Ship Journey: 1654 - Gyllene Haj (Golden Shark), bound for South River

Ship Name
Gyllene Haj (Golden Shark)
Departure Location
Departure Date
Arrival Date
Ship Journey Information

New Netherland and Beyond
Delaware River Settlements 1637-1682
Immigrants to New Sweden

Gyllene Haj
(Golden Shark)
Left Gothenburg April 15, 1654
Missed the entrance to the South River and
Arrived at New Amsterdam September 12, 1654

Some of the families who could not find room on the Orn, went on this ship, and a few soldiers and servants also came on this expediton, but the exact number is not known.
On the way, many people became sick. They arrived at Porto Rico on June 30th, where new supplies were brought on board. The people went on shore the following day. On August 15 the Haj left Porto Rico for New Sweden. By mistake, they passed Delaware Bay and arrived at New Amsterdam. The ship was put under arrest by Director Stuyvesant. Most of the people on the ship, remained in New Amsterdam, persuaded thereto by Stuyvesant. It is probable, however, that many of them went to New Sweden after 1655.

    Hans Amundsson Besk - with wife, 4 children and 2 servants
    Appointed Captain at first but proved himself incompetent as not many persons liked him. He was replaced by Hendrick von Elswick. As he had private claims in Porto Rico to look after, he applied for persmission to go on the voyage, assisting Elswick in whatever way he could. He died on the voyage while in Porto Rico, July 2nd and was buried on the island.

    Commander Hendrick von Elswick
    After attempting with all his might to effect a settlement then losing the colonists to Dir. Stuyvesant in New Amsterdam, he returned to Sweden.

    Sven Hook, Lieutenant

    Anders Matheus from Amsterdam,shipmate
    While the ship made a stop at Porto Rico for fresh supplies, Anders tried to run away. Elswick was compelled to put him into irons in prison until the ship sailed. Elswick writes it was through the carelessness of his mate that the ship was led into an unknown passage behind Staten Island, and caused the ship to be put under arrest.

    Bengt Olsson, second mate

    Bengt Ericksson, upper boatswain
    remained in New Amsterdam

    Johan Ericksson, boatswain

    Sven Hakansson Brodd
    Hired at Stockholm in 1653 to serve in New Sweden for a wage of 4 R.D. a month. He probably stayed in New Amsterdam. [Possibly the samer person as Sven Hackeson Brad on the Kat 1649.]

    Jan Jansen, caprenter from Alckmar, Netherlands
    Engaged at 12 R.D. a month. Remained in New Amsterdam.

    Jacob Johansson, boatswain
    remained in New Amsterdam

    Eric Joransson, boatswain
    remained in New Amsterdam

    Berent Josten, sailmaker from Bergen
    Engaged at the rate of 13 florins a month and 2 months in advance.

    Carl Julius, secretary
    Went to New Sweden from New Amsterdam November 30, 1654

    David N....., soldier

    Sigfrid Olofsson, boatswain

    Johan Olofsson, sailor

    Anders Svensson, boatswain

    Olof Torkelsson, boatswain

The expedition from Gothenburg was delayed for want of a couple of sailors and a ship carpenter. Some of the sailors had proven themselves incapable of doing their work, these were discharged and others hired in their places.
The following were hired in Stockholm in 1653, before the Haj came to Gothenburg and whose presence is not determined in New Sweden, therefore, in all probability they did not make the journey, (with one exception).

Gustaf Johansson
Mickel Matson Melos
Nils Norman Ostensson
Nils Olofsson, skinner
Johan Peterson
Lars Erickson Stake

Matheus Stijrman, ship carpenter
[ Elswick was in need of a ship carpenter and engaged Jan Jansen [above]. Therefore it is probably in error that Matheus Stijrman is listed as the carpenter who stayed in Amsterdam, as the author A. Johnson lists him with 'those whose presence has not been determined', pg 723.]

Compiled from:
Swedish Settlements on the Delaware, Amandus Johnson, ©1911.