Pedro Vandewÿer

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Pedro Vandewÿer
Person Pedro Vandewÿer
First name Pedro
Middle name(s)
Last name Vandewÿer
Spouse of
Widow of
Occupation Merchant
Secondary shorebased occupation
Mariner occupation
Associated with ship(s)
Training Not apprentice
Is apprentice of
Was apprentice of
Had apprentice(s)
Citizen Unknown
Literacy Signature
Has opening text Peter Vande Wyer
Has signoff text Pedro Vandewÿer
Signoff image (Invalid transcription image)
Language skills Spanish language, Dutch language
Has interpreter
Birth street
Birth parish
Birth town Seville
Birth county
Birth province
Birth country Spain
Res street
Res parish
Res town Dunkirk
Res county
Res province Flanders
Res country Spanish Netherlands
Birth year 1627
Marriage year
Death year
Probate date
First deposition age 26
Primary sources
Act book start page(s)
Personal answer start page(s)
Allegation start page(s)
Interrogatories page(s)
Deposition start page(s) HCA 13/69 Silver 14 f.1r Annotate, HCA 13/69 Silver 13 f.13r Annotate, HCA 13/68 f.178r Annotate
Chancery start page(s)
Letter start page(s)
Miscellaneous start page(s)
Act book date(s)
Personal answer date(s)
Allegation date(s)
Interrogatories date(s)
Deposition date(s) Sep 21 1653, Nov 4 1653, Nov 4 1653
How complete is this biography?
Has infobox completed Yes
Has synthesis completed No
Has HCA evidence completed No
Has source comment completed No
Ship classification
Type of ship N/A
Silver Ship litigation in 1650s
Role in Silver Ship litigation None

Biographical synthesis

List of marks of silver laded onto the ships the Salvador, Sampson and Saint George at Cadiz in 1652 and seized by ships of the English Commonwealth. Allegedly belonging to Antwerp merchant, Jan Bollart, but possibly belonging to Amsterdam merchants, HCA 13/69 Silver 14 f.1v

Pedro Vandewÿer (alt. Peter Vande Wyer) (b. ca. 1627; d. ?). Merchant. Son of Peter Vander Wyer the Elder (b.?; d. bef.1653, and Antwerp merchant, who moved to Seville in Spain. His mother, Sarah Smitsartsa, survived her husband's death.

Former apprentice and servant of major Antwerp merchant Jan Bollart.

Resident in 1650 and 1651 in Middleburg. Resident in 1653 in Dunkirk in Flanders.

Pedro Vandewÿer stated in October 1653 that he was "a native of Sevill in Spania, and nowe an inhabitant of Dunquirke".[1] He referred in the same deposition to his father's house being in Spain, where John Bollart (Peter vander Wyer the younger's former master) had formerly resided for a considerable time.[2]

In this connection see Baetens (1976), who states "Ferdinande is bedrijvig te Cadiz, Igantius, Manuel en Jan Baptist te Sevilla, waar de lastste in 1632 inwoont bij Peter van de Wayer en Jan Bollaert"[3] Baetens appears to refer to Jan Baptista van der Bequen, who was son of the eponymous Jan Baptista van der Bequen and Maria van Oppervelt. Jan Baptista's elder brother, Ignatius van der Bequen, was also connected with Seville[4]

Evidence from High Court of Admiralty

October 1651

Thomas Tasse, supracargo or factor on the ship the Golden Eagle, deposed in the High Court of Admiralty on October 25th 1651. He was examined on the claim of Lovinus ffrancke, Hendricke Vander Geyne, Peter Vander Wyer and John (alt. Jan) Bolart for the ship the Golden Eagle and for quantities of money and bullion taken from her by the English ship the Tyger Frigot.[5] Tasse stated that the four above named men were the owners of the Golden Eagle. The first three were described as merchants of Middleburg, and Bolart as a merchant of Antwerp. Tasse knew all four men and had been at their houses. Tasse claimed that the ship had been set out from Middleburg to Saint Malo in France in November 1650. Twenty-six year old Tasse was Antwerp born and had lived with Leland Mayon in Saint Malo two and a half years earlier "to learne ffrench and to understand the trade and merchandize of that place."[6]

