New Sweden Governor Johan Risingh 1654

Johan Risingh was the last Governor of New Sweden having only a one year term: 1654 to 1655. He was born in Sweden in 1617 and attended University in Uppsala, and Leyden (Holland). Before becoming Governor, he was a well regarded economist in Sweden.

One of his first acts in New Sweden was to seize control of Fort Casimir, which as noted in other posts, was constructed by Dutch Governor Peter Stuyvesant in 1651 as part of the competition between the 2 colonies. The fort was subsequently renamed Fort Trinity, however, it was retaken by the Dutch 1655.  After this, the Swedes were offered the opportunity to live under Dutch rule, however, they refused so they were sent back to Sweden.

Although Risingh died in poverty in Stockholm in 1672, his short term in New Sweden was highlighted by the extensive reports that he wrote about his governorship. These reports have provides a valuable history of New Sweden, and a contemporary copy is stored in the National Library of Sweden.


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