born on 30 September 1819 in Leipzig and together with Karl Teodor Hielle he founded the company Hielle & Dittrich in Schönlinde (Krasna Lipa in the northern part of the Czech Republic). The town of Żyrardów is situated in the heart of Poland, at the south-west part of Mazowieckie Voivodeship, 45 km from Warsaw and 90 km from Łódź, where Dittrich expanded a huge linen factory which they bought in auction from the Łubieński brothers who had established it as a textile factory in 1833. One of directors of the factory was French inventor Philippe de Girard (from Lourmarin). The town developed during the 19th century into the most significant textile mill town in Poland. In honour of Girard, Ruda Guzowska was renamed Żyrardów, a toponym derived of the polonised spelling of Girard's name.  Philippe Henri de Girard was a French engineer and inventor of the first flax spinning frame in 1810

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