East India Company House

Gothenburg, Sweden

The old East India Company House (now the City Museum) was once the hub of Sweden's trade with the Far East. Most seafaring nations in the 18th century had an East India company which held a monopoly on trade with the East. Scottish merchants were not part of the lucrative dealings of the English, so Scot Colin Campbell, in association with Niclas Sahlgren in Gothenburg, devised an idea for a Swedish East India Company, which would be Sweden's first international trading company.

The company started up in 1731, and the next year the first ship set off for the Far East. This made Gothenburg a European centre of trade in products from China and the East. The main goods were silk, tea, furniture, porcelain, precious stones and other distinctive luxury items. Trade with China saw the arrival of some new customs in Sweden. The Chinese cultural influence increased, and tea, rice, arrak punch and new root vegetables started appearing in Swedish homes.Middle and upper class families bought entire porcelain services with their monograms on.The last ship from East Asia arrived in Gothenburg in 1806, by which time the great East India era was already over.

The house of East India Company was built between 1750-1762. Today it hosts the city museum, archaeological museum and etnographic museum.

References:
  • Marianne Mehling et al. Knaurs Kulturführer in Farbe. Schweden. München 1987.
  • goteborg.com

Comments

Your name



Details

Founded: 1750-1762
Category: Museums in Sweden
Historical period: The Age of Liberty (Sweden)

Rating

4.3/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Daniel Karlsson (12 months ago)
Interesting and impressive ship!
Anas Ashmar (2 years ago)
Nice to visit and hear from one of the sailors the history of this ship. How they spend several months onboard. How they eat and sleep. And the way they work when they sail abroad. We enjoyed our time there BUT the tour onboard the ship was 20 or 25 minutes max. We were not allowed to stay longer. We had to follow the guide all the time and were asked to leave the ship immediately after he finished the tour/explanation. We were not allowed to see Captain's room either.
Janne Pålsson (2 years ago)
Worth s visit if you like old ship's
Teodor Christensson (3 years ago)
Great place to relive the history of 1800. English information and translations are on point. Visit the ship as well it is worth it.
K Asbell (4 years ago)
Great replica of the original ship! Wonderful explanation of the history and purpose of the original ship. A lot of history crammed into a small space. The tour guide was incredibly knowledgeable and helpful. She showed a genuine love and care for the ship having sailed on it previously.
Powered by Google

Featured Historic Landmarks, Sites & Buildings

Historic Site of the week

Seaplane Harbour Museum

The Seaplane Harbour is the newest and one of the most exciting museums in Tallinn. It tells stories about the Estonian maritime and military history. The museum’s display, that comprises of more than a couple of hundred large exhibits, revitalizes the colourful history of Estonia.

British built submarine Lembit weighing 600 tones is the centrepiece of the new museum. Built in 1936 for the Estonian navy, Lembit served in the World War II under the Soviet flag. It remained in service for 75 years being the oldest submarine in the World still in use until it was hauled ashore in 2011. Despite its long history, Lembit is still in an excellent condition offering a glimpse of the 1930s art of technology.

Another exciting attraction is a full-scale replica of Short Type 184, a British pre-World War II seaplane, which was also used by the Estonian armed forces. Short Type 184 has earned its place in military history by being the first aircraft ever to attack an enemy’s ship with an air-launched torpedo. Since none of the original seaplanes have survived, the replica in Seaplane Harbour is the only full-size representation of the aircraft in the whole World.

Simulators mimicking a flight above Tallinn, around-the-world journey in the yellow submarine, navigating on the Tallinn bay make this museum heaven for kids or adventurous adults.

Seaplane Harbour operates in architecturally unique hangars built almost a century ago, in 1916 and 1917, as a part of Peter the Great sea fortress. These hangars are the World’s first reinforced concrete shell structures of such a great size. Charles Lindbergh, the man who performed the first solo flight across the Atlantic Ocean, landed here in 1930s.

On the outdoor area visitors can tour a collection of historic ships, including the Suur Tõll, Europe's largest steam-powered icebreaker.