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Alexander Waddell was a merchant and burgess of Stockholm from before 1670 as in that year Adam Leijell [SSNE 6493] and his brother David [SSNE 824] and others raised a case against him. The editor of the Marscoe-David Letters believes erroneously (p.126) that Waddell and the Scots were newcomers to Stockholm in the 1670s when in fact the nation had maintained a presence in the city for over a century by that point. In 1672 Waddell supplied some 29% of the Iron from Stockholm to the Marscoe-David Company (pp.126-127). 

On 24 July 1672 (pp.353-354) he wrote to London that he had drawn £1000 against the Marscoe-David Company against goods on the ship 'De Hoop' and the same amount against the same goods on Nathaniel Wilson in Hamburg. He had also sent a bill of Lading from Gothenburg regarding 200slb of iron consigned to Marscoe-David aboard the ship 'Konig David'. In this same letter, Waddell pointed out that the ship Halven Maend[t] was in the Sound and was a Swedish ship and that all the cargo in her belonged to Waddell. With some dozen dealers competing in the same field, prices were sluggish and cash in short supply as Marscoe-David working on a six month credit basis. He further supplied some £2,183 gross worth of pitch and tar to the company, though with the new 'renovated Tar Company, this business was lost (p.163). He had mentioned in his letter of 24 July (pp353-354) that he had hoped to gain a directorship in the new Tar Company and if got it he would have given exclusive commissions to Marscoe-David. However, he did not get it. Further, Waddell's commissions were rebuffed by the company who still clung to the credit system and other dealers went bankrupt including the Momma-Reenstierna (pp.127, 130, 153). Waddell tried to draw £3,350 through Hamburg, Amsterdam and Edinburgh and could demonstrate to his partners that he had shipped £6,629 worth of goods to London. Since Marscoe-David could not pay up, Waddell transferred his stocks to another agent, Edward Nelthrop. By October 1672, Waddell's partnership with Marscoe-David had collapsed (p.136) and he noted with interest the collapse of Abraham Reenstierna and the general lack of money in Sweden. Thereafter Waddell's fortunes deteriorated. From the surviving correspondence relating to this man, it is clear that he was initially part of a Scottish mercantile network covering Stockholm, Copenhagen, Amsterdam and London. Members included William [SSNE 807], Johan [SSNE 8342], Jacob [SSNE 8341] and David Strang [SSNE 4927], William Halliday [SSNE 787], George Scott 9possibly [SSNE 4683] and Alexander himself. While the non-payment of debts by Marscoe-David undoubtedly crippled Waddell, it was his falling out with his Scottish business partners that finished him off. Initially Waddell traded in London with William Strang who was a Swedish born Scot and burgess of Amsterdam living and trading in London at the outbreak of the third Anglo-Dutch war. On 26 June 1672, Waddell wrote his first letter to the Marscoe-David group (pp.351-352) in which he made it quite clear that he wished to transfer all his business to them and away from William Strang, due no doubt to the latter's status as a Dutch citizen. He pointed out that Strang and the skipper of Waddell's ship De Hoop had been informed of this, and that should Strang become awkward about this, Waddell would employ his attorney to compel Strang to comply with orders to hand over his goods. Whether Strang did this or not is unclear, but Waddell then engaged David Strang in Amsterdam to consign another cargo.

