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Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Carl Stapel says that Adriaen Kempen had commanded the ship Meermin

Carl Stapel had sent me his document about the Zeeland ship Meermin (Meerminne). Adriaen Kempen, who served during the First Anglo-Dutch War, had commanded the Meermin from 1641 until the peace in 1648. In 1648, many ships were inactivated, as the peacetime fleet was limited to 10 ships sent to Brazil and 40 convoyers. Only by 1651 were more ships activated, when there seemed to be an increasing threat of war with England. In 1651, funding was provided to fit out, provide crews, and provisions for 36 cruisers. Many of these were sent to the Mediterranean Sea, while others operated in the North Sea. More funds were voted in early 1652 to provide for another 150 ships. 100 were to be provided by the five admiralties and 50 by the Directors of the various seaports. We now find that many of the ships provided by the admiralties were warships, either recently completed or activated from the reserve. Everyone had assumed that all 100 ships were hired merchantmen.

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