Navy (flottan) documents – an overview

boatmandec1Rullor flottan 1635-1915 Ib:70 (1810-1810) Image 250 (AID: v390213.b250, NAD: SE/KrA/0503036) Link.

ArkivDigital has photographed many documents which include information about naval (flottan) employees. This blog gives a short overview of the sources that are available in ArkivDigital.

To research a person who served in the Navy (flottan), one begins by looking at what is available in the archive, Rullor flottan 1635-1915. The seamen (båtsmännen) have their own series of records, Rullor båtsmanskompanier (volumes IV: 1-79). In this series, you will find different types of records regarding the seamen including the general muster rolls. The seamen muster rolls are organized in the same manner as the muster rolls for soldiers. (Link to blog about general muster rolls.) In these muster rolls, one can follow a sailor’s career from enlistment to discharge.

In the archive, Rullor flottan 1635-1915, there are many other types of records. The archive is divided into a number of diverse record series such as: rolls for companies in Karlskrona, Stockholm and Göteborg (Rullor Karlskrona, Stockholm och Göteborg), rolls for non-commissioned officers (Underofficersrullor), rolls for the company of young sailor boys (Rullor skeppsgossekompanier), rolls of seaman companies (Rullor matroskompanier), rolls of the companies in Finland (Finska rullor), rolls for navigators and civil workers in the pilot service (Lotsrullor) as well as a large number of various rolls for officers and crew at the Stockholm station.

botsman1201secondRullor flottan 1635-1915 XII:16 (1791-1791) Image 113 (AID: v398912.b113, NAD: SE/KrA/0503036) Link.

In the archive, Rullor flottan 1635-1915, one not only finds information about the seamen but much more. The archive includes records series for various workgroups such as carpenters and other tradesmen. One workgroup that has its own series is the pilots (lotsarna) or navigators in the piloting service The image above is from a lotsrulla from the year 1791.

In addition to the archive, Rullor flottan 1635-1915, there are a number of other archives and records that provide information about the Navy (flottan).  Below is a list of the most important sources found in ArkivDigital.

Seaman Records (Båtsmansrullor): In the late 1800’s, a little book was created for each seaman and these books contain much more detailed information than the general muster rolls thus allowing one to easily follow the seaman’s career. You can find the boatman rolls in ArkivDigital in the various archives for Karlskrona Station and Stockholm Station in the military archive. Read more here. These records are now completely available in ArkivDigital.

Naval Ship Muster Rolls (Skeppsmönsterrullor)The Naval Ship Muster Rolls (Skeppsmönsterrullor) offer information about a ship’s sailings as well as who served on the vessel. These records are found in the following archive, Flottans arkiv: Amiralitetskollegiets med efterföljares kontor, Arméns flotta, loggböcker, rullor m.m.: Sjöexpeditioner, skeppsmönsterrullor 1689-1873Read more here.

Service Records (Meritförteckningar): In the archive, Meritförteckningar flottan, you can find detailed information both about officers and non-commissioned officers. You can follow each person’s military career including information such as education, promotions, peace time activities together with completed expeditions and other trips.

Pension documents (Pensionshandlingar): In the archive, Flottans pensionskassa, you will find records for the personnel who received a pension (gratial).  Read more here.

Read blog entry in Swedish.

ArkivDigital

Boatman Rolls (Båtsmansrullor) – a unique source

boatman1
Karlskrona station: Bohus 1. båtsmanskompani E9:8 (0-9999) Image 128 (AID: v33634.b128, NAD: SE/KrA/0510086Ö) Link.

For those who are interested in researching Navy seamen (båtsmän) in the late 1800’s, the boatman rolls (båtsmansrullorna) are a real goldmine.  In the late 1800’s, a little book was created for each sailor and these books contain much more detailed information than the general muster rolls thus allowing one to easily follow the sailor’s military career.

As an example as to what one can find in a boatman’s roll, we shall look at the roll for Gustaf Johansson Blå, boatman number 189 in Bohus första båtsmanskompani.  The record shown in the above image has two columns.  The first column provides basic information such as birth date and place along with enrollment and discharge dates.  Gustaf was born on the 19th of November in 1862 in Skee parish. In the second column, you will find a detailed physical description of Gustaf at the time of his enrollment.  In this case we see that Gustaf was 169 centimeters tall, had gray-blue eyes, light flax-colored hair, dark eye brows, and a few scars.

boatman2Karlskrona station: Bohus 1. båtsmanskompani E9:8 (0-9999) Image 129 (AID: v33634.b129, NAD: SE/KrA/0510086Ö) Link.

In the boatman rolls, a complete record of when and where the sailor served both on land and sea is recorded (see image above). In Gustaf’s case, 15 different service duties or assignments are noted. One gets to know for example that Gustaf’s career began with a recruiting course at a military school from the 23rd of September 1884 until the 13th of April 1885 and that from the 17th of October 1887 until the 13th of June 1888, he served as a boiler man on the small sailing warship, Balder.

boatman3Karlskrona station: Bohus 1. båtsmanskompani E9:8 (0-9999) Image 132 (AID: v33634.b132, NAD: SE/KrA/0510086Ö) Link.

On the last page of the boatman’s roll, any disciplinary actions were recorded. In Gustaf’s case there are two entries. On the 21st of July 1886 he was sentenced to four days arrest in the guard house for indecent behavior and on the 31st of August 1888, he was sentenced to two months in prison. The reason for the imprisonment was refusal to attend to his duties and disrespect shown toward his superior.

You can find the boatman rolls in ArkivDigital in the various archives for Karlskrona Station and Stockholms Station in the military archive.

Read original blog entry in Swedish.

ArkivDigital