Abraham Rutter

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Abraham Rutter
Person Abraham Rutter
First name Abraham
Middle name(s)
Last name Rutter
Spouse of
Widow of
Occupation Merchant
Secondary shorebased occupation
Mariner occupation
Associated with ship(s)
Training Not apprentice
Is apprentice of
Was apprentice of
Had apprentice(s)
Citizen Unknown
Literacy Signature
Has opening text Abraham Rutter
Has signoff text Abraham Rutter
Signoff image (Invalid transcription image)
Language skills English language
Has interpreter
Birth street
Birth parish
Birth town
Birth county
Birth province
Birth country
Res street
Res parish
Res town London
Res county
Res province
Res country England
Birth year 1625
Marriage year
Death year
Probate date
First deposition age 30
Primary sources
Act book start page(s)
Personal answer start page(s)
Allegation start page(s)
Interrogatories page(s)
Deposition start page(s) HCA 13/70 f.651v Annotate, HCA 13/72 f.469v Annotate
Chancery start page(s)
Letter start page(s)
Miscellaneous start page(s)
Act book date(s)
Personal answer date(s)
Allegation date(s)
Interrogatories date(s)
Deposition date(s) Nov 17 1655, Aug 6 1658
How complete is this biography?
Has infobox completed Yes
Has synthesis completed No
Has HCA evidence completed No
Has source comment completed No
Ship classification
Type of ship N/A
Silver Ship litigation in 1650s
Role in Silver Ship litigation None

Biographical synthesis

Abraham Rutter (b. ca. 1625; d. ?). Merchant.

Bookkeeper of London merchant Antonio ffernandez Caravajall from 1640 to 1652. Still bookkeeper in 1658 ("whose booke keeper this deponent for all the said time hath beene, and still is")[1]

Resident in London in 1655 and in 1658.

Evidence from High Court of Admiralty


Thirty year old Abraham Rutter deposed on November 17th 1655 in the High Court of Admiralty. He was examined on a libel on behalf of Antonio ffernandez Caravajall in the cause "Antonio ffernandez Caravajall of London merchant against the shipp Saint Mary and} against Marcus de la Rambida".[2]

The case concerned the shipment of goods from London to Spain by Antonio ffernandez Caravajall at the order of Marcus da la Rumbida in the mid-a640s.

Abraham Rutter confirmed that the goods shipped were for de la Rumbida and duely paid for, saying that " in or about the moneth of October in the yeare 1644 the said Marcus da la Rumbida had and received at Paris and other places in ffrance upon the credit and account of the said Antonio ffernandez Caravashall the number of 338 crownes, amounting in sterling money to 72 li 7 s 6 d, which hee knoweth being then in ffrance with him, and delivereing to him part of the moneys in behalfe of the said Mr Fernandez and seeing his letters of credit from fernandez for the rest, and being specially acquainted with his receipt of the said rest, and passing the same to accompt; and the said Marcus da la Rumbida promised to pay and satisfy the same back to the said Fernandez".[3]

Rutter referred to his knowledge of Carvajall's account books, saying he had "seene an accompt made up in the yeare 1644 betwixt the said Fernandez and the said Rumbida who was then in this citie, wherein the said Rumbida chardged himself as debitor to Mr fernandez in the summe of 3000 li sterling as by rorder of the said Rumbida invested in ffrance by Antonio Dias ffrances in linnen cloth sent for Spaine and there received by his order in the yeares 1642 or 1643 or thereabouts. And this deponent beleeveth that the said Fernandez hath since paid the said summe to the said Antonio Dias ffrances, having since seene generall releases from the said ffrances to the said fernandez of and from all accompts".[4]

Rumbida appears to have been involved in importing bullion to England in the 16540s, since Rutter stated that "from the yeare 1644 to the yeare 1647 the said Antonio ffernandez prosecuted a sute on the behalfe of the said Rumebida and by his order touching certaine silver brought from the West Indies to England, and was therein at greate charge and expence of money".[5]

Carvajall had received a two percent provision on all goods bought and sent by Carvajall on behalf of Rumbida.[6]


Thirty-five year old Abraham Rutter deposed on August 6th 1658 in the High Court of Admiralty. He was examined on an allegation on behalf of Antonio Fernandez Carvajal in "A buisinesse of Examination of wittnesses on the behalfe of Antonio fernandez Carvajal of London merchant concerning two hundred twenty two chests of sugar, one hundred and thirteene baggs of shumack and forty Rolls of tobacco laden on board the shipp the New England Merchant whereof William Parish was master at Porto Porto in Portugall and there afterwards seized upon by the Officers there and unladen out of her again".[7]

The case concerned the freighting of the ship the New England Merchant by Antonio Fernandez Carvajal in from November 1657 to February 1658to sail from London to Dartmouth to take on a lading of fish, and then to Porto Port in Portugal.