Interestingly, Tasse states that Henricke Vander Geyne and Levinus ffrancke were both natives of Antwerp, though living in Middleburg. He describes Petr Vander Wyer as "borne at Civill in Spaine" and living in the same house with ffrancke and Vander Gyne in Middleburg. He omits to mention that Vander Weyer had been apprentice to the fourth man, Jan Bolart, though claims that "all of them...were and are by birth subiects of the King of Spaine". Tasse reported himself as Antwerp born and knew all four men from Antwerp, together with their parents and kin. Tasse had a small private adventure of 800 dollars for which he also sought restitution.[7] Lovinus ffranck is identified as a Middleburg merchant in the March 1657 High Court of Admiralty deposition of a Middelburg mariner named Peter Butt. Butt claims (in contradiction to Thomas Tasse) that ffranck was not a subject of the King of Spain.[8]

Tasse was employed as factor to get a lading of linen ready at Saint Malo, travelling there in advance of the ship, and took with him from Middleburg letters of credit drawn on the four mens' correspondents in Saint Malo to the amount of 100,000 guilders (£10,000). He had been hired in Antwerp by Jan Bolart, and on accepting travelled to Middleburg to wreceive written instructions. Tasse reported that these instructions were currently in the custody of his father in Antwerp.[9] These original instructions were supplemented by a further notarised written instruction concerning his last voyage from France to Spain. During the course of the three voyages between France and Spain Tasse sent and received various dispatches and letters of advice concerning his factory. These he sent and received overland (presumably to avoid detection by the Spanish authorities).[10]

Tasse was to carry out trade between France and Spain on behalf of the four men. At Cadiz Tasse bartered and sold the linen for money and plate, which he carried in the ship back to Saint Malo, where he puchased another lading and again went back to Cadiz, or rather to the nearby Bay of Bulls. The ship had moved from the Bay of Cadiz on learning of the arrival of three Ostenders, who would have seized his French goods, given the state of war between France and Spain.[11] Again he bartered and sold the cargo for money and plate. This time the ship sailed to the French port of Roscoe and purchased a cargo of 181 packs of linen cloth for the owners of the Eagle and returned back to the Bay of Bulls, where he bartered and sold the linen for more money and plate.[12]

Tasse reports that a Captain Peacock, commander of the English ship the Tyger Frigot then seized the Golden Eagle in the Bay of Bulls on August 17th 1651 (new style) and took possession of the money and bullion.[13] The ship had intended to return to Roscoe for a second time, and Tasse states that in the absence of new instructions, he woudl have purchased another lading in Roscoe and returned to Cadiz.[14]

The ship the Golden Eagle had been built at Ostend and purchased by the Middleburg merchants after it had been built, who added a second deck. The master, Dingeman Govertson, Tasse believed to be Dutch and living in Middleburg.

March 1652

Thomas Tasse, supracargo on the ship the Golden Eagle gave personal answers in the Hugh Court of Admiralty on March 6th 1652. His answers concerned the ship the Golden Eagle, allegedly of Middleburg, whose silver and ship had been seized by the English in the bay of Cadiz. Tasse argued that he concealed bills of lading and the silver for fear that the English captain Captain Peacock would reveal the illegally laden bullion to the Spanish. Tasse claims he was imprisoned and subjected to "other torments" to reaveal the concealed moneys and bills of lading. Tasse yielded and told Peacock that the bills of lading were with the ship's gunner.[15]

March 1653

Twenty-four year old Peter Vandewÿer deposed on March 4th 1653 in the High Court of Admiralty. He was examined on the claim of Andrew Pickenotti of silver in the ship the Margaret. Vandewÿer claimed to have known Pickenotti for ten years, first in Antwerp and now in Madrid, where Pickenotti currently resided. He identifies Pickenotti as an Assentista for the period of ten years he had known him, whose factor at Cadiz was John Baptista Montobio. Vandewÿer had also known John Stephano Spinola for six years, with whom Vandewÿer corresponded and dealt in merchandizing whilst Vandewÿer lived both at Antwerp and Middleburg. Vandewÿer identified ffrancisco Marquez Pachero, who was an officer of the King of Spain, who signed licences for the exportation of silver from Spain to Antwerp. A further officer, ffranco Antonio Cla[?ses] also signed Spanish licences for silver. Both Pickenotti and Montobio are described as "Italian borne".[16]

September 1653

Twenty-six year old Pedro Vandewÿer deposed on September 21st 1653 in the High Court of Admiralty. He was examined on an allegation in the cause of "The claime of John Bollart of Antwerp for his money and plate in the Sampson, Salvador and Saint George.[17]

The case concerned the seizure of large quantities of silver, together with smaller quantities of other goods, on the three ships the Salvador and the Saint George of Hamburg and the Sampson of Lübeck. The silver, which came from the Spanish West Indies, had been laded at Cadiz by a mixture of factors and merchants of Spain, of Flanders and Brabant, and most probably also of the United Provinces. Hamburg and Lübeck ships were chosen to lend neutrality to valuable shipments in the early months of war between the Dutch and the English.