In the National Archives of Scotland, Waddell is also mentioned in connection with David Strang, and a ship taken as prize during the third Anglo-Dutch war and this may be the route of the above correspondence. The Admiralty decreet mentions that the ship carried insufficient passes and some fictitious ones from Alexander Waddell, a citizen of Stockholm. He was said to own both ship and cargo. Yet according to deposition of the skipper, at the time of loading, the ship was in Holland and designed to go to Sweden. The ship had never been in Sweden and Waddell was not the sole owner, but in partner ship with several others and the skippers oath contradicted the manifest. The skipper admitted to being employed by David Strang of Amsterdam since September past and that Waddell’s pass related to April past. He had both Swedish and Danish passes. The Scots argued that both ship and goods belonged to Amsterdamers. The ship was judged prize and confiscated along with the goods. A document from the Danish archive states that the St John which was taken as she sailed between Archangel in Russia and Amsterdam. The skipper and crew had pretended that the destination for the goods was Swedish controlled Bremen and each man aboard had been paid 25 guilders to say so by the Dutch merchant who was also captured aboard. Another ship of Waddel's, The Diamond, was also taken by the Scots off the Dutch coast after which he petitioned the king. In total, Waddell lost three ships. Waddell moved to Elsinore where he was arrested. Waddell wrote a demanding letter to Jakob Momma-Reenstierna in 1673 and some other correspondence relating to David Strang around the same time and 'fled his creditors' (p.153). On 3 May 1673 (pp.366-367) he wrote to the Marscoe-David company to let them know that he had left Stockholm a fortnight previously and was shocked and distressed to learn that neither he nor Mr Beck's drafts had been honoured by the company. This he pointed out was in contradiction to the Companies promises as they had told him he could draw on them. This whole letter is one of shock and horror and begging the Company to let him know the true extent of his finances, who was owe him money and if they could furnish him with money now, for without it he could not proceed on his journey. He added forcefully 'I and my whole House could be ruined by it, for which you will have to answer severely before God'. He concluded this letter with a final demand for a true reckoning of his finances and a plea to be given leave to draw money so he could complete his journey. Letters and addenda of 6 August 1675 from Copenhagen discuss his correspondence with Envoy Lillecrona on the subject in which he notes 'his long and ruinous arrest', while others in CSPD, 1675-1676, pp.125-126, again discuss his creditors.

Sources: Riksarkivets ämnessamlingar. Personhistoria https://sok.riksarkivet.se/bildvisning/A0074951_00008#?c=&m=&s=&cv=7&xywh=-824%2C1607%2C8278%2C4539



In correspondence of David Strang: https://sok.riksarkivet.se/bildvisning/A0073901_00247#?c=&m=&s=&cv=246&xywh=2581%2C3059%2C3304%2C1811

National Archives of Scotland, AC7/3, Register of Decreets, 1672-1675, ff.350-366. 19 November 1672. Captain James Douglas against Louis Neilson (some sources say Laers Wolfson) of the ship St John; Danish Rigsarkiv, England A III, 39, f.143 letter from C. Buckerstaffe on behalf of the Scottish Admiralty Court, Edinburgh, 22 November 1672; Swedish Riksarkiv, Förteckning över Momma-Reenstierna Samlingen, part C: brev till Bröderna Momma-Reenstierna ingångna skrivelser, section 2, brev till Jacob Momma-Reenstierna - E2523, 55, 1673. See also section 3, Affärer och processer med nedan nämda enskilda personer, E2606, 139; Swedish Riksarkiv, Biographica Microcard, E01946 1/8. Letter to the Swedish king dated Haffnia [Copenhagen] 6 August 1675 and signed by Alexander Waddell. Erroneous reference here to 'engelska Willem Strang Amsterdams borgare' and 'svensk fodd David Strang'. In fact Willem was from Forfar in Scotland; Swedish Riksarkivet, Brev till Magnus de la Gardie a) från enskilda, 1675, one letter from Alexander Waddel; T. Fischer, The Scots in Sweden (Edinburgh, 1907), pp.30, 39 and 216; H. Roseveare, (ed.), Markets and Merchants of the Late Seventeenth Century: The Marscoe-David Letters, 1668-1680 (Oxford, 1987), pp.351-352. Letters from Waddell to Leonora Marscoe and Peter Joye, Stockholm, 26 June 1672, 24 July 1672 (pp.353-4), 3 May 1673 (pp.366-367). Also editorial, pp.126-127, 130, 136, 153 and 163; Steve Murdoch, Network North: Scottish Kin, Commercial and Covert Associations in Northern Europe, 1603-1746 (Brill, Leiden, 2006), pp.156, 185-186, 189; Curt Haij, 'Skottar i Stockholm under 1600-talet', unpublished list of names, Hintze biblioteket, Genealogiska Föreningen, Sundbyberg, Stockholm. Thanks to Ardis Dreisbach for this information

Service record

Arrived 1670-01-01
Departed 1680-12-31