Abraham Rutter stated that the lading of fish was for the use and account of Caravajal as well as Antonio Rodrigues do Morais and Jeronimo and Raphael Rodrigues Lamego, merchants of Rouen in France. The ship was to return from Porto Port either to Newhaven or to Rouen with goods laded at Porto Port for Caravajal's account. The ship arrived safely at Dartmouth, where Caravajal's agent Thomas Jago laded fish to the value of £1250.[8] At Porto Port the fish were delivered to Policarpia de Oliveyra, agent of Caravajal. This agent then invested the proveeds in a lading of sugars, shumack and tobaccoes to be sent to Newhaven or Rouen, consigned to Anthonio Rodrigues Morais and Jeronimo and Raphael Rodrigues Lamego, but for Caravajal's account. According to Caravajal's books, which Abraham Rutter still kept as bookkepper, Anthonio Rodrigues Morais and Jeronimo and Raphael Rodrigues Lamego were indebted to Caravajal to th esum of £3500. However, shortly after the buying of "222. chests of sugars, 113. baggs of shumack and forty Rolls of Tobacco" and lading onto the New England Merchant, the goods were seized by the officers of the Inquisition at Porto Port and carried back to shore and detained, and the ship was not permitted to sail to France.[9]

Rutter concluded by stating that "Antonio fernandez Cavajial was and is a merchant of this Citie of London, and there dwelleth and keepeth his wife house and family, and hath soe lived there by the space of twenty yeares of this deponents certaine knowledge this deponent having had relation to him by the space of seaventeene yeares of that time or thereabouts, and thereby alsoe well knoweth that he the said Mr ffernandez was and is a Subject and free denizen of th Commonwealth of England".[10]

Comment on sources


"Report on the Records of the City of Exeter (AD.1622) may be of interest: May 27, 1622 - Abraham RUTTER - The, Lords of the Council forward to the Mayor a warrant for the arrest of Abraham Rutter, a citizen of Exeter, as soon as he should return from the Low Countries. (He was charged with exporting gold and, silver out of the realm between Aug. 27, l6l9 and May 1622, but cleared of the charge on Nov. 30, l622.) 'POSTSCRIPT - You are to carrie this business very secretly least that Rutter having notice thereof doe forbeare to returne thither and keepe out of the way'. He apparently suffered no harm, because on Sep. 17, 1629 • 'Royal Licence to Abraham Rutter, of Exeter, Merchant, to export various kinds of merchandise not exceeding value £50,000...."[11]


Devon Archives and Local Studies Service (South West Heritage Trust), Ref: 1926 B/RB/T/2/1, Assignment of mortgage. 1. Edward Leyminge of Exeter, merchant. 2. Magdalene Rutter of Berry Pomeroy, widow. Sara Rutter her daughter. William Randall of Berry Pomeroy, clerk. Abraham Rutter of London, merchant. John Bulley of Ipplepen, yeoman. Samuel Langworthy of Bridgetown Pomeroy, glover. John Bulley of Berry Pomeroy, yeoman. Martin Parris of Plymouth, saddler. Premises: messuage in Towsington.
  1. HCA 13/72 f.470v
  2. HCA 13/70 f.651v
  3. HCA 13/70 f.652r
  4. HCA 13/70 f.652v
  5. HCA 13/70 f.652v
  6. HCA 13/70 f.652v
  7. HCA 13/72 f.469v
  8. HCA 13/72 f.470r
  9. HCA 13/72 f.471v
  10. HCA 13/72 f.472r
  11. Rootsweb, RUTTER-L Archives, Mike Craig, Subject: Origins of Rutter name, Thur, Oct 2003, viewed 28/10/2016