To learn more about this complex case, which spanned Cadiz, Antwerp, Hamburg, London and Rouen, and became highly politicised between Spain, England and the free sstate of Hamburg, follow this link.

November 1653

Twenty-six year old Pedro Vandewÿer deposed on November 4th 1653 in the High Court of Admiralty. He was examined on an allegation in the cause of "The clayme of Sarah Smitsartsa widoe of Peter Vander Wyer of Antwerp deceased for sylver in the shipp Salvador (Christian Cloppenburgh master)"[18]

It is probable that the deceased Peter Vander Wyer in the title of the cause was the father of Pedro Vandewÿer and the widowed Sarah Smitsartsa was his mother. In contrast to the thirty parcels of silver with thirty separate marks on them, the claim for his mother's silver involved just one mark, S+S, which can obviously be linked to the name Sara Smitsartsa.[19] The silver claimed for was allegedly purchased with the proceeds of two cases of Fladers lace shipped in January 1652 from Ostend in the ship Jesus Maria Josephus, (Master: Jan Cooopmans). Pedro Vandewÿer gave the Antwerp born Sarah Smitsartsa's address in Antwerp as "upon the Moor for about 8 yeares last past", having formerly dwelt in Spain.[20]

Pedro Vandewÿer deposed again on November 4th 1653 in the High Court of Admiralty. This time he ws examined on an allegation in the cause of "The clayme of Giles Risheuvel and Melchior Rediquer for their goods in the White Angell, John Lewison de Vischer master".[21]

The case concerned a claim for parcels of oil seized on board the ship the White Angell (Master: John Lewison de Vischer) by English ships in ther service of the Commonwealth. The ship itself and its principal cargo belonged to Jan Bollart, a leading Antwerp merchant. The oils had been put on board the ship at Mallaga by an Antwerp merchant, Andries von Cantlebeck, who was the factor or correspondent of the claimers, the two Antwerp merchants Giles Risheuvel and Melchior Rediquer.[22]

Pedro Vandewÿer stated that "Risheuvel and Rediquer...are Antwerpers borne, by common report, where they have lived with their respective families ever since this deponent knew them ...the said Giles Risheuvel neare the Towne hall of Antwerp, and for the other hee remembreth not the name of the street"[23]

Comment on sources


There is a reference to a joint stock involving Peter van der Weyer in HCA 13/65, which is in fact the case mentioned in the Calendar of State Papers Domestic below for 1651. The case is titled "The clayme of Levinus ffranck Hendrick vander [?Geyme [poss. ?Gayne]] Peter Vander Wyer and John Bolart for the ship the Golden Eagle and the respective quantities of money and bullion on board her taken by the Tyger Frigot whereof Captaine Peacocke is commander in the ymediate service of this Comon=wealth"[24].

Interestingly, Thomas Tasse, the twenty-six year old Antwerp merchant who first deposes in the claim, states the claimants "Levinus francke Hendricke Vander Geyme and Peeter Vander Wyer were and are merchants inhabiting and liveing in Middleburgh, and the said John Bollart hee saith liveth at Antwerpe in fflanders". This he claimed to know having been at all their houses and to very well know them, and having been their factor aboard the Golden Eagle[25] Tasse recounted joining the ship at Saint Maloes in France, the ship having sailed from Middleburgh, and having letters of credit from the claimants to buy a cargazon at Saint Maloes. The ship sailed thence to Cadiz, arriving safely, where it laded "money and plate" in exchange for the cargo of linnen, and departed allegedly heading for Roscoe in France. The ship appears to have taken on more goods in France and returned to "the Bay of Balls" and to have been seized on its second return to France[26] The ship was seized by Captain Peacock on August 17th 1651 (new style) and brought first to Plymouth and then to London.[27]

