MESTERTON, JAMES [SSNE 6696]

Surname
MESTERTON, MESTERTOUN, MAISTERTOUN, MAISTERTON, MESTERTHUN, MASTERTON
First name
JAMES, JACOB
Title/rank
MERCHANT
Nationality
SCOT
Region
EDINBURGH?

Text source

James Mesterton's (1625-1689) parentage remains murky. Some sources claim that he was the son of Archibald Mesterton, allegedly a former governor of Edinburgh castle (requires substantiation) and his wife Christina (Christiane Meine). Other sources suggest that James Mesterton's father might have been a skipper from Leith called Archibald Masterton, who married Lux Cobron, and may possibly later have married a Christina Meine. 

James Mesterton certainly made his way to Sweden in the mid-1600s, where he became a merchant burgess of Stockholm in 1652, apparently noted as "from Lijt" (Leith), perhaps giving credence to the aforenoted Archibald Masterton, skipper, being his father. James Mesterton had been working for John Halliday [SSNE 7358] for eight years(!) before becoming a burgess, dating his arrival in Sweden to 1644. 'This would surely have provided James Mesterton with an instant network amongst the settled Scottish mercantile community in Stockholm. Indeed, Halliday and James Feif [SSNE 4779] stood as guarantors for Mesterton when he took his oath as burgess.

James Mesterton married twice. Firstly, in 1658, to 'Kerstin Scrymgeour' [some sources say Kerstin Jacobsdotter], the year he appears in the records of St Nicholas Church. That Kerstin/Christina's maiden name may have been Scrymgeour is an interesting issue: was she perhaps a Scot or of Scottish descent herself? Her first marriage had been to Hans Hansson, a fairly well-to-do Stockholm burgess. Through Christina James Mesterton came to live in Nygränd 2 in Gamla Stan, Stockholm. Christina Jakobsdotter's first husband, Hans Hansson, had either commissioned the building in 1651 or greatly renovated it that year, whether the plot had been in herited by his wife, or purchased by Hansson remains unclear. The couple's initials - H H S and C I D - can still be seen above the very fine medieval portal. James Mesterton came to own the house after Christina's death in 1668. James Mesterton's apparent second wife was Petronella Scheaij. With these women he had seven children; Sara(1660-), Kristina (1664-), Peter (1671-1774), Jakob (1673-1720) [SSNE 919], Eva Maria (1677-), Petronella (1678-1752), Lucia (1680-). Several of these were baptised in Stockholm's Nikolai Kyrka between 1671 and 1681. The records of Maria Kyrka in Stockholm reveal that James buried several people in the church including a child of Alexander Pattillo [SSNE 7241] on 22 August 1684, and William Smith's child on 23 March 1694. 

By 1660 James Mesterton had a farm in Arboga and later owned property in other parts of Sweden. According to one source James Mesterton apparently married a second time, to Petronella Schaeij, possibly after his move away from Stockholm.

It is presumably this James Mesterton who was involved in a case with James Porteous [SSNE 791] regarding a sum of money Porteous owed him.

James Mesterton had other Scottish connections. On 24 June 1687 he shipped a quantity of iron (worth £6958:32) to the Scottish merchant in Rotterdam, Andrew Russell [SSNE 143], which was consigned by the merchant Patrick Thomson [SSNE 6475] in Stockholm on the ship 'The Mary' owned by John Gib of Bo'ness. Another Scot shipping on the same ship was Alexander Pattillo [SSNE 7241].

Another shipment was made from Stockholm, but via James Thomson in Norrkoping worth £1697:41 in September the same year.

James Mesterton died in 1689.

 

Sources: In 1684 he co-signed a letter in Stockholm with the British merchants Adam Leyell [SSNE 6493], Henry Leyell [SSNE 3614], John Bower [SSNE 7761], Thomas Lake [SSNE 8343], Johan Geddes (possibly [SSNE 2321]) and John Strother [SSNE 8344]. See https://sok.riksarkivet.se/bildvisning/A0073901_00251#?c=&m=&s=&cv=250&xywh=2859%2C577%2C4757%2C2608

Stockholms Stadsarkivet, Maria Församling, Register över döda, 1681-1700, p.489; Stockholm Stadsarkiv, (Storkyrkan) Nikolai församling dopböker, 1623-1717, I, p.339; National Archives of Scotland, Russell Papers, RH15/106/636, f2. James Thomson to Andrew Russell, 12 September 1687. Also f5. Patrick Thomson to Andrew Russell, Invoice of iron shipped aboard 'The Mary', 24 June 1687; Svenska Riksradets Protokoll, vol. XVIII, pp.104-106; Svensk Biografisk Lexicon, vol25, p.430; T. Fischer, The Scots in Sweden, (Edinburgh, 1907), p.32; A. Hansson, ‘Ett stockholmskt borgarhus från slutet av vasatiden’, in Fataburen, C. Axel-Nilssson (ed.), Stockholm: Nordiska museets förlag,p.223; F.U. Wrangel,  Stockholmiana I-IV, (Stockholm, 1912), p.250-251; Eric E. Etzel, 'Notes on Swedo-Scottish Families' in Scottish Historical Review, vol. IX (1912), p.271; Steve Murdoch, Network North: Scottish Kin, Commercial and Covert Associations in Northern Europe, 1603-1746 (Brill, Leiden, 2006), pp.161, 193, 245. With thanks to Ossian Mesterton for information from his website on the children of James Mesterton.

HouseinStockholm

Service record

SWEDEN, STOCKHOLM, ARBOGA
Arrived 1644-01-01
Departed 1689-12-31
Capacity IRON MERCHANT, FARM OWNER, BURGESS?, purpose TRADE, COMMERCE
SWEDEN, STOCKHOLM
Arrived 1652-12-31, as BURGESS
Departed 0000-01-01
Capacity BURGESS, purpose COMMERCIAL, MERCANTILE