Tasse states that "Hendricke Vander Geyme and Levinus ffrancke were and are natives of and in the towne of Antwerpe in fflanders but saith they are merchants who live in Middleburgh and for all the tyme arlate did and doe still keepe houses and their families there together with the said Peter Vander Weyer who hee saith was borne at Civill in Spaine and liveth in the same house with the said ffrancke and Vander [?Gyme] in Middleburgh And the said John Bollart hee saith liveth in Antwerpe And all of them hee saith were and are by birth subiects of the King of Spaine....the parents of the said John Bollart were allsoe Inhabitants in Antwerpe untill they removed to Sevill where hee was borne"[28] Allegedly the ship used was built at Ostend and bought new by the claimants.[29]

Tasse notes that "Levinus ffrancke Hendricke Vander [?Gayne] and Peter Vander Wyer are ioynt partners together in trade in this present voyage and designe but the said John Bollart doeth trade in this present voyage by himselfe and without any copartnershippe with the rest save only as hee is owner of a quarter part of the said ship and saith the said Bollart hath alsoe a fourth part of the moneyes and bullion which are now claymed [?XXXX] aboard her at the time of the seizure thereof and the other three parts of the said ship and goods hee saith doeth ioyntly belong unto the said three owners thereof named in the beginning of this deposition"[30]

December 1651

The Calendar of State Papers Domestic makes reference on December 9th 1651 to "The petition of Peter Vander Wyer and Hen. Vander Gyne, concerning the Peacock, late the Golden Eagle, with the letter of Council annexed, referred to the Admiralty Committee, to speak with the parties pretending an interest in the ship about employing her in the service, and report"[31], and then on December 30th 1651 to "The petition of Peter Vander Wyer" referred to the Admiralty Committee", dated December 30th 1651, so prior to the seizure of the Silver Ships[32]

June 1653

Two years later, in June 1653 there is a further reference to "Petition of Simon de Caseres and Pedro Vander Wyer, merchant strangers, to the Council of State, for license to import pitch, tar, hemp, cordage, masts, and deal boards for the service of the State, without incurring any of the penalties under the Act of navigation. With reference thereon to the Admiralty Judges, who are to see their own orders in Caseres' case made good, or certify the state of the business; and note, 8 June, that they are to speak with the Admiralty Commissioners"[33]; there may have been a brother or relative named "Jacomo van de Weyer"
  1. HCA 13/69 Silver 14 f.2v
  2. HCA 13/69 Silver 14 f.1v
  3. Roland Baetens, De nazomer van Antwerpens welvaart (XXX, 1976), p.146
  4. Online resource: FONDS PLAISIER BIJLAGEN, citing Bron: De Insolvente Boedelskamer en A.A.B. Deel 35, blz. 91-95
  5. HCA 13/65 unfol. IMG_129_06_3737
  6. HCA 13/65 unfol. IMG_129_06_3744
  7. HCA 13/65 unfol. IMG_129_06_3741
  8. HCA 13/72 f.2v
  9. HCA 13/65 unfol. IMG_129_06_3742
  10. HCA 13/65 unfol. IMG_129_06_3743
  11. HCA 13/65 unfol. IMG_129_06_3744
  12. HCA 13/65 unfol. IMG_129_06_3738
  13. HCA 13/65 unfol. IMG_129_06_3739
  14. HCA 13/65 unfol. IMG_129_06_3744
  15. IMG_114_04_7265
  16. HCA 13/67 unfol. IMG_117_07_1356
  17. HCA 13/69 Silver 14 f.1r
  18. [[HCA 13/69 Silver 13 f.13r Annotate|HCA 13/69 Silver 13 f.13r
  19. [[HCA 13/69 Silver 13 f.13r Annotate|HCA 13/69 Silver 13 f.13r
  20. HCA 13/69 Silver 13 f.13v
  21. HCA 13/68 f.178r
  22. HCA 13/68 f.178r
  23. HCA 13/68 f.178r
  24. [HCA 13/65 IMG_102_07_3025]
  25. [HCA 13/65 IMG_102_07_3025]
  26. [HCA 13/65 IMG_102_07_3026]
  27. [HCA 13/65 IMG_102_07_3027]
  28. [HCA 13/65 IMG_102_07_3028]
  29. [HCA 13/65 IMG_102_07_3029]
  30. [HCA 13/65 IMG_102_07_3030]
  31. CSPD, 1651-52 (London, 1877), p.53
  32. Calendar of State Papers, Domestic Series of the Commonwealth 1651-1652, p.83
  33. CSPD, 165?2-?53, p.428 (poss p.378)